Help Please - Finding It Hard Adjusting To The Real World
Yes! As Giles Gray says above, in time (a short time) you will look back on this time and see how much you have progressed.
I took on the name 'stuckinarut', and yet I am far from that point now! The last two years have been the very best, and now I'm really enjoying a full and genuine life.
You will too my friend!
in all the years ive been coming here ive read countless experiences like yours. you are going through the classic new ex-jw issues ~ jericho
I've not only read them.........I've lived it. It is a long time in passing unless you have the opportunity to make new friends......at work.....at school......etc. And even then, as JWs, we never really learned how to make friends because there were so many "automatic" friends. Being a JW makes it seem easy to make friends (with other JWs). The reality is that it is far different to make a real friend.
I'D GIVE MY EVER-LOVIN' ASS TO BE 31 YO. GET OFF OF YOUR MOPEY ASS AND GO TO SCHOOL. At 31 I hadn't figured out yet what I wanted to be when I grew up. Med School? At least start with nursing. Here that's a 3-year degree and makes damn good money and has all kinds of opportunity to move up from there.
And if and when the family does approach you, turn the tables on them. Remind them that Pastor Russell said when they need to beg for money it would be proof that they no longer had God's Blessing. (Issue #2 of the WatchTower back in 1879) I've never before seen such groveling for money!!!! What should that tell a JW? Good luck to ya! Keep us in the loop! We LOVE to read success stories!
Remember: The greatest revenge is living a happy & successful life! ..... DOC
It's a real shame your family are treating you this way, pale.emperor.
Any born in’s relate to this? How long until this passes? - I'm not born in, so I don't know.
I passed up going to medical school when I was in my early 20s because Armageddon was so close. Now, it’s too late to start down that path - are you sure? Please elaborate.
I got 6 GSCEs (A*-C) when I was 16. I was in the WTS at the time, so for the next 14 years I applied for/was stuck in dead end jobs. I later went to college and university.
AFAIK, you can still go back to full-time education.
A wrestler feels most comfortable when he is being pinned. Don't give up the struggle, it will feel so good when you have control and are the one able to command your responses without guilt. Time will help, but more so the habit of thinking clearly. Dismiss the guilt and move on. With the passage of time and by surrounding yourself with non cult people you will heal.
Pale........ I'm getting a sense of arrested development. You are 30 years old........ time to act like it.
As happens to all of us you are grown up now. Stop referencing things from before. Like all of us the before was a delusional believer in nothing.
Your no longer a JW because it was impossible to remain one. You got a peek behind the curtain and saw that the wizard of Oz was just another old flabby man with bad breath.
You have been given a blessing. You are young enough and smart enough to make the adjustments to have a good life, your life.....stop second guessing yourself. It's all in front of you....... there is nothing in back of you.
A family, a career that means something.
You have in all probability another 50 years of healthy life to live......maybe more. You can spend it being an ex JW or a reborn person who has sustainable new beliefs and wants to accomplish something.
Put away the child who was raised a JW you are now a man of the world.
always remember, breaking an addiction causes discomfort, because what is familiar is gone.
Going back to the addiction to get a "fix," just prolongs the misery. You know you're on the right track, getting out of that cult!
I wasn't born in but when I left I felt the same way you do. I was in from age 9 to 20, probably the most important years for developing the ability to make friends. When I left I didn't know how to make friends so the loneliness was sometimes overwhelming. I became very shy and went into my shell, unable to see the various offers of friendship at first due to the unhealthy mistrust of "worldly" people that was enforced on me all those years. I always thought were some ulterior motive when instead they just wanted to hang out or include me in their lives.
Luckily I woke up due to a persistent acquaintance who once point blank asked me why I was such a snob. I was shocked & hurt she'd say that but I immediately understood where she was coming from. I wasn't a snob, I was still wearing that smug JW persona that looks down on worldly people as evil, debauched and imminent roadkill when the Big A came down the road, despite not believing in that anymore. I realized I was treating certain people that way - people who were a bit "out there", alternative and different. Good people. It's frightening how much damage the cult causes us.
