Hi everyone. I've been awake now for about 6 months I'd guess and a member here for a couple of weeks. It's been eye opening to read other peoples experiences on here and I appreciate all of you.
I've noticed in many, seemingly most, of your comments that you were not treated well at your hall or you have had very negative experiences in the "org" so I thought I'd like to share mine.
In all my time as a JW I have to say for the most part I always loved the people. I was treated very well and I treated others well. I had a lot of very good friends and there was much love in my congregation.
I will admit I was a very naive person and didn't know all the gossip and back stories and all that stuff as I never payed any attention to any of it. Not out of fear but just because that's not how I was raised. I preferred to look for the good in people and so I did.
All in all my experiences were positive with regards to other people and with elders. All of my local elders were good men who were trying very hard to shepherd the flock in their care and to be loving people. I can't honestly say a bad word about any of them. Even when I got DF'd back in April of 2015 I felt they had made the right decision and they handled it with genuine love.
Sure there were people who were odd, or even mental, but even those I could see as having genuine motives behind their speech and craziness, so I never thought of them negatively.
As a youth my best friend and I would often visit other nearby congregations looking for our potential wives lol and there was only one time I remember feeling something strange. Most congregations were very warm and loving especially to visiting brothers but this one time it was just cold and dead and when he and I left we both said the same thing "There was no Holy Spirit in that hall!" we both felt it, it was very different from our other visits to other halls. But besides that one experience I always felt at home in a hall, wherever in the world or country it was.
One of my best experiences in life was the 2006 District Assembly. I got to go as a delegate to Prague to be at their big international assembly and it was amazing. The feeling of love was overwhelming and it really changed me as a person and at the time really made me feel like this was God's love in action. Not sure how to feel about it now, but I still think back on that time with joy and appreciation.
I'm sorry that so many of you have had negative experiences with the JW religion. Mine were never people based but rather internal. The guilt, the constant not feeling good enough, etc..... And I've since come to realize that with all the false prophecy, and all the blatant lying the org has done over the years and always pointing the finger at the members for their "false" ideas that there is no way this could be an organization directed by God.
But suffice it to say I always felt and still do that the people themselves for the most part are very sincere and only want to do what they think is right and what God wants of them.
It's sad really.....