How do you help your kids if they are surrounded by dubs?

by wanderlustguy 10 Replies latest jw friends

  • wanderlustguy

    I got into it with my ex the other day about my kids and them being around their dub relatives. They live with her and I know she needs help from her relatives, but I see it doing bad things. One in particular is the inability to determine their own preferences, they say what they think the people they are with want them to say. The dub family of course drills the JW poison into them constantly and they are punished in one way or another if they act too worldly or say something contrary to dubdom, so now they are beaten down. They are afraid to say what they really think and it takes me forever to get them to start opening up, which is reversed as soon as they get back home and have to go back to saying what everyone wants to hear.

    I hate it because there isn't anyting I can do, and the hardest thing for me when I got out was learning to be honest and start to see things for myself, and not as I was taught to see them. I had to learn to be honest about how I really felt about things, all things from what music I really liked to what I wanted out of life.

    The main fear I have is that they will get sucked in one day when they are feeling insecure about life and see all these people with the fake smiles and love, and get taken down the road most of us left. I wish I knew how to make sure that doesn't happen.

    I'm betting I'm not the only one.


  • Scully

    Your kids are going to value the freedom of thought, opinion and speech that you have been teaching them. They may not realize it now, because it gets them in trouble with the JW relatives, but one day they are going to know that there is someone (you) who will always love them even if you don't share the same opinions as they have, and will allow them to think for themselves and explore issues from different perspectives.

    You are giving them a huge gift, and it will serve them well as they get older.

  • carla

    Maybe you could do some research on critical thinking? (just one site

    Or look to a counselor to help you help your children.

  • compound complex
    compound complex

    Dear WLG,

    You bet correctly, you are NOT the only one. Now that I'm understanding what I see and cherishing my new-found freedom, I want to emancipate all my loved ones. Well, that saying about locking a JW convert in the closet for six months.... Guess what? When it's your kids though, you may feel panicked as you have no seeming control. But it could not have been better expressed than by Scully. Every day our loved ones go out into the world and are shaped by it, not really damaged in any permanent way. As a former-dub parent, I worried endlessly about every evil influence that Satan would visit upon my precious children. Nothing happened. Of course, there were some bad times. Many moments of despair. I wish I had it to do over again, though. But in your case - being on the other side of the fence - the situation is the reverse of what I just described. I now see little dubs in the making amongst my JW associates and want to do something about it. But it's not my place; however, as a concerned friend and a good listener, I will make every effort to plant a seed. Maybe even water it. I've met up with young adults who were raised as JWs - some I hadn't seen in years - and they're OK - they are NORMAL!

    Best wishes on the road ahead,


  • Rebirth

    I'm sorry you are going through this, I deal w/these feelings on a daily basis w/my little ones. I would try to show them how great life can be out there. The more they are exposed to the beauties of your earth and its people, the more they will see that what the W says is a bunch of lies. Get involved in a charity you love and your children can participate in. Seek out friendships w/families that have similar ages as your children. Do you go to any sort of religious service? I bring the girls to a Unitarian Universalist church. It is the church I found that teaches acceptance of all religions and encourages free-thinking. Many of my college professors go there if that gives you any idea. The girls are learning to embrace tolerance to counteract the hate they learn at the KH. Also, celebrate big with them. Make a big deal of their birthdays and holidays. Show them how fun life can be when embracing all there is to enjoy.

    Good luck!


  • Quandry

    I do not think you need to worry about your kids being around their relatives. First of all, kids need to be around people who love them. This generally means relatives who provide a needed support system, no matter what their beliefs are.

    You are there to help your children think for themselves. This will serve them well, if not now, later in life, when the tough decision making is needed.

    You are doing all you can. If you put stress on your ex the children are ultimately the ones who are upset. Relax and enjoy your children when you see them. I work in an elementary school and see children with problems from divorce all the time. The thing children want most is two parents who love them. They do not want to be in the middle of feuding adults.

  • carla

    kids need to be around people who love them.-- Which would eliminate most jw's wouldn't it? Their love is conditional on being a jw.

  • brokenup

    i happen to be the mom of the two girls he speaks of in this thread.... had a differnent name when i started reading this board so i wanted to make sure he knows who i am... First of all the girls and i don't go to any meetings. Ive told you this but just in case it didnt sink in there it is again. I have made my wishes known to my parents of how i intend to bring up the girls and what i want them to know about and make choices about. When i became the main parent in thier lives I had no way to support them. No work history to fall back on. The one thing i had to fall back on was my family. So i would appreciate you not brinnging my family up in this way again. They have helped me through the hardest part of my life. Our split up. I dont expect you to understand that, i've tried to explain it to you many times but its like talking to someone ive never known. I go on with the help of my parents and my brother. I dont bother you for anything unless it is something im not sure how to handIe. I have tried to set a good example by what i am doing with my life to the girls. I have been in college for several years now and have made something of myself that i can be proud of in the years we have been apart. That is the one thing i will drill into our girls is the need for education so they dont have to rely on ANYONE. Believe me that is not a JW teaching and you know that. They bring up nice girls that will be nice JW wives remember i used to be one of those it was the one compliment if you want to call it one that i have gotten from you. Im not sure that is what you meant by saying that to me but i refuse to take it any other way. I really hope i have taught the girls they dont need a husband or any man for that matter to get what they want. More then anything else i want them to be able to handle a life they choose for themselves and i will do all in my power to give them what they want and need to do just that in life. So dont you dare sit there and think that i am about to let them become mindless robots to be used by any idiot guy that comes along. No matter if he be JW or not I wont let it happen to them I was there and dont want and wont let them to wind up with a broken heart because that is where the life we had led. They will be strong women able to stand by any man out there as an equal not a so called compliment that i was taught was the way we are suppose to be. So i will tell you one more time and not anymore then this that the girls dont get anything pushed down on them. Sure they hear mom and dad talk but how are they not going to hear that when i live there and i take care of them. Dont worry they dont have much longer left in life so you really dont have anything to be worried about. That thorn will be gone from your side and you will have to find another to take its place. I read back over this post and i can see my anger at you but only because you again make me feel like i am in the wrong for choices i have had to make. My parents choose to be what they are and i wont tell them they are wrong because they have such a short time left if it makes them happy to be what they are then leave them out of any of this. Every man woman and child has a right to be what they wish to be as much as we may hate it. They are old too old to change what they believe. I wont be any more of a pain to them then i already have become. There is so much i would say but all of it comes out so angry. I am a better person because of my family and so are our girls if you have anymore issues with my family please refer them to me. I dont ask you for much but im asking you for this. Thanks

  • KW13

    It must be hard to watch, i have no advice but i just hope it works out for you.

  • jgnat

    Brave of you, brokenup, to join this thread. I applaud you.

    If we take the Witnesses out of the equation, you two are going through much of the same anguish that all split-up couples go through. Dad questions his significance and fears for his children's future. Mom struggles and feels misunderstood.

    You are both important in the development of your children. Fear is natural, but it often paralyzes. If we're not careful we can speak that fear in to our children. That goes for you too, wanderlustguy. For instance, my son dated a girl who was told from the time she was fourteen that she was a whore who would end up on the streets. Why would her mom say such a thing? Because that's what happened to mom and she was terrified it would happen to her daughter. But her fear caused her to put in motion the one thing mom feared most!

    Your children will make a few bad choices, unless they are angels. Your resiliency and hope will give them the message that even if they make a mistake, they will still be loved, they can still overcome.

    Mom and dad, instead of speaking your fears in to each other, strive to give a common message. Might I suggest:

    Because Life Goes On...Helping Children and Youth Live With Separation and Divorce

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