Suicide - How many do you know within the JWs

by Lady Lee 234 Replies latest watchtower scandals

  • Lady Lee
    Lady Lee

    Thw WTS likes to play games with their statistics. One interesting but truly tragic is the number of Jwhovah's Witnesses who commit suicie.

    Now I suspect that if a person commits suicide shortly before or after they are disfellowshipped then the elders would say that person wasn't a Witness or that they had done something so terrible that they were too guilty to admit it and by their action of committing suicide they pretty much declared they were no longer a JW.

    Yup fancy talk to make sure any crap didn't fall on them.

    So my question.

    Do you know of cases like this? If so then can you answer a few more questions.

    Had this person been DFed or in real danger of being DFed or whatever the equivalent is if they were never baptized?

    Would you consider that any shunning of the person might have pushed a person over the edge?

    What status did they have in the cong - baptized or not, elder, MS, woman, minor, active or not, any abuse issues, possible discipline coming up. . .


    I know about one young man in the congregation where my mother was going who committed suicide shortly after being DFed. The Witnesses never blamed the shunning of him as a factor in his suicide. They simply said he was living a sinful life and that is why he did it.

    MY aunt who was 13 and baptized committed suicide due to sexual abuse and how the elders mismangaed it. She was sent to live with an older sister ofhers who was not a JW. Since she was no longer going to meetings then she was no longer a JW.

    My sister (never baptized)( who decided when she was young that she could never be a good Witness so she decided to be as bad as she could. Got no treatment for the sxual abuse she experienced. My mother sent her to foster care. She spent all her adult life living a self-destruictive life - drugs. booze and sex. She worked as a stripper for many years. She eventually committed suicide. The elders said it had nothing to do with how her mother shunned her and everything to do with her lifestyle. But then maybe if she had been protected and loved she wouldn't have chosen that kind of life. She tried many times to change her life and made many suicide attempts until she finally succeeded in 2005.

    And the elders disfellowshipped me after I told them of my suicidal thoughts and plans. I guess they figured if they threw me out then if I did succeed with my plans they could say that it was something else that caused me to do it and had nothing to do with shunning or how they mismanged my sexual abuse or the abuse from my elder husband.

  • jay88

    The remedy to depression/melancholy is to put "God's will" first. Which means to shut the hell up and pound the pavement doing Jehovah's Witnesses ritualistic activities.

  • shamus100

    One, not DF'd. But a partier and 'bad girl'.

  • 00DAD

    The WTBTS's response to the suicide of those they have disfellowshipped:

    What would make you think that someone that is torn up by guilt over what ever it was for which they were disfellowshipped, has been indoctrinated to believe that Jehovah God has rejected them and they are then subsequently shunned by every family member they have and every friend they have ever known, why would anyone ever think that a person in that situation would likely to be depressed or suicidal?

    Seriously, the WTBTS shows a STUNNING lack of compassion and/or awareness in this area, stunning. All the more tragic for a religion that loudly claims to be identified by their "Christian love" for one another. (John 13:35) Two words: Major Fail.

    In a recent thread started by Mr. Flipper, he shared a link to Janice Harper's Huffington Post article on the subject of shunning and it's grievous effects on people. Two points in her essay really stood out to me:

    • "To shun a person consequently isolates them at the very point when they most need support."
    • "I remain troubled by the failure of our species to extend compassion to those who need it the most"

    Actually, I'm surprised more people that leave or are expelled from the JW religion don't either either kill themselves while in the mire of despondency and despair or commit acts of violence on those that have abused them in retribution for the violence they have had inflicted upon them! I'm not qualified to comment on the reasons why this is so; I only know my own heart and my own experience.

    What a messed up excuse for a religion! If Jesus is really up there, I'd imagine he would be pretty upset with them. But then again maybe not as we've not heard a peep out of him ...


  • Simon Morley
    Simon Morley

    Lady Lee that is terrible and heartless. When I served as an elder there were a few who were suicidal my immediate thought was one of helping them - never did I think of encouraging any behaviour of friends and family that would tip them over the edge. Often, I would encourage them to seek professional help and that I would follow up to makew sure they did. Elders cannot deal with mental illness no different than one who had a serious physical illness. That does not mean that there were not a few heartless elders who saw suicide as a "sin". One only has to recall the events King David had post the loss of his son - if ever there was an account of one suicidal in the bible that would be it. How God dealt with that is an indication of how we mere humans should folow suit.

    I recall In the two decades I was part of this cult I recall four suicides (I gave a funeral talk at one) compared to not one amongst my workmates, aquantances and work community for the same period.

    I had chance to visit recently with my family physician who had retired (he was happy I was no longer a JW) and he commented in his years of family practice the highest incidence of depression and alcoholism was with his JW patients. Add to that the ones with imagined diseases and conditions. No wonder many resort to suicide as the only way out, how terribly sad and a shameful indictment on the leadership for perpetuating false reasoning. they have been instrumental in forcing a self inflicted postponment of hope.

    How correct that Benjamin Franklin stated:

    "I conceive that the great part of the miseries of mankind are brought upon them by false estimates they have made of the value of things"

  • shamus100

    I disagree that they are responsible for the deaths of those they disfellowship.

    They are responsible for all deaths of those disfellowshipped and all that kill themselves while still inside the group.

    Want help? Don't get help - pray more. Remember, it's always your fault.

    Living up to impossible expectations is a real bitch. For lack of a better term...

  • Glander

    I think the attitude of the GB is pretty plain in cases that happen right under their nose. The young man serving at Bethel who jumped to his death from his dorm window several years ago. I believe the story behind it was that he was struggling with his sexual orientation.

    Viola! an excuse for the GB to show their self righteous disregard for a human tragedy. He was some one's son.

  • ShirleyW

    It absolutely boggles the mind that if you seek help for depression or suicidal thoughts, the only counsel you will get from the elders is "go out in service more" or "pray more".

    Sounds like some serious criminal charges should be filed, here, but I believe all religions are protected from that because it's assumed that you have the right to choose how you worship, but if you're a born in you really didn't have the chance.

  • Lady Lee
    Lady Lee

    Thanks for your responses

    Simon - I think you were an exception to the rule. I was always told more service , more prayer and study. Just divert your attention to something "spiritual" and you will be fine. I came very close to doing it and if it hadn't been for a non-JW friend I might have tried.

    When my sister died I had an appointment with my DR the next day and she immediately started a risk assessmet on me. Two suicides in the family with a long history of abuse - I'm considered high risk. But I told her that since I left the JWs and the first husband (1985) suicide has never once been considered. That is quite something since I had been thinking of suicide when I was 6 yrs old.

    It is a huge shame on ther WTS and JWs but like the image posted above they will wash there hands of it and point people in another direction.

  • flipper

    LADY LEE- I knew about 3 or 4 in my time as a JW who committed suicide . One of them was a really close friend I knew who was inactive. He died in 2003. His kids knew my kids growing up as teenagers and we took them on hiking and camping trips. It was very sad. The octrasism and cutting off I believe turned him to drugs of some sort - and he lost his life at age 56. I think of him often, he was a good guy

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