I just started a community book writing project over at WEBook called "Shunned: Stories of Former Jehovah's Witnesses". It is intended to be a collection of personal stories about leaving the Witnesses and building a new life in the aftermath.
From the description of the project:
shunning: the deliberate avoiding of association with, and habitually keeping away from, an individual or group
There are many religious traditions that practice shunning of current and former members as a form of congregational discipline, but none so large and fierce about the practice as the Watchtower Society, also known as Jehovah's Witnesses. Anabaptist groups (such as the Amish and Mennonites), the Ba' Hai, and some Protestant Evangelical churches practice shunning, but the Jehovah's Witnesses at over 6.5 million members are the largest of them all and the form of shunning they practice is among the most severe, consisting of a complete ban on all unnecessary interactions with anyone who leaves the religion for any reason, including family members.
This means that if a daughter leaves the religion and her parents are still members, the parents will never speak to that daughter again if they can avoid doing so or they may face punishment themselves. No matter who leaves, son or daughter, father, mother, grandparent, or just very dear friend, the treatment is the same. Shunning is expected, enforced. Thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, of people are disfellowshipped by the Watchtower Society or disassociate themselves from the religion every year and are subjected to this harsh, traumatic treatment. It is the fear of losing all the people a person loves that keeps many within the group and it has been the experience of enduring it that has driven many back into the group, even if they don't believe in the teachings.
This book is a collection of stories, experiences, of people who have left the Watchtower Society and what they endured in the process of starting their new lives, trying to move on despite all they've left behind.
If you want to share your story, your experience, go to the site and contribute to the book. Tell your story.