Good thread, Minimus! From experience I can tell you I was depressed since I was 22. I'll try to be short. Became a witness at age 22, already married to an abusive man for 1 year. We were tortured emotionally and mentally ( I say we because we eventually had three children). The abuse surfaced when he heard HE was the HEAD of the house. We lived in constant fear and stress. Elders were always at our house with council for BOTH of us, telling me if I left him I could NEVER have Jehovah's blessing and certainly could never remarry. At the meetings you are told the elder's council comes from God himself. After 20 years of this I broke down. I could not understand what I was doing so wrong that Jehovah wouldn't help me. My children were a wreck. Abuse goes on more often than any dub will admit. I hid it for years (mainly because I felt I was the ONLY one, and the elders see you and say," Come on, SMILE!", .....so you do.)
Once that relationship ended, and I remarried a wonderful man, we were persecuted endlessly by x-mates. Lies, slander, rumors. Tormented from congregation to congregation. No one could/would stop it. To this day my three children think of their step-father as Dad because their biological father disowned them. (mind you, we were all still in good standing!) Now you sit at the meetings and hear the "love we have among us", and try to make sense of why your own life is soooo screwed up. Then the x-mate becomes a servant 6 mos. later and an elder after that. Think of it, HE is giving council to people with problems. SISTERS!! LISTEN UP! HE IS COUNCILING YOU TODAY!! But, the elders are appointed by holy spirit, so where does all this leave a sane person? You are forced to go the elders only, who have NO earthly business in your affairs and are even told not to get involved by Brooklyn, no power to help or protect you, commit the same sins/crimes as the ones they council. Then they get "promoted " for doing so and are proud that holy spirit chose them! This is detrimental to anyone's sanity.Then besides what REALLY goes on at home, you have the DO MORE complex to deal with as stated in above posts.
For a more detailed account of REAL reasons for depression, please read "Mr.& Mrs. Wizedup's DA letter", I posted today. What I just told you is mild compared to the rest that I have no room for on one post.
We just celebrated one year of freedom, and the mental clairty is returning. It feels truly refreshing! Jesus said, " Come to ME all you who are toiling and loaded down, and I will refresh you!" He has! He has!
Are JW's depressed? With all the hidden anxiety, there's no way they can't be. The system they serve under is set up for it. If you break someone's spirit, you'll own them for life.