Jehovah's Witnesses and Divorce

by Eustace 28 Replies latest jw friends

  • Eustace

    I really hate divorce. It was my parents getting divorced that helped messed up my childhood.

    Part of why I came to conclude the Jehovah's Witnesses don't have the "spiritual paradise" they claim to is how many of their marriages end up in divorce.My parents I could dismiss as an exception to a general rule, but I could never understand how often it seemed to keep happening to lots of different people when the Watchtower Society teaches that divorce is wrong except in case of adultery.

    But what really brought things home for me was this study by the PewForum on Religion Survey showing that even though Jehovah's Witness are less likely to be married than the general population, they're MORE likely to be divorced or separated.

    They really have a nerve telling people in the Jehovah's Witnesses religion that they shouldn't have sex outside of marriage when they've done so little to protect JWs who get married, and their children, from the extreme stress and conflict of divorce.

    It's really messed up.

    Heck, even the Catholics they're are always dumping on have a lower divorce/separation rate than the JWs.

    JW Divorced/Separated = 14%

    General American Population = 12%

    Catholics Divorced/Separated = 10%

    Mormons, Orthodox, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Evangelicals, Buddhists, Mainline Protestants, and the Unaffliated all have lower Divorce/Separation rates than the Jehovah's Witnesses.

    Of those surveyed only the Other Christians, Other Faiths (probably Wiccans and such), and Historically Black Churches have Divorce/Separation rates worse than the Jehovah's Witnesses.

    I feel sorry for Jehovah's Witnesses, you can either be celibate your entire life or you can put yourself at an even higher risk of divorce than the divorce happy general American population.

  • BlindersOff1

    Many marriages are broken up when one mate learns the "truth about the truth" TTATT .

    The JW loyalist then uses the excuse their spirituallity is at risk to either separate or divorce.

    The elders will in many cases support this.

    This has happened to many on this board .

    Other religions have people that counsel marriages in danger . No such thing in the witnesses , elders are worse than

    worthless .

    Witnesses are the worst hypocrites when it comes to divorce.

  • jgnat

    I think it is the rush to stay ahead of passion that does in JW marriages. The couple hardly have time to come to know each other. Compound this with marry "only in the Lord" which is interpreted as "another Witness" and you've drastically reduced the pool from which to choose a compatible mate.

    Canadian divorce rates have been falling for years and the statisticians speculate that this is because couples are staying together longer before committing, marrying when they are mature and sure.

  • DesirousOfChange

    Nearly every couple we were friends with in our original congregation from 30 years ago, are all divorced. A quick count is at least 10 out of 12 couples. Most JW born-ins.


  • MsD

    A friend I made within the org just told me that her and husband separated due to her "making some bad choices". I truly found it hard to believe since they seemed like "the perfect couple". She never talked about any issues they had. Married close to a decade, didn't have kids. I know he wanted kids but she was always saying how she wasn't ready to be a mom. Really at 30 yrs old, ok?! And it's not like her husband is her age... He is a decade older than her!

    It seems to me they didn't discuss important things like children and goals for the future. I remember when I got pregnant with my first she would always say oh the paradise may be here in a few yrs so we'll have kids at that time. This was back in 2004! To me, it seemed they woud stay married forever so it's sad to see they are getting divorced but it goes to show the statistics are right.

  • Socrateswannabe

    I just looked through a list of publishers (including elders, etc.) for our congregation and, exluding minors, here's how it shakes out for us:

    Observably stable marriage: 31%

    Separated/Divorced (at least once but not necessarily at present time): 21.7%

    Not separated or divorced but with HUGE problems in the marriage: 33.3%

    Single: 14%

    Knowing some of the couples in the "huge problems" category, separation or divorce would lead to a much higher quality of life for all involved.

  • scotoma

    Jgnat hit the nail squarely. It's not rocket science.

    I performed 3 marriages. All three are divorced. I once made a tally in the margins of my Watchtower (study on Marriage) of all the weddings I could think of attending. As a witness you go to a lot of them. Half were divorced.

    Once when Karl Klein was visiting my parents we were discussing the problems with the failed 1975 date. I mentioned how so many of my peers got married because they were afraid that if they died during the great tribulation they would never experience sexual intercourse. The result was a sunami of broken marriages. Klein said he would have to add that to the list of causalties of 1975.

    The big mistake is that the Watchtower teaches you that prayer, study, and communication will solve all your problems. They pay little attention to temperaments that just don't get along. They should at least allow couples to divorce without consequences if they are mutually agreeable to that solution.

    A lot of times the problems begin right after engagement. The mask comes off and people start showing their real personality instead of their courtship facade. So what clever rule does the society come up with? They declare you imature if you break an engagement and even take away congregational positions. Losing your responsibilities is viewed as a loss of Jehovah's confidence so you go against your intuition and marry setting the stage for a miserable life.

  • daringhart13

    You need look no further that JW's are a cult than their marriages.

    Don't forget, the elders are given authority to insert themselves in your marriage. I will never forget one of my polarizing moments. I believe it was 2008, at Kingdom Ministry School with the elders........sitting in the audience with elders that had gotten involved in my marriage, (including meeting with my wife alone in his bedroom), ......they then began to explain their new 'porn doctrine'.......if a servant was caught watching it....the elders were to meet with him AND his wife in the B school and see how the wife felt about him watching porn. They would then decide whether to delete him or not.

    I couldn't believe my ears.

    I closed my Flock Book and decided it was over.

    When I look back, its a minor miracle that I didn't drag a few of my fellow elders outside the KH and beat the living s**t out of them.

  • cobaltcupcake

    Other religions have people that counsel marriages in danger . No such thing in the witnesses , elders are worse than

    worthless .

    That's fer darn sure! My ex-FIL counseled a couple who had conflicting sex drives (he wanted it all the time and she didn't) by telling the husband, "That's what she's there for - use her!"

  • jwfacts

    I wrote an article about Jehovah's witnesses and divorce that looks at the statistics from some other sources as well, and they all tend to show that JWs have a similar divorce rate the to general population.

    What was shocking to me was that the Watchtower dishonestly quotes statistics to make it appear they have a substantially lower divorce rate than "worldly people."

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