" I'm appalled that I ever believed.....?"
...that apostates were so evil because they were puppets being used by Satan and beyond all reason or love. They were out for revenge because they were doomed to destruction, because of their envy of the relationship the JWs had with Jehovah, and because of what they had lost. That's why the apostates want to take as many JWs as they can with them.
I just never stopped and thought it through. If apostates really missed all of that, why not just repent and go back? Why does Satan try so hard if he is doomed anyway? Why bother if we are doomed or in such despair? I never considered it was due to the WTBTS own shunning policies! I never considered that apostates, some, like I was, raised from infancy to appreciate truth, would, once finding out the real truth, be so upset that they became determined to expose the JW lies to their families and bring them out of that enslavement.
Actually, I did have a glimmer of this in the 80's when a bunch of us went to Portland to look for some Bible translations. We ended up in a Xian bookstore, and I saw this book on the shelf, 35 Years a Watchtower Slave. My brother actually pointed it out to me, and mentioned it was an apostate book. The title was enough to start me thinking a little more. I had already had doubts based on 1975, the denial that the WTBTS ever said 1975, the hidden pictures in the WT, and Ray Franz' disfellowshipping. The Creation book only fueled the fire.
By the time I left in 1994, I knew that probably Armageddon wasn't coming, that the Watchtower was probably wrong about some things, but I wasn't absolutely sure. I just knew there were inconsistencies I couldn't resolve, and that they couldn't either, and I wasn't going to wait around for them any longer with my life on hold. After I left it took me about a year and a half to start looking into information about cults in general, and Jehovah's Witnesses in particular. I read about the real reason for the free food at the assemblies. I knew they were a cult, but had no idea the extent of their lies.
Even though I new the JWs were all wet, I still couldn't bring myself to associate with apostates or read Ray Franz books until Summer of 2002. It was then I was floored with internet website revelations about the child abuse scandals, the UN, the Rand connection, and the 607 lie. I actually went to the library and researched 607. In 587 Jerusalem fell according to almost every historian scholar, and even the website of the nation of Israel. Those that didn't think it was 587 thought it might be 586.
Maybe I'm most appalled that I just took everything they told me for granted. I never checked it out for myself. One day in the library checking some quotes, checking historic dates, etc. might have saved me, and possibly my family, years of heartache.