what have you learned since leaving ?

by man in black 16 Replies latest jw friends

  • man in black
    man in black

    Since leaving the jw religion,what can you say that you have learned about life/people in a positive way that you probably would have never experienced

    if you had remained a witness ?

    My story is regarding this :

    My Mom died 5 years ago, and was a jw for 30 years. My parents moved out of state, but still remained close to quite a few members of their hall.

    After she died, only 5 people sent a card. Only one couple stopped off to talk about what happened. I completely lost respect for the people that I thought were "friends" over the years. Since I left, I promised myself that I would attend every visitation / funeral of anyone or their relatives that i knew during my life. Over the years, I have reconnected with old school friends, distant relatives, and just associates that I hardly knew.

    This has been a real eye opener for me because it showed me how important it is for the survivors to have closure, and people attending the funeral really do help them out.

    It may sound somewhat fatalistic learning such a valuable lesson by focusing on funerals, but that is when people are at their lowest both emotionally and


    I have developed a completely new viewpoint regarding the coldness and hard-headedness of the jw religion regarding death. There is a whole aspect of human emotion that is closed off because of their beliefs. And I'm very embarrassed to say that I went along with it for over 25 years

  • Separation of Powers
    Separation of Powers

    man in black,

    I have learned that no matter what you have done for this organization, no matter what you have done for the brothers, no matter what sacrifices you may have made along the way, when you are sick and laying on your death bed, there will only be a handful of people, typically family, that will even care.

    Sure there may be a large group that attend the funeral, but their reason (in my estimation) is that they feel obligated and are concerned that others will "notice" if they aren't there. After its over, they won't call, they won't drop by, they won't "help out." You are completely, totally, and utterly on your own.

    It is all part of the process of belonging to the organization. No one really has a true and meaningful relationship with anyone else. It is all dependent on something else. It is, again in my opinion, the reason why Paul stated that there would be "no natural affection." I have come to believe that where love is preached loneliness exists because why do you need to preach love if Christ's followers were recognizably "loving."

    A friend on mine once told me when he left the organization that he no longer had the desire to live forever. I was confused and asked him "why?" He said, "Why would I want to live forever with a bunch of people who don't care about me now?" I have learned the value of that perspective.


  • likeabird

    I have learned that no matter what you have done for this organization, no matter what you have done for the brothers, no matter what sacrifices you may have made along the way, when you are sick and laying on your death bed, there will only be a handful of people, typically family, that will even care.

    Don't even have to be on your death bed to discover that!

    You're lucky if you have even a handful of people, even family, who care - most of whom are probably just hounders imagining they are doing their "job".

    The female sex counts for absolutely nothing (in the borg) regardless of how much they may have devoted their lives to "mother" (ironically a female term!), they could just as well be invisible.

    If you pray, good things may happen. If you stop praying, wonderful things do happen.

    Life is breathtaking. Life is amazing. It is wonderful to actually be living...instead of waiting and watching life go by.

  • 3rdgen

    I must admit that for many years I took most deaths for granted as many JWs do UNTIL a family member I was especially close to suddenly died in his 40's. It was a devistating loss not only to our family but to the hundreds who loved him. I didn't recieve one card and just a couple of phone calls. From then on, like you, I made it a point to let others know my sympathy in writing. Cards mean more than we think. They are often kept forever. Later, when my own son died, I soon learned how shallow the love is at the KH. If i missed a meeting because I couldn't handle the music, crowd or stupid comments , I was gossiped about. We were treated so badly I basically stopped attending.

  • PaintedToeNail

    I have learned that people matter. All people, not just JW's at the Hall. I have far more love for man than now than ever before and have been trying to make a difference in peoples lives, doing nice things for them without any premeditated reason...such as being a good little witness. It is much more satisfying to make a real, meaningful difference in their lives than to offer them some obscure hope that never seems to come.

  • clarity

    Man in Black ...nice to see you. Sorry about the lack of love regarding

    your Mom. Feels like the message of the watchtower changes us into

    plastic people ... we are standing there but there is no warmth or personality



    There are so many things I learned since leaving...basically how pointless

    it all is.


    There was never a place in 50 years when I felt ... I have done enough,

    I am good enough. I won't be killed at A.


    I laugh at the idiocy & insanity of it all now!

    I weep at the loss of what could have been.


    In the case of my parent, who never had a jw visit in 2 yrs

    before she died in hospital, I learned "out of sight, out of mind",

    unless we trudge d2d & go to all mtgs ...we have no value.



    (((3rdgen))) so very sorry about the loss of your son...


  • jam

    Not to be a know it all, there is so much to learn and little time

    to do so. As a JW I knew it all. LOL

  • Crazyguy

    Funny thing now that I'm out of the JW mind think I actually know way more about the bible.

  • Phizzy

    Ditto Crazyguy, I was probably the one JW with the best grasp of what the Bible actually said in my Congo. But I knew next to nothing really. When I discovered this site I read everything posted by the excellent Leolaia and by others almost as informative, many of whom posted on the same threads.

    Boy, was that a learning curve ! I learned many words that I had never come across before, and awhole new dimension to Bible Study.

    I think the main thing I have learned is that I need to keep on learning ! Not so much these days with anything Bible related, but Biology, Evolution, History, Philosophy and on and on, there are so many wonderful fields of study that I will never know it all !

    The other wonderful realisation I have come to, which never would have happened had I remained trapped in the cult, is that nearly everybody who is not a JW is a wonderful person !

    Yes, there is the occasional pain in the butt type, but most are really great ! and I have made true friends who really care, and don't give a flying fudge bar about what I may or may not believe, they are my friends, and Mrs Phizzy's friends, because they like us for who we really are.

  • yadda yadda 2
    yadda yadda 2

    Blame the apostle Paul. He said Christians don't mourn as the rest do. When you believe in a hereafter pie in the sky, the motivation to attend a funeral and show sympathy to the bereaved is diluted.

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