M.E illness amongst jehovahs witnesses?

by haujobbz 51 Replies latest jw friends

  • haujobbz

    I have always wondered why so many jws i knew suffered from the illness "m.e" previous to being a jw i never heard of this illness but when joining the borg i noticed noticed so many jws saying all of a sudden they had m.e maybe its a jw disease trend.

    Anyhow what does m.e stand for.


  • meat pie
    meat pie

    Funny you should mention that, there were at least 4 with ME in my old cong, out of about 50.

    Some were self-diagnosed.

    While it may be a genuine illness for some people, it could be that it was used as a get-out for the min, meetings etc.

    I asked one alleged sufferer if he had been diagnosed and he said there was no diagnosis, my own sister said she had it (non-JW) and that it had been diagnosed by her Dr.

    Who knows?

  • expatbrit


    ME stands for Myalgic Encephalopathy, better known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrom (CFS).

    From: http://www.nmec.org.uk/

    ME, or Chronic Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome, is primarily a brain disorder which typically occurs in a vulnerable individual, often at a time of stress, as a consequence of a viral or recurrent viral infection. Clinically it is a fluctuating disorder of energy control (fatigue). Symptoms commonly include prolonged recovery from any activity, muscle pain, sleep disturbances, disturbances of memory and concentration, irritable bowel, abnormal temperature control, emotional liability and mood fluctuations. The consensus view is that the average duration of the illness is four years and up to twenty percent of sufferers fail to return to previous levels of functioning. The severity of this disorder varies, though some patients are disabled for years.

    It is estimated that there are around 150,000 people in the UK today suffering from ME and related chronic fatigue syndromes. The loss of working hours and the inter-related burden upon social services amounts to many millions of pounds annually, less alone personal stress that cannot be measured.

    I too wondered at the apparent high prevalence of this disorder amongst JW's. I think there are genuine sufferers, but also outright frauds in order to get out of service and meetings (can you blame them?). It also seemed to be the fashionable disorder to have a few years ago, so any tiredness automatically became ME to some people.


  • RedhorseWoman

    It's probably a lot safer for a JW to say that they have ME rather than to admit that the psychological burden of living up to the "standards" was causing them to be exhausted.

    An actual physical condition allows them to avoid examining the real reasons for their exhaustion.

  • haujobbz

    I agree with both of you it was genuine in some cases but otherwise outright fraud for most others just to possibly avoid duties in the temple

    You made me laugh when you said that if they were tired they automatically had me,thats just so true what is was like in my hall.

  • Scully

    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is very much "in vogue" for lots of JWs. It's a sure fire way to beg off from service, meeting attendance, assemblies, etc without the demonic suspicion that comes with clinical depression.

    By the way, a lot of CFS sufferers are also on medications like Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, Paxil and other anti-depressants. I find that quite interesting.

    Love, Scully

  • metatron


    Multiple Personalities

    Candida infection

    Allergies to perfume - and everything else on earth

    Multiple Sclerosis

    Chronic Fatigue

    etc, etc.

    These may be the result of a body (and subconscious) saying "STOP!"

    There's lots of Witnesses suffering from the above maladies
    - and many wear these illnesses like a crown of thorns partly to
    escape the narrowness and sterility of Watchtower life.


  • Jankyn

    Don't forget fibromyalgia, which keeps one from meetings and field service quite nicely, thank you. Funny thing about that one is that it can only be diagnosed by process of elimination. If you DON'T have any other explanation for your aches, pains and lack of energy...and of course, it's often treated with anti-depressants as well.

    Lots of fibromyalgia in my mom's congregation. I suspect it may be contagious.


  • Elsewhere

    I remember when I was in the bOrg I always felt tired and exhausted. It was caused by all of the burdensome requirements of being a JW. Studying, Meetings, Field Service (Quotas), Tending to RVs and studies making sure I kept up the image of a Fine Upstanding Brother, worrying about the "brothers" checking on me if I started to slack on anything. I didn't want to do ANY of it, so it all became an overwhelming burden to me that exhausted me.

  • ballistic

    I was diagnosed as having ME when I was in the borg. I have some info on it if you need it. It is very 'real' to the sufferer and I am open to the idea it may be caused by depression / stress, however I would have been offended by the talk of it being 'in vogue' or pre-meditated to avoid meetings.

    It took me 2 - 3 years to get over it and as there is no cure, I considered the dietry changes I had made to be the explanation although I am since unsure. I have never experienced a complete relapse although I do go through periods of low energy probably more so than the average person.

    Yes, I could quite believe it is more common in the Witnesses than in the population in general.

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