my family wants me to talk to the elders...

by Calliope 28 Replies latest jw friends

  • jojochan
    but it sounds like you are juggling a lot right now. if right now is not the time to shake things up with the elders, then just call them and BS your way out of it.

    nuff said, you need that time, soft of like riding an escalator, slowly but surely you'll make it there.


  • sass_my_frass

    Yeah, i know that feeling. I've been pleasing my parents for years. I even followed their advice to pour my heart out to the elders, and it got me d'd, I don't think they were expecting that. I've since realised I never want to go back, and I'm actually glad it all happened, because if I'd not been d'd or been shown some kind of mercy I might have thought that god was with them. Now I know they're just fools at best, powermongers at worst. And my family; they're not stupid but they choose to remain in a cult in spite of the pain all around them. I decided not to let their guilt and fear keep me bound for life.

    Take your time; it takes everybody a long time to recover from the brainwash. Some people devote their entire lives to it and don't even get close. If you think it would settle things to give an elder a quick phone call to give them the facts, go ahead, that might get your parents off your back. It kills mine that they could never motivate any of my elders to take me under their wing. We all know that it's not any of their business as do you, but we've all had to play some version of this game to give ourselves space. Take what you need, mostly - time.

    Important phrase to keep in the back of your head, in case an elder gets on your case:

    *smile* "Thanks, but I'm not able to talk about this right now."

    Never be ready to talk about it, until you know you are. DO understand that talking to the elders about doubts is guaranteeing that you will, sooner or later, be d'd as an apostate. There is no reasoning; no counsel. There is the occasional loving and sincere elder wanting to help, but most of them are just guys with a family and life of their own, and no idea of what to do with this enormous responsibility they have. They're not trained, they're not educated, it's not a profession... it's just some guys who've done a few days reading a book written by men who have never lived in the real world.

    much love

  • Calliope

    it's funny, even now, after everything i've learned about the real "secret society", i have a hard time believing that they would d-eff me simply because i have doubts. but then again, you probably all had a hard time believing that your friends and family would really/actually shun and disown you when you left the truth. their whole misuse and elementary understanding unconditional love is baffling... and sad.

  • Mary

    Tell your mother that you're considering a reconciliation with your hubby so you don't want to get the elders involved......yet. That should make her back off for a while..........

  • Calliope

    my husband da-ed himself so i think don't think that would get them off my back. nope... there would probably be a "ding-dong" from mom and dad in my very very near future.

  • Sunspot
    It's your life so your parents will have to accept sooner or later that you do not wish to be a JW, and if you explain it to them gradualy and well, they may not take it so badly

    Among the many things I can say about your situation, this seems like a good place to start. I don't mean to hit them with the whole tree, but just let a branch or two fall that will help ease what you know is eventually going to happen.

    You can explain to them that you are undergoing a lot of things and you need time to sit back and quietly reflect on things, so you can sort them all out. (You can always mention "prayerfully" sorting things out, it goes over much better!) How can they argue with that?

    I would NOT include or involve the elders at ALL, because they will be banging on your door and phoning you 24/7 to "talk"....and I sure didn't want that...I doubt if you do. I wrote a letter to the elders and told them that NO ONE had called me or stopped by in months and months (except to record my time) and now *I* wanted to be left alone to give all of this a LOT of uninterrupted thought and prayer. This was in July 1999 and in October 1999 I wrote my DA letter.

    In your case, I don't see the need to tell the elders anything. Just let it go, and tell your parents only what THEY "need to know". You'll figure that out by your circumstances and past communication with them. Dragging things out indefinetely will make you crazy and will anger THEM even more when they realize how long you have felt this way.

    My very BEST to's tough at first....but once it hits the does get better, Sweetie.



  • willyloman

    Isn't it interesting that you and your husband have separated and the advice you're getting is "confess your sins" rather than "get some help." Worldly people in your situation would be counselved by their families and others who love them to seek professional help or just come over and talk your heart out.
    Your parents believe this is a behavior issue that must be taken to the elders so it can be determined how much of this is your fault and what responsibility you bear for it.
    Think about that! Listen carefully to the advice you receive here from people who've been there, done that. You have no obligation to tell these elders anything about your personal life. It is simply none of their business. It is between you and your spouse. These men are not trained counselors, they have no "magic" for you. They will, however, jump on you like a wolf on a wounded rabbit the moment you go to them for "help." These men are nothng special. They don't want to believe that, of course. And they don't want you to believe it. Your parents don't want to believe it, either. But it's true. And you know it so act on what you know. Follow your instincts!
    Oh, and about this advice:

    Maybe instead of a phone call, send a letter to the elders.

    There are two rules for dealing with elders:
    1. Don't put anything in writing.
    2. If you are tempted to put something in writing, see Rule No. 1.

  • NYCkid

    Sorry to hear about your situation, best wishes and hope you find happiness and peace. Speaking from my own personal experience I would advise not going to the Elders about your marital problems. The simple reason is that they are not adequately trained or qualified to deal with such personal emotional issues. Relationships are very complex and private.

    In my opinion, they are not adequately trained to manage theological issues as well but I digress. If you're looking for specific information on WTBTS policies, I would guess go to them, but for guidance on private personal issues, they, as much as some of them are nice, just are not qualified.

    My Dad is an Elder (although he's very sick now). In the best of times, he was very considerate, compassionate and sincere but he really did not have the background and training to manage people's private matters. He like all Elders in this role, are really puppets of the WTBTS and only serve the purpose to direct the congregation and enforce policies.

    Best wishes,


  • Calliope

    here's a gem:

    my parents were trying to convince to speak to the elders because that's what they are there for, that's why jehoobah has placed them in their respective positions....
    my reply:
    but, i don't pray to the elders, i pray to god, so shouldn't this just stay between god and i?*

    * now of course, i don't really pray to anyone, but i thought it made a good point.

    ps. it didn't go over well with my parents.

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