One of our daughters in law said this:

by Mulan 30 Replies latest jw friends

  • morrisamb

    I left the Witnesses in '85; one of my best friends in '94...he still cares what Witnesses think 'cause he's worried about being disfellowshipped. I stopped caring years ago but I obssessed with death and Armegeddon until a couple of years ago! He never worried about that!

    We're all so different in our individual reactions to the experience yet bonded by something we all had in common.

    My friend and I met in '93 --he didn't know I had been a Witness; I didn't know he was one...not until the following year did he admit that he was a Witness. I was completely shocked. I didnt' go, how wonderful you are one of me...I thought, why the hell didn't you tell me earlier? As close as we were by that point, we immediately had this catalogue of experiences to share, a language so unique that all my other friends VISIT out conversation, but never really understand what it was like.

    I don't really know ex-witnesses...I met my friend before he left...One of the things this board has done for me: I've never felt so fricken normal in my life!

    I agree with some of the posters: Mulan is one of the most fair, even-handed people I've ever communicated with here.

    I find bitterness a normal emotion but it isn't a pleasant feeling to witness or experience.

  • Jayson

    Having not had the experience makes it easy to say "get over it." It is sad that people don't/can't/won't take the time to learn about just how deep the JW experience takes a person. I can understand looking at Ex-JW's and think man Ex/current whatever these people are wacked. But I was taken back when I started talking about my in-laws with just how many people have a story of JW's messing with or messing up someones life. Yes they usually recover but it bothers me on how so many people are left to cope with it alone. Another thing that bothers me with modern society is how we are told that there is something wrong with us if we get angry. And bring out the strait jacket if we stay that way. It is healthy to get angry when you are being attacked. And this is the thing that is so incedious about this group. They attack and the emotional level and the spiritual level. Even if you leave them as long as they plant the seeds of doubt as long as you look for everything that is wrong with another group then you will never be happy. And then if you stay unhappy they win. In todays world High Contol Groups and relationships are loosing their grip of power in all aspects of life. Battered women and children are not told to "just get over it" anymore. With Ex-JW's there may not be visible scares but they are there and they often hurt. And it is OK to get angry and it is OK to stay angry until you are ready to let it go.

    Thats how I see it


  • LyinEyes

    I agree with you Mulan, being a lifelong witness does form you, it was your life for so long, as it was mine. I dont think there will ever be a day I dont think of being a JW , or considering myself an ex jw.

    Everyday , I thank God, (well I try to believe in him and try to pray ,not sure if he listens to me) and when I think of God, I still think of Jehovah. That will automatically remind me that I am not one of Jehovah's Witnesses anymore.

    I have read alot of things to convince me that maybe Jehovah is not God's real name, but habit,,,, I guess and the learned behavior of that name , may take many more years to not think of using that name when I pray.

    I have noticed a differnce in posters who got out of the borg, at a young age, maybe as teens or in their 20's ,,,,,,,who are not as bitter , as some of us who gave up alot more years that we can not get back, and many opportunities that we can not get back,,,,,,,,, Not to mention bringing our children up in the JW, and almost screwing their lives up as well. Of course people like us who have put so much into are going to be mad, angry and bitter from time to time, we feel like we have been had. I know I think to myself ,,,,,,,,,,,why didnt I see what I was really into, why didnt I try to find out......???? But when you are a faithful dub you wouldnt even think to look at an "apostate" question,,,,,,, so how would we have ever known ?? Thank God for the internet. Many of us had nagging questions, but couldnt ask, but we could secretly , in the privacy of our home, do some searching. I am glad we did, and that more are doing it. I also tell everyone from my new next door neighbor , to the lady at the check out stand ,,,,,to NEVER listen to a Jehovah's Witness if they come to your door. Most people say they never do.

  • ozziepost
    I also tell everyone from my new next door neighbor , to the lady at the check out stand ,,,,,to NEVER listen to a Jehovah's Witness if they come to your door. Most people say they never do.

    Me too! Does this mean we have a worldwide brotherhood (sisterhood)? See, it must be the true organisation???

    Cheers, Ozzie

  • LyinEyes

    I think so

    I find a great delight in telling people this is my first Xmas or my first birthday,,,,,,,,and they looked so shocked, that is how I start my "apostate presentation", you know spike their interest,hehe.

    Most people say, " I knew those Jehovah's were weird."

    Now spreading the good news has a whole different meaning for us

  • Shakita


    I really think this is a case of "You have to walk a mile in my shoes" to understand why.......

    Just because someone hasn't experienced a traumatic event in someone else's life doesn't mean though that we can not show empathy for that person. I equate leaving the JW organization, especially after many years in, like experiencing a death in the family. Except that this death is not of a person, but of a part of the life we have left behind. People can empathize with us on our loss, but they can not truly understand the depth of feelings we might be harbouring inside. Some people are not as good as others at showing empathy, or they just don't want to put forth the effort to try to "walk a mile in the other person's shoes."

    Lyin Eyes:

    My daughter celebrated her first Christmas at school this year. This year she has the same teacher she had in a previous school year when she did not celebrate the holidays. The teacher asked the kids what was going to make this Christmas special to them this year.....and my daughter said, "It is special because it is my first Christmas." When she told me this I was happy for her, but sad for the rest of my children who did not get to share in this kind of joy when in school. I try not to wallow in the regrets of my past mistakes, but when you are an xjw parent, there are SO many regrets that it is hard not to wallow. This is key to why so many xjw's can not put the past behind them......because, in a sense, it is never behind but always there like a bad memory that continues to haunt them throughout the rest of their life.

    Mrs. Shakita

  • LyinEyes

    You are exactly right, Mrs. Shakita,,,,,,,,, so true!!!
    My oldest son, has that look in his face, of childhood longings, as he watches his little sister and brother as they celebrated their birthdays this last year. He never got to blow out the candles as a child in awe of a birthday cake, presents or getting to go to some cool place little kids like for their b/d , like Chucky Cheese's.

    He is 16 and we gave him his first birthday party back in Jan. He enjoyed it , but I could tell he seemed to have that sadness of how pitiful it really is to be 16 and having your first birthday party. There are so many things he didnt get to do, but he is doing so great now, making up for lost time. He is an honor student, in the National Beta club, plays football, baseball, goes out with friends, has girlfriends, and basically has a great time .

    I feel bad that we didnt get out sooner for his sake, but at least he got to have his teenage years , he was 14 when we left the JW's. Leaving the JW's probably saved his life, I was getting so worried about him, he was lonely and depressed, there were no other kids , or young adults in our congregation at all.

  • rocketman

    Many ex-jws cruise along just fine, and do move on with their lives. But as els mentioned, sometimes something triggers all those feelings again, be it something someone says, the approach of a holiday, whatever. Many find needed support in places like this. They need perhaps affirmation of the choice they made to leave.

  • Nosferatu

    In my case, I feel I've gotten over it as much as I possibly could. It's extremely difficult when you're growing up in this religion, you have no desire for it, and you're parents force you to go to the meetings and out on service by threatening you with beatings, and kicking you out of the house.

    I knew what was happening with my childhood. I knew I was missing out on a lot. I knew that I would look back and see how wasted my childhood was. But I also know that I cannot reclaim it. The best I can do is pave a normal way of life for my children, and feel even the smallest piece of a normal childhood.

  • crownboy

    My current non-belief in Christanity has nothing to do with "bitterness", or my JW experience (an experience which quite frankly was not as bad as many here have had; just mainly boredom and unfullfilment), but I do credit the experience with helping me to be more critical about what I believe, which has led me to my current state of knowledge.

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