How To Fade Away Cleanly?
You are going to lose many people and it is going to hurt.
In a cult, friends are instantly made and instantly lost.
Hey Splane, good on you for your decision to leave.
FWIW, I didn't know what I was doing when I left, and I wasn't ready to set the world on fire, but I still had to be truthful when asked by family and friends why I "wasn't going to meetings." What I said was I had issues with the corporation, and "I'm taking it to prayer/or between me and Jehovah at this time." That really worked for me because nobody wanted to "go there."
Not sure it would work in today's climate. I wanted to be clear to them it wasn't a passing fancy, and it wasn't personal as with a person or persons, I wasn't wounded or hurt or discouraged. I wanted them to know it was the policies of the corporation is what I had issue with and it was serious enough for me to take action.
I wish you strength and peace for the journey. It is so worth it.
DO NOT tell anyone any more about your doubts, or your opinions.
They will not understand, they will prosecute you for them.
Make a few meetings, then attend less and less, don't go out in service, maybe go to the memorial.
If they ask why you are not going, tell them you are tired and discouraged.
Never tell them what you think, it will not end well.
Don't say you have been stumbled, it won't end well, you won't impress them or change their mind.
Enjoy your Saturdays and Sundays!
I faded out for family. Family can put up with leaving the religion if they really want to. Mine wants to.
Friends, on the other hand- if they remain believers, they usually distance themselves from the totally inactive friend. Your only real hope among them is that someone is mentally out.
But you will find new friends and figure out a path.
Sorry if that's not positive enough.
Thank you everyone for your words of advice! I will let you know of any updates.
When you fade, break free. When you waffle and attend a little they think there is hope. Cut it off and give little in reasons why. You are not obligated to say anything to anyone. Determine what you feel you MUST say and then be coy. Good luck.
There are only four ways of leaving the Jehovah’s Witnesses. So there are four ways that could lead to shunning. I say “could” because options three and four has some loopholes.
1. You are “dis-fellowshipped.” You commit some kind of sin in the eyes of church. For example you commit “Immorality” meaning you have sex before you are married or you are married and have sex with someone besides your spouse. There are other sins you could commit but these are by far the most popular. You meet with three elders in the local congregation. If they feel you are not repentant enough for your sins, the will expel you from the congregation. Sometimes even if you are repentant enough, they will still expel you anyway. They will do this to make an example of you to others. Or they just don’t like you. It’s a “good old boy country club” and sometimes favoritism comes into play. You could be dis-fellowshipped in one Kingdom hall and just get a slap on the wrist in another for the same offence.
2. You “disassociate” yourself. You send a letter to the local congregation and resign your membership.
If you do the first or second option will be definitely be shunned. You can never again have ANY contact with any of your Jehovah’s Witnesses friends or family. You are dead to them.
3. So you don’t want to do option one or two. In recent years a new way to leave the Witnesses has become popular. It’s call “fading.” This is a tricky one. It’s done by people who don’t want to make a complete break from the occult. Usually because of family members, the thought of not ever talking with their parents, children, siblings and loved ones is more than they can bear. It works just like it sounds. You move away from them slowly. Many times this requires an actual move to a new town or state. You might even tell your family and friends that you are still an active witness but in reality you have moved on to a new life. Others have called this “a double life” This phrase has been coined to describe mostly younger ones, teenagers and young adults who have two different lives. These are kids who are trying to keep their parents happy and will pretend to be a good witness by going to the meetings and out in field service. However on the weekends they will “party down” and act like “worldly” people. Whether you are a “double lifer” or a “fader” the results can be disastrous if caught. You could end up in the “back room” with the three elders telling them your story. This rarely goes well.
4. The fourth and final option is death. For many who couldn’t make the choice from the first three options, have chosen this one. Yes, you can break free with suicide. There was a time when I even considered this option myself. I have known at least a half dozen people who felt this was their only option to leave. As I have said earlier, I personally have contributed to at least two people choosing this way out. Yes, but even dead people can be shunned too. Many witnesses have boycotted their family member’s funerals because they were not in “good standing” in the organization when they died. So for many there is no forgiveness even after your dead. My mother wouldn’t let my father go to his own father’s funeral because it was inside a Catholic church. As Bob Dylan once said “Some of us are prisoners and some of us are guards.”
Welcome Splane ,the sad truth is if you leave Jehovah`s organization for any reason sooner or later all of your "friends" will soon leave you .
You don`t have to be labelled as an apostate for them to desert you ,simply stop attending meetings and field service and the fact that you will be deleted as a MS will set the rumour mongers/gossipers whispering about all sorts of reasons of why you are being deleted,coupled with the fact you don`t attend meetings anymore must mean you were DF and they will shun you.
Be prepared for the worst .
Make friends outside of the religion and concentrate on that and goals that you can achieve in this world.
Agree with so many of the comments.
I just left, one meeting there, the next not. No conversations about doubts.
Now if i see any of the jws in the small town i live they treat me like Im df'd or have a contagious disease or something. Over the past few months i have seen 2 different sisters at the grocery store and the post office. I smiled and said hi as i passed. Each one physically turned their head away as if they didnt see me.
It may be hard at first, or hurt. But its great now, i know who my real friends are.
Welcome Splane. Your first post's title is non-applicable to your situation - considering what you've already said and done. You've already put the noose around your own neck, and now your executioners will be only too ready & willing to pull the trapdoor lever if you open your mouth to others. Having said that, the KH gossip-mill will be grinding away, and there's every chance that no JW's will want to talk to you now. Silence is golden - say no more.