Bethel Rules

by brotherdan 194 Replies latest jw experiences

  • Mary
    11. Couples can not make "noise" while having sex. In fact when a brother gets married he is to meet with his overseer before the wedding to have a "sex" talk about what is appropriate (missionary only) and what is not (oral, anal, nasal...)

    How the hell are you supposed to have sex without making any noise? That's not "missionary style"---that's "Freddie Franz style".

  • TheListener

    We used to refer to witnesses who were not at bethel as "worldly witnesses"

    Back when there was a charge for the literature we would get to submit a list each year of who we wanted to receive an early yearbook - it was expected/hoped that the individuals on our list would send us some money.

    Does anyone remember the laundry bags?

    How about the stickers with your key and room numbers put on every single article of clothing? Even your underwear.

    Remember being totally excited about the special pre-gilead graduaton meal?

    You had to pay for your telephone calls. That was ok, but if you had a girlfriend who was a long distance phone call you could really rack up the bills.

    Remember making your lunch on Sunday morning so you would have something later (perhaps during service). I remember them leaving out lunch meat, sliced cheese, etc for making sandwiches.

    Dish duty, night watchment (with those stupid key clocks).

    But, most of all, I remember the camaraderie that most of us felt. We were in it together. Most of the young guys took care of each other and helped each other out. We'd cover most things (not gross sin as defined by WT) for each other.

  • sir82
    How the hell are you supposed to have sex without making any noise?

    Maybe they are encouraging bondage games? Gags as well as handcuffs?

    That's how I would interpret it!

  • undercover

    I've enjoyed this thread as it has progressed. I knew quite a few Bethelites and former Bethelites but I never went, though as I grew up my family kept pushing Bethel to me. I even went to a couple of the Bethel meetings at the conventions for anyone interested in serving.

    The one thing that kept me from ever really being all gungho about it was the fact that I don't much care for big cities. Oh, I love visiting them but after a 3 or 4 days, I'm ready to get back to the country (or at least the little "city" I live in).

    I also had listened pretty close to the stories told by Bethelites that visited. I couldn't quite peg it then, but there was a disconnect between their experiences and stories. They kept praising it as the best place to be but then they'd bitch about the rules and strictness. I heard some funny stories about how they used to try to circumvent the rules or get away with stuff.

    From hearing their stories I compared it to those movies where an unruly kid was sent to a military school to shape him up. Of course amongst the occasional hi-jinks and hilarity, despair and disaster await. I started to dislike the idea even more.

    But what really sealed the deal was actually visiting and touring Bethel. After seeing firsthand the regimented schedule, the strict dress codes, the meeting schedules, the ass-kissing of anyone higher than you, I knew that I'd never survive the place. Of course, as a believing JW, part of me thought it was weakness on my part...I felt I wasn't good enough. If had I more faith maybe I'd fit in. Looking back I know now that it was an inner survival mode that was warning me to stay away. I'm glad that I listened to that inner warning now.

  • LongHairGal


    I am sorry for your sacrifice and hope you are happy now.

    Your experience in bethel complaining to the man who 'mumbled' when you went to complain about abuse you were receiving is typical when you are dealing with somebody in a supervisory position who is not willing, able or even sympathetic to your complaint or plight - and who doesnt WANT to be quoted by you later on. This way, he can say "I never told her that...."

    In 'worldly' offices I have seen and experienced this. It is almost always a male supervisor who doesn't care if you are alive or dead or what your complaint is. While I have dealt with female supervisors who are not very sympathetic, at least you can have a half-way decent conversation. You might not get any results but at least you had what passed for a conversation.

    Reading all these posts about the rules, regulations, crazy unfair attitudes, sick personalities and politics in bethel, the headquarters of this religion, I am angered at the false whitewashed front that this place is given in the congregations.

    They really deserve to be exposed.

  • Libelle

    Wow, The Mr usually tells me he wants me to go with him to Bethel because it will be the convincer in my turning JW... uh-huh. He's appealling to my "communal farm fantasy" (that oddly enough alot of UU's and Pagans that I know have). He thinks it's a picture of perfect harmony.

    Ah well, can't go, I don't wear dresses... shame.

    I cannot believe the BS that goes on in that place. Sorry for all of you who had to suffer through it.

  • Mary

    Am I the only one thinking that someone needs to collaborate this entire thread, have it made up into a uh, 'brochure', re-name it:

    Everything You Wanted To Know About Bethel But Were Afraid to Ask!

    We could then pass them out at the next summer ASS-embly to unsuspecting young lads and watch them crap in their spiritual drawers as they flip through it.

  • sir82
    Back when there was a charge for the literature we would get to submit a list each year of who we wanted to receive an early yearbook - it was expected/hoped that the individuals on our list would send us some money.

    I got one of those one year.

    I (naively) thought "Hey what a nice guy - he's thinking of me!"

    However, I did not send any money.

    Next year I did not get an early yearbook. I wondered "why not?"

    Now I know.

  • brotherdan

    I forgot about the early yearbook thing!!! I would send TONS of them out and drain my pathetically small back account. NO ONE would send money. Now that I think about it, my parents never even sent me money. They bought into the whole fantasy that bethellites were taken care of and Jehovah would provide.

    I would've had a much easier time if I'd have had money. But I had nothing. There were times were I couldn't pay to go to the meeting and I'd get the stink eye from the driver of my car group.

  • rocketman

    Great thread. While I can see the need for some rules in any place in which a large number of people must function together, most of these rules appear needless and unreasonable - just like the rules of the Pharisees.

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