Howdy and welcome.
I'm in, and having a hard time biting my tongue sometimes
"My question is, is there ANY way to SAFELY talk about doubts?"
The most effective way I found to address such subjects, is by initially removing myself as the person asking the question. You phrase the question in such a way that it would realistically be asked by a householder.
For example, with this sister's question, you wait a few days and then ask if she looked anything up. Don't make an issue of it, and just state, "well, it's something a householder would probably never ask about. I'm more concerned about how I would respond to a householder asking about Deut 22: 28,29 where a raped virgin is forced by the Mosaic Law to marry her rapist, sold to him like 'damaged goods". That's an account that householders are more likely to take issue with in the Hebrew Scriptures." Then if you feel playful, add, "there's only one way to effectively deal with someone asking about that law." When she asks how you'd respond, say, "I'd tell them that I'd have to go and do some research on their question, then I'd leave and never return to that door again."
Similarly with the conversation about evolution, don't make any bold personal statements. Instead, you can say, "How would you respond when the householder asks how millions of species fit into the ark? Animals like kangaroos and koalas, how did they get from Turkey to Australia?" I was able to ask many such questions in the third person, because I had been asked them in service or was able to phrase the questions as a valid question by a householder. Dubs can't summarily dismiss them as apostate, which is what they would likely do to you if you asked the question as coming from you.
And WELCOME! Proceed with caution and take your time to carefully plan for your future. I'm glad to hear that you've learned TTATT at 20, rather than some of us that drank the Kool Aid until we were 40+
Welcome Noonehome !
The best advices I could give you (I'm living exactly the same situation. All my relatives are JW) :
. Avoid question about what is written in the Watchtower's publications.
But, make print and copy of all it can be used in these publications to discredit the Org. Display it on a wall in your desk for exemple.
indeed, who would criticize you to display hence the 'holy' spiritual food supplied by the GB ?
Ex : the cover of the W 84 15/05
Or Kingdom News No. 37, “The End of False Religion Is Near!” Distributed Around the earth in November 2006...
No assertion. just ask and conclude your question by using the key sentence : "But I'm confident that God will answer me very soon"
Ex : "Recently I was reading yearbook 2009 ( http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/302009002#p175 : a Brother, his wife, amd his 5 years old daughter killed while they was going to conduct a Bible study ) and I wondered deep inside me How Jah permitted his angels directing the Witness toward specific people, but without protect them individually when they are in the field ? .... But I'm confident that God will answer me very soon" .
If it can help you ...
Ask questions.... And run.... Encourage people to read the bible directly...... And run... Tell them about some weird stuff you read in the bible and run.....
Te best you can do is to reactivate their minds but they have to think is them who are coming to conclussions..
No advice on biting your tongue- however, KEEP STUDYING EVOLUTION! Human origins are especially fascinating.
Stephen Jay Gould is a great author- the mismeasure of man is an excellent book of his that details the missteps of human evolutionary theories.
The great thing about science- when they mess up- they dont cover it up, they dont keep it in- but they keep the facts and move ahead. Scientifc knowledge advances and progresses based on empiricism. Hooray!
I told my doubts to 2 people, a close friend who had faded and we have great discussions, the other was an elder friend I had, a few months after I left i met another elder who said 'i hear you have apostate leanings'
Be careful who you talk to. 'Fortunately' I left with depression so the elders are wary when talking to me.
Sounds very much like me. The more you wake up, the more that the stuff you hear from platform sounds crazier and crazier (because it is). Many JWs probably have the same doubts but the cult mentality stops it going any further and acting on it. They might secretly agree, and yet still rat you out to the elders - they don't think twice about the hypocrisy of it. It's all smiles at the KH, but the first chance they get they will throw you under the bus and pat themselves on the back for doing it too. They've done it to people in the org much higher up - even the latest new-light™ takes a big dump on their founder Charlie Russell, so they won't think twice about a doubting publisher.
I agree that talking about it in the third person is a good strategy like billy says. But don't kid yourself that you are going to wake people up - many people are just too far in. Getting yourself out in one piece will be enough work.
To answer your question sure I talked to my fellow witnesses ........I had a few close relationships and they listened for a while until they realized I could pull them down with me............ then they started avoiding me.
I also realized not everyone was as unhappy being a witness as I was. Some lived for it.
There are other things of greater importance. Stop carrying the blood card for instance you might get seriously injured and some doctor will respect your religious rights and let you croak.
If you want to fade we have experts here and the one thing they will tell you is plan how you'll fade and plan how you are going to live when your witness pals realize your on the way to getting DA .
Build a social circle of non witnesses better yet former witnesses.
Get some level of higher education or learn a trade even Jesus had a trade for most of his life. A two year degree will help give you a start towards a meaningful career so you can support yourself.
Put your energy in getting an education. Meanwhile vent here.
67% of JW born-ins are leaving and a lot of them are on this and other sites.........that's who you should be talking to.
I can't contain myself sometimes. The other day my non-JW grandma and my sister were talking, when my sister asked her what happened to a girl she knew that was studying with the JWs. My grandma said she quit when she was told or heard that only JWs would survive Armageddon and that her family would not make it. She couldn't contemplate 'everlasting life' without her family. My sister right away 'apologised' and told her that that's not true, and that she probably misunderstood or that the brother lied. I had a WTF!? expression on my face and snapped. I asked my sister why she was lying and didn't know what she believed in (she doesn't, like most JWs). I then looked up the most recent Watchtower that said that only JWs will survive and showed it to her in private later on. Her face turned red when she read it and realised she was wrong, and she then asked me why I was 'against Jehovah'. She accused me of being an apostate. I was dumbfounded. All I did was show her a recent Watchtower (not 'old light')!
"But Jehovah's servants already belong to the only organization that will survive the end of this wicked system of things." Watchtower 2007 Dec 15 p.14
I believe Moshe is right. The only way you can safely discuss doubts is if you're ready to be financially independent. Are you currently going to school or working? I'm also your age if you need someone to talk to.
If you don't tread lightly you might get this response