....and a new wrinkle

by outsmartthesystem 41 Replies latest jw friends

  • blondie

    I grew up in a family where my father was not a jw and my mother was. She did not coach us but we heard what was said at the meetings. I can remember when young coming home and begging my father to come to the meetings or he would die. Kids are "coached" by what is said from the platform and what comments are made during and after the meeting.

  • Fernando

    Great advice by posters above.

    Maybe those coaching your daughter would like to explain from their hearts: "Is legalism apostasy?"

  • DaCheech

    I purposely put my kid in a diverse school.

    my kids see tons of muslims and hindus there too.......... I hammer in their head that there are tons of diffrent ways that people worship god, and his name is diffrent per religion.

    I have done a good job of de-doctrinating them. They probably are on their way to freedom (hopefully).

    good luck, and fight (don't lay back)

  • Nathan Natas
    Nathan Natas

    You can defuse her argument easily by agreeing with her. She's only five years old, so her reasoning skills are not very sophisticated.

    Tell her, "God knows everything, right? ...and God is all-powerful, right? so nobody can resist God, can they? So everybody is doing what God wants them to do. If god want you to go to the Kingdom Hall, you should go. but if God wants you to go to the zoo where you can admire his creation, then you should do that too. god likes it when we admire the things he's done for us. Why don't we go to the zoo on sunday and admire God's creation?"

    Let her grandparents and her Mom tell her that Jehovah is not all powerful and that jehovah CAN be resisted. then you can ask why her Mom thinks Jehovah is so weak.

    Confusion can be the first step toward truth. Confusion is cognitive dissonance: the conflict between two opposite ideas.

    Later you can talk to her about being happy. Is Jehovah a happy God? Does he want us to be happy? How can you tell when people are happy? What if someone says they are happy but they really are not happy - can you tell they aren't really happy? Do the people in the Kingdom Hall look happy, or do they look sad? Is Mommy happy or is Mommy angry? If Mommy did what Jehovah wanted, wouldn't she be happy?

    Truth is simple.

    Keep your arguments simple. Let her Mom and her grandparents beat their brains out trying to explain how complicated "the truth" is.

  • elderelite

    Agree with all of the above. Cant argue doctrine with a 5 year old, although adult dubbs are just as bad. Love her. Thats all there is to it. Whenever my kids, especially the oldest who is a teenager, freak out and worry i always reassure them in the same way:

    I love and will support whatever you do in life, as long as its legal and productive. If you want to be a dubbie, a pioneer an elder whatever, i will support you. We will talk about it like any other choice in life you want to make, but i will never forbid or try to stop you , and end with a smile and a hug.

    It never fails to defuse the cult reflex they feel. They smile and confess they dont really want to *fill in the blank* .

    In a family like ours where kids have one die hard and one fader/nonbeliever the last thing they need is a tug of war over things they dont understand. I love my kids first and foremost and im damn sure not going to give in to the cults all or nothing mindset, as in they have to be all in or all out. As she grows feed her more info, but really, at 5, the very best medicine is to be "normal" and happy. Every kid is drawn to that :)

  • daniel-p

    This kind of thing infuriates me. I have a 2-year old now and I see the very begining of the division I know my family (mother, mostly) will try to bring. She doesn't live near us, but she came to visit for two weeks and in that brief time taught my daughter how to pray before meals, how to look at nature and say "Jehovah made that!" and also started teraching her that behvaing her parents is the same as making Jehovah happy.

    My wife isn't nearly as hardcore, and doesn't do that kind of stuff, but she still takes her to the meetings with her and teaches her a few things here and there. As my daughter grows up, I feel myself getting more and more possessive/attentive in how she is raised (natural, right?). And while previously I said "wife, you can take care of her spiritual education and she'll make her own decisions when she grows up," now I am not sure about leaving it up to the JW side of the family (everybody except me).

  • DaCheech


  • Billy the Ex-Bethelite
    Billy the Ex-Bethelite

    Kids are big on questions, so fire back with questions...

    "She then asks why I don't serve Jehovah anymore."

    Reply with something like, "What? Why would you say that I don't serve Jehovah anymore?" Maybe use her line back at her, ' "I will serve Jehovah forever. And YOU can't stop me!"

    With a kid, the answers will probably be all over the map, but it may give you an idea of where this is coming from.

    Another approach might be to say, "I worship Jehovah, he doesn't need me to serve him. You know how Mommy serves us dinner, right? It's because we need her to do things like that because you're too young to cook and I'm not very good at it. But Jehovah doesn't need someone to serve him his dinner. When you say that God needs us to serve him, you make it sound like Jehovah can't take care of himself. But he can. Instead, we worship him. We love and obey him as our only God." Dunno if something like that would make her stop, listen, and think?

  • yknot

    She is being a normal indoctrinated 5 year old.

    I was just as passionate when I was her age (with no additional encouragement from parents just me being me from what I pick up at the Hall)

    She is a bit angry and probably frustrated/fearful for the division she sees happening in yalls household.

    She is being a 'good dubbie sister' and making her stand for Jehovah as she has been taught.

    Which leads me to point out something I and others used to remind husbands like you... The WTS has long instilled various techniques into us Sisters that create automatic trained loyalty responses when confronted with alternative anti-WTS male direction. Your wife and daughter are applying these principles in the wake of your attempt to question WTS protocol/beliefs.

    I am a fully 'awake/conscious' Sister and these loyalty responses still pop into my head when certain buttons are pushed by my husband.

    What you should come away from this experience is the fact that your household is in trouble and in full WTS reaction due to your present path of attempting TATT.

    My advice is stand-down and allow the waters to calm.......

    Anything else and you are playing right into the WTS hands.

    Regroup and work on more subtle infiltration...... you are of no real influence to your daughter nor your wife if they don't trust you.

    You will not regain their trust until they both feel 'safe' and 'safe' isnt going to happen unless you consistently act like a good dubbie dad/hubby/brother for at minimum of several months......if you aren't willing to do that than expect the 'us vs him' division to grow and deepen.

  • jamiebowers

    Again, Ynot, with all due respect, his kids are getting older and more indoctrinated by the minute. Asking a five-year old questions about her declarations is the best way to begin teaching her critical thinking skills.

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