Not sure of the point of telling my story, but just got off the phone with my Grandma and I am so angry, stressed and I don't know what else...I guess i just wanted to hear from someone other than my husband that I'm not crazy for my reaction to family interaction.
My condensed story gramatical errors and all :)
Father was a born in JW, Mother was a convert. I was born the last of 3 siblings and shortly after my birth in 1981 my parents divorced. My father wanted me raised a JW so I’m told he got the watchtower to help him find an attorney and fight for full custody of me and my siblings. My mother through all this was so depressed and tried to kill herself on more than one occasion; this is one of the reasons the attorney used to show my mother was unfit. Well, my father won custody and my mother moved away. Over the next year or two my father remarried and divorced. After the second divorce he decided he didn’t want the responsibility of raising two children; oldest sibling was old enough for court to let him decide he wanted to live with my mother so that just left me and one brother. Now instead of the normal sane thing to do, call my Mother (who had left the JW religion) and give us back to her to raise, my father decided it would be better if his brother and wife who were still JW’s got to raise us. When my mother received a letter stating that my aunt and uncle were trying to adopt us she immediately found an attorney and tried to fight to get us back; unfortunately the same attorney that helped my father win custody did the same for my aunt and uncle. Courts did not grant adoption but they did give my aunt and uncle legal guardianship. I was five by the time this was all finished…so young that I grew up calling my aunt and uncle Mom and Dad…really they were the ones who raised me, no matter the crappy circumstances in which that came to be. So from 5-18 I was a good little witness girl, baptized at 11 in an attempt to make sure my aunt and uncle were proud of me and couldn’t send me to an orphanage…that threat was thrown around a lot when I was little. My creepy Uncle-Dad was a pervert that abused me for years. I was so traumatized I repressed it, until one day sitting in the Kingdom Hall listening to a talk about why masturbation is bad (I think I was 13 or 14 and I never did understand why the little 6 year olds had to hear those talks, bet that made for some interesting questions on the car ride home!) and the memory of it all came flooding back. My family was kind of the black sheep family of the hall (5 kids and Aunt-Mom at every meeting, always late, with an inactive barely there Uncle-Dad) so everyone just assumed that when I freaked out bawling and ran out it was me upset about the adults fighting at home. I never did tell anyone why I was so upset, it wasn’t still going on and I was afraid they would send me away if I told them because in reality I wasn’t their kid. Well, I moved out at 18 and then moved to a different town and completely cut off contact with the family and all JW friends at 19. Before I left I told my 6 years younger Sister-Cousin what had happened so she would be careful around my Uncle-Dad because I wouldn’t be around to make sure. When she got baptized she felt it was her duty to tell the family what my Uncle-Dad had done and I got a random phone call (after not speaking to my family at all for 2 years) from two elders conference calling me to ask if it was true. One of the elders on the phone had the audacity to tell me “well that explains you”. That statement still sticks with me today and makes me SO angry. Anyway, Uncle-Dad was disfellowshipped for a couple years (cuz that fixes everything…sure) and then called me to give a half assed apology in which he pretty much blamed my Aunt-Mom for not giving him the attention he needed; shortly thereafter he was reinstated and to this day goes to meetings and occasionally knocks on doors. It disgusts me! That believe it or not is a very, very condensed version of my story, some of it not too different than so many other stories I’ve read. I have since been married to an awesome loving ‘worldly person’ and have talked to and visited with my family including the pervert Uncle-Dad mainly only because he’s always around when I visit (yes family still talks to him and acts like nothing happened, Even Aunt-Mom talks to him and they have been divorced for years and she is remarried). My contact with family other than my Sister-Cousin is maybe once a year if that because they have to ‘limit their contact with me because I am no longer a Witness’. I got fed up and this past year there has been no family contact. I really don’t know if I want to continue contact with anyone other than my Grandma because she is getting old and I don’t want to miss her last few years (plus she isn’t judgmental like the rest of them) and Sister-Cousin. I have never lost contact with my Sister-Cousin (she herself has had her ups and downs and left the JW’s and then returned) so my relationship with her has always been a comfort to me. I am going to see my Sister-Cousin this weekend, who happened to mention to my Grandma that I was coming. Grandma always tries to make my Uncle-Dad and my real Dad talk to me when I come visit (she still wants her big happy family) which is why they are always around when I come. I wasn’t about to have that happen this trip, I’m done pretending everything is fine when it is far from it. I’m the one the family can’t talk to yet these two losers are ok to talk to? Well, I called my Grandma today and told her I would come see her but I didn’t want to see Uncle-Dad or real Dad, just her and my sister-cousin. She said to me ‘Well, Uncle-Dad apologized didn’t he?’ As if that meant it was ok. I explained it wasn’t ok, and I was tired of pretending it was. She didn’t push the matter but it makes me so angry that I have to explain why I don’t want to see him or have anything to do with the wacky JW religion! I am so stressed and angry…I wish seeing family was a happy thing.