How did you feel when you found out "the truth about the truth"?
When I first discovered TTATT, my first reaction was to try to disprove TTATT. When I later realized that "the truth" COULD NOT stand up to TTATT, I said F*** it & began my fade
How I felt? It was funny. When I tried to disprove TTATT, part of me wanted TTATT to be false, BUT another part of me wanted it to be true! It was a weird feeling! Anyone else had such a crazy feeling before?
How did you feel when you found out "the truth about the truth"?
I initially felt terribly out of sorts as my CD didn't work anymore - I couldn't make excuses or explain stuff away - I KNEW something was seriously wrong.
I broke down.
I made one last huge effort spending time out in service - and it just got worse.
I asked hard questions to the 'qualified' career pioneers, elders - and close trusted friends who are clean, honest and totally loveable - I asked these questions as in 'how would you answer this in a bible study'
I got angry at the foolish answers over time - and I pushed harder - people stopped texting and talking to 'our dear sister Alive'
Its a long old journey - I watch those GBs - and think, I was brought up to know better, - but it still hurts. I should get more angry - but often I just feel incredibly sad that I fell into a trap that felt so good, for so long..... And I feel ashamed that I closed my eyes to stuff that I knew was wrong amongst our high ranking elder friends who loved to drink it up, gossip and talk spiritual stuff all in one sitting. And it appears this is a global culture problem. What a weakling I've been :-(
Not weak at all, just human x
I had doubts for years but when my wife died in 1996 I bought my first computer a month later. Started searching the internet about JW's and even those first stories I read about other JW's being wronged and the lack of love in the org. connected with me. Bought Crisis of Conscience in 1997 or 1998 and became numb. I didn't know what to think. By this time I started missing meetings and then gave the book to my daughter and told her about all the other things I saw on the internet. I then bought her a computer because she was now separated from the lazy, didn't want to work JW she was married to and then filed for divorce. Even though I was mostly mentally out, I still attended the occasional meeting and every once in a while has guilt feelings and would try to convince myself that it was the truth and Satan was trying his best to discourage everyone. When 911 happened I went back for awhile but it didn't last. I knew in my heart that it was all a sham. I'm happy to say that my daughter was about a year ahead of me knowing it was all BS.
The last time a went to any meeting was memorial of 2003. I don't miss anything about it or the people I knew and have a great life now. My senior years are happy ones since I have a decent pension despite some who said years ago that I should change jobs so that I could devote more time to the ministry. Yeah.....right!
I'm also glad that I wasn't born in. My mother was a JW since 1961 and introduced me to my wife to be. I married her before I was baptized and sometimes I wonder if I bought into it for her.
Wow...so many similar stories and reactions!
All the issues mentioned in your post I was not aware of when I faded. That was 1990. Only after access to the internet I got these informations. While "active" (terrible word) I never knew of a pyramid story, the only thing I heard of in the 80's was 1975 but from a brainwashed "whitewashed" Wt perspective.
And the more I read about ever more latest "scandals" I was convinced that the whole "system" has to be changed and not only some minor points, some directives.
In my case a constant feeling of depression and loneliness in different forms as result of the JW lifestyle as single male combined with feeling of senselessness in face of the terrifyging outlook for forthcoming Armagedoon, as well as feeling of senseless efforts in service with parttimejob were the triggers that slowly opened my inner reasons and warnings bells. I stopped to believe in every word, while further playing happiness. I was in the age when a man should establish a family but was desilusioned and unsure, cause I couldnot see how I would ever really like live in JW family pattern situation, teaching children something aweful that I was not really convinced of, I appreciated only the love message of the bible. Sacrificing a child for the blood issue was not in my intention. After I undersigned the "blood card", I hided it and didnt even carry it with me.
When I realized that I could not speak really openely about difficult questions that I had about the blood issue or overexegerated usage of armagedon, i knew that I was trapped. I looked up the "blood" subject in a public library and found out what jewish and catolic thought about, and found the explanation more convincining, fortunately I began to read other things than watchtowers. For me these other books were an "aha-experience". The news since internet are even more convincing.
Love reading this thread - so many likeminds - thank you so much for all your responses.
I relate to Sabin, the indoctrination is so strong. There are days when you feel pulled back into the fear, obligation and guilt. Thats why this site is so important, it affirms and validates what you know to be true.
I cried a lot when I first started reading jwfacts and COC, its a mixture of regret over 25 years of decisions made under the influence of the GB, opportunities lost forever, and a feeling that your entire foundation has cracked and you don't know where you fit in or what to believe anymore. At the same time there is immense relief, no longer having to go out on service, to several meetings a week, no longer feeling crap for never being good enough, no longer having to make excuses for and try to love nasty individuals in the hierarchy. Not to have to be friends with some people who you think are completely nuts and would cross the road from in real life! Free to form your own beliefs, make friends with who you want to, spend your time as you see fit. But like many, many others here, I so wish I'd done it 20 years ago.
Lurkers - seize the opportunity now and walk away, don't waste another minute living your life for 7 men on a huge ego trip.
I was born in and blinded for decades. It took the shock of seeing how a judicial committee works in the case of one of my children to fully wake up.
I had doubts for almost 20 years but I kept pushing them back in my head for some reason.
How I liken myself now is to a recovering drug addict that now has to start over at 40 years old with close to zero social skills and no network of people to lean on.
It's very comforting and affirming to read everyone's stories.
I felt like I was going slightly insane during the first year or two of waking up - sifting through the dark pangs in my heart and the rotten feeling in my stomach when I went to meetings - some of me still 'in love' with the idea of being with God's only true people, and a growing part of me wildly rejecting the unsound, unhealthy articles and statements in the publications, the reflection of these in the words of the 'friends' - and the misery of realising there was no room for honest discussion.....
I used to love field service - I felt for the people and actually had great exchanges with random folk we met - when it really hit me that I had distributed literature that contained blatant error and articles claiming false knowledge and I actually 'confessed' it to myself....I seriously couldn't do another minute of 'field'.
My observations and experiences over the years made me really ask myself - could I really convince someone that 'God is truly amongst you prople'
A signature of 'Satan' ( if you are a believer in it/him) is deception and lies, false prophecy. But he can also appear as 'an angel of light' - Inbetween what appeared to be the 'good' stuff such as a worldwide brotherhood - we had a history of truly awful misrepresentations.
And behind the nice smiles and excellent grooming of the congregations, the carefully modulated speech and practiced interactions - were behaviours that would shake the average decent person. And these behaviours were not in the minority.
A friend said to me 'but people are people everywhere, even in the Christian congregation' - OK, so if we can't stand out as being 'God's specially chosen people' by our behaviour and words because we are imperfect - (and we know about JWs when you lift the veil) then surely an impeccable record of solid truth and clear indication that God is speaking directly to the writers and interpreters - the guardians of doctrine. I mean, this is all meant to be urgent right?
There are many, many lovely people amongst the JWS - so many I have loved and still love - but I couldn't stand our claiming to be the only true people deserving of salvation. It made no sense.