I Am Shunned

by Thirdson 5 Replies latest jw friends

  • Thirdson

    Some of the events in this story are true, others, have been changed.

    Eighteen months ago I quit my job. I had worked for this company for nearly a decade and had a signed contract. They taught me much, they taught me to teach others and I had grown and matured in the organization to become a highly respected senior representative. I had moved to “serve where the need was great”. I had learned the “pure language” and could “speak” the languages needed for the compiler. At least twice a year I attended assemblies of the organization and heard presentations about the bright future we had, as prepared by the senior leaders. After each assembly we went away feeling refreshed and recharged ready to work harder. Periodically, we had “new light”. Either changes in the structure of the organization would be announced or, a new version of our main product would be released. We worked hard at making sure that all we dealt with were acquainted with the new changes and were helped to see the benefits.

    After eight years I felt the future offered was looking less bright. Many people had been forcefully removed from their positions and many others, discontent, had simply left the organization. I began to feel the same way. I examined the ethics of the organization, the way it treated its own members and looked at the future it was promising but the promises looked empty. I quit, I decided to go somewhere else and several other organizations were quite keen to have me as a member.

    I had already expressed my doubts to my immediate superior. This person was well aware of the struggle I having. However, the higher up people were simply disgusted that I would choose to leave the organization, after all the assistance and instruction I had been given. Some said Thirdson was unappreciative of the work of the leaders. Some said I was proud and resentful of other people senior to me. Some said I felt some of the work to be demeaning. Still others said I had grown impatient and wanted to enjoy the temporary rewards of another organization.

    As a result my former colleagues shunned me. They felt that by joining another organization I had turned my back on them and they felt I no longer qualified to be treated with dignity and respect. Even now when I am shopping in the supermarket I occasionally run in to an ex-colleague but they simply look through me as if I didn’t exist. Even my own nephew refuses to have anything to do with me now.

    Is my story shocking? Why would reasonable, intelligent people treat me like this? How manipulated by the senior management were these employees to go far as treating me as if I was dead?

    The shunning part of the story isn’t true, nearly everything else is. (I was never resentful of others so I guess no one said I was, but who knows?) Actually, I meet, eat and drink with my former colleagues.

    However, the story isn’t much different to the JW who leaves the congregation and joins another church. It doesn’t matter that churches aren’t rivals but seeking a common goal. To JWs, for a member to join an another church is so serious as to have that one publicly announced as having disassociated from the congregation. All the congregation members should then shun the DA’d member. Any JW found associating with a DA’d person is liable to be forcefully removed from the congregation and disfellowshipped.

    Why is the religious practice of JWs acceptable while the supposed practice of my colleagues is a disgrace?


  • mark smith
    mark smith

    DONT be dismayed brother i to was shown the door.I loved GOD with all my heart but was not alowed to ask any questions.
    I was 21 and studing the bible with a elder.i used to work away at the time and was late home one evening. The elder made sexual advances at my wife.and cornered her and tryed to put his hand up my wifes skirt saying disgusting things.when i came home my wife was in a terrible state.i waited for him to come for the study the week after.when he came i sat him down and confronted him. Straight away he confessed and started crying asking me to forgive him.He said will i pray for him asking JEHOVAH to forgive him.Which i did.But i said i wanted to study with some one else.He agreed.The head elder came and wanted to know why i wanted the change.after a while i told him.He called me a liar and a trouble maker.i went to the hall for a few more months but know body would talk to me.
    My dad died at this time and know body came to see me or comfort me.So i left and went in my search for spiritual food else were.
    Two months after he was caught with a elders daughter taking her to an motel room then the truth came out,there were other young girls who he had things going with.
    But the elder never came around and appoligised he still shuns me today.
    Brother i feel for you they make you feel 2nd class,filthy,and a out cast.Nobody wants to feel this way,its a tactic to make them feel in control and high and mighty (IS THIS TRUTH??IS THIS THE LOVE JESUS SPOKE ABOUT??).
    Please dont let them get the better of you .now is the time to look UP asking the father to send HIS COMFORTER.Remember its GOD we searve not man.
    am from england friend and if you want to stay in touch as friends that would be lovely may GOD send you HIS LOVE AND PLACE HIS HEALING HAND UPON YOU.


