why jw's commit suicide?
The JW lifestyle is unhealthy and psychologically burdensome. Just as many JWs (anecdotally)suffered physical burnout, many more seemed depressed and mentally worn out.
I sincerely don't believe that WT subliminally or otherwise encouraged suicidal ideation, however the guilt, pressure and belief system lend to what I felt was a perfect storm of mental anguish.
i can't tell you how good it is to be free. Don't subject your children to this! Whatever the cost!
MOrpheus @diog- you say things have gotten worse since my day.... out of curiosity, when do you think "my day" was....?
Sorry Morph, just seen it.
I thought you posted a photo in flippers photo thread....I'd say the 1930s -40s?
😂😂😂 Good call I have no idea. Point taken!
I think a big factor to it all is that you just can't be yourself. This creates frustration as bottle things up all the time. You can't speak freely. So when life's problems come along, you make mistakes, you can't live up to Watchtower standards..who do you confide in? What will be the repurcussions?
That's what causes anxiety and depression for so many, particularly among the youths.
The suggestion that rates are high among Jehovah's Witnesses comes from Bergman whose research is seriously flawed. Have you read it? Prove to me that suicide rates among Witnesses are higher than the general population.
One of the faults with criticism like this is that it starts with an unproved assumption. There is much to criticize that has a valid basis. Making unproven or faulty claims darkens the message you may want to convey.
I agree vienne. In my view, Bergman's "research" doesn't even qualify as research in the sociological sense of the word.
Besides, unknown numbers of people who are attracted to JW organization's message are already mentally unwell even before they study with and eventually become Witnesses.
Those mentally ill who become Witnesses seem to find some comfort in the association. You're evaluation seems accurate to me, Steve, though that's just a feeling rather than based on data.
Bergman is not a class act.
Another point: Some of the comments rely on Beckford. His work is dated, and in some ways as flawed as was Stroup's. In my last exchange with him, he said he did not understand major portions of witness history, an honest admission. I do not believe we can rely on work now dated written by a man who is charming and polite but who did not then and does not now, by his own admission, understand his subject.
In the study of the mental health of Jehovah's Witnesses by Rolf Furuli, which I referred to in an earlier post, he also considered the rate of suicide in Norway over a 20-year period.
He says (pp.12,13) :
What is the frequency of suicides in the Norwegian population? According to Folkehelserapporten [The Report of Public Health] 2014:4, page 181, the average rate per year is 15 suicides per 100,000 for men and 6 per 100,000 for women. For the past 20 years, the number of Witnesses in Norway has been 15,000 on the average, and to match the average suicide rate in the population, the Witnesses would expect 3.15 suicides per year, or 63 suicides for the whole period.
The questionnaire sent to Norwegian elders in all parts of the country in 2015 asked them to report all suicides that they knew about among the Witnesses during the last 20 years. The total number of reported suicides was 23, including 20 men and three women. Of these, four men were reported to have been psychotic. This means that the rate of suicides among JW in Norway is 36.5% of the rate of suicides in the population as a whole.
My only reservation is that he only sent his survey to about a fifth of the congregations in Norway, so the figures may be slightly inaccurate. However, I do think that in a country with less than 200 congregations it is most likely that in his sample they would have known about most JW suicides in the country.
James Beckford shares a similar view to mine that Jehovah's witnesses would not have allowed schizophrenics to remain in the organisation.
Guys I appreciate that this is just one persons experience, but in my old congregation there was a baptised sister who couldn't give coherent answers, there was obviously some serious issues. She seemed to me to suffer with paranoia, too. The attitude of other Jw's was that 'jehovah had obviously seen something in her heart' and drawn her to the society.
I realize that not all congs would be so accepting. She was included in all service arrangements and invited to all the main 'get togethers'. I'm not sure what happened to her as I was only a teen at the time.
Ten bucks says that the GB scratch their heads over why, because for them, being a JW is easy-peasy.