by EmptyInside 44 Replies latest jw friends

  • Hadit

    Hang in there! I completely relate to how you are feeling. It's one crazy mess of up and down. We are all so different psychologically and we all process things differently. Some can get up and get out while others need to digest everything and let it settle. Some are able to let go of family and move on while others have to do what they can to get them out. We are all different. I think what is needed is TIME. Living a double life is extremely hard on the body though. I'm sure we can all attest to that. Take good care of yourself! I think a vacation is a great idea. A good time to reflect and get stronger.

    My thoughts are with you. Wishing you all the best!

  • RosePetal

    Although we were in the wilderness for about eight years not attending but still full of doubts and unsure whether it was still the 'truth' although we could see so many things not adding up, when we finally woke up and walked away all my extended family shunned us.

    But we had each other, my hubby my daugher and I. I feel so much for all those who wake up alone I can imagine what a frightening lonely experience that can be. To make up your mind to face everyone shunning you. Even though at last you will be free is such a high price. That you could lose your husband wife or children and risk them shunning you. This is no small thing, no small decision to make. My heart goes out to you, I have sat and cried reading some of the heartbreaking stories on this and other forums.

    I have not let go of my faith in God so my prayers are with you empty inside and 5th generation I pray you have the courage and the strength to keep going whatever decision you make. I pray that your families wake up.



  • Out at Last!
    Out at Last!

    After I figured out the thuth about the troof, I still attended meetings for awhile. I felt the same as you do now, depressed, stomach problems, especially if I had a part on the TMS or service meeting that I knew was BS. A person knows when he has had enough and sacraficed as much as he can, but can continue no more. Each person is different, Empty inside and 5th generation, only you can tell when this time is. But I can tell you, walking out of the hall for the last time and knowing you will never go back feels so good, enlightening, refreshing, like you just dropped a heavy load and are free to finially start a new life. It is a feeling you both can feel soon, but until then, do what you must. If you need counseling to help you hold on, go get it. But please remember that it is YOUR life you are living, you can not live your life for someone else. To thy own self be true.

  • Dark Side
    Dark Side

    Why can't you just understand it's not that easy for a lot of us to just give the finger to our family, friends and decades of indoctrination and expectations. In my case, a century of tradition.

    You've got it backwards. When you leave, your family and friends give the finger to you

  • RosePetal

    Spot on Dark side

  • cult classic
    cult classic

    Such a good point ds. That's important to remember. If/when you leave, you haven't done anything wrong.

  • EmptyInside

    Thanks all. Sometimes I think,I'm a lot of talk and no action. It's always the same old issue with me. But, it's comforting to know others have been or are going through the same thing.

    5thGeneration-I finally did send you a pm, there was a little mix-up.

  • sass_my_frass

    There's absolutely nothing wrong with using the 'health excuse'. You are entitled, firstly, because you're unwell,. but also because you're going through a bad thing and you shouldn't put any pressure on yourself. I suggest though, that when getting away from THAT, pick up THIS - something else, anything else, to distract yourself for a little while, or even to 'reboot'. Start with short, cheap night course, or some kind of hobby that throws you into a new crowd of people.

    After being disfellowshipped I had my wedding to focus on, and since then I've been doing a degree. Five years later, it's nearly over, and all of those years that I would otherwise have been mooning and grieving, I've been changing, growing, improving my work choices, and moving right on. You have to actively seek change, for your life to change. Start small and you'll find yourself suddenly relieved of a whole lot of dumb stuff.

  • anewme

    I remember those awful days Empty Inside. Just thinking about them makes my stomach turn sour and start to hurt.

    I remember thinking all I ever wanted was happy family life. Happy family life like in the paradise brochure was what attracted me to the religion. But I personally did not find it. The man I married was a very strict interpreter of the Society's wishes for us. We set ourselves up to be the examples of meeting attendance and field service participation. After 30 years of it and much poverty, no children, ill health and dissappointment in life my heart was aching for something else, some relief, some change.

