Riddle me this....

by Serene 32 Replies latest jw friends

  • Serene

    Hello everyone... Im new here! Welcome me

    I have a question...maybe you guys can give me some insight. I have a boyfriend whom I looooooove. Hes a wonderful person, treats me well etc etc. Recently, though, I had to piece together the fact that he is a JW. I mean....we talk about everything. We have discussed marriage. I trusted him explicitly. Our communication was great (so I thought). We live about an hour away from eachother (2.5 in traffic...its L.A. what can you do) so...hes able to do all those witness things without me really knowing. But...long story short, from certain things about his lifestyle I concluded that he was a witness. I confronted him about it and he admitted to it, claiming it was a big part of who he is and a lot of the things I love about him are part of his character because he's a witness....

    So I guess my question is...under what circumstances would a person HIDE something like this? (it was almost like he was ashamed...) Should I be waiving a red flag? Is this a big deal? Do relationships like this work? I've researched the JWs and I have informed him that under NO circumstances will I become one. (no offense to anyone....but its just not for me...at all) He recommends that I visit the Kingdom Hall just to see what its about. I'm not willing. I have a strong (non-denominational, non-churchy) Christian background and I love the Lord as much as the next guy but.... do you guys think we are headed for major problems? All his friends and family are witnesses... Im the only "non" from what I can see.

    So knowing what you guys know about the JWs... do you think it will be a big issue? Big enough to be prohibitive?

    Thnaks in advance!

  • mkr32208

    Yup... Run away! Run away!

  • stillajwexelder

    Welcome Serene - relationships like this can work - if he is hiding the fact that he is a witness - he is not a strong witness. Be careful at first - dont rush anything.

  • Serene

    He said he didn't tell me because he didn't know how I would react. He swears that the JWs are NOT a denomination but instead are indeed the chosen people of God... He knows my stance on "denominational Christianity" (I am adamantly opposed to it--I feel as if it is divisive and absurd)

    We're in a holding pattern right now...putting off the inevitable clash *sigh*

    Thanks for the feedback... and the welcomes....I think I'll stick around for awhile.

  • misspeaches

    Welcome from me too!!!

    The truthful reason why your boyfriend was not telling you that he was a JW is the following. JW's are not allowed to date anyone outside of their religon. It is deeply frowned upon. If it was known to his congregation and Body of Elders that he was dating a wordly person (which is what you are classified as) he would lose his privileges and perhaps get a reproval from them. Additionally they would question him about what you two have done including all sorts of personal questions of a sexual nature. If you have seen him without a chaperone present this is another JW issue. Some JW's have been accused of immorality and subsequently disphellowshipped (excommunicated) simply because they did not have a chaperone present to say that it did not happen.

    Great religon isn't it!

  • stevenyc

    Hi Serene,

    Jeez, where to start?

    First off, welcome to JWD. This is a great place for your research. Most posters here are ex-Jehovah's Witnesses. There are a few who still attend for personal reasons, and a few who are die-hard witnesses.

    The subject of having a relationship with a Jehovah's Witness is huge. Generally, the people themselves, that is the guys you get knocking at your door, and attending their meeting are very honest, and good. He is correct in saying that some parts of him you are attracted to are a direct result of him being a witness. However, there is a darker side to this movement.

    On becoming a Jehovahs Witness you are promised eternal life on a paradise earth. Sounds nice. What they don't mention is that if, after becoming a witness, you should decide it's not for you, or you question their leaders, beliefs, or practices, you will be excommunicated, and from that point on no-one in their community will have any dealings with you. Including family members and life-long friends. They will literally (I really mean literally) cross the street in sight of you. This is done out of fear. If they recognise you, they become excommunicated also.

    A member of their leadership (know as 'the governing body'), was excommunicated for have lunch with an excommunicated person. The fact that this person was his landlord made no difference.

