I was disfellowshipped in 2005. After two years of silence, I called my best friend and we talked for a short while. He told me how much he missed me and how badly he wanted me to get reinstated so that we could associate openly and freely once more. We had been through many hard times as well as good times, and I loved him as much as I loved my fleshly brothers. I dreamed of the day we would meet face-to-face again.
Then, last June, I decided that I would not seek reinstatement. Three years had passed since my last conversation with my friend and I had lost all contact. I found a way to contact him through a third party, a Witness who had "faded away." She talked to my friend who gave every indication of wanting to talk to me again. So she passed on my phone number and my message asking him to call me. I haven't heard a word from him since.
The loss of his friendship has been very painful and I mourned as though he had died. After six months of grieving I decided that all I could do was move on. But I was angry that a friendship of more than twenty-five years could be ruined by the hateful theology of a distant religious clique in Brooklyn. I was fortunate in that I had many friends who were not Jehovah's Witnesses and they have certainly stood by me during all this time. But I have also come to realize that one of the greatest evils the WTS has done is the destruction of human relationships. I don't waste time hating the WTS, but I do take some comfort in the knowledge that it will reap what it has sown.