Do any of you born into the cult feel like your mental growth was stunted?

by rockemsockem 45 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Simon

    You sound like you apply a certain amount of stoicism DrearyWeather, I think that's healthy and missing in a lot of people's lives.

    You can't control life, but you can control your reaction to it and make the best of the cards you're dealt.

    Some people just seem to wallow in drama, no matter how great life could be, they seem to find a way to turn it into a pseudo reality show.

    It is all about personal choice and accountability.

  • snugglebunny

    Being raised by parents who apply the teachings of a high control group such as JW's will almost certainly impede maturation to some extent. Lessons normally learned by trial and error in developing youngsters just don't happen to the same degree when all one's choices are clearly laid out by the controlling group.

    That's not to say that the effect of such an upbringing is irrevocable, but I've seen many cases of what I can only term as a delayed adolescence in the newly departed.

  • pale.emperor

    Oh definitely.

    At 34 I'm still figuring out "the world" and real people and real situations. Mentally I feel like I'm 18 or 19. I found I went through a low/depressed stage, then a rock and roll period for a good while after I left. Had a blast.

    Now I'm somewhat calmer and less angry about my JW upbringing and try to focus on the present and future. Starting University in my early 30s at first felt silly but it's something I feel I should have done straight from school so I do it.

    I've seen many cases of what I can only term as a delayed adolescence in the newly departed.

    I'm guilty of this! /\

    It's like I'm trying to catch up with everything I missed.

  • WTWizard

    Being raised a jokehovian is stifling. You do lose out on much fun--holidays, vacation time, and class trips. Also, you get forced to do field circus on your weeks off from school, and there are too many rules that make you suffer. Along with forced boasting session attendance.

    But, put it in perspective. I wonder how many other cults, and really devout xian parents, do the same things or even worse. I have heard of children in other xian denominations, even in the cat lick church, being horribly abused because the devout parents wanted to beat "the devil" out of them. They also lose out on many opportunities, and as much fun, as the jokehovians do.

    And one of the worst possible experiences can be to missionary parents. This is as true with any denomination as with the jokehovians. You see a missionary couple, usually white going into Africa, staying there for a long time. While there, they have a child that is an "Oops". While this may not spell the end of their mission, the child is forced into a missionary lifestyle. And, when the child comes "of age" (and it may not be as old as 18 in some of those countries), they are indentured to the church and left while the parents go back home. As the child was born in that country, they will be full citizens there (and not citizens in the parents' home country). They also miss out on life experiences, usually under far worse conditions than most jokehovians have to suffer, and never get to see their own people once their parents leave for home (and, aside their parents, never at all). Those people never get the opportunity to do anything outside church.

    And yes, I do hate the jokehovian witless cult. But, in perspective, anyone that is stupid enough to devote one's whole soul into that xian filth (in any denomination, even the cat lick church) can provide equally bad experiences (or even worse) for their children.

  • days of future passed
    days of future passed

    Well, my parents were the first impediment I would have to say. Then my mother's religion. I think how you rise above it, depends a lot on your basic personality and if there is intervention from others that come into your life. Or circumstances.

    Unfortunately, my personality is pretty docile and trusting. I've been in a box most of my life and still struggle against being influenced. No support from parents in art and the religion X'd it out. I only did art in a commercial sense when i left for a short period. Too bad the fear of Armageddon drug me back in.

    So many ingrained pathways at this point, that progress is slow. Oh Well.

  • Solzhenitsyn

    Mentally and emotionally stunted for sure for those of us who were tried and true born and raised in what ultimately turned out to be a dystopia (negative UNreality).

    From being read Bible stories inutero back in 1978 of Jehovah killing non Jehovah's witnesses in the flood, to Stormtroopers bursting in and elders shredding documents and deleting Google drives before being hauled off to JW jail.....

    I was never trained nor developed the ability to recognize my true problems much less solve them on my own. Or even recognize that the problems and deficiencies I had were even really problems to begin with. I was raised from infancy by an organization in essence. A tried-and-true narcissistic, emotionally abusive, male.

    Thank God for a loving and patient wife and therapist trained in religious cult recovery & PTSD care.

  • Nikki collins
    Nikki collins

    yup! 100% needless to say im screwed up but i have to own it. it is what it is.

  • neverendingjourney

    James Hetfield of Metallica and Ellen Degeneres were raised Christian Scientist. Beck was and is a Scientologist.

    There are a lot of successful people who've overcome similarly screwed up childhoods. One of the biggest benefits I derive from telling people about my JW upbringing is learning that I'm not on an island. Lots of people have had to overcome similar challenges.

    It doesn't make our upbringing okay, but it does put things in perspective.

  • Humphry

    Listening to the self serving information coming forth from the WT corporation 5 hour a week for 52 weeks a year not to mention circuit assemblies and conventions x how many years you were in the Twoof. I think this repeated indoctrination in things that take away the locus of control from your self and give it to them has got to effect mental growth in the negative direction and I would advise where possible seek a good analyst to get to the core of your being, I have not done so but,I continue to do use the internet, library, to sort of be my own analyst and some other practices to try to become more whole or together. Also more important is what is going on in the unconscious part of our total self, and how this will effect us as we age. A lot of counterproductive ways of dealing with life's problems have been implanted and it takes time and effort to make the beneficial productive ways replace these implanted drives.

  • zeb
    • I am ever thankful we allowed/permitted/approved of our kids having 'outside' friends.
    • go to the movies
    • go off for exploring in the bush.
    • have hobbies.
    • go to school activities
    • go to school camps

    and of course we got the evil eye from the self righteous class.

    It has been my observation that jw kids born ins are at least two years behind their 'worldly' peers in mental and social development.

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