Old Photos and blank stares

by Lady Lee 10 Replies latest jw friends

  • Lady Lee
    Lady Lee

    I have been scanning a lot of old pictures from when my girls were small. (trying to reduce the clutter around here)

    I have been looking at people's faces - JW faces. They look dazed. I just finished an old friend's wedding. The bride looks stoned and I know she never drank anything. The groom looks like he would rather be anywhere else (maybe at a door in service) Another good friend sits and stares off into space oblivious to the events around her.

    Some smile when the camera is in front of them but the eyes are so telling. People are not free to be themselves.

    I have a few pictures of the bride and groom at our home the next morning. They are giggling and laughing like newlyweds. They are relaxed. They are happy.

    But those group photos are eerie. I have other pictures and will be going through them but has anyone else noticed this?

    I know there are psychological reasons for this but to see it is really something

  • William Penwell
    William Penwell

    I don't know if its just a dub thing but I would say most don't get married for love but sex. I know looking at my old wedding pictures my ex didn't look happy but it was a forced smile. It was only years after that she told me that she had second thoughts about marrying me but felt obligated.


  • Lady Lee
    Lady Lee

    I agree Will that most don't marry for love.

    What got me was that dazed expression not on just the bride and groom but on others too

    I suspect it might be that because of all the rules people cannot be themselves so they hide behind masks trying to hide feelings and who they really are. All that just so they can be acceptable to this org and any elders that might catch them acting like a real person

  • badolputtytat

    Strange that you bring this up right now.... recently, a family member sent me a large collection of family photos. Most of them old, some new.

    I couldn't get over the "eerieness" that you describe. If you didn't know better you would swear they were all on the same drugs. Some of the pictures were taken at the assembly.... the girls (my cousins) are holding song-books, mouths open (singing I assume).... but the "dead stare" is there.

    The ones of my sister(who never left home... 28 yrs old now)... she looks like one of those children in that old movie "children of the damned"... just creepy, blankness on her face. I thought I was making this up in my own mind... but other people I have shown the pictures to, see it as well..

    Happiness.... I certainly don't see it. It's like ... they aren't alive?? Empty feeling? ... definitely creepy.


    ps. Hope you are well Lady Lee

  • William Penwell
    William Penwell

    For sure Lady, you are always walking on "egg shells". Being afraid you might offend someone or that maybe you might do something that maybe "unscriptural".Visit Smiley Central!


  • William Penwell
    William Penwell

    Further to your point Puttitat, again its like you are conditioned to be afraid of the smallest things. Don't enjoy life and have fun but make sure you are walking that fine line. If you dare stare than you better do penance for the rest of your life. I know from my own experience that should I dare go back, I am not allowed to have fun and mingle with the pure righteous dubs because of past mistakes I am marked for life.


  • waiting

    I've thought about the pictures I have - or were given to me - very few blank stares. I doubt if the ratio to worldly blank stares differs much. Some people are always going to look blank at gatherings. Bored, irritated, drunk, etc.

    The people in my daughter's first wedding were all jw's - the second wedding, none. Same ratio.

    The conversations & openess were different - granted. But no high ratio of blank stares.

    I've got pictures of get-togethers, other home gatherings, just kids - same ratio. Could be the areas in which we live - or just our individual congregations.

    I know several women who will never look you in the eye..........but I know the backgrounds on those women, and suspect it has more to do with that.

    I know a couple of worldly women who won't look you in the eye too.

  • Lady Lee
    Lady Lee

    Tahnks waiting. I will have to do more examination of this.

    I know the women in the pictures I mentioned very well and know of their histories (not like mine but not great either)

    Well I will be doing a lot more scanning over the next while so I attempt unbiased reporting.



  • Big Tex
    Big Tex
    Some smile when the camera is in front of them but the eyes are so telling.

    Some people die inside. You can see it in their eyes. They are dead long before they actually die. My father is like that. An empty husk of a man who is barely an echo of what he once was.

    I don't know if it's fair to say all JWs are like this, but I do think it is fair to note that many, if not most, are limited in how they can express themselves. I think there is a pervasive attitude of "can't" and "shouldn't" that dampens someone's natural personality.

    We hosted a JW wedding shower a few months ago and we noticed the many dead spots in conversation as well as an air of limitation over what could be discussed or how a topic could be discussed. Just a couple of weeks later, we had 25 apostates in our house. There was none of that feeling in the house and there were no dead spots. I noticed too that with the apostates, people seemed to move freely from one group to another. The Witnesses were stiff, the apostates were loose.

    Just an observation.

  • Elsewhere

    Big Tex... I did a sketch to try to capture what you described... is this what the JWs looked like?

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