Do you Remember the Moment you Stopped Being a JW?

by Smoldering Wick 56 Replies latest jw friends

  • LDH

    Wow! what a great thread with so many great experiences.

    I wish I could add a "Lightning Bolt" experience to yours, but I can't.

    The closest thing that I could say that happened was when I attended an assembly in Bakersfield CA about five years ago. I went and got a motel with my daughter and made my entrance. There, on the first day of the assembly, my ass started burning. For the first time I listened with fresh ears, and it made no sense at all! I was fidgeting in my seat so much I was getting "the stare" from those around me. I left at lunch and never went back.

    I realized it was bullshit, and didn't add up. The things I heard were so offensive to non-JW (keep in mind I wanted my worldly boyfriend {at that time} to attend but he refused, so I was listening to see if it was as bad as he made it sound).

    HELL YES. It was worse.

    I don't feel one twinge of guilt.


  • Adam

    There were realy two things that came at the same time and contributed to the moment I broke free. They were the study of the Revelation book and the coming of my Dad's divorce. While on summer break of 6th grade visiting my dad, he studied for about a week with the JWs, he was searching as was I. He decided that it wasn't for him and quit. But the JWs struck a chord with my step-mom and I. We both went in full bore. I moved in with them so I could continue. As the years went on, my step-mom bacame more and more of a controlling bitch. But she was my "spiritual head," immagine my wonderful life. My dad let it be know during my senior year that he was going to get a divorce after my graduation. I could not stand the thought of living with my step-mom and wondered how I was going to make it on my own with all the temptations. I wanted to see what it was like to smoke pot. I wanted to have premarital sex. Many other "bad" things. Then I realized that if I wanted to do these things, I must not think that they were bad. After all, I always had hated killers, cheaters, and liers, I thought they were bad. But I saw nothing bad about masturbating. If, after 5 or 6 years of trying to convince myself that these things were wrong, I didn't think that way then I never was going to.

    At the same time I was worrying about life without my step-mom to keep me in line we were studying the Revelation book. My anylitical mink kept yelling inside me, "How can they KNOW that this vision means what they say it means? How can they KNOW that their interpretations are correct? WAKE UP MAN! These are words from men with no conclusive proof of their validity. How do you not see that?" I realized that faith was the acceptance of something that could not be proven, and that I had no faith.

    These two issues kept yelling at me in the back of my head, no matter how I tried to shut them up. I felt guilty for my doubt, but couldn't escape that fact that thru all my study there was no resolution I found accetable that the JW literature could provide for either of the issues I had. I had visited my mom one week. The next week I was sick. So I had skipped several meetings. I had no excuse one night and started getting ready. I realy didn't want to go. Finally my step-mom asked me "are you ready for the meeting yet or what?" Butterflies were working overtime in my tummy. Finally I said fuck it. "Barbara, I'm not going." "What?" she said angrily. "I'm not going to the meeting, I'm not going to any more meetings at all." She stood there with no words. Finally she said "fine" and took herself and her son to the meeting. That was the moment I was no longer a JW.

    After about 5 minutes, my chest relaxed. I was free. I breathed in and it felt like I hadn't taken a breath in 6 years. I stood up and I felt taller than the Empire State Building. I was master of my own destiny. I was not a Jehovah's Witness. I was not bound by the doctrines of any organization or the controlling dictates of a power hungry bitch. I was only Adam, no more and no less. Adam was a rock, an island, untouchable, impenitrable. I had been being groomed for Bethel and I got a sinister pleasure out of the schock from the congrigation at the announcement, communicated to me thru some JWs who would still talk to me under cover. Elders and pioneers called on me, invited me out to lunch. I would accept their invitations and explain with a smile that, no, I didn't want any spiritual help, the reasons I left are personal, thank you for your concern. The best part was seeing Barbara every day for the months prior to my graduation. Sometimes I was stoned, sometimes I had beer on my breath, and I made sure she knew it. I can't exress to you the satisfaction it gave me to tell Babrara one day, after telling me that I couldn't go out 'till I had done some menial chore, "Barbara, I'm going to do whatever I damn well please. I am 18 years old, you are not my spiritual head any more, and your status as my step-mother exists only on paper and everyone knows it. The only authority you have over me is what I choose to GIVE you! Think about that!" The look on her face was worth all the money in the world.

  • wonderwoman77

    Yes I remember the moment....

    It was after my dad got disfellowshipped, and the way I was treated in a group of people, I thought to myself, how can this be God's people, and I thought, it all adds up now, all the little things, I know, this is not God's chosen people, I am done with this. I quietly went along and went a way to college, never to return...

  • rodnico

    Awesome Thread!

    Sunday afternoon during the watchtower study in 1997, it hit me I don't want to live like this anymore. Why do I subject myself to this lifestyle? Is this how I want to spend the rest of my life? Or am I living this way out of some duty I felt to my overbearing mother? Do I really believe in God or just afraid of my mother? From this point on I am going to live my life the way that I want to, and make my own decisions not based on familial pressure or pressure from the congregation. I looked the study conductor in the eye, threw my watchtower on the floor and walked out.

