Trying to be positive.......

by Unstuck 32 Replies latest members private

  • Unstuck

    Well hello everybody! My hubby has been very patient, waiting for me to post my first post - he has been a member of this forum for about three years now, but I've only really "awoken" late November 2016 so it has taken me a little time to be ready to venture into this "new world"...... so here goes!

    Ah, as you may have gathered from the above - this is all very new for me. Reading the ARC findings report on the 30th November was like, um, how to describe it - my world stopped turning, everything froze and all of a sudden I realised TTATT.

    Without boring you with all intricate details, I'm monumentally incandescent with rage - I've been lied to and manipulated my entire life! Yes, I was raised a Witness. Baptised at 14, regular pioneered from 16 to 26 (now 42 if you're wondering). Ugh. I feel so betrayed and colossally annoyed at the still-in witnesses who can't see what I now see. The ARC just started the process. After reading that report, I then allowed myself to read and research more. It's like taking a bandaid off. Peeling it back bit by bit, hurting with each tug, each new thing that you learn you had wrong, you trusted wrong, you believed and based life decisions on - all wrong, wrong, wrong.

    I am one of the lucky ones though because I have an amazing, wonderful, incredibly supportive husband who has been helping me each step of the way. I feel bad that I wasn't there for him when he went through this painful process several years back. Looking back, I now recognise the signs, but I missed it back then. Still, "trying to be positive", I am so very grateful that we are both where we are now - I know I'm lucky.

    I'm trying to help myself too. I've started seeing a psychologist to help me process the range of emotions I'm feeling. I've had three sessions and at the last she asked me a question that I'm having a little trouble with and so I reach out to this forum for your thoughts...... She asked: "is there anything positive about your experience being raised as a witness that you can focus on?"

    So, I know what she is trying to do, trying to help me counter balance my anger with some positive thoughts. Trouble is, I keep coming up with arguments against anything positive I can think of. Here's an example:

    Moral values - right, being raised a witness, you are taught right from wrong, given some kind of a moral code. That's good isn't it? Nup! See, I feel that my "moral code" is now higher and better than the Watchtower. I WON'T tolerate, condone or be part of an organisation that can apply archaic scriptural interpretation (their interpretation!) to the handling child sexual abuse. Exercising my moral rights, I reject Watchtower - which makes me have more integrity than them! Watchtower didn't inculcate moral values into me, they didn't guide them, they certainly aren't guiding them now. Next.....

    Volunteering - ok, so I pioneered for 10 years. That taught me the value of volunteering and giving. Right? Nup! See, you can only volunteer to Watchtower. Volunteering to "worldly" organisations is a waste of time because their efforts are all going to fail because the kingdom is the only solution. So when you volunteer to Watchtower you are taught to be a judgemental self-righteous prat. Mmm, not much positive there.

    I think you get the idea. Just about anything positive you can come up with, I find a flaw, a reason to tear anything supposedly positive about the organisation entirely apart.

    I'm not so sure what that says about me - other than as mentioned I really got to work on the anger thing. So I reach out to those more experienced and mature than me. How did you deal with the rage? The frustration? Were you able to counter balance it with something positive - and if so, what was it??

    Sorry about the length - hubby did tell me keep it short, but, I get carried away :)

    Unstuck (well, trying to get unstuck!)

  • Iown Mylife
    Iown Mylife

    Welcome! Great post, thank you, and so happy you're Unstuck!

    Processing takes time. Pick it up, think about it and write it out, put it away until next time.

    This forum helps tremendously.

  • steve2

    Great first post, unstuck! Welcome. it has been such a recent and highly disruptive awakening for you. I so feel for the huge waves of emotions and reactions sweeping over you!

    In my opinion as a registered clinical psychologist, before you are asked to consider the "positives" of your background, you need to be correctly understood by the psychologist and your emotions validated. It sounds to me like you are no where ready to consider the "positives" - and I'd question the psychologists "judgement".

    Has that psychologist really heard you, including your strong and deep emotional reactions to the sense of rage you feel about an organization you thought was a place of safety but now realize it has manipulated you and betrayed your trust?

