In this heartfelt interview, mother-daughter duo India and Catherine Oxenberg discuss their profound journey of healing and resilience following India's escape from a dangerous cult. They open up about their evolving relationship, the challenges they faced, and the steps they took toward recovery and mutual understanding.


Catherine Oxenberg reflects on the trauma of losing her daughter to a cult and the intense effort required to reconnect. She shares how, despite the cult's attempts to polarize their relationship, she maintained faith that their bond would ultimately prevail. Catherine's unwavering belief in their spiritual connection and her commitment to helping others, even while India was still entrapped, underscored her determination and love.

India, on the other hand, speaks about the transformation in their relationship, emphasizing the depth of mutual respect and understanding they've developed. She acknowledges the challenges of reconciling after years of manipulation but highlights their successful journey to rebuild their bond and work together as a united team.


Forgiveness played a crucial role in their healing process. India shares how her mother's relentless efforts to understand cult dynamics and her unwavering support helped melt the "iceberg" that had formed around her heart. Catherine, in turn, discusses the importance of self-forgiveness, as experts reassured her that it wasn't her fault but the cult's calculated manipulation.

India's path to self-forgiveness involved understanding the mechanisms of indoctrination and brainwashing. She explains that gaining compassion for herself was essential, as it allowed her to move beyond self-blame and start healing.


India describes the internal battle she faced while trying to reclaim her sense of self. She vividly recounts how, even a year into deprogramming, she struggled to feel love for her mother due to the deep-seated programming. Over time, however, she fought back against the negative self-talk and began to rebuild a positive inner dialogue, likening it to "faking it till you make it."

She emphasizes the importance of having a support system that believes in one's ability to heal, which was pivotal for her during the darkest moments of her recovery. India's journey involved recognizing the power of her intuition and learning to trust it again after it had been systematically suppressed by the cult.


Writing her book and participating in the documentary "Seduced" were transformative experiences for India. She explains how expressing her story publicly was a form of rebellion against the cult's rules and helped her reclaim her narrative. Despite the emotional toll and the nightmares that accompanied this process, it was a crucial step in her healing journey.


India Oxenberg's story is one of incredible strength and resilience. As she continues to heal and grow, she aims to make healing accessible to all through her and her mother's foundation. Their mission is to provide safe communities and resources to prevent others from experiencing similar traumas.


  • Mutual Understanding: India's and Catherine's relationship evolved through deep mutual understanding and respect, strengthened by their shared experiences and commitment to healing.
  • Role of Forgiveness: Forgiveness, both of oneself and each other, was crucial in their journey to rebuild their bond and heal from past traumas.
  • Internal Struggles: Overcoming negative self-talk and rebuilding a positive inner dialogue were significant challenges that India faced on her path to recovery.
  • Power of Storytelling: Expressing her experiences through writing and public speaking helped India reclaim her narrative and facilitated her healing process.


India and Catherine Oxenberg are dedicated to their foundation's mission to make healing accessible to all, providing support and resources to those in need.

This interview provides a powerful insight into the resilience and strength required to overcome extreme adversity, highlighting the importance of support, understanding, and self-forgiveness in the healing process.

To watch our full interview with India & Catherine Oxenberg, visit the Self-Care Is For Everyone YouTube channel where we regularly host friends of the brand for deeper conversations about mental health, self-care & healing.