@Stella Forstner I'm not trying to invalidate your story, but while I understand your attempt at empathy (something which is discouraged, as well as sympathy in Scientology).
Scientology is abusive to anyone it comes in contact with, but especially children and especially those children that join the Sea Org. There is a lot more to a Scientology childhood than "touch assists" and "contact assists" and time out.
I had to confess my masturbation habits to my parents as young as 12 years old and that I had watched pornography, in the presence of both my parents and several other people. In the Sea Org I had to give detailed accounts of my mildly sexual relationship with a fellow Sea Org member in front of several people at age 17. I was humiliated and shamed and left on my dad's doorstep only to be humiliated and shamed some more. I spent years hoping that some day I would "fix" my homosexuality through Scientology counseling practices.
So while your story is interesting it also, to someone like me, seems rather sweet. The abuse is deeply ingrained in all of it's teachings; as much a part of it's teachings as Xenu. It's not about Xenu. It has never been about Xenu. It's about child abuse.
You may not be familiar with stories like mine, and I am not trying to allege that you are intentionally undermining the effort to expose the abuses of the Church. I am just trying to give the other side a breath of air here because your story is so mild compared to so many others.
This is probably your experience and the extent of your involvement in the church. I am so happy that you did not get pulled deeper than you did. You are lucky, and fortunate and for that I am grateful. You are someone who was a potential victim that did not become one.
At least from what I have seen thus far in your story.
This is an interesting story, but were I to share mine it would be a much darker version than this.
This series, thus far has hardly covered the actual indoctrination techniques used to keep people in the church through shame and humiliation and the ones for people who are not yet in that effectively eliminate a person's critical thinking abilities.
It doesn't touch on the abusive nature of working on staff and in the Sea Org, where children as young as 13 (in my own personal experiences) and reportedly younger, are asked to sign a billion year contract to work for the organization for a little as $20 a week and averaging 100 hours a week, usually more.
It doesn't touch on the homophobic nature and racist nature of the religious doctrine. IT doesn't touch on the recruitment tactics used against children when they are expected to join the Sea Org. It doesn't talk about the confessionals that people are forced to do nor does it discuss the shame and blame game that Scientology uses on people. Children who are born with disabilities are thought to be "evil" and that they deserve those disabilities. Gays are the scum of society and seek to destroy anyone around them.
Granted your next section is about "leaving the church" which I am assuming is some kind of disconnection. I was disconnected from my family earlier this year. Meaning I had to leave the house and my family will not speak to me simply because I posted on a website called "Ex-Scientologist Message Board" and I wanted to share my story.
If you want to see the other side of Scientology, not the sweet story here that threatens to give me diabetes, here is a link to my story: