What woke you up?
What woke me up or actually helped me start the critical thinking and questioning was the 2011 October and November watchtowers with the two part series articles on the 587 vs 607 destruction of Jerusalem. Thank you Watchtower for publishing something so eye opening and completely unsupported. From there it was learning about the whole 1874 vs 1914 christ invisible presence and then the nail in the coffin was Ray Franz's books. Cult mind eliminated
I posted this before, but my awakening began on my baptism day at age 15. It was 1992 at Plant City, Florida. My friend was watching a door or hallway can't recall, but needed to use the restroom. I volunteer to guard the area while he left, but the Elder in charge ask me if I was baptized. I told him yes, I got baptized today. He informed me it wasn't long enough and I was denied the "privilege" of guarding a door. Later that day I went to see the same friend, he was an Elder's son. He was in a room where his father was counting money. Again I was told I couldn't enter, only Elders allowed in. Inside this room were Elder's wives chit chatting, and young Elder's children running around playing tag. I learned right then they were no different than any other religion with hierarchy. I knew with a non-witness father and a "spiritually weak" mother I would be a 2nd class citizen in this religion.
In 1995, when I was 18, the last straw was the generation change. So both the double standards I witnessed and false teachings was enough for me to leave. So glad I got out early
I was going through a very inward spiritual crisis nobody knew about (probably because of associating with worldly people on a hobby site), doubting everything, and realizing these worldly people are actually really loving and true friends, when I was assigned to give one of those talks they only gave you a scripture with and no other resources. I think our cd rom was scratched and unplayable. So I did what I always do when I want to research something....look online. I got interpretive analyses of this scripture from religious scholars and who knows who else, but what was written affected me deeply. It made me truly appreciate the sacrifice of Jesus for the first time in my life. I gave the best talk I have ever given. It was in a back room, but man, was it passionate.
The 1995 changed teaching on "Generation" was my wake-up call.
ThIs, coupled with all the rude awakenings, and the religion's appalling attitude towards women was really the last straw.
...Also, the religion saying that people with careers and full-time jobs were materialistic was another reason. Glad I'm not there to hear all the appeals for money.
To the OP, Israel Ricky Gonzales . Your story sounds so fake, like an ad from an anti-JW. The common ole Child abuse, UN NGO, Russell and Rutherford and then Greber. That sounds so unreal and not common among people.
My awaking is how people follow the GB/FDS/Watchtower that they are drones and it makes people so unkind and unloving. Why would I want to be with people that treat me and others like that.
I can only tell it like it is. It was a quick, rude awakening.
The prevalence of WT jerk-people in every cong I ever attended, was like a alarm clock going off in my brain every few months with me just hitting the snooze button.
Eventually I stopped hitting snooze and started examining the teachings in ernest and that was like climbing out of bed and getting a coffee.
Then lights started turning on in my brain that hadn't been used in years and I was able to get dressed and get the hell out.
I wasted 50 yrs. of my life in the cult. Married during the scare of 75 to a woman I didn't love. Just concerned with self- preservation. I figured I would learn to love her in "Paradise" just a scant few months away. Father- in- Law was of the anointed & knew Rutherford personally. I got quite a few bonus points marrying into the family. Met a number of the GB, CO's DO's. Became a well known elder. Gave district talks, worked on the RBC, had stage duty at the assemblies...As the years passed, I finally found the love of my life, divorced the wife & of course, got DF'd. I figured I would get reinstated within a year or two. Two of the three on the committee were close friends & were well aware of the situation. The third had been a rival elder & there was no way he was letting back in anytime soon. (By the way Frank, THANK YOU !!!) After three years I got pissed & started research in disfellowshipping. This let to Paul G's website which led to Crisis of Conscience. That was a complete shock. I knew some of those guys. Had dinner with them & their wives. I read the book in three days & I was out. I became a full blown "apostate". Most JW's in Western NY steer clear of me. Got a couple of nice tattoos......
i am also avoided like the plague. And my second disfellowshipping took 2 years and 5 letters. The arrogant elders did everything to discourage me from coming back but it didn't work.
Years of being treated as less than because my husband was disfellowshipped, plus being stuck in that marriage, which had never been good. Struggling to attend the meetings due to health and family issues, seeing the futility of the door to door work. Learning critical thinking skills and starting to see the hypocrisy and nonsense.
I had decided to leave the marriage and didn't care what anyone thought about it, the stress was killing me, I knew I had to get out. By chance I connected with a guy I knew in high school. He had a major crush on me but I wouldn't date him as he was not JW and I was a recent convert. In thinking back over my life and why I made the decisions I did, it just suddenly hit me that it all just wasn't true, couldn't be true, that the Watchtower was just some man's opinion, Armageddon wasn't coming, it was never coming. I had stayed with the JWs because I thought they taught the truth about trinity and hell fire. I couldn't reconcile all that at the time, but I knew I couldn't stay in the religion.
I left and never looked back. I didn't even learn tatt until years later, but I knew in my heart I made the right decision and I was never tempted to go back. Most people have heard my story, but for those who haven't, I married the high school guy and we are still very happy after all these years.
The weird thing was that this is what he wrote in my yearbook:
I've known you for two years, but never really gotten to know you. Maybe in some other time and some other place we will get to know each other.
I went on classmates.com by accident, he wasn't signed up, but I left my email, not really thinking to much about it. Two days later he went there looking for me. Once in a while, life grants you a fairy trail.