There are many positive aspects that come from my daily life, leading me to sleep decently at night, most of the time. Most of them come from the distance between me and the departure from that negativity of so many years of indoctrination. And for the most part, these slowly disappear as time moves on. But a few, keep a grip, even if tenuous. The one that holds on the tightest is that of disappointment. Yes, the one thing that most of us HATE to be to others is a disappointment. Whether a child with our parents, an adult with our bosses or in our relationships as spouses, partners or lovers. We want to be the best we can to them all and while we are human and imperfect, we still have a difficult time letting others down. At least this soul does.
One thing they did as a religious group as a manner of control, was to use disappointment as a tool. That meant if you didn’t measure up to their “standards” of Christianity, Bibles studies, conversions, hours in the door to door work…you were not very “strong” as a JW, nor as a person. When this would happen, you were relieved of your duties in some parts of the congregation. And, of course, this made me ALWAYS feel that I disappointed everyone. Yes, they even said God was disappointed in me if I didn’t achieve and maintain these so called standards, averages. As a teenager and adult, this was NOT easy on the soul and heart…the mind. I worked hard to be good at what I did for everyone and it was still never good enough unless one of the ELITE in the church. That meant being one of the following :
1) An Elder or pioneer (leader or putting in over 90 hours a month in preaching)
2) A beautiful person physically (they always seem to skate by in my congregations)
3) Were very elderly and or infirm
4) Had LOTS of money or fame.
Otherwise, the climb uphill was a tough one. And I rarely amounted to much, even as a ministerial servant and good speaker. This transferred to my relationships with others and never feeling adequate or good enough at what I did, as nobody seemed pleased with me. It ate at me for decades. It still afflicts me now and then with the resulting need to try to overcompensate and prove myself more than I truly need to. My partners have to deal with this now and then and while they are absolute dears and want to reassure me that I’m NOT a disappointment to them, that they love me and that I NEED to be ME…it still bites at my heels. Even after a decade of being away from them, their influence over thirty five plus years has left it’s negative mark. Yet, I try hard every damn day to convince myself that I am NOT a disappointment to others. Various things I do help accomplish a measure of success in this, like this blog and communication with my loved ones. Reading positive material, studying uplifting words and in general being a good soul. As the days away from that destructive religion ad up and make it just that much easier, I know the battle is real and that I need to stay on top of this.