Fading and not "outing" yourself, what are your thoughts on it?

by Brock Talon 29 Replies latest jw experiences

  • Brock Talon
    Brock Talon

    Fading and not "outing" yourself.. What are your thoughts on it?

    I ask, because I just received a scathing personal message on Facebook from a person who read my latest book and in it I describe myself as a fader. I was not DFd and I did not DA myself. I faded because I didn't want the drama associated with the other options. I wanted to be able to talk to JWs if I should meet them on the street. I also faded because to me the DF/DA situations were just playing by their rules. I felt they didn't have any real hold on me and I didn't want to give them the satisfaction of making judgement on me. So, I just walked away and didn't feel I needed to explain to anyone why I did it. Should I bump into them on the street, I could chat with them and tell them I was happy and reverse Witness to them. Should they try to get me to go back to meetings or meet up with me socially, I would just politely change the subject.

    Now I'm being hated on by an angry reader who called me many names for that: Dishonest, narcissistic, needing therapy, fooling myself, and other ugly words by a person who calls themselves Christian. This because I faded and because I don't want to use my real name in public "to out myself properly" after writing a book on the subject.

    What are your thoughts on that? Do I have to out myself or write a letter of DA to really be a real ex-JW and not be dishonest? Do I have to expose my real name to a person like this who Facebook friends me and praises my first book (which used Brock Talon as the author's name) one day, but then turns on me for using Brock Talon again for my second book and attacks me that same exact thing?

    I know this: I'm not fooling myself that I'm happy now. That much I am sure of. But whether this makes me a "real" ex-JW or not because I faded and refuse to out myself, I'm not sure.

    What's your take?

  • Simon

    I think everyone should definitely be free to make their own choice without facing any criticism from any militant types!

    For most people I think fading and not getting DF'd or DA'd is the wisest choice. It is the best option if you have any friends and / or family still in because it doesn't force them to potentially have to make a difficult choices themselves that they are not ready to make.

    They may very well want to support you and stay friends but if you make your leaving too public and too noticeable then it becomes something that others can't turn a blind eye to. They may not be ready to force those choices on other friends and family that they have.

    We may disagree with their choices but they are their choices to make.

    Ultimately, it really boils down to personal choice and freedom. How dare someone criticize how someone else choses to leave the religion!

    I know the sort of person you describe and have had such criticism myself. Unless you are foaming at the mouth and wanting to rip JWs throats out with your bare teeth then they don't consider you "apostate enough" or they try to make out you are some WTS apologist or plant.

    You can be an ex-JW even if you attend meetings 5 times a week IMO. It really comes down to what you believe inside. What you decide you have to do for outward appearances to maintain family relationships is your own concern and no one else's to judge you for.

  • Ignoranceisbliss

    To each their own. I view u as a true authentic Ex-J-Dub.

    For myself fading seems like the wisest choice if u can pull it off.

  • NVR2L8
    Everyone is in a different situation and no one else can judge what's better for you. I successfully faded because the alternative would totally destroy my aged mother. My sister and younger brother who's an elder still talk to me and I am welcomed in their home. They are aware of why I am no longer active. On the other hand my wife is still active and I suspect that one day the elders may turn their attention to me...at that time I may have to officially break up from the controlling cult.
  • Billy the Ex-Bethelite
    Billy the Ex-Bethelite

    No matter what you do in life, somebody else will get their panties in a bunch and try to "set you straight". You don't need some Facebook nutjob's approval in order to have a fun and fulfilling life.

    For that matter you don't need my approval either, but you have my approval. And I think that if a "christian" is calling you "Dishonest, narcissistic, needing therapy, fooling myself, and other ugly words", you must be doing something right!

    I've found that fading and not outing myself has been ideal. I can still talk to the ones I want to, and I can ignore the ones that I don't want to talk to.

  • Brock Talon
    Brock Talon

    Simon, Ignornace, NVR2L8, Billy... I'm feeling a bit better now, reading your words.Thanks so much.

    I've been soundly criticized before, but for some reason, this one really got to me. I guess it was terrible review on Amazon.com with a follow up FU message on Facebook from a person who had "friended" me at first and praised me for my first book that really got me discombobulated. I actually tried connecting with them at the time of my first book publishing and then they did this... really strange.

    The really weird thing is that the worst criticism I get is usually from ex-JWs. Not JWs.

    Strange days indeed...

  • steve2

    Brock, knocks are so hard. Few of us get used to them to the point of numbness. They can be avoided by keeping quiet and complying with others' expectations and wishes for us. The cost is personal silent brooding and resentment that you've had to twist yourself out of shape to please others.

    By contrast, the cost of putting yourself out there and doing your best to respectfully express your point of view is knocks of one kind or another. People will innocently or willfully misunderstand you, poorly attend to what you have written, accuse you of saying things you never said, or meaning things you never meant and am low to hurt you.

    You will think you are prepared for attack and then find yourself absolutely astonished that people still think and react that way. You will find your mind going over and over and over how you could have worded things to have helped them see you are not the person they have accused you of being.

    It is dismal - but healthy - to realize that very few people take the time to read your words attentively and carefully, as they sharpen their swords in an attempt to cut you into a thousand bloodied pieces. Little wonder it takes guts to wear your heart on your sleeve.

    Then you will recall Paul Simon's words from The Boxer: "Still a man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest". And you will relax just a little bit more as time passes, and wipe the dust off your shoes.

  • Magnum

    I agree with the comments above. You don't answer to JWs anymore. Do whatever you want. Certainly you can be a real ex-JW without going through the formality of turning in a document to the congregation.

    What I don't like now is that if one DAs, the same announcement is made as if one is DFed. So if you DA, then JWs who hear the announcement might think that you still wanted to be a JW, but the elders disfellowshipped you for some reason. I might be more apt to DA if it would be announced that I said I didn't want to be a JW anymore, but they will anounce it as it the org gave me the boot for some deficiency or wrong on my part, whereas, the wrong is on them.

    Also, I agree with you that there can be benefits to not DAing. There are a few elders who confide thier doubts in me, whereas, if I were to DA, I don't think they'd communicate with me.

  • rip van winkle
    rip van winkle
    I also agree with what everyone said. To fade or DA is a personal choice. No one should dictate or decide for you how YOU choose to live YOUR life.
  • Brock Talon
    Brock Talon

    Steve2, Magnum, Rip... much appreciated. I'm feeling better. I needed those words today. This community has been very helpful to me in my own healing. This day was another example of that.

    Signing off for now...


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