I was raised a jw in a divided household. My father always said he thought my mother was brainwashed. I was about 3 when my mother became a jw. She raised me and my sister in the religion. My grandparents and father still gave us holiday celebrations until we were old enough to be guilted into believing we had to stop to please Jehovah. I was baptized at age 16 in 1989. The talks on baptism for the young always focused on if we were old enough to know what kind of car we wanted to drive, we were old enough to decide whether to serve Jehovah or not. Life didn't turn out as they had promised since my childhood. The generation change didn't really bother me until about 10 years later, when I really started to understand and see the lies. My first problems with the Society were the misapplication of scripture. I couldn't tell you how many times I sat there reading the bible (looking at the context of a scripture just used in a talk) and thinking how they had misapplied it. I would sit and read trying to see what the writer really meant. I always loved Christmas and secretly wanted to celebrate. Our daughters first birthday was really hard on me not to celebrate. I loved her and was so happy we had her. What was the problem with celebrating her life and my appreciation for it? That bothered me for years. When we were studying the Daniels prophecy book again, I was sick of all the anti-type and thought how presumptuous and arrogant to say all the things they were stating as fact. There was also a district convention that had the "revelation" that the scripture that says the sun will not shine and the moon will turn to blood could be literal things happening in the heavens. Duh. Of course it could be if you took the scripture at facevalue and didn't try to give it a figurative fulfillment. I remember as a small child my grandmother saying to me, " I wonder what life will be like for my baby in 50 years when you're my age." I thought "Grandma, we'll be in paradise by then. That is what the bible promises." Wow, that is not happening. I guess I got more cynical and sick of all the changes. After having my children, as all mothers will attest to, you fall behind in the latest publications, releases, what is new at the literature counter, etc.... I couldn't believe there were so many things I missed. My husband left before I did. He was still supportive of me, but didn't care about going to the hall or bookstudy. I felt I personally had to save my little family. I even told the elders we could use a shepherding call, knowing how mad he would be. He went through it, and it backfired on me. They were no real encouragement. Their next visit while they were in service, turned me completely off. I knew I couldn't do it anymore. I had been reading here (lurking) and found out so much information it made the scales fall off of my eyes. Thank God. I used to feel like there was a spiritual wrestling going on up on my house roof. I felt so much pain and turmoil and guilt. I felt there must be an angel and demon wrestling above us. Afterall, as witnesses, struggles are proof we were right. So I had struggled on for a couple years. Now that I am free, I feel peace. Peace like I have never known. Witnesses of course would say this means that Satan won. I am no longer there at the hall, I have gone to church, celebrated holidays and birthdays. But the bible says peace is a fruitage of the holy spirit, therefore, I will believe that it was the angel who won out. The witnesses always use the scripture that God draws those whom he chooses. It amazes me that I can now think, he can draw them away from the Watchtower. I lost alot, I went through hell trying to figure everything out and come to terms with leaving without having a breakdown. I came close to that. I nearly lost it. The fear of displeasing God and being killed by Armegeddon was almost paralyzing. I spent every second I could on the internet and praying. I bought a new reference bible with four different translations side by side to be better able to understand the true meaning of the scriptures. It helped me look at certain verses we always used in a different light. I am so thankful we have this sight and hope to someday find a friend from the past here. May you all find peace.