Can "Born-Into-Its" Ever Be Happy?

by Englishman 46 Replies latest jw friends

  • tinkerbell82
    Ah, so you think it is possible to make up for the lost years

    I'm not sure yet...I'm trying to do just that, but i'm still relatively young. when i first left i went utterly wild acting out and having my adolsecent rebellion (better late than never) to my own detriment. i'm trying to pace myself these days. if i reach the mental age of 21 before i hit 22, then i'll let you know. ;)

    of course i think you can only make up for lost childhood past a certain point, if that makes sense...those early years are gone. i'm just going to have to live with the fact that i didnt get to believe in santa and the tooth fairy or get cake and play pin the tail on the donkey on my birthday. that's the sort of thing you can't go back and redo. you've just got to accept that you lost out and move on.

  • garybuss

    This is why exit counseling is so important. It's sort of like getting a new heading on the compass of life and a map showing the different ways to get to the goal of healthy living. One problem so many of us face is getting a real goal. Once we have the goal, getting there is possible.

    It's also like getting a new pair of glasses. Things were different than we thought but we couldn't see that.

    I have a good quote on the goals thing. I'll go find it and post it. GaryB

  • Simon

    I don't think it's possible to 'catch up for lost time' or make up for things that you never did although it's easy to believe that you need to or somehow can. An easy mistake to make.

    The thing to realise is that you are not who you were or what you have done. What you are is who you are now and what you di with your life from now onwards.

  • garybuss

    Thriving – page 3,
    Spring 2002 Issue 1 Vol. 4 Wellspring Retreat & Resource Center

    Many Wellspring clients report extreme physical or sexual abuse at the hands of their cults, while others display the same symptoms of trauma though they
    haven’t suffered these overt types of abuse. Is the cult experience itself damaging? “Yes!” say Wellspring Director Dr. Paul Martin, clinical counselor Dr. Ronald Burks, and researcher Larry Pile.

    The reasons for this trauma are many.

    Loss of Meaning
    Cults offer to meet a fundamental human need, that of meaning and purpose. The member's life purpose becomes tied to the group. Thus, when the individual leaves, he abandons his reason for living. Once one has lost his purpose for living, hopelessness sets in and depression often results, Burks said.


  • Elsewhere

    I've been going through something similar... only I left at 25.

    It has been very tough at times. Constantly learning things that everyone else learned as teens. Hell, it wasn't until after I left the bOrg that I had my first real "date". I had no idea how to act. I'm still learning.

    I have just had to keep at it. I make it a point to go out and interact with different people. Each time I learn a little more. It doesn't matter what I do or with whom... just so long as I get out and see people. That's all that matters.

  • SisterLiz

    I'm also an ex-JW who was born in it. I had a really tough time adapting to life situations.. Social situations were especially difficult for me. I'm lucky I became good friends with another woman my age and....lets just say she's lived enough for both of us and understands my past and is always full of excellent advice and guidance. She could not believe how innocent and naive I was at my age.....she still teases me about it to this day. Suffice it to say I'm getting there......things don't shock me as much as they used to.

  • undercover
    Social situations were especially difficult for me.

    I can relate to that. After growing up and being taught that all non JWs are evil and social contact with them is to be avoided, I never learned any social graces. How to mingle in a party, how to carry on a conversation at a dinner table. These things were down right scary. Being a quiet, reserved type person made it much worse. But now that I have loosened up, and forced myself into social interaction, I actually enjoy parties, bars and other large gatherings.

    I don't think it's possible to 'catch up for lost time' or make up for things that you never did although it's easy to believe that you need to or somehow can. An easy mistake to make.

    I think you can make up some of it. Not all of it, but enough so that you can at least enjoy life and not mope around and dwell on the regrets of your life. Just keep your smarts about you and don't go overboard on the party boat.

  • Victorian sky
    Victorian sky

    I think I lucked out. I was raised in it and I left when I was 30. I was able to go to college and I have very supportive relatives who are cool christians. I didn't lose my whole family like so many have. I've lost 'friends' and that was painful. Overall, I'm a happy, positve adult but when it comes to men and dating I'm painfully shy about it and reserved, I know that comes from the JW sexual hangups. Years of 'marry only in the lord', 'date only for marriage', 'bad association' and dire warnings about worldly men (they all have AIDS, they can't be faithful and so forth) makes it real tough for me to trust any of them. So when it comes to dating, I'm clueless but I'm happy and well adjusted in all other aspects of my life. - Victorian Sky

  • LittleToe

    I left 18 months ago as a born-in-it,as-were-my-parents 30-something elder.

    I'd say that I'm reasonably happy, as I just turned over a new leaf and constructed a new life for myself. I was a bit like a kid with a new toy when dressing my first Xmas tree, last year, but what do you expect

  • tinkerbell82
    I was a bit like a kid with a new toy when dressing my first Xmas tree, last year, but what do you expect

    i've already regaled the board with tales of my trick or treating exploits ;) but i've said it before and i'll say it again, i LOVE halloween!!! i can't wait for it, i'm already trying to plan my costume for this year!!!! holidays are the BEST!

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