When I first left the JWs I really needed to deal with my childhood abuse issues (pre JW). In doing that I realized that an old childhood desire to help others who had been abused. Naively I went into that think I would rid the world of child abuse. So naive. But I learned. I could work on just my tiny piece of it. Very small and often I would never know what effect I had.
I have been blessed though in knowing I have made an impact on people's lives. But I also know I have made an impact on people and never knew it at the time.Years later I have met people or heard from people who tell me they saw me speak somewhere or read my web page or read a comment I made. One even told me she read an excerpt in a book that someone else published that hekped her. But I think those are the rarities. Most often the impact is unknown.
After a few years I began to deal with the JW issues and I still am on some issues regarding this. I have no idea how far reaching my words go on the internet. But the last month has been odd. I have 3 JWs emailing me right now. They are at a cross-roads.
A month ago another one was emailing me. For now she has decided to stay. But seeds of discontent are planted in her heart. Not by me but by her experiences. But she is asking questions. Her discontent will grow and as it grows she will reach out again. Maybe not to me but I am sure she will reach out again.
For every person who has posted in here there are amny more lurkers. Those who are in. Those who have left. Those who are studying. Those who have a relative in - or a girl or boyfriend. Or someone just interested. We just never know.
I am very lucky because people tell me that what I say helps them. Hopefully it helps others too.
One thing that I learned about recovery is that in the telling of our stories, in the sharing of the process, we release the hold that the abuse/control/stigma has over us. I often tell people recovery is like peeling an onion. Each layer will trigger new aspects of what we went through. Many layers will make us cry. But eventually we reach the core - the sweetest part and sometimes the most painful. I our sharing we heal ourselves.
Sometimes we do need a break. I take them and disappear for a bit. But then I am back for another layer of my onion or to offer help someone peel another layer of theirs. Either way I am stronger