Worldy friends vs. JW friends........

by LDH 15 Replies latest jw friends

  • LDH

    Just thinking out loud here...

    When I was 19 and df'd for being pregnant (yes they knew I was repentant but told me I was to be used as an example), I ended up with no friends.

    When I was 20, some four months later, and I was reinstated before my daughter was born, I thought for sure everything would be fine. After all, hadn't I been reinstated? Wasn't I a valued member of the Congregation?

    Well lo and behold I was a NOBODY. Although I had been a 'strong publisher' for YEARS and reg. pio'd for three years, when I was reinstated I was a NOBODY. Believe me. Some elder's wives would even talk to me. Not only was there no baby shower which isn't a requirement, but since I was a working single mom it would have helped me out a lot, only 3 families in the cong. got me a baby present.

    Well, it's almost 12 years later and I'm about to have another baby. Circumstances are different.

    I've got a whole new circle of friends. And while we're not rich, we're not poor either, my hubby and me. These friends don't even know I was raised a JW, thankfully, so my past is never an issue.
    DH and I own two houses, two cars, we're doin ok.

    So, how come on Oct 13, 150 of our closest friends will be honoring DH and I in the form of a baby shower?

    Why did my best girlfriend tell me to go register at two stores because she was sick of getting asked what people should buy for us?

    Why are these people supporting us even though we could do this baby thang without their help?

    Why are people who I have only known for less than five years acting like real friends when the JW's couldn't even be bothered to help out one of their (lifetime) own who really needed it at the time?

    I'll tell you why. Because they're disgusting, vile, evil things from the world.

    Damn worldlings make me sick.


  • joelbear

    Hi Lisa,

    This is one place where are JW experiences differ somewhat.

    I had a group of JW friends from the age of 10 on who I was very close with. There were about 12 of us all together. We pioneered together. We did everything together. We had a blast. When I was dismissed from bethel for admitting I was homosexual, but not disfellowshipped since I hadn't done anything, they welcomed me home with open arms and were very loving and supportive. In the year before I was disfellowshipped and was really struggling with my homosexuality several of them talked to me and told me that they would try to help me in any way they could. Even since my disfellowshipping I have heard from a couple of them from time to time. My mother has told me that they all miss me very much and hope I will return some day. I love these people as brothers and sisters. They are good people. Our philosophies of life just differ.

    I had a similar experience with the 10 or so Jehovah's Witnesses I was close to in Jacksonville after I left home. Several of them spent hours talking to me about my feelings and trying to help me cope. Alas, they simply didn't have the power to change my sexual orientation. Again, they promised that if I ever came back they would welcome me. So, I basically have fond memories of my close JW friends.

    Now, I have a new set of friends who are just as loving and who my homosexuality doesn't bother. Of course, most of them are homosexuals too, but not all.

    From what I read on here, I was fortunate to be in 2 very kind Witness congregations.

    I think they are misguided but that doesn't stop me from caring about them very much.



  • LDH

    Joel, I still have three friends in my old cong. who will still talk to me though I have been labeled 'suspicious"--AKA apostate. After all, I did marry a worldly man.

    Anyhow, I grew up in two sister congs, I knew EVERYONE not just by name but because I cared.

    I was relating my experience with how I was treated after I was reinstated. Before I was df'd, I was the one of the prized 'spiritual youths.'

    I'm not sure if I missed it, but I did not know you had at one time been reinstated.

    My experience told me that it was like spiritual leprosy. Even though the thought police said I was ok, I was treated like a leper.

  • joelbear


    I have not been reinstated. I was just relating how people who cared about me have acted towards me and I believe they would act kindly towards me if I was reinstated.


  • Bridgette

    It's the simple difference between unconditional love and acceptance and extremely conditional love and acceptance.
    Joelbear, I'm glad your experiences were so wonderful. You always lend a balanced view which is often needed. I still assert that the love or at least the acceptance you received was conditional in your cong. but maybe I'm just jaded. The important thing is you're happy now, and at peace with your past. I'm happy for you.
    Anyway, my experiences are much the same, Lisa. BTW, when are you due? I'm due in Feb. and this is my second child and husband. I'm having 3 different showers from different circles of friends in mine and my husband's lives. I had the misfortune of sharing my pregnancy the FIRST time around in the ORG with a sister of the "in crowd". But I did get a few table scraps that fell. And 2 of my friends (who wouldn't even speak to me now) did manage to put together a little something for me. That was nice. But I feel so much more comfortable and loved by my new real friends.

  • Nathan Natas
    Nathan Natas

    Joel -

    I'm surprised that you accept the conditional love of you Jdub "friends" as legitimate friendship. They'll be happy to love you if you will only deny yourself self-respect, if you'll only wallow in guilt a bit more.

    Such a deal.

    I'd be friendlier, but you haven't sent me any money latey.

  • LDH

    Joel, they would treat you as if you were a spiritual leper.

    And try doing what I HAD to do, namely, bring the 'cause' of my df'ing to all the meetings. Where it cried, as babies will do. [8>]

    Try bringing Mitch and snuggling with him or even holding hands.

    Yeah right, they'll act kindly.

    I'm sorry but I don't buy this one.

    Newly reinstated people are treated worse than poo.


    ps Bridgette, I'm due Nov 22. You can email me if you like.

  • joelbear

    As I said,

    I think they are misguided, but I still care about them and I believe they care about me too.

    All friendships have limits, for instance, I have no friends who smoke, not even one, because I just can't stand to be around it. I don't think I have any friends who are Christians since our philosophies just don't line up.

    Many of our gay friends have dropped us because we are so open about our sexuality and naturism, they just have different tastes.

    My friends now definitely put limits on our friendships. There are many behaviors and ideas that they would not accept and remain as my friend.

    I don't think I've ever experienced unconditional love other than from Mitch, so I guess I don't have anything to compare my experiences to.



  • joelbear

    No, they wouldn't accept Mitch, I agree. They would accept me back under very specific terms.

    Our experiences with reinstated people differ thus leading to our differing perspectives. In my home congregation reinstated people were not treated that way. In fact, as a pioneer, elders would come to me and other pioneers and assign us to such ones to encourage and get out in field service.

    I'm certainly sorry you had such a harsh experience. To me it just shows that being a Jehovah's Witness does not automatically make a person a perfect example of love or a perfect example of the lack of love.



  • Yerusalyim

    I honestly have to say that in every situation I've been in with Dubs, other than them knocking on my door, they've treated me great. Not so my family. When I would venture to the Hall with them everyone wanted to shake my hand and talk to me, but my family of highly suspect dubs, they were ignored by almost everyone at the hall. I know the reason they treated me nice, they wanted to draw me in and show me how loving the dubs are, but how could I see that when at the same time my suspect family was shunned.

    "Vanity! It's my favorite sin!"
    [Al Pacino as Satan, in "DEVIL'S ADVOCATE"]

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