Have you Overcome Guilt & Fear Since Exiting Jehovah's Witnesses ?

by flipper 63 Replies latest jw friends

  • flipper

    Minimus had a great thread recently asking if any who were witnesses felt guilt as a Jehovah's Witness. Thought I would build on that a little dealing with how you have moved on AFTER being a Jehovah's Witness ?

    One definition of guilt in the American Heritage dictionary is : " Self-reproach for supposed inadequacy or wrongdoing ". Many of us as former Jehovah's Witnesses were made to feel a self loathing, or that we weren't good enough in God's eyes, the WT societies eyes, or the elders eyes and that we could NEVER do enough to make up for our deficiencies. Have you been able to develop self esteem after exiting the JW cult ? Or has the damage been such that it is taking YEARS to build up your self esteem ?

    One definition of fear in the same dictionary is : " A feeling of agitation and anxiety caused by the presence or imminence of danger. " As Jehovah's Witnesses we were all led to believe in an alleged " time of the end " in which Armageddon ( supposedly ) was coming to destroy any wicked who did not align themselves with Jehovah's Witnesses or the WT society. It has been shown that the WT societies proclamations of this supposed Armageddon were false. 96 years has passed since the WT societies prediction of being in the alleged " time of the end " . Nothing's happened. Have you been able to move on from the fear instilled in you by the Jehovah's Witnesses ? Are you fearful of Armageddon anymore, or do you think it was a false tactic used to keep you under control and fear ?

    One thing that ALL mind control cults use on it's members to keep control of their lives is guilt and fear. Indeed the two legs that mind control cults walk on and operate on : Are guilt and fear. Personally I feel lucky to have moved on from it. I am no longer afraid of Armageddon. I don't believe it's real . It was a scare tactic used to control us. And I don't feel guilty anymore. I try to do good things in my life in helping others so I have NOTHING to feel guilty about ! No matter WHAT any mind control cult says.

    So- How are you all doing ? Are you moving on ? I know it's hard , but you know what ? Life is good - and whether or not you are Christian, atheist, or agnostic - the big bad dream that was put on you and your mind as a Jehovah's Witness was not true. I hope you are doing better in life and happier now post-witnesses ! As always - I look forward to all of your responses. Peace out to all of you, Mr. Flipper

  • minimus

    I feel little guilt.

  • keeshondgirl

    Luckily,I was only a JW for 5 yrs. At first I felt very guilty for not attending meetings or field service. I was never terrified about armaggeddon so that didn't bother me. I just felt guilty because of the idea that meetings and field service saves you and when a person stops doing those things then you are disappointing Jehovah. It only took a few months to get over the guilt and fear for me. I stopped going at the end of last december and I kept thinking that I would attend the memorial, out of fear and guilt, but when that time rolled around my husband and I did not attend because we no longer felt that it was important and that the watchtower followers do not have the truth. I finally feel FREE to be me!! No one has came to see how we are doing. its like we are being shunned, even though we aren't disfellowshipped.

    I had a good JW friend, or so I thought, send us an email saying we are serving satan because we don't go to meetings.she is very convinced we are going to die. she grew up in the religion so you know her mind is a mess, she could never leave because thats where all her family and friends are. she is controlled without even knowing it. I feel bad for her, but she won't even communicate with me at this point. I am happy I seen 'the light' after 5 years and am free to move on. I do not have family that are jw so it was easier to leave. many events led husband and I to doubt the watchtower it just took time for us to tell one another what was bothering us and then we left. we held what we felt from one another thinking we would stumble eachother. another control tactic of the watchtower was telling you if you think you may stumble someone then refrain from doing it or else you could commit a death sin. so naturally we didnt tell eachother what we felt. So, freedom is what we now have and sweet it is.

  • freedomisntfree

    I wish i could say i have but i havnt getting there tho.i unfortunatly realised there is a hall about 5 minutes from my new home here and whenever i see it or see witnesses out and about im terrified I dont even know of what .I just dont want them to find me.

