Preventing a minor child from being baptized if you are their parent

by RayPublisher 44 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • RayPublisher

    There may be no way legally for me to stop this, but it is a worry since I "woke up" to the truth about the truth a couple years ago.

    Now my young kids (9 and 11) are heading in that direction at the urging of their mother. I am still inside and trying to do a fade (for family/friend reasons) but sometimes I wonder if leaving would be smarter in the long run for them. I am definitely willing to do it for them.

    Any thoughts or strategies are welcome.

  • mummatron

    Seeing as you're still technically in you could pull rank with the headship arrangement and insist that they must be 18+ before committing to baptism. Use Jesus as the example to scriptually back it up.

    Of everyone in my congo who got baptised before the age of 14, and there was quite a few of them, all but 1 have been DF'd/DA'd by their early 20's. I would imagine this is the norm in most places, so you could reason with your wife that maybe she'd prefer her children make up their own minds when they're 'of age' rather than her potentially face years of none/minimal contact with them if they later decided that the bOrg isn't for them once they've grown up.

  • Black Sheep
    Black Sheep

    Get this book out of the library .............. today.

    Read it yourself so that you know what to expect.

    Then, if you think it is suitable, study it with your kids and, if you can, your wife as well.

  • RayPublisher

    @mummatron - Pulling rank and just saying no won't work w my wife she is firmly aware of obeying "God rather than men" (specifically her man lol) I may try the Jesus' age of 30 point, thank you for that.

    Plus they are still a bit young but I'm trying to prepare them now for ways to avoid it bc in the next year or two their little friends in the hall are going to start getting dunked and that's always when they want to do it, or at least become interested in it.

    @Black sheep - am looing at the book on Amazon right now, very cool.

  • Band on the Run
    Band on the Run

    My mom was batpized around twelve and expelled from high school for the flag salute at 14. It made her very bitter and deeply hurt. My gm would not have hesitated to salute if any onus were placed on her. Indeed, The Supreme Court never ruled it was all right for a student to refuse. Their decision, the last on the subject, held that parents could not be penalized.

    My counsins started to get baptized at 12. I was eleven. All I could see was the love in which they basked. The instant approval. To me, it was marriage. Instant adulthood. Own car. Own home. Own hubby. Own children. A nice shortcut to adulthood. I shared my utter jealously with my mom. She said we would be baptized young over her dead body. She said I would not understand but dedicated was very serious. There was no turning back without the most serious consequences. It was more than Catholic baptism. She said the thirties were the beginning of an appropriate time. Further, she was willing to be severely beaten by my father. She would not discuss whether she no longer believed. Obvious now but not to an eleven year old.

    Within two years, I caught brothers misreading simple literature. How could the Holy Spirit allow it? My communal ties at school, neighborhood, and, most importantly, my college bound curricula, led me very far away. I was dragged to the KH against my will. My counsins emerged barefoot and pregnant, high school dropouts. Forced marriages with babies popping out months too soon. I had not a shred of jealousy left.

    Oh, The Beatles appeared on Ed Sullivan. I screeched my teenboppyer head off. I'm seeing McCartney this summer. The music was infecttious but I screached b/c every white girl my age in existence screeched. There was a clear choice between rock music and JWs. I chose exuberant, life-giving, common rock music.

    It felt so sublime. My school was so poor we receive federal aid to see the Stravinsky Festival, opera, ballet, plays. Yes! The KH could not compete.

    Still, for all my unbelief, I was relieved they could not tag me and disfellowship me. I could be at Woodstoock or the Filmore and worry about A. in my mind.

  • Evidently Apostate
  • Evidently Apostate
  • Scully

    What's the rush?

    Caesarâ„¢ doesn't allow children to do whatever they want until they reach a certain level of maturity.

    They can't consume alcohol legally, obtain a driver's licence, enter into a contract, obtain a credit card, join the military, get a job, drop out of school, buy firearms, purchase cigarettes, get married, etc.

    I like comparing baptism to the stance that the WTS presents regarding marriage, from the old Making Your Family Life Happy book (the gold cover). They recommend that a courtship take place over an extended period of time to allow each person to get to know the other, rather than rushing into a marriage hastily and having regrets later on. They say this because marriage is such a serious commitment, and a vow taken before god.

    Why, then, should anyone rush into baptism - particularly if the individual in question is not fully mature (at least not mature enough to get married), if that commitment involves a vow taken before god and is a decision that is considered even more serious than marriage? Jesus was a fully mature adult of 30 years of age. He was certainly old enough to be married, have a livelihood and a trade before his baptism, and before beginning his ministry. He undertook that decision as an adult, having studied under Jewish teachers during his youth. He didn't have his parents coaxing him into it, or wanting to get baptized because all his friends were doing it, the way a lot of young JWs in their teens do. It was HIS decision, as an adult, and nobody else's.

    You might, if discussing it privately with your wife, express concern that should either of your children make a poor decision post-baptism that you'd both be required to shun them. Say that you know you've got great kids, but you don't think you could handle it, and you wouldn't want her to experience that pain either. Make it about preventing her from having her heart broken like that. Wonder out loud with her whether it would be better for the children to be a little more mature, a little wiser, so they can make an informed decision from the heart, rather than one that is based on peer/parental pressure. Say you'd hate for them to make a mistake after they got baptized before they were really ready, and end up DFd... and then turn around and say "mom and dad pressured us into it, and now they won't speak to us". It has to be their decision, without any external influence from any source, including yourselves.

  • pbrow

    I take it from the comments that you are still with the mother.

    I think its go time. You need to make a clean open break with the religion. Ask yourself, do you want your kids contemplating this same scenario when they are older? Do you want them to regret being taught a lie for 20 years and then having an epiphany at 20, 30, 40 or even later?? Hell no!! You cant teach your kids to think critically by reading a book and then live a lie. You need to step up for the kids sake. I am not saying its easy, but what is the alternative?? I look back and ask "how did my mom teach me this bs?" They are only kids once, give them the chance to play a sport, be on the debate team or whatever else they are into and just be a normal kid!!

    Fading is living a lie. That is not judgemental . I know some faders and I know why they are doing it. But one of the reasons I woke up is because of the thought of having to explain to my kids some effed up things that do not make sense to me. They will learn above all else by what you DO, not what you say.

    I feel for you bro, not an easy decision for you.


  • J. Hofer
    J. Hofer

    remember that picture in the youth book with the two children in wedding dresses? it was something along the lines of "do you think these two are ready for marriage"?

    they say baptism is the single biggest decision a person makes in his life. now if baptism is a bigger step than marriage, how would a child be ready for it?

    when i grew up some brothers tried to pressure me into baptism, but i told them that jesus got baptized at what was considered full age back then, as an adult. so i did the same at what is considered full age now in my country, at 18 (should have waited till 30, i wouldn't have done it then...).

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