As fans of The Walking Dead know, our heros have found sanctuary (or have they) at Alexandria, a seemingly normal safe zone from the walkers/rotters/etc. This past episode had Rick's 'family' invited to a 'welcome to the community' cocktail party, hosted by Deanna, the leader of the community.
Having entered Alexandria, we're starting to see the different levels of PTSD in our little group. Rick, Carol, and Daryl trust no one. Others want to trust, but are wary. At the party, Rick initially refuses an alcoholic beverage, while Abraham finds courage in the available beer. Daryl doesn't even go in the front door, and Sasha goes off on a well-meaning villager who wanted to know her favorite dish.
I know that the horrors of a TV zombie apocalypse are not comparable to being raised in a cult-like religion, but watching this episode, especially how Rick's crew were trying to feel at home, or accept that this party was somehow normal, I could especially relate as someone who feared, and avoided the 'world' growing up. Everything 'worldly' was like a walker coming to try to eat me, and I avoided it as such. But upon learning TTATT, and realizing that the 'world' wasn't the evil, demon possessed people I was led to believe for so long. But even as I realized that the things learned as a JW were incorrect, and I started to move out into the real world, I felt a lot like Rick's people, as they tried to fit in to what to everyone else is a normal situation. They were uncomfortable, slow to let their guard down. Just like I was when I first started making friends on the 'outside'.
The only real difference between us and Rick's group is that they fear being inside the group, while we first feared leaving the confines of the group we were in. But for me, it did get better, but there is a lingering feeling of not always fitting in, even today, several years later.
Hopefully for us, we fare better than our WD friends have so far. And hopefully Daryl takes a shower, Rick doesn't kill Jessie's husband, Carol doesn't tie the kid to the tree for the walkers, and Abraham doesn't have a hangover.