My father severely abused me. Several times I fought for my very life. I was the eldest and the scapegoat. My family had extensive contacts with JW since Russell's days. My father served at Bethel as a bodyguard to Judge Rutherford and Nathan Knorr. He never did what he was supposed to do Witness wise yet he would not disassociate. We had all the negatives and none of the very few positive. It was extraordinarily painful to me b/c both sides of my family were active. He was irrational. There was no way to avoid a beating. He had an ancient Roman view of his authority. Whatever he did was sanctified. I was such a good child. In fact, I was overly eager to please. He beat my brother with cerebral palsy with no mercy. My mom struggled to not be murdered. I won't repeat all the details here.
I prayed so hard to Jehovah for my father to be an active Witness because my aunt and uncle were kind people active in the WTS. My conviction was that if he did what he should do, he would be loving. He was a redneck buffoon, too. One night when I was twelve, he beat my brother and sister, too, in a very frightful manner. I wrote to a teen fashion mag for advice. Rather than print my letter, they responded that I should get in touch with a social welfare agency. Despite repeated attempts, I gave up b/c of the Ten Commandments Respect your Parents one. Lightning would strike me. I crumpled up the letter and hid it. My mother, the spy, found it and sought help. Their first instinct was to meet with the minister in charge of the congregation. My mother was adamant that it would make the abuse far worse. The agency was shocked. Never before had they encountered such a religion. To this day, I have no doubt we would have been implored to worship his authority. The JW theology and its unique culture fed his abuse. I am not stating that the WTS beat me. Rather, that a deliberate atmosphere existed where his actions and beliefs flourished. Witness theology gave him justification.
As my mother predicted, the day he did became active, the beatings increased 500%. I could not believe that I prayed for this situation. He tried to throw me down stairs with a full body cast on me. He was dying of heart disease. Trapping me in the bathroom when we were alone, he proclaimed that I was killing him, murdering him so I would watch him die. He gasped for breath. I tried to budge his body away from the door but he was way stronger than me in the midst of his affliction. I screached for help and an ambulance with every fiber of my being. The police arrived. He ran downstairs and popped up a pill. When the police said to stay away from each other, I told them he could not stay away from me. When the agency heard this story, they went ballistic. A rape watch was instituted. Efforts were made to have far away family take me for safety. I snapped completely. Ever Dudley Doright, I accepted the beatings. Now I fought back with all my might. He had no legitimacy. I asked for guns and/or knives from school acquaintances. My brother did, too. Finally, he announced that I was so despicable I could not stay in school. The overseer had pulled his thirteen year old from school. I was determined to attend college. He wanted to watch me bag groceries at a local grocery store. I spoke to the principal to prepare for a major court battle. The sad part was I knew the principal and a judge would never let a star student bag groceries against their will. My family was the issue. Why did I have to go in exile and never see my mother and siblings. He died before it came to resolution.
I am active in Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families. This is the price paid for undue deference to authority. Once he died, we had a wonderful family. I refused to attend one more meeting. My family followed my lead. It was shocking to me how quickly the Witness stuff crumbled. Not all Witnesses are like this. My perception was that the Watchtower never really counselled families during this period. Clearly, he knew numerous responsible people at Bethel. My mother would have turned to them if it were feasible. Once we attended an assembly in Nova Scotia. My little sister was an adorable two year old! She swung her little legs in front of her, slightly brushing the chair in front of her. A Bethelite was sitting next to us, making out with his girlfriend. He removed his belt and handed it to my mother to beat my sister! Maybe abuse is not endorse in the WT text or from the platform. The culture endorses it.
Unlike good Witnesses, I know my New Testament from years of reading entire books and comparing books in one sitting. Can anyone imagine Jesus picking up a strap to beat a two year old? The Witnesses I run into at my door and the train station are good, decent people who are brainwashed. It is so sad. Unlike other people I know, I can't talk to them about content. I try to be introspective about my hatred of WTS and its true role in my abuse. They get the benefit of my doubt. The WTS reputations seems to be squeaky clean, devoted worshippers or crazed, brainwash victims. There seems to be no stereotype in the middle.