    I was told to pray more, go out in service more, study more, comment more. Everything in my soul told me just the opposite! Get out more! See the world more! Embrace life more! Take time off! But the grind went on. Boring boring boring weekly routine to the exclusion of all other interests and activities. I lost interest in the people in our own bookstudy who attended in our home on Thursday nights. I stopped cleaning before they came. They also met in our home on Saturday mornings. I didnt like any of them anymore. They werent people I would normally invite in to my home. They werent excited about me either. And I was expected to go out in FS every Saturday morning rain or shine with these people. I found myself begging off. My soul just wanted to quit everything, the Book Study, the meetings, the constant sacrificing soldier existance we led. Dont get me started talking about Convention days!!!

    I was very tired. I had been inducted in the early 70s and here it was the year 2000. I had been through many campaigns designed to excite the public to study with us. Many promises the earth was about to undergo a grand change. But nothing ever happened.

    I just got older and more discouraged. The people who inspired me in the 70s died. Their kids married and left town to buy houses in other areas and raise families. New elders came in the hall and changes came with them. One day I looked around during a Watchtower and thought "this meeting today is nothing like the meetings back in the 70s with congregation members all aglow and commenting passionately from their hearts" Why, the new Watchtower Overseer announced that if you didnt have a comment from the paragraph not to bother raising your hand and commenting because he would not call on you if you did not stick to the paragraph. So he wanted comments straight out of the Watchtower which we just read! And my husband conducted the same meeting in our home on Friday or Saturday night with friends over! I was going nuts with boredom. On top of all that my husband began to view me as a Satanic influence because of my constant desire to stay home. So even he was not much of a friend to me anymore either. His pressures on me to attend every meeting and go out in FS and accompany him to halls when he gave talks out gave me the impression he was choosing the Watchtower Society over our marriage and me. He would rather see me unhappy or dead than "unfaithful" to Jehovah. He thought my problem was a spiritual one.

    I began to have stomach upsets all the time. I started to throw up all my food on a daily basis. I went to Kaiser and told a nurse my problem. She pinpointed the problem as a need for control over my life. She recommended therapy. I saw a Kaiser therapist and she said I was suffering from "enmeshment". Enmeshment is when your thoughts and opinions are totally knotted and entagled with anothers, in my case my husbands and the Watchtower Society's. I was being controlled and forced and my body and soul were rebelling even while my mind was trying to keep me in the Organization.

    After that meeting with the therapist I began to wonder what life might be like outside the Organization. I desperately wanted to be happy. Brothers and sisters heard that I was depressed and offered me the names of their doctors and medications they were on.

    But I knew in my heart I did not need medications and that I was not crazy. There was no one in our family to talk to, no one. They were all ultra witnesses.

    Well, thats all I want to write about for now. Your letter Empty Inside reminded me of those awful days of despair and agony.

    Looking back I think I should have been true to myself and told everyone I needed a break for my mental and physical health and left it at that. No further explanation needed.

    Perhaps I could have had it my way and saved my marriage and family ties. But my witness husband would not have allowed it. He was so strict and nagging. I was his and he would not be embarrassed by a wife who was not a fine example.

    Fine. But I was not going to stay and just die! I think my husband would have rather I got cancer and die than leave the way I did.

    Oh well! That was 10 years ago folks!

    And now I have a new marriage with a man 15 years younger! I have a management job I like. I bought a house for the first time!

    And I am looking for to fall and harvest time and Thanksgiving and Christmas!

    And I havent thrown up in 10 years!!!! Gee I wonder why???????

    Because somebody saved her own life, got out, and found some happiness!!!


  • Pistoff

    It is hard to leave a cult; there is no honest way to leave, and keep your family.

    I agree that you should not make any meetings, just don't go. If people ask why you don't go, just tell them you are tired and discouraged.

    And begin reading:

    I recommend Bart Ehrman, Elaine Pagels and John Dominic Crossan.

    They will help to loosen the grip that guilty belief might have on you without being a more radical approach, (Dawkins, Hitchens, etc)

    Glad you are here.

Share this