  • Frenchy

    I gather your story is told from the perspective of someone who gets df’d or who da’s himself. I’ve never been df’d so I can’t say that I know how it feels, I can only imagine. I know that shunning is a powerful tool that the Society uses quite skillfully. I just thought I would point out that there is yet another tool that is not quite as harsh as the shunning but still disquieting as well, sort of a semi-shunning.

    When a publisher becomes inactive and does not attend meetings regularly, that person is AVOIDED by most of the congregation. You’re still allowed to answer at the meetings and will be spoken to when you are there or perhaps even receive a shepherding call (although they never come to see me! ) but your friends do not socialize or just visit you at your home anymore. They are also prone to walk up to you and say things like: “Please don’t abandon Jehovah!” To which I promptly reply: “I have not abandonned him nor to I plan to. I know everything that you know and I know too that serving God is much more than attending meetings and riding around in a car group telling jokes between doors.” Sure I get funny looks!

    When I do attend a Sunday meeting I make it a point to comment during the WT study. When the ask how I’m doing I get the feeling they are waiting for me to tell them that I’m just wasting away now that I’m away from the congregation but I smile and tell them truthfully that I’m doing great. More funny looks. I go around and shake hands with everyone and hug the sisters. I go up and talk to the visiting speaker (rumors have been flying around that I have been disfellowshipped and most of the out of town speakers are surprised to see me walking around and talking to everyone! They give me funny looks!) and ask about those I know in his congregation.

  • Frenchy

    I'm truly sorry that you and your wife had to go through this terrible thing. It sounds like you walked away before you were ever baptized and if that's the case then you are among the lucky ones.

    There is something wrong with an organization or a person that is more concerned with their image than with people. When the rules become more important than the people for which they were made, then it's time to find a new set of rules.

  • waiting

    Hello Mark,

    Welcome to our forum. People sometimes ask why we talk about the negative things which occur in the WTBTS's congregations. It's because they happened to us or our family....and they happen all the time.

    I'm sorry about your experience - and glad you confronted that elder about your wife's experience. Some men might have let it go, saying she "misunderstood" what the elder was doing. Adults tell kids that too, btw. Not all the time, but we don't want to believe a spiritual leader would act that way, now do we?

    I hope you hang around here - good place. A bit fiesty - so if you find yourself in a thread not of your liking, just click to another one. We all do that....or stay in it and fuss

    Howdy Frenchy,

    When a publisher becomes inactive and does not attend meetings regularly, that person is AVOIDED by most of the congregation
    Rather like the infamous MARKING which very few people understood in the first place. In our minds, we *mark* that person as having something wrong about their spirituality. Far be from us to comment on it! We just won't have anything to do with that person, except a cool hello.

    I think Jehovah's Witnesses are some of the most judgemental persons on this earth.....and WE didn't even realize it, because I was of that group for 30 long years.

    At least I can now proudly say, "well, I never fit in well."



    Thank you for the imaginative *parable*. I've decided to give you an "A" for your next talk. The illustration was appropriate to the subject matter and the listener could easily grasp to what you were referring. Fine work, brother, thank you, and we look forward to your next talk.

    Now........can I walk the walk and talk the talk, eh? LOL! And I'm a woman!


    ps: this post contains an attempt at humor.

  • Thirdson

    Hi Mark from England,

    Welcome to the board. I would like to ask you a few questions and get to know you better by e-maol if that is OK.


    Thanks for the "A". An "A" from you is better than some lowly "G" from an uneducated janitor. (Educated janitors are better)

    Regarding my story, it isn't exactly about me. I am neither DF'd nor officially DA'd. However, I think some of my relatives shun me for the reasons I state above but this is their own choice in the matter.


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