longhairGal - what you say is very true - Indeed early on I was told a daft thing by an elder that I needed to work fulltime to support my pioneer husband!!!! I immediately told my husband saying I thought I was supposed to be aiming to pioneer too!!! well we approached another elder and he said that elder is talking rubbish take not notice!!!
Just recently I have learned that high control groups tend to keep their members feeling uncertain and this uncertainty can build to feeling dread all the time. This then builds dependency and all of this may be done via unconscious psychological processes so even the hierarchy may not consciously know what they are creating and yet still they may feel the same uncertainty and dread. I realise now that throughout my time as witness I felt a this sense of uncertainty and dread and was probably building dependency on the group all the time.
edit: just to add there is debate about what exactly is going on in high control or cultic groups so there is no one size fits all model. I mention the above (dependency, dread and debility) because it closely matches my own experiences.