Obviously this is a very personal matter. I can't believe I'm posting it here but I need to make myself. I'm probably going to regret this.
I have discussed before that I was physically abused and neglected as a jw child. The abuse did not start until jw got involved in our family. Obviously the jw abuser in my family was not forced to do it by the cult but clearly she was pressured to. Recently I had another one of those disturbing dreams and it has me thinking about the long-term effects.
This scholarly article has some interesting information but little seems to apply to me.
- Aggressive and Violent Behavior
- Nonviolent Criminal Behavior
- Substance Abuse
- Self-Injurious and Suicidal Behavior
- Emotional Problems
- Interpersonal Problems (as defined by "feeling shy and self-conscious and feeling that one is not understood or is disliked"--I am the opposite, I am numb to others' opinions about me.)
- Academic and Vocational Difficulties (I am successful in this area but have had some conflicts over certain things, always with a theme of me being unable to tolerate injustice or dishonesty, even putting myself at serious risk to rectify the wrong.)
On pg 9 there is an interesting summary which names certain protective factors that predict better outcomes--cognitive abilities (interesting, I wonder why that would matter), returning to school (I did), and removal from the abusive situation during childhood (I wasn't).
This article talks about physical health problems in adulthood. Bingo. So I guess I somaticize it all.
So those are the consequences I generally don't have, what do I have? It's hard to figure out b/c I don't know what it's like to be a non-abused person. My guesses are a history of deliberately creating distance in adult relationships, even if it meant ending it just to avoid being too close, and a total lack of interest in being a parent (which IIRC did pre-date my jwism though), and my perception that life is a series of serial battles for justice to fight, and the one I'm going to win is always the current one. I also do not like physical affection from anyone but my husband. I dunno what that's about.
A few times I've punched people who startled me. At least one deserved it. I hate being in a room with my back to others. I am generally prepared for warfare--guns in the house that I know how to use, etc. I check my car for people hiding in there before I get in. There are alarms and lights on my property. I know a lot about laws--studied it in college--and have exercised my legal rights many times. In fact my profession is legalistic. I guess this is all related.
Please post your insights/experiences. Thanks