I look back and am disappointed that I did not go to college but instead pioneered right out of high school. I would have loved to be a lawyer. However (for myself) being a witness and participating in the tms has helped me get many of the jobs I have had. The field ministry taught me how to present myself, how to speak in a convincing manner, how to find common ground with people. I also learned how to study and apply knowledge. Looking back I wish that I had gotten a degree, but feel that being a witness gave me marketable skills that helped me to launch my career. I have a great executive level job with benefits and retirement in a stable segment of the economy.
How Being a Witness made you Lose out on Higher Education and Careers
I had a scholarship to MIT and UTI. My sister had a FULL scholarship to Hardvard.
I quit college when I became a jw. Heart broke my parents who wanted me to get a good education. Definitely changed my life. I gave up the goal of becoming a history teacher to become an accounts receivable clerk.
I don't know how old you are but I have a patient who went back to school and changed careers when he was 50. He bacame a teacher! If you still have the desire, you should go for it. Lilly
I noticed this thread had been bumped up awhile back without my knowledge of it. Sorry for the delay in replying.
JEFPAINTHORSE- I hear you. The coulda, shoulda, woulda story- I've experienced that one too. I'm sorry about your lost naval career.
CURIOUS BUTTERFLY- I think a lot of us were not planing the careers we are in right now, myself included. At least I'm doing O.K. though .
LOVELYLIL2- I'm glad you and your husband have been successful and reached out for your degrees. Good for you. It shows what's possible after we exit the JW cult !
STUCKINAMOVEMENT- I'm happy you have a good career and are doing well. True- some JW things we did helped us to speak in front of others and communicate- however only in a stilted , controlled manner I have found. At least after exiting the Witnesses WE can determine what the subject matter is- not the WT society. Like yourself- I would have liked attending college as well.
JOSHNAZ- I'm happy that you & your sister went to college. Good for you both.
STRAIGHTSHOOTER- I'm sorry you didn't get to be a history teacher and became an accounts clerk. My parents influenced me not to go to college as well. It sucks, really does
Even when an elder, I never did agree with the WTS policy on higher education. Dumb, dumb, dumb. Do they still toe the hard line on techincal/trade school type educations, or is everything still about serving the Publishing Cult as a pioneer after high school?
Think About It
Think About It - All higher/university education is discouraged to the point that elders can be disqualified if they allow their children to go to college. Pioneering is the big push still now that Bethel has scaled back become somewhat irrelevant.
I passed up a scholarship to go to Bethel. I did learn a trade in high school and that helped me make decent wages for a long time. The sales skills I learned as a JW (the Service Meeting used to be a pretty good sales training seminar before everything got dumbed down) have helped me to make six figures a few years (I was a matrialistic JW and elder, the guilt was incredible).
However I did not realize until I went to college a couple of years ago how much I missed. First of all learning is fun. College was challenge. My mind had not been challenged that much in years. It hurt for about six months LOL!!! After my mind got the hang of it I wanted more. I had to stop but I am getting ready to go back and finish my degree and the pursue MBA because I love learning and despite what the JWs believe a college degree is a big deal if you want to be successful. Of course they don't want members to be successful or wealthy or educated.
I am on career path that suits my nature and contributes to a happy way of life.
My father forbade regular use of baby sitters. He was right. My mom worked evenings so that a parent was always home. She did not work for pin money. We needed it desperately. She had to take public transit late at night. I worried about her endlessly. She was talked to many times about making meetings. Like myself, she was born in and it went right in one ear and out another. She was expelled from high school b/c of flag salute. Her dream was to be a teacher or fashion designer.
She lived through me in many ways. We sewed fashionable outfits together. She taught me about Manhattan when most people never travelled the extra half hour. My education was vital to her. I was quite taken by the nurses. Women could not be doctors then. I volunteered as a candy striper and received credits for a scholarship. In order to hurt me deeply, my father made me give it up. My body was so tense when I had to explain his Witness logic to the director.
My father was trying to pull me out of high school against my will when he died. I spoke to the principal. He was not going to do so! If my mom would not stand by me, a judge would. I was ranked so high in the class. We were an urban poor school so federal funding was abundant. Colleges were after me to attend. The struggle with him and the Witnesses largely defined my entire life. Kitten and princess girls' fathers do not sexually threaten them or punish them for liking school. Everything was topsy-turvy. Someone here posted recently about irrational fears that the Witnesses are correct. My being is shaped like a bonsai tree.
I consider myself lucky that I was even able to learn a trade, as the JWs tried to stop that, also. It was only my high grades through high school, plus contacts that my non-JW father had in the industry, that got me an opening there. (During those years leading up to 1975, the WTS was strong about "young people should have the minimum education, and then pioneer").
Later, I made several attempts to do the Diploma course in Electrical Engineering, but either work or family commitments made that a non-starter:
- Very difficult attempting the Diploma course when you are working 16 hour days!
- Even doing the trade course proved to be disastrous for family life (by then I was married with two children).
To those who have later been able to pick up the baton and complete College studies, despite what the WTS did to them, I tip my hat! The fact remains, though, that the best time to study is when you are straight out of high school.
These days, I am resigned to going no further than a busted a$$ electrician can expect to go - and the only letters that I will have after my name are "S.B." (ie. "Silly B*&$")
busted a$ electrician can expect to go
It's a different world now. (thanks to our politicians) That was my trade and thanks to an IBEW apprenticeship I did OK. Looking back, those years I was a JW cost me some work by being laid off first, due to my shitty JW attitude. In the 80's I got into instrumentation work- traveled to nuke refuels and overhaul jobs , then in 1994 I landed a job as a maintenance electrician at Chrysler Foundry (now closed- thank you Nafta). That job separated the men from the boys- 2600 degree molten iron gives the fools no second chances. The work was beyond the ability of most construction electricians, but I had taught apprentice school for 4 years and worked maintenance at a couple small plants during winter layoffs, so I was able to pass muster and worked about 15 more years until I took an early retirement package. Even if I had I gone to college, I doubt that I would have the retiree benefits I have from almost 40 years of union work- 4 different pensions and retiree family medical insurance for a reasonable monthly premium. Union work is in the toilet right now, but in a few more years, as more of us baby boomers retire the doors will open up again, the work will come back- and adding this pointer, go north, forget about working in the south. I was talking to an $8.50/hr electrician helper this week about better jobs up north-, but he just lo-oves Florida.