NOT feeling like there life's been affected that negatively by their involvement with JW's?
I ask because while I do believe being raised a Jehovahs Witness has probably done me some considerable emotional damage, I still can't imagaine it hurt me anymore (and in a lot of cases I'm sure it did far less damage) than the average non JW upbringing
I had no debilitating diseases, no broken family, kind and loving parents etc...You get my point though?
While I clearly don't believe that JW's have the truth I have no problem with them believing it. I think some people have a need to believe in SOMETHING and it fills a space in their life. Hell, I think a lot of them know it wouldn't hold up to close scrutiny but don't want to go too far down that road 'cos then they'll loose a whole bunch of coping mechanisms. I was always a stubborn one and a thinker and as such it reached a point when I was 18 (compounded by personal problems with elders in my congreagtion) where I knew categorically it wasn't true and no longer feared repercussions.
Anyway, I met some good JW's and some loathsome ones in my time but the same goes the people in my life since and I have been left feeling pleased that I have some sense of spirituality even if I'm very wary of where to direct it!
The problem is (I hope this isn't offensive to people here but knowing me and my fat mouth it's gonna be!) having read some of the posts I'm left with a little anger towards some of you.
To deviate for a minute, a friend of mine, previously unflappably happy, went through a fairly bad bout of depression once. When he finally started to recover he explained to me it had been triggered by his brother. His brother had recently had a breakdown and, while undergoing therapy, the therapist had told him that his problems all stemmed from his mother and father. My friend was told this and what his mind absorbed from this was "We have the same parents, if my brothers had a breakdown because of them then I must be completely screwed".
That's kind of how I felt reading through some of your posts. I feel fine but some of you seem traumatised and/or in need of extensive help or reproramming which in turn makes me wonder if my general happy demeanor is a cover for something far darker going on inside my brainspace. Obviously some of you had far worse experiences than me. It also sounds like some of you like the drama and the whinging.
I know these kind of comments won't neccesarily ingratiate me to a lot of you but I think it's important to move forwards with your lives and while a little talk can help you get perspective and vent anger, constantly revisitng your past is just plain depressing. The best thing about your past is that it's already happened, OK?
So, a bit long, unfocussed but those are my intial thoughts. It's still nice to have found a forum populated by people with similar experiences (being a JW did make up 18 years of my life which is still the majority of it ya know!)