Shunned: Stories of Former Jehovah's Witnesses

by tastyrerun 4 Replies latest jw experiences

  • tastyrerun

    I just started a community book writing project over at WEBook called "Shunned: Stories of Former Jehovah's Witnesses". It is intended to be a collection of personal stories about leaving the Witnesses and building a new life in the aftermath.

    From the description of the project:

    shunning: the deliberate avoiding of association with, and habitually keeping away from, an individual or group

    There are many religious traditions that practice shunning of current and former members as a form of congregational discipline, but none so large and fierce about the practice as the Watchtower Society, also known as Jehovah's Witnesses. Anabaptist groups (such as the Amish and Mennonites), the Ba' Hai, and some Protestant Evangelical churches practice shunning, but the Jehovah's Witnesses at over 6.5 million members are the largest of them all and the form of shunning they practice is among the most severe, consisting of a complete ban on all unnecessary interactions with anyone who leaves the religion for any reason, including family members.

    This means that if a daughter leaves the religion and her parents are still members, the parents will never speak to that daughter again if they can avoid doing so or they may face punishment themselves. No matter who leaves, son or daughter, father, mother, grandparent, or just very dear friend, the treatment is the same. Shunning is expected, enforced. Thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, of people are disfellowshipped by the Watchtower Society or disassociate themselves from the religion every year and are subjected to this harsh, traumatic treatment. It is the fear of losing all the people a person loves that keeps many within the group and it has been the experience of enduring it that has driven many back into the group, even if they don't believe in the teachings.

    This book is a collection of stories, experiences, of people who have left the Watchtower Society and what they endured in the process of starting their new lives, trying to move on despite all they've left behind.

    If you want to share your story, your experience, go to the site and contribute to the book. Tell your story.

  • Maddie

    Thanks tastyrerun, I may well lput my experience of being shunned in there.


  • ninja

    a friend of my wife...linda eadie.... shunned me today in my own house! even though I still haven't been booted....(slippery ninja).....I find it hilarious now.....and also in costco on saturday too with her friend francis's good to name names.....also I really annoyed them all waiting to pick my kids up at school last thursday....while waiting for the kids bell to ring I decided to read "in search of christian freedom" as you do.....sharon gault cranked her neck 180 degrees to see what apostate book I was reading when driving in.....she then proceeded to tell elder george cairns about it.....I know this because elder george cairns never speaks to me....but on this occasion out of the blue he decided to small talk me while looking around my car for the offending's great to annoy the brothers....he he......

  • excito-are

    Nice one Ninja

    I know some of the people you mention, having being to many witness parties in Glasgow throughout the years and visiting certain halls in the area. You are certainly not missing any interesting company! I have not experianced any of the shunning as of yet, but that would change in a second if I ever gave a witness person a Chance to see what I really think.


  • dawg

    I'm never around JWs now, I haven't been to the KH in years.... but one time years ago, an Elder, that was a real ass wipe, tried to shun me in my hometown... in my hometown I'm pretty well known as a clown.. I have tons of friends...

    I went to the elder and very loudly asked him if he was avoiding me? He said he was... it's been years so if I tell this wrong, its because of the time...But I said in a real loud voice..."this man is shunning me because he's a JW... they say they are Christ like but won't talk to anyone that disagrees with their teachings... or something to that effect...

    He started briskly moving away... but I followed explaining as I went how JW act towards ex members... it was funny as hell.

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