For the past several weeks I have been seeing a wonderful therapist who ran a grief support group that I attended 1 1/2 years ago when my Mom died.
At the time I was just absolutley shocked that after 30 years of being a wt slave only 5 people bothered to send a card regarding her passing.
I brought up to her in detail how the jw religion does not look favorably on anyone who doesn't agree 100% with their way of thinking, and moving forward That still affects me to a certain extent, esp. the shunning.
Well, she brought up several times how the witness "mindset" of collective thinking (I kept thinking of the borg in Star Trek ) discourages individuality. This thinking has carried over in other aspects of my life, tendrils she said that work against other normal human behavior feelings.
The key is how a person deals positivley with the new way of dealing with unknown, or repressed emotions. She said by focusing on positive things, and exploring new ways of dealing with life it should help me move forward.
Several things that I do is help the elderly people in my neighborhood, mow their lawn, cook a dinner , or just talk to them is hugely helpful to me.I realize that I can have an honest - supportive relationship with someone,,,,, and not even mention my religion to them. But in a way the guilt of not doing that is still present to an extent I also help an organization called Honor Flight which is a HUGE leap for me,, but deep down inside I believe it is important.
Paying attention to what/who I am is much more important than what others think/expect what I should be.
The jw belief system can also cause much anxiety because of always having to meet unfocused expectaions from a group of men who are more focused on a manmade postion than actually serving God . As a guy I could identify with this 110%.
Focusing, and working on emotions, experiences that are positive, and forward thinking are my assignments, it is something that is hard to do after being a witness for so many years. Breaking the jw mindset is not easy,, but it can be done.