I found your post to be one of the most sincere and heartfelt posts I've ever read on this board. Facing one's demons and the baring of the soul are two very attractive qualities in a person.
And you're so right in many aspects. However, it's one thing to be able to do that with people who've been where you've been. It's altogether another to do it with people (like JW's) where you have to tow the line to be accepted or with non-JW's who don't have a clue where you're coming from.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that we (or at least I) understand what you're saying. Most of us desire a place where we fit and are accepted. But truthfully we (ex's) have an everlasting scar (our individual experience with the WT Society) on our soul. That scar affects the way we interact with the world around us. Unconsciously we use the scar to encase our hearts as a self-preservation mechanism. And we develop a visible persona to measure up to societal expectations. Inwardly we know we're square instead of round. As a result, we (for the most part) find that we don't 'fit' in anywhere.
Religion does strange things to people. I don't think I've ever met anyone that religion has made a better person. A person may act better (visible persona), but their nature is not better. Only God can change our nature. And that experience is devoid of religion.
Ultimately everything we turn to in this world for security and fulfillment will fail. That includes religion. The only thing it can provide for the soul is a false sense of peace and security. The soul can be deceived, but the spiritual core of our being (the spirit) can't. In the end it's the spirit that provides the ultimate fulfillment. And that can only occur with a one on one with God Himself. Contrary to the opinion of the majority of posters on the board, that truly does happen. PB