This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.
Thank you everyone for sharing your experiences because they have really helped me to have the courage to speak up about my own experiences. I can’t express how wonderful it has been to finally confront the fact that the PC wasn’t really the heaven on earth I had thought it to be.
I graduated after being at the PC for four years. Then I was consecrated and lasted a grand total of 8 months in Mexico. When I look back on those years I have to say I lived in constant FEAR… In fear of making a mistake, in fear of getting in trouble and in fear of being disfavored in God’s eyes because I didn’t do his will. I thought that if I messed up or showed any rebellion that I would be considered unfit for the lifestyle and sent home… then I would be a failure in the movement’s eyes. Because of this fear I forced myself to put up with everything and never questioned authority but instead bottled up all my thoughts and feelings inside. To make matters even worse I didn’t feel comfortable talking to my spiritual director and no matter how much I tried, I couldn’t connect with her AT ALL!! This consecrated was my spiritual director for three whole years…9th to 11th grade even though I told her on at least three occasions that I just couldn’t open up with her and wanted a different SD. I even told the director and was told it was God’s will that I open up to this consecrated and that if I pushed myself I would grow from this experience. I just remember making things up in spiritual guidance and feeling sooo sick before every SD. Every time there would be a mass SD change I would run to my chapel box thinking that maybe this was the day..but it never was…that is until my senior year.
I remember escaping at times to the stairs leading from the science room/gym to the dorms and just breaking down in tears because I wanted so badly to talk to someone I could trust and be heard by someone. I tried confiding in other PCs but I was always reprimanded for going against “universal charity” and having special friendships. The minute they saw me becoming close to someone I got switched to another team, another housework, another table, etc. It was definitely a very lonely experience. I still struggle getting close to people and it takes me awhile to feel that I can trust a person when I share my thoughts and feelings.
Lastly, I would just like to share a little bit about….Senior year. I was also one of the “prune juice drinkers” AND on the special diets menu because of all the stomach problems I was having due to stress. I’m pretty sure I wasn’t imagining other girls being in the library at 2:00am reading a book because they couldn’t fall asleep due to so much anxiety. For God’s sake we were barely 18 years old and were under sooo much pressure to make major life decisions!!!! I wanted so badly to do God’s will and was so afraid that if I didn’t do it I wouldn’t ever be happy again.
My formators told me I had the qualities and there weren’t any “signs” saying it wasn’t for me….. so I got consecrated. Damn I wish I would have had the courage to say “no this is not for me.” It was only after crying myself to sleep for 8 whole months in Mexico that I was able to realize that, NO God doesn’t want me to be this unhappy and that he will love me even if I’m not consecrated. I can’t even begin to describe the amount of peace, joy, and freedom I felt when I realized this. That life was not meant for me and I know I’m a better person for making that decision…really the first decision I made for myself in the whole 5 years leading up that moment.
This story is a testimony from the 49 Weeks Blog. You can see this and more stories by visiting 49 Weeks.