Commenting on the opening post - this goes to the heart of the JW culture. They are incredibly ignorant and simple-minded - such lack of understanding that it is infuriating!
Having a mother with bi-polar and a father with depression I know all too well that control has very very little to do with it.
Last week, I had a similar conversation with a very-in witness elder. We were talking about mental health illnesses. He raised multiple personality disorder and told me about a witness in his congregation a few years ago who "claimed" (his words) to have multiple personality disorder. From the behaviour he described it seemed pretty clear to me that she did indeed suffer from multiple personality disorder and I expressed sympathy for her struggle with this particular illness.
But not this elder. He sighed as we talked and then said to me: "Of course, we know that there is only one personality - the new personality."
Somehow, I managed to keep myself calm - but I told him that that was an incredibly simplistic, ignorant and narrow-minded view if he thought that mental illness could be cured by a bunch of qualities listed in the Bible. I told him that his comment revealed a gross lack of understanding of the complexity of mental health issues and I hoped that he didn't say such things to members of his flock. I then zipped my mouth for the sake of the other individual present and the elder, at least, showed a modicum of wisdom by not saying anything further.
But the episode proved to me, again, how truly ignorant, uneducated and deliberately unaware JWs are - and yes, that's how I was too, I'm ashamed to say, but not anymore. And these elders have the emotional well being of so many others in their hands and yet say such truly idiotic things. I could just imagine him saying that to one his elder buddies and them nodding and sighing in agreement - truly frightening and angering.
Heartfelt apologies if my sharing this incident is a trigger to anyone.......
Love, light and hugs to all,