The autocratic leader will begin by placing restrictions on both themselves and their parishioners when fellowshipping with ministries outside their ranks, allowing very few, if any, to enter their sphere of influence. Limiting social interactions with those outside the cult helps solidify the unity experienced by those within, while also helping to prevent non-members from detecting and objecting to questionable practices.
Initially, the congregation is conditioned to be wary of other churches, perceiving them to be ether woefully deceived or deliberately hypocritical. Eventually, the conditioning will progress to include friends, family, spouses, and anyone that could potentially threaten the authority of the leader. Family members, even living in the same house may notice that their loved one has become aloof or distant.
The end result is to present the cult as the member’s only true friend, family, and spouse; producing within their members a devotion built on fear and psychological abuse. At this stage, the cult can overtly or subtly compel an individual to abandon an education, discard a career, or even divorce their family/spouse.