    I started to walk down the street to find a conveince store to buy a pack of cigarettes so I could throw the smoked buds at the elders and say I smoked a cigarette now disfellowship me. Decision made. My mother followed me out of the kingdom hall and begged me not to do that. I did go to a few more meetings, but that was it.

    It was not a moment of this teaching is false or I have been lied to, it was a moment of clarity when I decided I will now think for myself and make my own decisions.


  • funkyderek

    December 17, 1995, sometime between 11.30 a.m. and 12.30 p.m.
    That was when the Watchtower of November 1, 1995 was being studied. I hadn't pre-studied because I was already having doubts (and I can't think of any more boring way to spend a Saturday), but when, in one paragraph, a major doctrine* changed and nobody around me even noticed, I knew it was not - could not be - the truth. Six months later, I stopped going to meetings and have never looked back.

    *The "generation" doctrine. The reason I was still only having doubts up to that point was that I had realised if my religion was just a man-made cult, they would have to change the generation doctrine. I just didn't think everyone else would accept it so easily.

    Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes. - Jack Handey, Deep Thoughts

  • Smoldering Wick
    Smoldering Wick

    Thank you all for your responses, and kind words. I got a chill reading of your power to break free from those emotional chains.

    Besides the guilt, I realize that fear held me captive as well. I have always feared what others would think of me if I did something wrong, I feared how JWs would judge me.

    This was just sent by email about a minute ago:

    "Your fears can be overcome if you deal with them properly.
    Fear is an emotion. Emotions come wholly from within, and
    have only the strength we allow them. As human beings, we
    enjoy the possession of an intellect, and it is the
    intellect, not the emotions that must be the supreme guiding
    force of our lives if we are to know any measure of happiness
    here. Emotions are the color of life; we would be drab
    creatures indeed without them. But we must control those
    emotions or they will control us. This is particularly true
    of the emotion of fear, which if allowed free rein would
    reduce all of us to trembling shadows of men, for whom only
    death could bring release."

    -John M. Wilson

    Once I was able to work through all the emotions (and there are A LOT of them), intellect took over. You're right Scully, it was Prozac. Prozac artificially suppressed my emotions long enough for me to think.

    I still am an emotional person by far...but, now I realize I am in control not them.

    "God is a comedian playing to an audience too afraid to laugh." ~Voltaire

  • Angharad

    During a blazing row with Simon.

    He had already decided it was all wrong and had been trying to convince me for weeks (hence the rows). Unknown to him I had been reading some of the things he had been printing off the internet and also looking at some of the 'Apostate' sites he had been visiting (snooping through the address history). Of course I could not bring myself to admit this, as I was so scared about what I'd been reading and was starting to think. I was also scared about what everyone would think of us, and how it would affect my family.

    At one point in the row I said something like I still believe its the truth, to which Simon said 'Go on then tell me exactly what you believe' At which point I realized that I couldnt answer him, other than a vague thing of God is god, Jesus, Kingdom etc.

  • MegaDude

    Do I remember the moment I stopped being a JW? Like it was yesterday.
    My then JW wife was out in service, so I had time to watch the anti-JW video I had gotten from a Baptist bookstore without her knowing. I was sitting on the couch watching the video "Witnesses of Jehovah" and thinking "Holy s****, if this is true, I'm never going back." That night I told the wife "I'm not going back to the meetings." A ferocious argument ensued, and it became very bitter between us. I took my time before completely severing my ties with the JWs, but I was no longer a believer after that day.

    "...don't you sometimes wish your heart was a heart of stone."

  • Valis

    I have several moments of clarity...

    The first at a very young age when i discovered change from Watchtower sales was a great source of candy money.

    The first time I met someone I knew from school out in service.

    The first time I considered lying to get out of going to meeting.

    And finally it was 3 weeks before my 17th birthday. I had a killer job, knew dam well I didn't want to go to meetings, nor did I want to stay in my parents house, pay thier bills, and live by thier rules. I got off work and one of my buddies came over to help me pack my things. My plan was to stay in a scumbag hotel until I had enough for 1st rent, etc...My parents came into my room and asked me what I was doing. I told them I was leaving and didn't want to be a JW anymore. They laughed, I said "FUCK OFF" to both of them. My dad punches my face hard enough to knock me down and I see stars. The paradise on earth was definitely over. I never looked back.


    District Overbeer

  • new boy
    new boy

    For me it was what was written in the "1000 Year reign" book 1970

    I think its on page 128.

    What a paradox It said "mankind suriving armageddon is NOT giving him a SECOND CHANCE--------Its giving him the first chance he never had!"-----------SOOOOOOOOO If it's OUR FIRST CHANCE How could any one be judged now in this system? Plus why is God giving us {JWS} a first chance and not everone else since he is such a loving God?

    When I went back to N.Y. bethel in 1997, I was allowed in the Writing Dept. There I saw Ceiro Alacineo an old friend of mine, he is in charge of reserch in the writing dept. I asked him directly has the society ever change their mind about that Quote? He said "NO!"------------------Good enough for me, they really don't know what they believe.

    P.S. If in fact it is a free gift to everyone this "first chance" how can you earn it, which is what they believe, YOU EARN your way into the new system my works. Ask any JW this Questuion "Is it by works or is it a free gift, that we make into the new system? THEY WILL NOT KNOW WHAT TO SAY.

Share this