    If your boyfriend is seeing you from a distance, my guess, and its only a guess, is not so you would catch him in the act, but, that a member of his religion would see him with you. That would cause instant trouble, possibly leading to his removal. Not only from the religion, but, as with the consequences, from his life-long friends and family. He would loose everything.

    Tread carefully here.


  • Serene

    Hmmmmmm.... Im not liking what Im hearing so far!! Are all the particular Halls the same (I dont know what to call them... chapters? i dont know) What I mean is... is the threat of excommunication for dating "someone like me" something that is a universal practice? Its sanctioned by the folks in Brooklyn? Really? I've read about it on other sites...but the Watchtower official site makes them sound so friendly and loving lol...its this just for appearances?

    He will not let me meet his mother.... he jokes about it....but Im beggining to think that the two issues are related...? *sigh* This makes me very sad because he is a wonderful person but I don't know if I can get past this. I don't like how I feel like an "outsider." In hindsight...his best friend did question me about my religious beliefs when I first met him. Then when I saw him the next time, he barely spoke to me very very sad indeed.

  • gumby

    Welcome Serene

    He recommends that I visit the Kingdom Hall just to see what its about.

    Does he want you to go with him to HIS hall....or go to one in your area? I'm asking as I'm wondering if he's maybe been in some trouble with his congregation such as has been Disfellowshipped or reproved for something and is hiding you from them to keep from getting into more hot water.

    Have you met any of his family or friends yet?

    As Misspeaches has stated, JW's frown upon members becoming "unevenly yoked" with unbelievers ( non-wintesses ). If he has a position in his congregation such as an elder, ministerial servant, pioneer( full time door knocker), he will lose those privledges as stated above for dating you.

    You have much to think about in this relationship. We just had a girl on here who is hooked up with a witness also and she is not and who has not been accepted by his witnesses family and she feels like someone on the outside and as dead to his family.

    Down the road were you to marry and have kids, the issue as to what faith they will be will become a BIG issue and can reak havoc on a marriage......unless you don't mind your kids being Jehovahs Witnesses.

    Think this one out real good, stay hooked up with this site and learn about witnesses and the lives of those involved before you make any long term commitments.

    Good Luck


  • misspeaches

    You know what Serene it is really sad. you sound like a really nice girl. I'm sorry you've had to get caught up in this madness.

    Not every JW who dates a 'wordly' person is going to be excommunicated but they certainly will be marked. When your marked your treated with suspicion, watched carefully, excluded from gatherings whatever is needed to help you to see the error of your ways.

    The official site does make it appear that they are caring. They preach that they are the only religon practicing real love. But they don't. I grew up in this religon. What they have is conditional love. The condition is that you must be a JW for them to love you. The moment you question a belief, you do something against their copious strict rules they stop loving you and shun you.

    I really don't mean to sound hurtful but I just want you to know how it really is.

  • Serene

    @Gumby (I haven't figured out how to quote people yet ) he didnt specify which hall. I feel bad for not being willing to go with him and he has even accused me of not supporting his walk with God (which made me feel even worse) But...my best friend in high school was a witness and she was one of the saddest, conflicted people I've ever known. She had to sneak to talk on the phone with me... and she was no better off as a human being than I was! In fact she was worse because she was painfully shy, afraid of males and very self conscious. I dont dispute that there are wonderful people out there who are witnesses (my boyfriend is one of them) but (excuse me if I offend...I really dont mean too) judgmentalism seems to be present in spades...and isn't THAT wrong too?

    He quotes the bible and says that "bad associations corrupt good character" which is not untrue. But I am a good person. Ive been blessed. Im a (conscientious) law student, former teacher, I volunteer with the homeless and juveniles...Im empathetic, hard working and God-fearing.... I dont mean sound like Im tooting my own horn because God is responsible for my growth but I hate the idea that Im may not good enough for him to date. I also don't want to be put in a situation where I have to force him to choose between me and them!

    Thanks for letting me get this off my chest guys! The lawyer in me tends to shoot off 50 questions in a row when I talk to him about it and that seems to be a quick way to put people on the defensive

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