Mother's Letter To Start Off The New Year...

by silentlambs 87 Replies latest jw friends

  • FreePeace


    I am sorry for your situation. I know it must hurt deeply.

    Some have said not to send your reply to your folks. I have to disagree.

    -- At what point do we stop enabling our parents and other loved ones to continue pouring out hurt on us through guilt manipulation and twisted reasoning?

    -- At what point do we stop enabling them to remain absolved of personal responsibility for their actions?

    We are all human beings, and as such, have the human right of free will to believe and live as we see fit. No other human being--parent or otherwise--has the right to deprive us of our individual right to remain true to ourselves. No one has the right to deprive us of family relationships based on judgmental criteria.

    But along with these rights goes self-responsibility. Your parents--and mine--must also stand up and accept personal responsibility for their actions (or inactions) and beliefs.

    Your parents are adults. They must be treated as such. You have a right to tell them how you feel. After all, they told you. Now, they must be adults about it and listen to you.

    To not send that letter would be codependent. We cannot control another human being, but we must show respect for our own dignity and pain and loss by being true to ourselves and standing tall and strong.

    Since your parents initiated this correspondence, they are entitled to your response.

    Only you can know what you have personally sacrificed in this honorable cause. You have stood up for those who cannot stand up for themselves. Continue standing.

    If nothing else, your parents must respect the courage you have shown for what you believe in. After all, isn't that what being a Witness is all about? Now they deny it of you.

    Send the letter.


    "The World is my country, and to do good, my religion." --Thomas Paine
    Who Am I? -How to Reinvent Yourself After Leaving the WTS

  • larc

    Free Peace,

    I disagree. What is the point of antagonizing those who don't understand? What is the point of driving a bigger wedge between you and them? What good does it accomplish? None, in my opinion. What is the value of proving you are right to those who can't see it? None whatsoever.

    It is best to leave it alone and try to find an area of common agreement and love. My own JW sister and I have done that.

    Never dance before a cripple.

  • FreePeace


    I appreciate where you are coming from, and have given this matter considerable thought prior to this thread.

    It's not about Bill's parents so much as it is about the message he sends by sending the letter. It's about the message to his own kids that, while his kids may not always agree with their parents, they are free to express their disagreements and find a mutually acceptable ground to continue their relationship.

    Obviously, it is up to Bill as to what he does. I do agree that there are times when backing down is prudent. Only Bill can decide if this is one of them.

    Their relationship is already strained, perhaps beyond repair due his parent's position.

    I have refrained in sending letters to my own parents for exactly the reasons you cite. However, I have done so when it comes to standing up for my values and principles.

    JW's seem to have every right to express their venom, and we often do not stand up out of regard for their ignorance. Again, they are adults. If they offer such words as Bill's parents have, they must be willing to hear the other side.

    It takes two to make a relationship. If Bill is the only one giving, then it will not last. If Bill is always taking the "blows" and adjusting for them, that is codependent. It is not healthy and will not last.

    Again, I appreciate and respect what you are saying. This is a tricky issue, and one that may be different for different people and situations.

    All my best,


    "The World is my country, and to do good, my religion." --Thomas Paine
    Who Am I? -How to Reinvent Yourself After Leaving the WTS

  • LoneWolf

    For what it's worth ---

    What I've done with all, my folks, my children, my wife, the elders --- quite literally all --- is to tell them flatly that I will not violate my conscience. Some dismiss it, some laugh as though it's funny for me to even claim to have a conscience, etc., etc. However, over time, when they are forced to discard one theory after another as to my evil motives, they've gradually come to respect me. It's a long process, but worth it in the long run.

    I do that because it continually raises the question, "What could we have done that violates his conscience." Then again, whenever someone urges me to get back in, the answer always shuts them up and puts them right back on the point of dilemma again. I just ask them: "Why are you urging me to violate my conscience? Don't you realize that violating one's conscience is a sin, regardless of why it is done?"

    Of course their next step is to try to psychoanalyse all the little events in one's youth to try to figure out some reason for you being antisocial, and some of those are truly pathetic.

    But I think the part that aggravates me the worst is that they will not believe any reason unless it is both false and contains an evil motive.

    Like children, they must continually be brought back to the simple answer time after time.


  • dungbeetle

    ((((((silentlambs and mrs silentlambs))))))

    As you know and I know, when someone is an abuser (as you parents are to you right now, emotionally at least) it is linked to having suffered abuse themselves. Anger comes from somewhere.

    I can only guess that the reason they are so angry at you, is because they KNOW, in their deepest heart of hearts, that you and the Mrs. are RIGHT. It isn't much, but maybe take some heart in that.

    Your children are very fortunate to have you and their mother.


  • thinkers wife
    thinkers wife

    Dear Bill,
    Thank you so much for sharing the letters. In my opinion, your mother's letter epitomizes the convoluted reasoning, or lack there of, that indocrination by the Witnesses encourages.
    Many differing responses were here. And the bottom line is we all have to decide to do what is best for us and our family.
    I personally, though I agree with your letter in essence, would not send such a letter. My question would be, what would it accomplish? Other than possibly making ourselves feel better, it seems to me, that it could only give them ammunition and make matters worse.
    You have always displayed reasonable and admirable qualities in the posts that I have read. I trust you will do the best thing for you and yours.

  • Frenchy

    I agree with those who say: "Don't send the letter." I was moved by LB's post. Obviously he did the right thing and it worked for him. You mentioned that you tried the kind approach with no results.

    I don't know who first said the following but I consider it to be a true statement: "When evil fights evil, evil always wins"

  • Frenchy

    I re-read your mother's letter. She is experiencing some incredible pain. I appears that there have been some unpleasant exchanges between the two of you and she is hurt and confused. She evidently loves you or else it would not affect her so to think that you are 'lost'.

    You're involved in an important work that is aimed at alleviating pain and suffering and exposing wrong. That is a very noble undertaking. Your mother and father should receive even more consideration that the strangers you are attempting to help. Strive to help them with the same self-sacrificing spirit that you demonstrate in your quest. My father and mother are gone and I can do nothing for them. Do all you can for yours while they are yet here with you.

    You were an elder once. You know why they think the way they do. They, on the other hand, have not a clue as to how you are thinking these days. Use your knowledge of their situation to help them. How much should you do? As much as it takes. As precious as your children are to you, that is how your parents view you.

    I wish you well, Bill.

  • barry

    Dear Bill,
    From what Ive read here both youre Mum, Dad and you and youre family are all JWs. Bill you havent been Dfs or Da and you are not challenging any JW doctrines. You have a vast amount of agreement in that case. The only area of disagreement would then be the child abuse issue. Youre a great christian man Bill and the WT would only be better off if they were to tackle this terrible problem head on.
    I feel this is what you have to get through to youre Mum this bit about '' we will never agree on anything'' is just not right you are just as much a Jw as they are.
    I come from a religious community where there are traditionals, evangelicals and liberals and other smaller groups all going to the same church and all having respect the others point of view and Ive allways seen religious diversity in the same church it is hard for some people to take but thats the real world.
    Opinions can be wrong but love is never wrong

  • Tina

    I agree with freepeace here.
    It is enabling to allow them to communicate their thoughts at the expense of stifling your own,
    Children from dysfunctional families always have to consider others feelings while denying their own. Not a good or healthy set-up.

    It also frees them from personal responsibility for their words and behavior towards you.
    Send it,you have the right to respect dignity and freedom of expression as they do.

    Vive Bene
    Spesso L'amore
    Di Risata Molto!!!

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