H, CYP, I recall you, too. A lot of people, even non JWS, don't think 'doctor' first, so of course, that would be my first (should have been in question form, though) reply.
I was not thinking of pharmas, and disappointed he was not recommended for counselling. That's my fault for forgetting the present medical climate of psychiatry, in which the latest DSM says: medicate first.
It's the nightmares and suicidal ideations that alarmed me. I know what it's like to be 15, 20, 25, and feel like that.
The Hassan Book is *the* reference, and as a team, i think you and your wife are taking a good approach. I can understand how he may feel more comfortable talking with your wife about the JW.
That doesn't mean that you can't take an active role and empathize at the right times. Saying something like "I know I can't understand exactly how you feel because I haven't been through it. There was a time when I was very low, though, when xxx happened. And it's okay to feel bad - you can always talk to me, son. I went through this with your mom, and it must be so hard! I understand." - or something to that effect.
One of the things to realize in your son's case, is that he was exposed to the JW at the very age where children develop their cognitive thinking skills. That is, between approximately age 7-10. So, the nightmares are where his subconscious turns to process at night, which left me, exhausted and depressed.
Is he gaming constantly or otherwise iosolating, with little physical activity? Think back to before the cult got ahold of your family, and did he like nature? soccer? basketball? Something you can do together.
You're right, it can be difficult to find a counselor that recognizes the serious effects that being a JW can have, especially a child. The Religious PTS sounds 'just' like PTSD, and this therapist may have some good points, but I would say, yes, biased. Bipolarsim, eg, is genetic, but can be *triggered* by stress or trauma - we *think* - so, my phrase would be 'religious-induced' PTSD.
I would be happy to look around online and see if anyone is in your area (and with sliding scale if in the USA). I've helped a couple of other people find help, and in different countries.
Will check in later, and sending you strength and good energy. xx
Edit: And yes, indeedy, TTATT should be a part of the process - organically - questions will arise. It doesn't have to be overly technical, dates, etc. Basic truths - like Jah knows what you are thinking! - are the things that need to be changed. Check out 'Transactional Analysis" as a therapeutic technique (of which there are many, and it's not the only one that may help him). xx