"The author describes women who join cults as intelligent, active, and seeking to make an impact. These women are looking for an environment where they can experience themselves as powerful but not competitive, be part of a community where they can get recognition and mentorship, and feel somewhat safe from the gender inequities that characterize the culture at large. In reality, most cultic groups are characterized by attributes that are diametrically opposed to those they emanate and espouse. Thus, women in such groups become anxious and depressed but have difficulty leaving because the manipulative techniques of the leaders mirror the gender power differentials to which women are accustomed."
-- The abstract to "Gender Attributes That Affect Women’s Attraction to and Involvement in Cults" by Shelly Rosen, C.S.W., for the International Cultic Studies Association