Reflecting On The JW Version Of You
It's been so long since I was a JW, I often forget what I was like. Like most, I was very judgmental and self-righteous. I was also extremely confrontational because I felt it was my duty(so I wouldn't be blood-guilty, you know) to correct your erred thinking. I can only imagine how pleasant I was to be around.
The biggest change, for me, is that I actually participate in life now. I was a person who just kind of observed life passing me by and thinking all my problems were somehow going to resolve themselves with time and Armageddon coming. Now I actively go after what I want.
The other big change has been throwing away that "us" and "them" mentality. We're all part of the human race. That doesn't mean I don't disagree with some, but I don't feel the need to change their beliefs and although I'm open to hear new perspectives, I don't need you to understand mine to keep them. That cuts down on a lot of wasted energy and frustration. I do what works for me and you do what works for you. Take for example marriage, I think it's a good arrangement for some, however it doesn't work for everyone. I would have never been open to that as a JW.
I am 74 and celebrated my 54th wedding anniversary with my pioneer partner now old ex-pioneer partner.
I met her when I was close to 19 and she was 15 &1/2! She looked .........17 honest to god! Found out her real age and we courted. Neither of us had a phone and we live about 40 miles apart. So we wrote to one another and met up at assemblies......... visits to one another's congregation, with mutual friends. We waited a year and a half to marry. We walked out of the JW world together in our young twenties.
I couldn't think about not being married to her...........hell if I had to go back in time and be a JW pioneer again ....I'do it all over again.
From that union we had our son who was not raised in any ' so called truth.' We have 3 grand children all as quirky as we were and still are.
Mt wife is financially set for life if something happens to me. I was abl to retire at 60.
We start our day in bed with coffee and a discussion of what we are going to do during the day........ we seldom see one another during the day as we are both busy. She teaches three classes a week in water aerobics. Has a second degree black belt and is a nationally known artist with one person museum shows to her credit.
I hold up my end with 24 years of community volunteerism. And the ability to invest our money.
Our marriage was and still is a partnership. So when something like this works it can strengthen both parties. When it doesn't work out it can diminish both.
the jw version of me:
i was a lazy person--no ambition--no drive. spent several years as a pioneer, which brought out the worst in me. i think associating with other dub pioneers just made it all a pointless existence
as regards marriage--well--yes--it suited me--mainly because it removed the need to chase tail.
I also have fall out. I left last may after 50+years and it has been unbearably hard at times. In fact so much has gone wrong JWs might say God is punishing us! If you think Satan attacks you when you join, well seems we’re getting it for leaving. Instead of falling into the bosom of nonJW relatives, we’ve had nothing but trouble from them. Our business is on shaky ground, health scares and so much else has happened, it’s been awful. I feel cheated! I’ve read so much about people leaving and how happy they are. But, despite all of this we feel a clarity of mind we’ve never experienced before. We are no longer chained to constant guilt. We can think for ourselves. Dare to have our own opinions. I’m still massively angry the WT stole my life but we are battling through and hopefully things will get better.
Baalam's Ass. The Ass that talks.
Rub a Dub
Phoebe check out this site it might be of help.
Religious Trauma Syndrome, A Practicing therapist for 25 years writes about it here:
My JW version: Most of the time self righteous, arguing with People that WT is correct. Many times battered by Conscience and cognitive dissonance, due to conflicting beliefs. Very often felt that WT teachings are too good to be true. Doubted the WT very often yet obeyed them. Very often Hated meetings and dreaded FS.
Current Version: Free in mind and spirit. Learned to live every moment of this only life. All religions seem to be humorous now. Feel pity on religiously devout people, who are wasting their lives. Contribute a lot of time to read the books I want, watch any movies, participate in any ceremonies with an open mind, debate religious people when I get a chance, biking and the list goes on.....
It's been so long since I was a JW, I often forget what I was like.
I take that to mean that there is hope! (I guess I just haven't been "out" long enough.)
Beautifully honest comments from all! Thanks for sharing!
One thing that stands out is how much more relaxed we all are!
JW me: I recently read a letter I wrote my parents about their possible deaths at Armageddon. I was so loving about how they would die and not be there with us kids. They were good, law abiding citizens, generous and loving and I was full of shit. That letter truly showed how deluded I was. What a drone I was for the GB.
Me now: They are dead anyway of advanced age and illness. Here I am looking my own mortality in the eye feeling betrayed by my own credulity. Even so, I am not bitter or angry. I do dislike the religion and will expose it at every opportunity so as to protect others. I have my loves and joys. Things are good.