Hi from New South Wales Australia.
FYI , It's Tuesday 10th September 2:36am here.
I am categorically not going to blame the cult for every poor choice.
I am conscious of the fact that I was at a genetically determined disadvantage academically; I was never going to be outstanding in my achievements, no matter how hard I tried.
I also know that Mum, Dad, two brothers, my sister and I have a shy, self-conscious and socially awkward disposition.
We come from a low socio-economic background. With a dysfunctional family tree branch.
But now throw into that mix the jehovahs witness cult in around 1963 and what you get is all those negative factors amplified.
The poor choices we made due to deceptive undue influence can be quantified.
I can only speak for myself and what I personally experienced and witnessed.
Because the big A was perpetually coming tomorrow I was dedicated in my heart to jehovah, and this was reflected in my attitude toward school, as noted in my year 10 high school certificate report, "Ray is indifferent in his approach"....I had no idea what that meant at the time.
The only reason (fortunately) why I didn't get baptised was due to an intense aversion to the level of focus that moment would attract.
Strangely that reasoning is contradicted by the fact that I was on the theocratic ministry school giving 5 minute talks from the platform. Go figure!?
My siblings are all mostly closer to 50 years old and above, not married, no children, not gainfully employed, depressed, medicated, have contemplated or had suicidal thoughts, endure a low standing in their respective congregations, clinging on to a promise of paradise that will never be realized.
The family name ends with my daughter as my father only has one sister.
I am the fortunate one who has a loving wife and daughter, I am gainfully employed, never had suicidal thoughts and am free of cult indoctrination.
But I have withdrawn from close friendship and isolated myself for 28 years , keeping counsel with myself about all things jw and doing the one handed clap.
Without being Shakespearean, I'm turtling at the moment, and I hope to connect with a few of you, let you know you're not alone in this stuggle to find your authentic self, gain some information I desire and offer something positive while keeping myself from becoming overwhelmed.
Hopefully this makes sense as intended and you can all contribute to the conversation. What has been your experience?