It's really good to read stories of other people that have experienced some of the same things I have. I haven't ever posted or even talked to another ex-JW except for my Uncle who I have just recently started a relationship with.
The sad thing is that I am 30 years old and I am still struggling with the past....I'm soo sick of it. I quit going to meetings when I was 16 and put into a foster home. It was a relief but it also came at a price. I was disfellowshipped at 14 and again at 20. Before I was disfellowshipped the first time I was put on "public reproof" which is not much different than disfellowshipping. Worldly kids were "bad association" for me and I was "bad association" for witness kids. I thought about suicide all the time. Somehow I made it through my teen years...I married at 17 had a baby at 18...and moved 2500 miles away from my family at 19.
It may sound like I didn't have a close relationship with my family but it's so hard to explain. Everything is good on the surface, we love each other very much, I'm just so fake around them because I nod my head when they talk about the "importance of coming back to the truth." There is so much anger and hurt when I think about what could have been, but I try not to go there. That religion ripped my family apart. I have a 42 year old sister who spent most of her life on drugs and is now somewhere in Oregon homeless. Our mom got cancer when she was 15 and I guess my sister didn't take things well...alot of people said that she was basically posessed by demons.Anyways, our mom was out of it and dad was at work so the "sisters" in the congregation took care of mom at home and gave my sister a hard time...so she left home...at 15. Our mom died that year and my sister wasn't allowed to come to her funeral.I didn't see her much after that. My brother was 13 when all of this happened..I was 4.
To make a very long story short..we were kids and each and every one of us were on our own by the age of 16 and it had everything to do with the religion. I don't know how anybody can stomach being a part of a religion that does the cruelest things in the name of love. The last time I was disfellowshipped I went back to meetings for six months until I was reinstated so that my dad could talk to me...and then I steered clear of any contact with Witnesses except for the occasional phone calls with family.
Currently, I am successful in my career, I'm happily married with a beautiful 12 year old daughter, I have many GREAT friends...but when something upsets me I go right back to where I was so many years ago. Lonely and feeling like nobody can understand. Sometimes my husband gets upset because my nature is to be very private...I call it private, he calls it secretive. Anyways, I guess it's just a long process.
Thanks for listening!