    Would that psychologist ask a victim of physical or sexual abuse to identify what positives have come out of their horrendous experience? Unlikely - because the psychologist would "get" the traumatic impact of what happened.

    There may well be a time to find some gold in a cup of vomit. But this is not it.

    Sometimes I think registered health professionals don't really know that much about the traumatizing impact of religious training and practices on individuals and they move straight into Problem solving mode when what they really need to do is listen and reflect back to you the deep sense of betrayal you feel.

    Take a deep breath and have a conversation with your psychologist about this very matter. You've lived a lifetime of having to watch what you say and to who. You don't want to carry on that watchfulness with someone you are seeing from whom you seek help.

  • LevelThePlayingField
    Welcome. I think you'll find in a year or two from now, that you will actually be able to find positive things. Right now though, you are angry and that's understandable. I was super angry when I first started learning TTATT.
  • stuckinarut2

    Welcome Unstuck! (I love the username too by the way!)

    So happy you finally felt comfortable to post here. This is a wonderfully supportive community of people who have travelled the path you are on. We "get it", and can help you.

    Um...and I must say, Thank you for your lovely words about me. I do try to be the best hubby possible.

    Yes, I , Stuckinarut2 am so very proud to be your husband! I love you Baby!

  • DesirousOfChange

    I really got to work on the anger thing. ~ Unstuck

    Yeah, me too. Don't get too rushed about it. I've been working on it for about 3 years (or maybe 4). It has gotten better but I was very angry (1) at me for being such a dumbass, gullible fool for so long; (2) at the bastards at the top of the WTS (whoever and wherever it leads) who know they are misleading people and selling them this "miracle wheat" (Reference to Russell).

    It sounds like your hubby handled it right in helping you to awaken. Maybe you or he can share the strategy to assist others who are struggling with helping their spouse to see the (new) light.

    Be happy you're only 42. So many of us were slow learners and lost an additional 10, 20 or more years of our lives than what you have lost. All of our children are "out", along with their spouses, so we are thankful for that and so grateful that we didn't discourage them from pursuing an education. We concentrate all of our efforts now for them and their children. Good luck! . . . . Doc

    The greatest revenge is living a happy & successful life!

  • Joyzabel


    Be patient with yourself.

    i recommend "EXiting the JW cult: A Healing Handbook..." By Bonnie Zieman.

    This site helped me (and a good therapist) the first couple of years after leaving the JWs. I'm so happy both you and your husband are "out" together Life can only get better.


  • Ding


  • dubstepped


    As with anything, your emotions will change and you'll go through phases. You're essentially grieving a loss, but more than that. My wife and I disassociated in September of 2015. I can totally identify with feeling tricked. I was listening to a podcast one day about pranks that people pulled on others and I looked at my wife and explained that I feel like I was pranked for decades. It sucks. Right now I'm in an angry phase myself. It comes and goes.

    As for positives, that is a question that has been asked on here many times. You might be able to do a search here and see the response of others. I believe I even saw a post about that topic recently. Myself, I don't see any positives. Certainly nothing that I couldn't have gotten elsewhere. I could have received a moral code without a cult. I could have learned how to talk to others, or many other things, without things that the cult provided. I just would have achieved them in a healthier environment. The only positive I see is that the super strong cult conditioning and morals kept me away from drugs. I have an addictive personality and wonder if maybe I would have tried drugs under a more laid back upbringing and it could have been very bad. Then again, that is pure speculation.

    You're in good company here. We're all survivors of the cult, well, most of us. There's still some knuckleheads rolling around here that believe it is the truth, but hey, you can't fix stupid and at least people are free to express themselves here, unlike anything JW related.

    Hope you enjoy your time here!


  • Confusedandangry

    Hi & welcome. I got chills reading your post. (In a good way) I also just 'woke up' recently thanks to the ARC videos. That's what started the unraveling for me. Im sorry I have no advice to offer because I'm still dealing with anger and frustration. So much frustration. My husband is still semi active and believes it's 'the truth'.

    Your post gives me hope that one day he will also wake up. Nothing would make me happier. I'm glad you're getting counseling & wish you the best. Looking forward to reading more about the process/steps that lead to your 'awakening.'

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