WT's Impact on Children

by Sea Breeze 20 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Sea Breeze
    Sea Breeze

    What is your opinion of the Wt's impact on children?

    Here, children get to connect the dots and see what will happen to you if you are disobedient.

    Death of Lot's Wife Coloring Page for Children, 2013

  • Biahi

    I’ve said this before…WT teachings are very detrimental to children (who have no choice). I could write a book about the trauma I endured, and I also know mine was not as bad as others I observed. If Irwin Zalkin, or another attorney wants to take on these harmful teachings and practices, and show in court the REAL HARM they cause, Im in. I think they owe me (personally) 5 million dollars.

  • hoser

    The more I age the more I realize how the institutionalized fear has affected my thinking and how I react with others.

  • BluesBrother

    I am not so sure about harm to children from this stuff. I grew up with the same teachings and same scary pictures in the Paradise book as everyone did . It never affected me at all.

    Kids love violence… it does not seem real. We had the cartoon characters doing “ Bam, Splat, Your Gone” and it was funny. The nursery rhymes and fairy stories had violent themes. I recall looking at my nieces book of Raold Dahl ( Sp?) horrible stories, just the same.

    To me , somehow all the WT stuff seemed much the same when I was that young . The good people survive and the baddies get their come-uppance so all is well..

    That is how my very young mind saw it anyway. It was when I was older that I started to see the terrible side of the message.

  • truth_b_known

    I was about 10 years old at the time my 2 younger siblings had a girl from our congregation over to the house for a play day. At the time we lived in low-income housing. There were a lot of kids in the neighborhood and everyone played together outside on a daily basis.

    I remember seeing my two younger siblings playing with this girl from our congregation outside. A local child from the neighborhood who was not a Witness walked up and asked if she could play with them. My sister said "Yes."

    The whole time this interaction took place with the neighbor kid, the girl from our congregation froze. She had a look of absolute terror in her face. It was as if this neighborhood child had rattlesnakes coming out of her eye sockets.

    This poor girl's parents where uber-Witnesses. She was an only child. I had to imagine she was taught by her parents that non-Witness children were the devil himself and playing with them guaranteed death at Armageddon.

    I don't think I have ever seen a child so terrified in my entire life. It still troubles me to this day.

  • Sea Breeze
    Sea Breeze

    When I turned around 14 or 15 (1977 or 78) I no longer believed the WT because of the false prophecy for 1975. So, I tried making some friends in the neighborhood. I would come home around 8 or 9 pm (not late) and everything from my bedroom would be in the front yard.... clothes, matttress everything. Happened at least twice.

    Those evil worldlings were stealing their son.

  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    BluesBrother I notice that you said the following. "Kids love violence… it does not seem real. We had the cartoon characters doing “ Bam, Splat, Your Gone” and it was funny." I never loved violence and I never approved of it being done for unjust reasons. I don't recall ever seeing any humor in the violence in those kinds of cartoons. For a time I watched the types of cartoons you mentioned, but I never loved and never liked the violence portrayed in them. I knew the cartoons were not real and thus I was not troubled much by the content, but when I imagined hypothetically what it would mean if the violence was real then I thought such would be horrible.

    In 1975 I was a preteen (enrolled in the Theocratic Ministry School) and I knew from my reading of the WT literature that the WT never said that Armageddon, the Great Tribulation, or the start of the 1,000 year portion of Christ's reign would definitely begin that year (though they did strongly suggest such was a strong likelihood). As a result, after 1975 ended I didn't consider the WT's claims about 1975 as being false prophecies or false predictions, but rather unfulfilled hopes. I got baptized as a JW several years later.

    I believe that the WT's negative impact upon as a child were their false teachings about evolution, their teaching that there were no genuine contradictions in the Bible, their teachings that JWs shouldn't disagree with the WT's teachings (and not read atheistic and/or apostate literature), attend and participate in Kingdom Hall meetings and pray multiple times a day, and related matters.

  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    By pressuring people (including children raised by JWs) to study numerous WT literature and at JW meetings to give answers to questions of WT in way which was in agreement with the WT literature, that hindered critical thinking (when I was a child and as an adult JW) in regards to religious topics. That routine also probably hindered my critical thinking in other areas. I also believe it hindered the critical thinking of others who were children under the WT/JW influence.

    In contrast, the WT influence on me when I was a child was very favorable in helping to instill strong morals in me and to also avoid doing the foolish things of many non-JW children (such as smoking or putting one's life unnecessarily in danger in other ways). My step-grandfather stopped smoking cigarettes before the WT forbade smoking, because of what he reading about the WT's view of smoking (and that one could not become and elder if one smoked). That likely very much benefited his health and the health of the rest of my JW family. It benefited the rest of us because we did inhale second-hand smoke from either of us during my lifetime (my step-grandfather probably stopped smoking before I was born since I have no memory of experiencing any of my JW family ever smoking, nor of smelling tobacco smoke in either of our homes). Also, the WT influence on me probably favorably influenced my reading skills.

  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    Correction: In my prior post when I said "... we did inhale ..." I meant to say "... we did not inhale ...".

    Additional Comments: Other negative influences by the WT on me as a child (a young teen at the time) were the frequent teachings about the Great Tribulation, the Battle of Armageddon, and the New Order. That is because such teachings pressured me to get baptized soon, and as a very sad result I did get baptized. If only I had had the courage to go to the library to read books about evolution (ones presenting the scientific evidence for such) and to read atheistic books (to see if they made good arguments, including in criticisms of the Bible) I would have been saved from the WT and never got baptized. I had been thinking that maybe evolution was true, that maybe the Bible was mostly unreliable, and that maybe Jehovah God didn't even exist, and thus I had thought of seeking such books. But because of the WT's warnings, including the WT's statements that college professors teach lies against creationism/creation and the Bible, I was too scared to do such research at that time.

    Even while in college/university I avoided taking courses which would teach evolution (though I was very curious about that subject) and radiometric dating (such as in geology classes), philosophy courses which might teach arguments against the existence of God, and a Bible as literature course which might criticize the Bible. Avoidance of those courses was also largely influenced by someone in my congregation saying that when JW young people go to college many of them end up loosing their religious beliefs (and by implication from a JW point of view, thus end up loosing their future prospect of living in the New Order). I heard that mentioned within a year of so before I entered college. If I had hadn't heard such I might would have taken the above courses. It was a huge mistake for me to avoid taking such courses.

  • LongHairGal


    Reading your childhood experiences and observations as a Witness are unbelievable and extreme:.. seeing the scared child who thought ‘worldly’ kids 🙄 are the devil; and having parents put your belongings on the front lawn for seeking outside friendships.

    For somebody not raised a Witness, you have my condolences. I have to say this religion is truly harmful to children. Hearing all this, how can anybody think otherwise?

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