Moving on after leaving JW Cult
Posted by: classyd78 ()
Date: August 05, 2010 08:32AM

Hello everybody,
I was raised a JW and left about 5yrs ago. I find it extremely difficult to move on with my life, due to a lack of support from my jw family.
It all began with my grandmother joining the cult and indoctrinating all of her children. They are from the south and severely dysfunctional, my mother was molested by her older brother and she is very mentally ill from the experience. My father has lost his ability to critically think and they live in a horribly crime impoverished neighborhood. All my life this has affected me, I have brothers and and sisters I haven't seen in years, because they see no way out of the cult. I am the only colleged educated person in my family, so I see right through the religion.

Cults target poor impoverished neighborhoods to recruit many of their members. Being that the neighborhood is so bad filled with drugs and crime,many families look to cults for their social life and support. I can't blame them sometimes, but it's just so sad to settle for a destructive cult just to belong. . This is the only reason I could never return, the jw doctrine is dictated by old power hungry men! The are all concerned with power and control of people's mind. This burns my soul that they destroy families. I feel like if you take someone's family away what does that person have left. You have no support system, basically they set you up to fail should you ever leave the
To make matters worse, since I was raised in a dysfunctional abusive home, I dated an psychopath for 5yrs which I just recently dumped.It has been a struggle but I am finally free!! It has been really hard for me since our break-up, I lost all my friends because he was such a psychopath and isolated me. I was used to being isolated bc of the jw religion, but very resilient to his manipulation tactics until I had enough. We were not compatible, he was dependant on me and I was his enabler. I am now at new point in my life where I want to make friends, but can't because of my financial situation. I don't even have money to go out, and no one wants to be a friend to someone who is broke. I may have to move, but have no where to go, I cry myself to sleep everynight hoping for a miracle. I don't have any real friends to support me through this crisis. Does anyone have any suggestions, I'm beginning to give up. How do I cope?? I so depressed.. Please help!!

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Re: Moving on after leaving JW Cult
Posted by: Samwise Gamgee ()
Date: August 07, 2010 12:46PM

Hi classyd78,
I feel for your situation. You took a real 1-2 punch from the witnesses and then the psychopathic boyfriend. You should know that you have actually already taken the hardest step toward recovery. You left the witnesses and you broke up with the psychopath. This leaves you free to get on with your life. It is a lot harder given that your family is still in the cult and you don't currently have a support group of friends. But, you now have a freedom to act that was missing before. You also are asking for help, which many people find very difficult to do. This is a reason to rejoice!

Specific steps you can take depend on your specific situation, which I do not know about. But, I can give some general ideas. You mention being on the edge financially. Do you have the ability to get a second job? I know this is not the best time to be job hunting, but there may be some possibilities. Do you have a marketable skill that you could use on a self-employment basis? This could be anything from baby-sitting to yard work to free-lance writing. If you have the time to do extra work, this would accomplish three objectives - both earning extra money to get you some breathing room and giving you a new circle of acquaintances who might become friends. As a bonus, it would give you less time to fret about the state of things. If extra work is not a possibility (or even if it is), you might consider volunteering. This would help with the latter two objectives. It would also give you the experience of helping others, which is probably pretty remote from your recent experience. I am finding that helping others and helping myself go hand in hand.

In addition, you probably need some sort of help sorting out the emotional and psychological mess that you are probably in after these experiences. Clearly psychotherapy is not an option for financial reasons. But there are support groups out there for recovery from a wide variety of negative experiences. For a starting place to look for these groups I would suggest I searched for groups nationwide under the keyword "recovery" and got 410 listings. Only two of these also came up when I searched "recovery from cult", but many are somewhat all-purpose. And, you could always start your own if you cannot find anything near you.

I would suggest that rather than despairing at being alone, you may be able to find a way to recognize that it is necessary for you to make a real break from the previous patterns of your life. We all have habits that we have grown into. Some of these come from our own inclinations, others are imposed on us by external forces such as your history of abuse and your time in the cult. You now have a chance to examine those habits and decide on which to deliberately get rid of and what new ones you may wish to cultivate.

This may be too personal, but I get the idea from your post that you ran directly from the cult into the abusive relationship. If that is the case, it may well be best to make a deliberate choice to not get into a new romantic relationship until you have achieved some measure of clarity about your past experiences and what you want for your future. It seems likely that past patterns of behavior are at work there.

I urge you to look for the positive aspects of your situation and start taking those steps you can to change it. Things won't happen instantly, but if you persist, they will change.

You have my best wishes.
Samwise Gamgee

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Re: Moving on after leaving JW Cult
Posted by: Samwise Gamgee ()
Date: August 07, 2010 01:16PM


A quick google search turned up the following site, which may be of some help.


In particular, the author lists 22 positive attributes which he has noted in the cult survivors he has worked with. The following three particularly struck me in light of your post:

# Survival: Don't overlook the simple fact you survived cultic abuse with your mind and body intact. Celebrate this every day.
# Courage: This is particularly true if you walked out on your own. And it's present to the nth degree if you are an adult child of cult members. You never knew another way of life and may have lost your family and friend support network when you left. Yet you still left — and stayed out.
# Resourcefulness: Anybody who leaves a cult demonstrates a high-degree of self-reliance, resourcefulness, and independence. These strengths are strong pillars you will build a new life on.

Again, my best wishes go out to you.

Samwise Gamgee

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Re: Moving on after leaving JW Cult
Posted by: bigpigweed ()
Date: October 05, 2010 10:08AM

Dear Classy

You are very brave to take this on. The JW's are one of the worst cults for shunning people after they leave.
I hope you can find support and strength here from those who have been through the same sort of trauma. I believe there are valuable resourses on this site that can help you as well as you might consider some in person support group or one on one counciling to help you feel able to vent.

Every best wish goes your way.

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