funny I never really minded being submissive....it's just now that I am realizing how much of MYSELF I lost in subjugating myself to another person. I never considered what my needs, likes and desires were...it is nice finally discovering myself even if it is a little late in life.
Women raised as JWs: Did the WTS views on women negatively impact you?
My mother spouted on about the 'joys' of subjugating oneself to her husband, but in reality, she wore the pants in the family.....her mouth and her example seldom agreed.
For the most part, my husband and I enjoy a spirit of co-operation in our household...we discuss all aspects of a situation and work out the best solution for our needs.
When I was in the congregation the most evident display of subjugation by wives was a spirit of helplessness and total dependency on the man of the family. So very sad.
I was'nt raised as a jw. I certainly sold my soul in being subjection. 14 years too long)))))))))). and having lack of self-esteem and self-worth compounded the living conditions.
Looking back over those years observing other women.I felt they were like robots. Like being too sterile.I remember being around two elder wives. envying them for being feisty and up front. Standing up for themselves. I thought how can they get by without being reprimanded. Of course these kinds of behavior was'nt shown in public. Only at their homes.
My encounter with the judical committee show the colors of subjection. Shared the experiences of abuse. There response was "you know how Men are".????? This sure blew this duck out of water.!!! The "good ole Boy's" club. Sounds like this kind of mentality exists through out the org. What was ironic was one of the committee member said "he wished their was a female on the committee. She would understand"!!!
I did buy my soul back with years of therapy. I walk in to my home everyday and feeling thankful for my freedom. I don't take it for granted. This is going on 21 years. I won't forget where I came from.!!!!
Thanks for the opportunity to speak. OCW
I was an "obedient" daughter of an elder. Did my duties and stayed quiet. But I did keep looking and listening to what all was going on. I was timid and shy and except when it came to telling "worldly people" about Jah.
My dad wasn't abusive, but since his death almost 3 years ago it seems like my mom is fulfilling some of her own dreams.(as much as she can and still be a JW). She takes trips, goes on weekend excersions etc.. sometimes with sisters, other times alone. She is still very much involved with JW's. She met us in CO 2 years ago and went whitewater rafting with us! If my dad had been alive I don't think she would have even met us much less gone rafting!
After getting out of a rotten marriage (not a JW) I began doing things I wanted to do. Learning about myself and realizing how much I had lost by being submissive and putting up with never being good enough. I decided to change myself. And I did.
I love my life now. I love my kids and husband. He supports me in almost everything i do. And stands aside when i decide to do something really stupid and lets me fall. Helps me back up again and has never told me "I told you so".
So yes, it did negatively affect me. Thankfully i was smart enough not to let it completely control me.
ps: and it really p**** me off when they told me that i COULDN'T go to Bethel because I was a woman!
I always had trouble with the submission thing. When I was dating one JW guy, who later became an elder, he actually said, "I don't know how to do any housework, so you'll have to do it all." I worked more hours than he did. I suggested learning how to do some of it to help out, and he refused. I broke up with him.
Lucky me...I now have a husband who comes home from work and cooks dinner for me, and helps out with the housework as well. :)
"Wifely submission" has always been a concept that I never seemed to be able to completely buy into. Caveat emptor.
It's really difficult for intelligent, independent, confident, career-minded women to be a JW, without losing respect for the males in the organization who are running the whole shebang with their varying degrees of ineptitude. OK, I'll admit that not all the brothers are inept.... but the ones who aren't are few and far between!!
I'd see brothers - elders and ministerial servants - on the platform who could barely read (I'd be cringing when they said "NEW CUE LAR war" instead of "NU KLEE AR war" etc etc), who didn't have a clue about how to figure out the 607 BCE to 1914 CE timeline (not that it matters now LOL), or who didn't know the difference between Elijah and Elisha...... and feel embarrassed for them first of all, but then really pissed off at Jehovah (and then later the whole organization) that I *knew* all that stuff and more, but because I didn't have a penis, I had to keep my mouth shut.
It also bothered me that many men in the organization only paid lip service to the idea of consulting their wife on important matters. Regardless of how she would feel on any given issue, inevitably he would end up doing whatever he wanted - even if it was to the detriment of their whole family. I mean REALLY!! how can a guy justify buying a $300 fishing rod that only gets used ONCE a year, when you don't have enough money to pay your rent or feed your five kids?? grrrrrrr
Hey! What is wrong with the Stepford Wife Syndrone? All those phony, sniveling, petty men have to have someone to push around! You ladies want they should kick the dog? You want to promote cruelty to animals? This whole process is why the J-duds as a group are passive aggressive. Sister Submissive can't ever seem to get husband Jerky Elder's coffee right, they have only been married 30 years! Well, he just thinks she dumb! Give the ditz a thousand years, she'll get the coffee right eventually.She messes up the bank book, the credit cards and things seen to break a lot around the house, but brother Clueless never puts two and two together. The J-dud master have trained him to overlook the obvious. No wonder so many of the sisters are on psychotropic drugs! Maverick
THe potential negative: I totally mistrusted marriage--I never could see myself married to a JW husband because on some level I knew I would eventually leave. I didn't relish breaking up a marriage to finally gain psychological, emotional, and spiritual freedom. My mom, a devout JW, sounds similar to many of your moms: although she gave lip service to wifely subjection, she in reality wore the pants in the family (dad was not a JW). She also spoke pretty disprespectfully of him. I don't know, the whole marriage thing to me was such a convoluted, complicated affair as a JW; I knew I didn't want to be married to a JW, but the only non-believing role model for a husband/father was my dad.
I'm very independent; always have been, so I opted to just forgo marriage for a long, long time.
I think it also did affect my relationships with men when I finally began to date (after I'd left). You know, the whole dating/courtship, sex-only-after-marriage JW tenant. I think it made dating and relationships unnecessarily uncomfortable for me. Every relationship (certainly every sexual relationship) with a man had to potentially lead to marriage, so I think I tended to size up and reject men way too soon, as opposed to just getting to know them and see where it might lead, if anywhere. I also think the JWism (plus with a little help from Dad!) disallowed me from having any true male friendships. The whole ridiculous chaparone thing: it's as though any time a male and female are in the same room ALONE, they're going to automatically jump each others' bones.
Ugh!!! Yes, I do feel sorry for women who are on the inside. Some of my family still are, and sometimes I get the feeling they're just on the edge of a breakdown.