My freedom came with a heavy cost. I couldn't stand the dishonesty so when my sister went out of town on a trip I told my parents that I no longer wanted to be a JW. When my sister got back and I told her she was so angry, said she really wanted to slap me, then she ran off sobbing, a few minutes later she deposited every gift I ever gave her in front of my door.
My entire family has turned against me. They all feel so much pain over this and from their point of view it's all my fault. Even though I know in my head that it's the narrow-minded shunning policy of the Watchtower that really causes this pain, I can't help but feel guilt everytime I relive hearing my sister crying or my mother's angry insistence that "deep down I know this is the Truth."
This morning I woke up in a home where I have freedom and acceptance. I'm glad I found good friends before I committed to this path because I know that this wouldn't have gone well for me otherwise. I have a long road ahead of me to reach a happy life, and I doubt these scars will ever fully heal, but now at least I can begin to get on with my life.