To Swan

by Big Tex 2 Replies latest jw friends

  • Big Tex
    Big Tex


    I think a mistake many people, including myself, make is to read through posts quickly without taking the time to digest properly what the intent of the poster was. In reading through your posts in this thread, I've come to realize the amount of courage it took for you to start it off. We share a common tragedy in our past, and yet I think of the two of us you are the one who is further along in recovery. In this thread you are expressing the true sentiments of Christianity. You are acknowledging the pain and trauma caused by your two abusers and yet you are advanced and mature enough to forgive them. Indeed, despite all they did, you still can feel affection for them. This to me is extraordinary. When I look inside myself at my own abusers I do not find the ability or desire to forgive them, much less express love for them. Your posts in this thread calls to mind all the scriptures wherein Jesus commends those who love their enemy. This ability to forgive someone, especially when the hurt is great, is at the very heart of Christianity.

    In my mind the greatest tragedy in this thread occurred when nearly everyone assumed you were some bleeding heart for child molestors. Time and again you stated you were referring, specifically, to your own molestors. If someone takes the time to read what you have to say it is clear you do not condone pedophiles, instead you abhor what they do and the pain they cause. I am truly sorry for my part in failing to recognize what you were doing. I am also sorry when you said you regretted starting the thread. Again let me say, what you did took a lot of courage. What should have been a healing experience for you apparently turned painful. If I am reading you correctly you were making a very personal statement about yourself and what happened to you, not the world in general.

    I just wanted to acknowledge what you were attempting. I believe we're all in this life together. If we don't help one of us, then all are diminished. I just wanted you to feel good about yourself for starting this thread. It wasn't a mistake to start it and I'm glad you shared your thoughts and feelings with the rest of us.



  • Swan

    Dear Chris (Big Tex),

    Thank you. I'm getting there in my recovery, but I still have a long way to go. It has been a painful process. I was not thinking of myself so much as the others here. This was very painful for them, apparently, and many of them still have a lot of animosity toward their respective molesters, and rightly so! I would never want to take that away from them. I have found in my recovery that hate and anger is a good thing. The JWs always tell us not to hate and not to be angry, but there are times when you should! They are valid emotions, like love and joy and fear. They have their purpose. I think that hate and anger are a necessary defense mechanism against extreme trauma and pain. I was just concerned that I had started something that was causing some extreme pain and anger here. If I touched any open wounds with my words, please be assured that they were only from my perspective and fit my experiences. I am sorry if they caused you any pain.

    As for Christianity, yes, forgiveness is one of it's greatest tenets. Unfortunately, not well practiced by "Christian" nations. Christianity, I have discovered, is not something you can just profess. It takes practice. I think that is what Christ did more than anything else while on Earth. He set a standard and an example for us to strive for. I do not consider myself to be a Christian any longer, but I do value the wisdom and teachings of Christ as I do many other wise men and women. I try to work toward the goal of enlightenment as Christ, Buddha, Gandhi, and others lived. It is ironic that I am a more enlightened and happier individual now as an agnostic than I ever was as a JW! I am less judgmental, more forgiving, more tolerant, more loyal, more loving, and more compassionate now than I ever was before.

    I am not a bleeding heart for child molesters, but I am an advocate of more research and education on the subject. I think we need to stop the cycle by preventing the abuse, rather than by punishing the abusers after the fact. Punishment is necessary, by all means, and I don't think it is often strong enough. But we don't do enough as a society to identify it and prevent it in the first place. I also believe that we as a society should be doing all we can to assist the victims in their recovery. That includes requiring by law all religious organizations, medical organizations, counselors, and educational institutions to report all allegations of child abuse to the law enforcement agencies, and have tough penalties for those that break this law. A Cardinal or GB member serving a year or two in prison for covering up a crime like this would certainly send a message to others that this is a serious crime and will not be tolerated in our society. Of course, the pedophile's sentence should be much longer. And we should also have rehabilitation in place for when they are released.

    Good luck in your recovery. I hope you continue to progress. You may never forgive your abuser, but you should never feel as though you have to. The onus should always be on the abuser, not the victim. That was something I really saw in Donald's book (morrisamb). His father and his church kept up this almost relentless pressure on him and his siblings that they needed to forgive him, which was so backward. The onus was on his father to repent, apologize, and ask for forgiveness, but whether he did it once, seven times, or seventy-seven times, it was never ever the obligation of his victims to forgive him.

    Peace to you too.


  • cruzanheart
    I think we need to stop the cycle by preventing the abuse, rather than by punishing the abusers after the fact.

    This is Big Tex here. I've hit the posting limit again (aarrrgghhh!), so I'm using my wife's account (thanks honey!).

    Wow, I could not agree more. I think that is something many people, including some on this forum, fail to realize. Yes, like you, I am all for locking a pedophile away, but for God's sake it's much more important to prevent the abuse from occurring in the first place. In your thread, mention was made of a program that assisted pedophiles in curbing their insane desires. I was amazed at one person who ridiculed that effort. This is short sighted and evident of ignorance. If we can prevent the abuse from taking place, there is no need for prisons, psychotherapy for the victim and to say nothing of having to experience the rape in the first place. I don't know if such a thing is possible, but I believe fervently that we need to explore whether pedophiles can be treated. As I said, I would prefer my tax dollars being spent on preventing and treating abusers than in locking them away. Mainly because there will come a day when they are released and when they are released from prison they will rape again. If we can find a way to treat them and cure this defect then the problem is solved.

    Thank you for your kind words. I've been out of therapy now for 12 years. I was, and still am, thoroughly impressed by your heartfelt expressions toward those who hurt you. I'm going to guess that it was more than boundary crossing, based on what I've read from you. I think it was your feeling toward this person(s) that touched me. I still find it extraordinary. I think you are further along than you give yourself credit for. One thing I remember my therapist told me, is that the pain will always be with us; it's just that as time goes by, and healing occurs, the pain becomes less and less until it is the size of a molecule.

    You have said nothing to offend me. Please do not worry about this. I am fairly thick skinned. Remember I used to be a JW! They don't handle victims too well, and they view male abuse victims as something akin to a freak. But that was a long time ago for me and I'm thankful I don't have to deal with those kinds of people anymore.

    As I've said, I want to validate your feelings and support your statement to your abuser(s). After all it's your right. What happened to you is part of who you are and how you choose to deal with it is entirely up to you. I did not know what your spiritual beliefs were, but I still say you are espousing the very essence of Christianity.

    Take care,


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