My husband has a brother he has not spoken too in years not even when he became an adult. There is a big age gap between them and when his brother was DF'd he was still a small child. His brother was 17 when he was DF'd for sex and when he turned 18 he left home and never looked back. He joined the military and made a career out of it and lived overseas for many years. He left the military and a few years ago and is living in the states again and is very successful from what I understand.
My husband told me that after he moved out that his parents would contact him once a year to see if he wanted to come back. Their final email from him was that he researched the religion and told them they were in a cult and that he did not want to have any contact with them or superficial contact. On this board what he did is referred to as "reverse shunning".
He has a family of his own now. The last contact they had indirecting was when their mother sent a message via facebook to his wife and introduced herself. His wife never responded to the message. I find this situation to be intolerable and so sad.
I asked my husband if he was ever tempted to reach out to his brother or wanted any type of relationship with him. He said he was tempted many times to reach out to him but he said he always talked himself out of it because at the end of the day what relationship could they have. This is where its so hard for me not to trash the religion but I refrained and told him I think he should seriously rethink his decision.
I want to contact my brother in law so bad but I don't want to open that door if my husband turns around and shuns him after some contact because of me. I really am not sure if my husband could shun his brother though if they reconnected. I think his brother might be the key to him leaving the JW's. Trying to get him to research his religion I don't think is the answer. It's family bonds. The research can come later when he is more open to it. He has cut back on field service but he still attends meetings. I noticed a big change in his attitude toward me after my crazy mother tried to drag me to the KH and the elders showing up and trying to ask me the loyalty questions. The more agressive they have gotten with me the more alienated he has gotten with them. He also seems to be enjoying the free time he has now since he resigned as a MS. My biggest fear is that his JW family will be able to get to him and he will get sucked back in more than he already is. Aggghh I don't know what I should do!!