JW kids and the national anthem humiliation......

by kid-A 21 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • kid-A

    For me, school was extremely stressful as a JW kid. The worst part had to be my morning dose of humiliation being forced to walk out of the room as the national anthem came on the loudspeakers (first god save the queen, then, Oh Canada).

    The other kids found this completely bizarre, and several of my "patriotic" minded teachers really resented me for doing this (despite the obvious fact I had no choice in the matter but was being forced into this by my parents).

    How could anybody force this public humiliation on a small child or teen-ager, already having to deal with the normal stresses of growing up and worrying about their public image with their peers??? Did you other ex-JWs actually leave the room or just have to "remain seated" when the anthem came on?

    These are some of my bitterest memories of growing up a JW kid.....

  • wanderlustguy

    I had to leave the room for the pledge and all holiday activities, but it was just the tip of the iceberg for me.

  • Scully

    Oh yeah. Grade school was the worst.

    There was one teacher who hated JWs so intensely that she would make it her business to harass me whenever she had the opportunity. She would yell at me all the time. During school assemblies, she would haul me to my feet by the hair at the back of my neck during the National Anthem. She would twist my hair in her fist once I was on my feet because I wouldn't SING "O Canada". I wasn't doing it to be disruptive - in fact, I was just doing everything I could to be invisible - or to be disrespectful; I was just doing what JW children were expected to do.

    My parents did nothing, except to tell me that Persecution™ was a "blessing". If a teacher laid a hand on a child like that now, they would be arrested for physical abuse. I don't blame the teacher for her lack of insight, but I think if I could have 10 minutes with her, I would let her know that what she did to me probably reinforced the belief system more than anything else. I had other teachers who asked me questions that got me thinking, and those are the ones I valued as a young adult trying to decide where to go with my life.

  • Scully

    Here's an old thread I started on this topic: Being a JW Kid

  • mrsjones5

    Not having to say the pledge of alligence wasnt the worst part for me - usually I just stood there instead of having to be excused from class. The worst part for being excluded from class holiday parties and having to sit all alone in an empty classroom or the school library. It got to the point where I just didnt tell my parents any of that stuff was going on and they were so disconnected from us kids that they hardly ever stressed to our teachers that we were to be excluded from all the wickedly fun worldly holiday parties.

    So glad my kids dont have to go through that crap.


  • thom

    I remember my 2nd grade teacher lifting me out of my chair for the pledge of allegiance. She didn't make me say it, just stand up. She was plain cruel to me, but most of my other teachers just dealt with it quietly.

    I think it's miserable to put your kids through that, but I also have a problem with the teachers that make it worse. Even though I'm no longer a JW, I still don't see why a teacher, or anyone, would feel it necessary to force someone to do something they feel is patriotic. How it brings up so much anger in some people.

    I still have no intention of "pledging my allegiance" to the flag or the United States of America. I would do my best to protect/defend the country and be a law abiding person, but I don't see the need to make a pledge.

  • DannyHaszard

    I was in second grade, a seven year old baby during the height of the 'better dead than red' cold war when president John Kennedy was assassinated.I endured brutal persecution afraid of the playground beatings i received for being a 'freak jehover'.My poor mother was grieved that her baby had to endure bullying because she went through the same thing.
    Meanwhile the 'anointed' old farts who made my rules had personal bodyguards at their ivory tower.
    My education was ruined by you bastards. ---------------
    Watchtower Whistleblower: Danny Haszard Bangor Maine
    Jehovah's Witnesses are the'perfect storm' of deception

  • horrible life
    horrible life

    One teacher, Just one. I had her for Speech class, for 6 years in Elementary School.

    Stare at me during the flag salute.

    Tell me to pretend that the party was for something else.

    Held my head down for the Lord's Prayer. (one time only) I told my mom. Don't know what happened.

    In the movie, Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang, The child catcher has always reminded me of her. Damn, she was ugly.

    Mrs. Pettigrew, if there is a firey hell, I hope you are there. HL

  • daystar

    Not singing the national anthem was nowhere near the worst humiliation I endured.

    One, single, girl in fourth grade caused me more years of humiliation and isolation than all of that combined.

    She was the most beautiful, most popular girl at the elementary school. And I had a massive crush on her. Unfortunately, she found that out.

    To describe the extent to which this went... I once wore a brand new shirt to school. It was a fadish shirt and I was proud to be wearing it. Her response was to vehemently exclaim that that shirt was too good for me and that I should not be wearing it, on front of all my classmates.

    It took me nearly eight years to really begin to come out from behind the walls those sorts of things built.

    My point being that to be fair, the JW teachings and practices were not the only source for my particularly humiliating childhood.

  • Joel Wideman
    Joel Wideman

    I went through all of that too. But I managed to gain strength from it. The irony, of course, is that this eventually gave me the strength to leave.

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