Questions from the Essay "Self-Identity and Growing Up in the Jehovah's Witnesses

by Reopened Mind 13 Replies latest jw friends

  • Reopened Mind
    Reopened Mind


    You are right, choices approved by the WT are no choices at all. Everything was already decided for you within very restricted parameters. I know I raised my boys that way. Your parents at least did something for you by letting you be in band. I too find it difficult to make friends. Although not being raised in the cult I have spent my entire adult life in it until just recently. Feel free to PM me. I would welcome it.

    Band on the Run;

    " My father was a bodyguard to Rutherford and Knorr. My uncles also served at Bethel. Their stories were heart wrenching. They ended up unable to fully embrace the society but still eager to conform. It was all they knew." All I can say is, "How sad". Congratulations on making your way out of the ghetto of Watchtowerland. The strength of your authentic personality has taken you far. Please continue sharing with us your valuable insights.


    My husband's father was much like yours, it was his way (WT way) or the highway. TotallyADD was told one time that if he left the "truth" his dad would disown him. Sounds like you took some of the lemons the cult handed you and made lemonade.


    You are so right. We have all suffered in MANY ways. So much potential has been totally crushed by the Watchtower. Allowing your children to live a life that they choose for themselves is the greatest gift that you can give them.

    Thanks to all for your comments.

    Reopened Mind

  • SirNose586
    You were allowed to be part of a chamber orchestra? Was that in the day when there was still live music at the conventions? My father-in-law was a professional musician before he became a Witness and played bass in the orchestra.

    It was the chamber orchestra in my performing arts school that I attended from 5th-12th grade. That's cool that your FIL was a professional musician! I'd had dreams about doing that sort of thing, but by the time I entered high school, it was pretty clear to me that I could not do that as a JW.

  • Reopened Mind
    Reopened Mind

    As promised here are TotallyADD's responses to the questions:

    1. Were you allowed to make choices for yourself when you were a teenager? If so were your choices restricted to those approved by the WT? Yes and yes

    2. As a child did you fit in with the in-group at the Kingdom Hall? No

    3. Were you part of a school team, yearbook, multi-cultural club or other extracurricular activities? Yes, DCT in high school. It was likebusiness school so I could run a business when I got out of school.

    4. Have you struggled with adjusting to the social norms and values of society after departing from the WT in your adult life? No

    5. Have you struggled with making friends in your adult life? As an adult Witness I had trouble making friends, but since leaving I have notfound it difficult.

    6. Have you attended counseling after departing from the WT? I had counseling vefore leaving the WT. It cleared my mind so I could seethrough the WT.

    7. What effect has your Witness upbringing had on you, positive, negative, or a combination? Negative, without hesitation.

    Reopened Mind

  • Reopened Mind
    Reopened Mind


    I just had a chance to go back and read your thread you referenced. Very enlightening! I especially liked the explanation of why the WT isn't interested in retaining teenagers because their natural inclination is to question everything---just the opposite of the Watchtower's herd mentality. Therefore I bumped it because I think it is a worthwhile read. I hadn't read this before because it was posted long before I began lurking.

    Reopened Mind

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