Why is the approval of family so important?

by jwfacts 30 Replies latest jw experiences

  • jwfacts

    One of the reasons people remain PIMO is fear of losing family. Those that are disfellowshipped and shunned regularly comment about how devastated that they have lost the approval of their parents.

    When I respond to emails from people saying how difficult it is being estranged or looked down on by their parents, I would like to say that over time they will come to terms with it, except I not sure that people ever do.

    I cannot shake that feeling either. I wish that I could have convinced my father before he passed away that the live I am living is something that he could be really proud of. Or with my mother, convince her that although we share different opinions, overall I am still the same person that she was so proud of many years ago.

    With JW friends it doesn't really matter to me anymore what they think.

    Why is it so important to children to have the approval of family regardless of how they are treated by them, and is it possible to fully overcome that longing?

  • waton

    It appears that at a certain age, teenagers, like my son now, do certain things to break loose from their parents.

    By living together longer, it could become convincing that the other person has not changed and is an asset to the family,? unless wt values are paramount?

  • Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Ho
    Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Ho

    I'm 26 years old with a child of my own, yet I deeply crave acceptance from my parents. It's my downfall. I guess we could look at our own offspring. Could they seamlessly shrug our love off when they're older and still be considered healthy, well-rounded individuals? Contrast it with the folks who shrug off OUR love for no longer wanting to be a Witness. Do THEY appear to be well-rounded people?

    Craving the love and approval of our parents seems natural to me when I think of it like this: when a stranger walks past me on the street and screams some random profanity at me, I shrug it off and keep walking. Why? Because they don't know me. They don't know who I am and what I stand for. Their opinion is therefore obsolete. But when the people who gave you life, who know exactly who you are and have had a lifetime to make an informed decision of you then REJECT you, deeming you unworthy of love, let alone contact... well. That really smarts.

    Perhaps from a Darwinian perspective, we could examine things in this way: being rejected by the very ones who propagated their genes to give birth to you could result in death. This may resonate more strongly with younger Witnesses whose parents shun them. But for older Witnesses who still yearn for their parents to accept and love them, we could think about how natural selection works. Standing out and not going along with the crowd is usually what kills you in more primitive species. It's going along with the crowd of your kind that heightens your chance for survival in the animal kingdom. As ex-Witnesses, we're standing out from the crowd we knew and accepted as our only "sort" growing up. Perhaps we're hard-wired by biology to experience this apprehension to being rejected (and subsequently standing out) because it signals a very real threat to our survival.

    I'm purely extrapolating here, but there might be some science to it!

  • dubstepped

    There's the natural thing of that just being such a formative relationship, of course. But I also think that since we grew up in a performance based cult the approval of others, including parents, is ramped up tenfold in importance.

  • jwfacts
    Contrast it with the folks who shrug off OUR love for no longer wanting to be a Witness. Do THEY appear to be well-rounded people?

    Yes, I guess continuing to want the acceptance of such parents shows we have not lost our humanity.

  • Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Ho
    Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Ho

    @jwfacts: "...have not lost our humanity." Nor our minds. WT currently has my parents' brains in a large mason jar under the bathroom sink at Warwick.

  • breakfast of champions
    breakfast of champions

    I would not say that “family approval” or fear of losing family is the reason my wife continues to be (barely) PIMO. . . . it’s really just out of respect for her octogenarian parents (who we take care of). We just want to avoid “rocking the boat” if at all possible so they can live out their lives in relative peace.

    My wife has expressed that as soon as her parents are gone, she will never step foot in a KH ever again, and would not shy from letting her siblings (and other family members) know exactly why.

    I don’t think we’re at all worried about convincing anyone of anything. My wife and I are happy together, and I think what we’ve accomplished thus far is indeed something we can be proud of. If family members in the org recognize this, then my wife and I have provided a “good witness” by example. If not, we don’t really care.

  • stuckinarut2

    There is another way to look this issue .

    The family that do the shunning are actually missing out on all that we can provide them and all that we can contribute to enhance their lives. ie, it is actually THEIR loss. They miss out on us, and all we are.

    Rather than allowing ourselves to be the 'victims', we should see those family as the victims. Yes, victims of the GB control.

    Dont stop calling or seeing those family members. Keep calling, and keep showing up and acting normal. If we stop contacting them, we play by the rules of the society, and give power to their corrupt policies.

  • Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Ho
    Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Ho

    What does PIMO stand for? I keep seeing it pop up on discussion threads... Prisoner In My Opinion? I can't work it out.

  • pbrow

    Your brain is literally wired from a young age when you are a cult member. If you are doing good for the group, you get praise, if you are not, then you are working for the devil. After 18 years of this bullshit your brain is fucked up. JW's are awesome at creating kids and young adults with low self esteem and low self confidence.

    You crave their acceptance because they have conditioned you to be that way. Its a cult tactic. Its how they get born ins to stay for 20, 30, 40 and 50 years and in turn train their kids that way.

    Your craving acceptance from your parents is your cognitive dissonance. You have woken up. You know that how they treat people is fucked up. You know that how they treat people is abusive, but at the same time you have had your brain wired from an early age to crave their acceptance even though the new programming you are learning tells you that people like your parents are toxic.

    Raising your kids in this cult is one of the worst things you can do for them. If you have children you cannot be complacent, you cannot hide your personal beliefs from them about this cult. I faded for about three months but realized that me being quiet about this cult only reinforced my acceptance of it. Your children absolutely need to see your open defiance of this thought control, this group think.

    Be the kind of parent that raises children that never have to come on an ex-whatever website and ask fucked up questions like this one. Our parents chose to raise us in a cult. That is fucked up.


Share this