Some of us who had been formally indoctrinated from birth in " group " situations in cults like the JW's might have an aversion to committing to a group situation that would require meetings, commitments and formalities. It's certainly not my favorite thing to do as I'm more of an individualist who enjoys one on one conversations in smaller informal gatherings.
That being said- I think the Tahoe fest that about 25 to 40 of us do each year works because it is SO casual, there are no plans, no schedule, no formalities, just folks that are ex-JW's and some others getting together to support each other mentally, emotionally, or bolster each others spirit up through chatting informally about our past around a campfire, or not. There's no pressure on anybody to conform to any regiment, no expectations, just chillin' by the campfire eating, drinking, playing music, smoking, swimming, whatever each person wants to do. It's a relaxing time which I believe creates an environment for people opening up about their stresses- if that's what they want to do- but then again they don't have to open up if they don't want to- just hang out.
Many have come these last 11 years from this board ( and a thanks to Simon for providing this board as a springboard for these people ) but also folks come from the Northern & Southern California, Oregon, Washington area that hear about the South Lake Tahoe gathering from Facebook and other outlets & word of mouth.
We'll probably keep doing it in some form or fashion each year as long as people want to come and give & receive support and make friendships. There's nothing political or religious about the meetup, just laid back people getting together to share friendship. Peace out, Mr. Flipper