I wish I could say it is easier now and it honestly should be but I am so sticking resentful now it is unreal. I truly wish I could get past this resentment as it is eating me up. My husband was an elder for 22 years of our 24 year marriage. I look back at all the wasted time that we could and SHOULD have spent together. There are just so many hurts and hateful comments that were made by him because of his being so stressed about his elder duties.
Like just one example after we left Bethel we were so broke and living on nothing, I worked two jobs sometimes three jobs and my husband started to work full time for the first time in our marriage. He hated giving up pioneering but we had just run out of money and yet I felt like it was all my fault that he had to stop pioneering, because I wanted a home and food the basics of life. It was and is all so crazy I know in the real world but being a JW is not the real world. I had promised myself that I would never ask my husband to stop pioneering as it seemed to be more important to him then life, and I am not joking, he had guns pulled on him in service and yet he still went back to those same homes the next time we worked the territory saying that someone new may have moved in and Jehovah would protect him. Even at that time as a true believer I thought it was crazy thinking but he refused to ever put someone down as a do not call. We had one of the MS's flip out in the hall and threaten to kill my husband and yet my husband refused to do anything. It was not until the MS threatened the next hall over and the whole hall got a restraining order that I finally talked my husband into us getting one also, I must add that we even called Bethel the frist time he threatned us and the first guy at Bethel my husband talked to told us to go to the police and as we were walking out the door to do that the phone rang so my husband answered it and it was some other "brother" calling to say that the first "brother" was wrong and to not bring Jehovah's name into it. So my husband did not want to go to the police as it might bring Jehovah's name into it. How the hall next to us got a restraining order on the MS is beyond me with how Bethel treated us what about Jehovah's name for that whole hall being brought into it. It was hell for me with the MS as he would stalk me for years even after the restraining order, telling me was was going to kill me or that he had killed my husband and I would never see him alive, after awhile I learned to live with it. The first time I was crazy with fear that he had truly killed my husband. I would have to drive by the police station to make him quit following my in my car but he still came into where I worked. The last day we lived in that stupid little where the need was great before we left for Bethel was the last day he stalked me. Shows on TV like Law and Order freak me out when they show a stalker like he was toward me. I remember the first time the MS called me and told me he had killed my husband, my husband was at an elders meeting that night at someones home I did not have a clue where he was so I call another MS up and his wife answered the phone, I was crying and totally flipped out. The wife got upset with me telling me I was nuts to even call them nothing was going to happen. Yet this same wife I heard after we were at Bethel had received a call from the MS and she slept in her closet with a knife that night, I guess without us in the town the MS started to go after others in the hall, not that I felt a bit sorry for any of them.
Before Bethel my husband made just $200.00 a month giving every second of his time to the meetings and the hall. My husband honestly thought we could live fine on $200.00 a month telling me that Jehovah would always pick up the difference. I just could not handle the stress of living so broke so I went and found work. I have always made more then he did for most of our marriage.
My husband told me it was my fault that if I would just back off and test Jehovah he would give us what we needed. My husband likens it to being on the edge of a cliff and having on foot over the edge. He says Jehovah will never be there as long as we keep one foot on solid ground, and that was my problem because I panicked and looked for work thus keeping one foot on the ground. If I would just threw up and hands and let Jehovah take over we would have done fine on just $200.00 a month. I think a part of me wonders if I was wrong, I know I am not but my husband is so sure that I am and that Jehovah would have been there if only I would have let Him.
I know it is crazy thinking but I was always so stressed out about money. Always. We drove over 30,000 miles a year to pioneer granted it was back in the late 80's and early 90's but it still took more then $200.00 a month to do it. I never saw Jehovah give us a dime, he just gave me the sense to work I felt.
I am just so bitter at all I have been through. I am sorry but I did digress on what I was saying so after Bethel I saved and saved and I thought the only way we could ever get back into pioneering was to buy a home as rent just kept going up and up and up, at least buying a home your payments are locked in, plus all of the other couples who were at Bethel with us had owned homes, nice cars, etc. Some of them had really, really nice homes and cars. I was like OK Jehovah I lived on been's and rice we never went out to eat and we lived in a dump of a place to pioneer and yet these others have so much, OK was just because I did't jump off a cliff for you or what gives.
OK so we had the money for a home, we bought a really, really low end home which needed a lot of work just to move into it and then my husband get this committee case at exactly the same time as we closed on the house. I begged and pleaded with him to get another elder to take his place. He absolutely would not do it. Not only that but he was so mad that I even suggested it to him. I was going crazy, it was totally insane. One of the neighbors came over after we or I should say I was working on the house alone just to say hi and introduce himself and asked if I was a single lady moving it. I told him no I was married and he said well where is you husband and why is he not helping you. I said my husband has been here and he said I saw a man once or twice, do you two live together. I mean that is how crazy it was as an elder wife, and I cannot get that time or memoirs back. It should have been a happy fun time buying our first home together but it was HELL yet again in my life. Unfortunately I did find out about the case that my husband was on. One of the sister blabbed part of it to me as it involved her son. This sister was one of the few women I was friends with in the hall and I stopped her saying really did not want to know anymore. It was one of the most craziest stories I have even heard, I was my husband is giving up his time for THIS!!! It was beyond a crazy story. I asked my husband if it was true and he was mad that I knew but admitted it was. I was like you have to be joking me. I am moving into our home alone so you can take care of this?????
Then we were redoing our floors and I wanted him to miss a Sunday meeting as we had rented a machine and he refused. He was the WT conductor and I knew he was right that none of the other elders would conduct for him but it was going to cost us an extra $75.00 to keep the machine until after the meeting we had thought we could get it done the night before but we just couldn't. I took it back by myself and it was so heavy and I was just so hurt. Just one stupid meeting, I never asked him to miss a meeting.
I have got to get over this bitterness. When he was deleted because of my stand against the pedophiles the elders said I was not submissive enough and I spoke out to much. Really??? My husband needed me to know my place. When he finally told me that I lost it. All the years of HELL I have been through with no one giving a care. This does not even begin to talk about his heart attacks and how the other elders treated him having him back up conducting the school the very next week after he had a major heart attack. He did say he said no but the elder he talked to said the school makes him to stressed out to conduct. One of the elders told me that he would see to it that my husband got two months off, my husband said no one ever told him that, then the elder denied saying that to me. I guess I was not submissive enough. I could go on and on. I truly HATE what this religion has done to us as a couple.
I still love my husband but it has been so hard.