I've been thinking a lot recently about the interaction between people in the exJW community and it seem to me that the "JW Experience" (sounds like a theme park ride doesn't it?) polarises behavior somewhat between two extremes:
We know in the JW scheme of things that friendships are very 'superficial'. One day, you can be friends with a couple of hundred people and meet & talk with them several times a week and then a day (and an announcement from the platform) later ... you are on your own with not so much as a nod in the street as you walk past. You realise that you didn't really have 'friends' so much as people who just happened to go to the same club as you on the same days.
For us, we've seen how false the friendships we had were and this makes us value the friendships we've made since we left even more. We may not be good at friendships and be a bit awkward socially but we this probably makes us value them even more. Most of the friendships go beyond just having the shared commonality of a JW past which makes them much stronger.
For some, they seem to go the other way - every relationship appears to mirror the transient nature of the JW-type friendships and the scheming and back-biting that always seemed to go along with it. One minute people find they are classed as a friend ... the next, they are not - people are used and discarded as it suits and affection turned on and off at will. They may have left the JWs but the JW has not left them.
Both are different types of 'social retard' which I consider myself to be - I do find personal interaction difficult due to my past but because of this I really value the friendships I have made since. I think some other "social retards" have the same difficulties but can't seem to shake the JW mentality which often results in only having short-term acquaintances and soured relationships.
What do you think? Do you consider yourself socially stunted because of the JW upbringing and how do you cope with it?