"What did Bill Gothard do to you?"
I hear that question al the time from my family and people who associate with my family. When I left that world behind, I discovered that people weren't angry about my disloyalty to the Lord so much as they were angry at my disloyalty to their infatuation with Mr. Gothard. I have been reading about the cult mentality and Quiverful, ATI, literalism as per Gothard is infused with similarities.
Bill Gothard has never done anything to me on a personal level. I have met him. My father worked for him. ATI folks are known to have this conversation...
Kid: What's the big deal. I'm not harming anyone by doing x!
ATI: If I do something dangerous and die, am I hurting my mother?
Kid: Well, yeah.
ATI: Then you are hurting someone.
They don't turn this around. Bill Gothard doesn't have to physically beat someone to knock them out. He teaches others how to do it for him. Patriarchy, QF, militant Christianity, purity aren't bad things if they're not abused. In my experience, no one of those things hurt me more than other ideals. But wrapped together and tied with the bow of perfection made them a devestating bomb of abuses.
Don't dress that way, you'll cause men to sin.
Don't sit that way, you'll give the boys ideas they can't control.
Don't say that, it displeases the Lord.
Don't think that, it displeases the Lord.
Don't wear your hair that way, it displeases the Lord.
Don't, don't, don't...
DO have a servant's heart.
DO prize modesty and virtue, even if it means accepting responsibility for a man's lack of self-control.
DO consider yourself subject to a man's rule, God wants you to submit.
DO speak meekly and think purely.
DO give up individuality for the herd.
Amazing how many of those examples fit if you substitute God for Gothard. Gothard is dangerous because people are more than willing to make that substitution.