Ive recently decided not to be a witness anymore and at the age of 28 was still so afraid to tell my parents. The truth is their life and knew i would hurt them. Ive had such a battle with the elders and because my dad is an elder its even worse. I havent been disfellowshipped and knew if i do i will lose my parents and their relationship with their grandson will change too. I still have guilt and worried that at armageddon i will be reasonsible for my son's death too. Can anyone help me with these feelings?
How do i overcome this guilt and fear?
Many of us have been in your position and fully understand where you are. It does get better - much better. Where are you? You maybe able to meet with someone who can help. If you are in the UK I would be delighted to speak to you, please check your PM's (little envelope Top Right - you may need a couple of attempts for it to open), I will be send you some information.
Please do some reading.
You are currently still suffering from indoctrination which will affect your ability to think rationally these books will help, they have helped many 1000's of people.....
The two Books by Raymond Franz - Crisis of Conscience and In Search of Christian Freedom
Don Cameron's excellent book - Captives of a Concept
Stephen Hassan's books Combatting Cult Mind Control and Releasing the Bonds.
Stay on here, chat, make friends and feel free to Vent if required.
Good luck with your journey
For me I had to do research and bible study. I know that is a pain in the ass, but once it becomes important enough to you to KNOW the TRUTH, then you likely won't be able to help it and will do the research like you have never done it before.
Just reading the bible on it's own in context is usually enough to convince many the JWs are wrong and that the bible doesn't actually support many teachings we believed as fact. Just reading the bible left me with a very sour taste in my mouth about the God of the OT compared to the Christ of the NT and reconciling the two.
Then there's doctrinal issues like 607 bce. This for me was the crux of the whole thing as if 607 is wrong then so is 1914, 1919, the FDS, the GB, this generation etc etc all hangs off it. I can tell you it is wrong but to prove it for yourself makes all the difference. The Gentile Times Reconsidered demolished 607 for me.
Also once you understand that this is a mind control cult then you can see through the subterfuge easily.
So you are going to have to read. Lots. But it is worth it, because by proving to yourself it is bollocks then your mind can be free(r) of the guilt and fear. It won't completely go, but it is a great help.
Welcome I'm recently out myself
Start educating yourself. Read, Read, then Read some more.
You have to see the Watchtower for what it is. It's a corporation in the publishing & religion business. They are manipulating minds to keep people in to continue furthering their interests. Don't just take our word for it. See this for yourself. Your witness life has centered on others telling you what to think. It's time for you to do this for yourself.
I started with reading the Bible & comparing other translations
Then Crisis of Conscience by Raymond Franz & Combatting Cult Mind Control by Steven Hassan
Why don't you want to be a witness anymore?
Newcomer1982 Welcome :)
When i first came here i thought what everyone was saying was satan trying to pull me away....that old chestnut.
I was having a battle in my mind, but after a while you will realize its indoctrination thats done that, so if you do get any of those type of feelings, all i will say is, listen to YOURSELF, think for YOURSELF, and go with YOUR gut.
I am not exactly very experienced JW, i was never even baptized, so i cant really offer a lot of help, but i feel for yoursituation and wish you all the very best.
I HIGHLY reccommend reading Ramond Franz - crisis of Consciense.
Welcome to the forum '82.
If you have the slightest suspicion that the WT was selected by Jesus in 1919 and that Armageddon might be just around the corner ............ deal with those suspicions.
How do you prove that the WT was selected?
How do you prove that it happened in 1919? If it wasn't in 1919, could the claim still be true?
Our parents chose to raise us in this religion. A religion that treats it's non-believing children badly. That was their choice. Their gamble hasn't paid off. Now they have to decide what price they will pay for their gamble. That is not up to us. We didn't ask them to raise us in their church. We knew nothing about about killer gods and demons that didn't come from them. We were just innocent children.
Do not accept the blame for their bad behaviour.
It wasn't your fault.
It wasn't your fault.
It wasn't your fault.
Welcome Newcomer. Well done for posting such honest and open comments.
Phew! Where to start. So much to say, so much to tell you......too much in fact so reading threads will open your eyes to what the 'truth' really is!! (The term 'the truth' is a very powerful example of 'loaded language', words that trick the mind and/or induce guilt, fear, phobia and a trigger in the mind. Consider how the word 'apostate' is used as a loaded term!!! High control groups use loaded language to control your mind.)
I was a pioneer on occasion and finally an elder some years. When you see behind the scenes even at elder level it make you think. If you don't think then you'll be a good company man. It isn't the 'truth'!!
Once you realise it isn't God's organization or the 'truth' you will begin to deprogram from the indoctrination and mind control techniques the watchtower uses on you. Once you identify what techniques have been used on you you'll get that 'eureka' moment and it'll be up hill from there.
There have been some good books suggested above. I only got to chapter 4 in S Hassan's Combatting Cult Mind Control and I was out. Now, bear in mind Mr Hassan was a moonie not a JW so it's not 'apostate' literature as such.
Can I refer you to an essay that someone did that will expose some deep mind control techniques we've all had used on us. Give it a read then let me know your honest thoughts.
You may want to research 'Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome' too. Many of us suffered this when we were exiting.
Now consider the content of this particular article (was on the last CDrom I had), and tell me how you read the subject matter when the JW leaders say they do not brain wash.....?
"Minds must be cleansed" = a quote from Watchtower, June 1, 1953, p. 350 par. 24.
you have to actively deconstruct your faith. they actively forced that faith into you, you now have to actively deconstruct it.
you can do that by staying on this site, by reading anything from the bible to the god delusion and by investigating other beliefs or non-beliefs and how they compare to the JW religion.
i recommend these links for starters:
@ Punk of Nice nice suggestion re PTSD. Finding out I had been lied to & manipulated led to a breakdown & hospitalization for a couple of days.
@Newcomer1982 I sent you a PM
http://jwfacts.com/watchtower/experiences/justasiam.php http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/fear-cult-mind-control.php I hope that these links might be a helpful starting point in realising WHY it is that you are struggling with these feelings. You are the only one that can free yourself from the guilt and the fear, but there are many here, myself included, that have been through a similar phase. I'm sure you'll receive plenty of help. I've got no idea how it must feel, though, to have a guilt trip laid upon you that your childs life depends on remaining in the organisation.. The only thing I can think of to say is: If you still believe that Jw's have 'the truth', researching their history will help a great deal, not only the failed prophecies but, as if that wasn't enough, many teachings that have changed so much that Russell (the founder of the Watchtower, who was meant to have been part of the line of the 'faithful slave class') himself would be disfellowshipped today for sure, he didn't even believe that a controlling organisation on the scale that we see today was necessary! If you come to realise that it is not 'the truth', or once you confirm beyond doubt that there is no reason to believe that God has anything to do with the organisation, you can be free of the control. After all, you don't fear burning in hell for all eternity, do you? You don't fear that Zeus/Allah or any other Gods are going to kill you or your child for not reading the Quran, or not doing whatever Zeus worshippers did. (Forgive me if you're converting to Islam, this is just an example.) And why not? Because you don't see any reason to believe in those things. Research as much as possible, jwfacts.com helped me a lot, and the fear will eventually lose its grip on you. Hope this helps.