Has anyone here been able to sucessfully fade and keep your marriage intact with an active JW? Are both of you happy?
My situation qualifies. But it is a bit different when the husband fades away instead of the wife. I was fully involved as an elder, and my wife was a good witness who didn't really follow the doctrine as tight as I did.
Anyway, I kept seeing things that seemed wrong and finally researched Jehovah's Witnesses and went wherever Google took me. It didn't take long for me to see that I was not in "the truth." Rather than immediately share my revelations with my wife, I made plans to resign as an elder and figured we would be able to discuss these things better after my resignation.
So I resigned and tried to help my wife see why I resigned, what was wrong with Watchtower. She would hear none of it. She literally put her fingers in her ears and shouted when I was talking, stating how she was getting a headache from all this.
As months passed by, I finally totally stopped going to the Kingdom Hall. I did manage to have a discussion with my wife about that. I said that I had been reading materials that
helped me to be an independent thinker. I told her that the repetitive nature of
meetings at the Kingdom Hall interfered with my independent thinking and I would not be accompanying her anymore to the Hall.
She took it rather well.
I cannot say exactly what she was thinking, but I am pretty sure she recognized that we had a wonderful strong bond in our
marriage and she was afraid to lose me. I think she decided to let me "fade" away from Jehovah's Witnesses in the hopes that I would
continue to be a loving husband. She wanted to keep her husband AND her false hopes.
When she asked if my decision to stop going
to the Hall changed anything between us, I said that it didn't have to. Further, I asked one thing of her. I asked that she not be
reporting anything about me to the elders. She agreed that my relationship with Jehovah was between me and Jehovah and she
wouldn't try to report/spy for them.
She honored that part of the agreement very well. Over the years that have passed, I have occasionally tried to tell her of some things I read about the Watchtower, but I have mostly tried to indirectly reach her to make her think independently of Watchtower teachings. While she has never shown signs of weakening her beliefs, she has been able to strengthen her ability to decide things for herself without automatically falling in line with Watchtower teachings.
All I can say in a hopeful way here is that I would have divorced her had I thought that she would have been happier without me. My wife recognized our strong marriage and probably figured the financial security of staying together versus the alternative.
Since I was free to be my authentic self in our marriage and put Jehovah's Witnesses aside for me, and since no children were involved, it has worked out okay. I put up threads about the occasional problems we have over religious issues, but we do pretty good considering.