Get out there and do things - group things, like casual adult sports teams, hobbies, running clubs, night courses at the community centre, book clubs, whatever. Anything that gets you amongst lots of people. A smile and a casual conversation can be sometimes all you need. Of course, there'll be people you won't like or won't like you, that's par for the course.
As far as finding your non-JW cousins - try Facebook. Enter their names and you might find them.
I was very much same situation as you at around the same time. Still adjusting but if able to get schooling if you don't have much of a career then get back at it, not too late. Keep trying to meet new people. Enjoy life, etc. It will lessen as time goes on.
This is totally normal. The brainwashing does not go away the moment you realize it's not the truth, that takes time. The organization has had you for thirty years, they have impacted and molded your thinking, probably in ways you don't even yet realize yet, because it is so much a part of who you are. This is the nature of cult mind control.
It's going to be uncomfortable for a while, but it does get better with time. As you guessed, thus is where people tend to go running back to the organization because it feels comfortable, but that is just a temporary band aid to a huge problem, it doesn't solve any problems because the doubts and unhappiness are still going to be there for them.
Think of this as a character building moment. You need to trust yourself that you made the right decision, even if it feels uncomfortable in the moment. The organization teaches a kind of learned helplessness, this idea that you can't trust your own thoughts and mind (because that's coming from Satan don't you know). Don't believe it, it's a way to make people afraid to think for themselves. Trust that it will get easier in time and that making it through the fear will make you a stronger and better person.
. So I feel like im starting my life again at 31yo. I passed up going to medical school when I was in my early 20s because Armageddon was so close. Now, it’s too late to start down that path.
I call BS on this. It's never too late, and 31 may seem old to you, but from my perspective you are just a baby. I was forty five when I left, I've had a whole other life since then. I am recovering from two serious medical issues and restarted my business last year at 60 and I still have plans and goals, so don't limit yourself. People are living longer these days and staying healthy and productive longer as well. I won't lie and say it will be easy, but don't limit yourself. If you can make it through leaving a cult, why not take that newly found strength and wisdom and apply it to medical school? You might be even more successful as a mature individual.
PALE EMPEROR - I totally get and understand what you're going through. I too was a "born-in " JW from birth and didn't exit until age 44 about 13 years ago in 2003. You and me and others here were raised and indoctrinated to feel unnecessary GUILT and FEAR in our views towards EVERYTHING that's not WT or JW approved. WT Society worked hard to rip our self esteem from us as humans through the use of these GUILT and FEAR tactics - so it takes effort on our part to reestablish our personal self esteem. Which helps us proceed in a positive way in most things in real life needed to lead a normal, sane life. So what you are feeling is normal for someone coming out of a strong, controlling mind control cult - yet it takes work and effort on your part, my part, and re-educating ourselves after leaving the Witnesses in order to understand HOW the WT Society controlled us and to learn HOW to break free and start a new, happy life for ourselves. In time experience helps, but we have to re-educate our brain neurotransmitters with different information in order to get rid of the harmful WT indoctrination and way of thinking.
At 31 years of age you still have lots of time to get that medical degree you wanted and lots of time to pursue hobbies and interests you have as an authentic Non-JW human. I highly recommend reading Steve Hassan's 3 books on mind control and how it affected us in order to understand how to move on from it : his website is www.freedomofmind.com.
There is no reason to berate yourself, put yourself down anymore , or to think that your life is over. In actuality and truth - your life has just begun my friend. I mean, I'm almost 57 years old and hadn't picked up or played a guitar- ever until 5 years ago at age 52 . Now I've written almost 60 songs and am pursuing making music like I always wanted to in my teen years as a JW - but wasn't allowed the time to do so. You now HAVE the rest of your life to pursue any dreams you desire in a positive way if you wish ! I know it's cliché - but today IS the first day of the rest of your life my friend. Think about it - seriously- don't put limits on yourself- embrace the positive changes in your life and eliminate the negative influences ! WE are here for you as a support and friendship too- take care, best of luck to you ! Peace out, mr. Flipper