i felt the same way, so i hope an account of my choices /path may help.
I left, went back to school and then went to university. Your family must decide themselves if they will love you unconditionally, as for 'friends'.... In real life, true friends dont care if you worship Zeus or Mario. True friends don't drop you for disagreeing with them, especially over things they would be forbidden to discuss, read, or know!
There is a church in england called the Anglican Church, it has...77 million members. Have you heard of it before? Its not a HUGE church at all. But it puts the JW minority into perspective, all 7 million. The reason I say this, is that there is a real life out there, a normal life. The JWs are extreme fundementalists and a significant minority. Did you know that they are the lowest paid, most uneducated (college/university) of all religious denominations! Did you know that 97% of scientists are in consensus that evolution is true and that religion is the dictating factor to disbelief. The significance...?.....,JW's are the last on the list of people that accept evolution. A trip to a museum will see anyone looking at neanderthals, early humans, dinosaurs that are 150 million years old! This is how disconnected they are from real life and why nobody wants the stupid magazines anymore!
The internet is a great source of information, hence the huge fear the JWs have of it. Think about it....,TRUTH does not need defending, it is nothing but suspicious to ban/instruct people from information, there is no benefit to it but control. Why cant YOU look at all the facts and decide what is true or not, what is so special about the 7 men in Brooklyn. We know they get stuff wrong and have YET TO GET ONE THING RIGHT, NOT ONE! Why cant you discuss questions and issues at the meeting? How controlled is it, that they make everyone read a paragraph, ask THEIR questions, not your own, then answer from THEIR ANSWERS and dare to call it bible study! Where is the INTERCHANGE of encouragement? Its just regurgitation of the hierarchy in the religion!
it is time to plug in and live life.....
my advice, research the JW's. use their own literature and court papers to figure it out. Want to know where to look? Use websites like JWfacts and watchtower-quotes to see all the disgusting hidden realities and flip flops. Seek out the book by the Governing Body member who LEFT the society due to a "Crisis of Conscience" (Franz). Finally....'Follow the money'.....It all goes straight into Satan's system, the stock market and property. Look at the canadian tax records and see what they tell governments they do... Did you know that they teach the public to read :/ lol
p.s. check out Russell, Pyramidology, miracle wheat, Rutherford, Beth Sarim manisons and cadillacs....
Once you have decided where you are with the JW's may I humbly suggest you start examining the history of the bible. Who wrote it, when, where? I know you have been dying to ask those questions..... Well finally get on with it ;) PLEASE read the bible from page one to end, you will be disgusted with the events you encounter and teachings within, never discussed. Please look at the original texts to see how 'inherit the earth' and 'be with me in paradise' has been changed, explaining why NO other biblical religion teach anything but heaven!! (Im an atheist now, so i dont have any allegiance to scriptural doctrine).
why not check out where the name Jehovah came from? (YWHW a hebrew phrase meaning 'he causes to become' and adonai, a greek word for LORD, mix them together for no logical reason at all, different languages and centuries apart, different testaments in the bible even-old and new,continents apart and the words become YaHoWaH, now convert the hebrew letters to latin.. again, a language that was centuries later, other side of the globe.....now you get JaHoVaH.... Ta da ! Welcome to the bullshit reality of how the name came about and WHY nobody uses it, it was an embarassing theory that someone had ,mix all the words together to get gods name...... Arghhh!)
Finally, i personally went on to look at world history (Adam would have to be alive whilst the pyramids were being built, and noahs's 8 survivors had 80 years to reach Ancient Egypts population), none of the history adds up at all! Nevermind that Adam was 6000yrs ago and yet we have languages older than that, cities older, the practice of farming is older than that! We have human remains going back 200,000 years. Your cave men etc..... No really!
This is where I began my research and study of evolution. I suggest a text book called BIOLOGY by Campbell and Reece or a hardback book called The Greatest Show on Earth, both explain Evolution properly (no scientist has ever said it is random chance, or that monkeys/ape turned into men! If you dont understand how an eye can evolve, you havent read the theory of evolution and looked at the evidence!!) at about this time you will look back at the JW literature and see how they hunted for quotes in science and took words out of sentences (adding dots where the words were!), took whole quotes out of context or lazily lied 'some scientists claim...' Suddenly you realise WHY they didnt want us going to higher education, this is lesson 101 and guess what....science is all about the evidence, unlike the JWs you are told to question it, explore all the ideas,theories, evidence, critisism. As for evidence... there is tonnes of it, you will see..... (In latest evolution/creation brochures they admit that there is evidence, about time! They just lie and say there isnt much.... Go see for yourself, its an easy lie, just go to a museum to see the easy truth!)
I ended up in university following my early dream of studying medicine. I love my new life, despite the difficult transition betweeen my old pioneer/bethelite life, to a normal one. Lost family and friends. But not all of them. i have a great relationship with my siblings etc md some awesome new friends. i could not live a lie. They were always going to abandon me when i left, the quicker you leave the more REAL life you get to live.
Please let me leave you thinking on one thing..... I really, really, really, believe we only have one life, one chance to do what we want with out lives. For me, i want to be nothing more than a good human being and maybe contribute something, leave something behind for the good.
armageddon, the teachings of those 7 men are not true, don't let your life tick by following blind, power hungry men. If you have doubts, go get on a plane, ask to talk to them, they are your brothers after all, ask them for all the financial records, after all whats to hide? Ask them to explain the history of the religion, the bizzare origins, now never discussed, the bizzare translations in the NWT, the stock they owned in a military company (Rand Cam Navy Engine)... I think you know just how much time they would give you, so how much of your life will you give them?
pm me any time x