  • dissed


    That is a fascinating experience you shared. You both care about each other and didn't want to hurt each other's feelings. Yet, you were coming to the same conclusions.

    Too bad your friend doesn't understand the law of kindness. That ain't anyway to encourage someone, "you're going to die!", no?

  • I discovered
    I discovered

    No, I feel fear because gossip can still get around and has been a source of

    guilt it can produce in me at times. A lot of sick dubs out there.

    I have been working on overcoming these issues though. hope to be able to get over these feelings someday. I still feel their hatered for me

    but, I am not going to let it destroy me. I am so happy to be out of that cult. Am still able to get on with the healing with this site and making new

    friends - non dubs.

  • stillajwexelder

    I have overcome gulit and fear being on this board while remaining a witness (in name only of course as I never go on the ministry these days)

  • villabolo

    I was a JW during my adolescence, eight years. I was a good boy below the waistline, obeyed their rules. But above the neck I had a dangerous mixture of curiosity and integrity. I also couldn't stand their pathological self worship. I believe that a mixture of these characteristics is what prevented me from suffering feelings of guilt or fear. When you finally realize that the organization is a crock of caca you have no reason to be fearful or guilty. Quite the contrary I had courage (Even though I was meek and introverted) and was innocent of any real 'crime'.


  • Mickey mouse
    Mickey mouse

    The only fear and guilt I have now is that of hurting my family.

  • flipper

    MINIMUS- I'm glad you feel little guilt.

    KEESHONDGIRL- I am so glad you and your husband left the JW cult. It sounds like you and hubby are very level headed people. You are lucky you were only in it for 5 years. I was born and raised in it from birth until finally exiting 6 years ago at age 44. But as you stated, it's harder if you have family in the JW's. That's what kept me from stopping attending meetings all those years. I'm glad you have found freedom is sweet as I have also. Sorry your JW friend shunned you- my 2 , 20 something year old daughters shun me too in spite of not being DFed. But realize your friend is just captured like an animal in a mind control cult. Maybe someday she will realize it. Good experience ! Thanks for sharing.

    FREEDOMISNTFREE- I hear you Freedom. I get a weird feeling in the pit of my stomach driving by kingdom halls too. But for me - it just gives me the creeps, not fear. But I do understand where you are at in your feelings- I also felt that way after first exiting the cult. It takes time to wear off of us. Hang in there friend.

    DISSED- Good point. Can you imagine a friend telling us " You're going to die ! " Pretty creepy indeed.

    I DISCOVERED- I understand what you mean about gossip getting around among witnesses and how you still feel their hate for you. I know I've been gossiped about many times in the 6 years I've stopped going - and have experienced the hate first hand when seeing witnesses I knew out in public . The hate on their faces is amazing. It takes time to get over it, but now I just laugh at them because I realize how misled and pathetic they are. So hang in there it will get better in time for you I promise.

    STILLAJWEXELDER- I'm glad you have overcome the fear and guilt Stilla. Hope things are going well for you friend.

    VILLABOLO- That curiosity and integrity helped you my friend to be able to see through the disguise the WT society was hiding behind. I also was disgusted with how the WT society always patted themselves on the back as if they were better than the entire human race. Like bragging of how they helped the Katrina victims in the hurricane. Well, thousands of other non-witnesses , white and black people helped each other crossing any prejudices they may have previously had - but you don't see any mention of that in the WT societies magazines about it - only that the witnesses helped people.

    MICKEY MOUSE- I hear you. Sometimes it can be hard to deal with the hurt our JW family is feeling due to OUR leaving the witness cult. But remember one thing - they are trained to make US feel guilty as a way of luring us back to make US feel like we are wrong for leaving. But in reality they are wrong for staying in the witnesses ( sometimes through no fault of their own ) because of the influence of cult mind control. But I know what you are feeling. I think if anything, I feel more sadness and sorrow for my JW family than any guilt . Hang in there my friend

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