I was homeschooled and kept socially isolated by my grandmother until I was 20, AMA
I was adopted by my grandmother when I was 2, she was a very fundamentalist Christian & extremely conservative. She "homeschooled" me, in the loosest sense of the word, and kept me isolated from the outside world to "prevent me from being corrupted".
There was no TV or internet. I was allowed to listen to the radio, but only to listen to certain things like Christian shows like D. James Kennedy and Focus on the Family. Only non-fiction books were allowed except for some classic literature. Most "schoolwork" involved intensive Bible study, reading of conservative literature and such. Anything that was considered "for entertainment only" she viewed as a waste of time and was not allowed.
I never had any friends growing up, social contact was limited to whatever I got closely accompanying her to the grocery store and whatnot. I was not allowed to leave the house without her. What family I do have was demonized and driven away, and I was pretty much brainwashed to extremely dislike my other family members and not want to see them.
I essentially had no idea of my situation until about 2005, at the age of 18. One of my half-sisters, under the guise of essentially "its just a fancy typewriter", my grandmother being completely clueless about computers aside from "the Internet is evil" allowed me to have it, and I was secretly able to get dial up internet through Juno (they used to send CDs in the mail). Thus began my realization that my situation was completely abnormal, and discovering the outside world through the Internet.
In late 2007, I got a job, in November of 2008 I moved out.
Its hard to explain how being 18/19 and still not realizing I could do whatever I wanted to. Some kind of crazy Stockholm syndrome I guess. I literally cried telling my grandmother that I was moving out, because she was so disapointed in me, and I felt physically unable to disappoint her in any way.
I went through a lot of depressed periods, not knowing how to cope. Went from not being able to look the checkout clerk at the grocery store in the eye without having a panic attack due to social anxiety, to normal enough that most of my friends have no idea of my background, just think Im little weird haha.
Last year my Gma was diagnosed with Paranoid Schizophrenia, among other things. Explains alot.
Uh....theres alot else I could say, but thats what this AMA is for. I've messaged the mods with proof. Apologies if the OP could be better. I'm just chilling in my apt, reading Reddit and whatnot, so have at it, and I'll try to answer questions as best I can!
edit: Im a guy, some people were getting confused. I am also 24, turning 25 this year.