JW Wife not listening
Hey guys, looking for some advice with what to do with my JW wife that is simply ignoring my wishes/demands.
First a little back story, we have been married for 6 years and have 3 children together. She is a JW, and I am not (nor do I have any religious beliefs).
There is a number of things that my wife is doing that has been getting on my nerves for a while now. I hope noone thinks I am overreacting here but if that's what you think then say so... I'm a big boy and Im sure I can handle it.
She asked me a while ago if I minded her starting pioneering. I do mind. I have never asked her to stop being a JW but that she needs to find a balance in her life with our children, me working extremely long hours to provide for us. I told her that I didn't want her to pioneer as its too much of a commitment and she already spends alot of time with JW related activities. I do wish she would spend less time worrying about that stuff and more time on our children or re educating herself to reenter the workforce. She's gone behind my back and gone ahead with pioneering regardless. I'm not sure where I go to with this. I do know some of her elders and I've even considered going to them and saying that she is going against my wished but I don't know if this is the right course of action or even if I'm entitled to do so.
There's a number of other things that I'm finding disrespectful too. They may seem minor but it's a case of these things I've asked her not to do but she does it regardless and it's starting to really annoy me. These are just things like throwing away old clothes that I wear to work or throwing away personal items that I've asked her not to touch.
Anyway id love to hear some people's thoughts or questions.
Well, how about a compromise?
Tell her that maybe she could find a part-time job to help support her desire to Pioneer™. Maybe suggest at first that she try Auxiliary Pioneering™ (which has about half the time commitment as a full-time Pioneer™)
You haven't said how old your children are, and whether her JW activities would potentially impact her obligations to them. If it's her taking the children to school, making their lunches and picking them up after school, and helping them with homework, then I'd say to her to go slow.
Understand that within JW culture being a Pioneer™ is a status symbol, and perhaps this is her way of off-setting any disdain or feelings that she is an outsider that she is experiencing by virtue of the fact that she has an Unbelieving™ husband.
This is the sort of secretive stuff that, over time, erodes trust and respect. What's worse is the JW organization claim that the husband is head of the household (I think this ancient patriarchal set up is stupid, btw). If you are by JW standards the "head" she's breaking her own belief!
I kind of get she might go pioneering behind behind your back. But throwing away your personal items.
you saidyou're "a big boy" so could take our feedback. I don't think you're over-reacting at all. Quite the opposite: You're under-reacting when you NEED to react and tell her her dishonesty and disposal of your things need to stop immediately. No more Mr Nice Guy, okay?!
Ironically, there's a great book called "No More Mr. Nice Guy" that you should pick up and read, as well.
Hubbys are considered Heads of their wives in JW land. Use it to your advantage, which means you dont be a dick but you say there needs to be more of a balance. You work long hours and aren't getting enough time with the kids. You are cutting back on hours, and she needs to work to help support the family . There are a few special months a year where you can be an "auxiliary pioneer" for far fewer hours in the month. Its like 25 instead of 50, maybe a current JW can correct me if wrong.
Offer that compromise instead.
I pioneered for 9 years straight. It is HARD.
There is a chance she will find herself a way to wiggle out of this very soon.
I hope that is of some comfort!
Our children are 1, 3 and 6. So one at home one at kindergarten and one at school. She takes care of the drop offs lunches etc unless I have a day off then I'll take care of pickin them up etc.
After what happened in our relationship roughly 18 months ago I can see why she may feel like an outsider (see a previous post).
I wasn't aware there was such a thing as auxiliary pioneering, so couldn't say which kind of pioneering she is. I just know she spends too much time on it IMO
I wouldn't want the younger children exposed to pioneering. Visiting strangers homes, dirty homes, unverified people near your child. Not to mention small children being forced into cult work and not being able to just be a kid and play or nap or learn.
As a woman, and wife, ugh never mind. Just your title implies 50% of your problem. Do you listen to her? Rhetorical... I do totally get it, where you are coming from. She is having an affair with her religion and you are having to share her and carry a large financial load. But, She will dig in harder as you make demands on her time, and she will justify to herself that she is doing it for Jehovah and you will lose. The best thing you can do is love her, do lots of outings with the kids, invite her, but go without her on her service days and meeting days. Be a better lover then her pioneering is to her. Let the kids have you! Make the family more a family to her then the congregation is, because it will encroach. if you keep focusing on your needs, she will keep focusing on herself. Equals don't "let" each other, they support each other. If you feel unsupported then tell her that. Ask her questions about why she believes what she does, do your research and ask insightful questions that would make her start thinking about why she chooses what she does. Let her have her own mind and beliefs, not making her wrong. It seems she is feeling good about herself pioneering. You need to learn and understand the cult psychology to help her break free and restore normalcy otherwise, it could get worse, and it will be encouraged by the witnesses to "maintain her integrity in spite of your persecution". Sick, I know, But, divided households, (affectionately called by dubs with one believing mate) are perfect to foster " the persecuted by satan's world" victim theme, and she could dig in harder and be applauded to do so. Gosh, they will put her on a pedestal...sister with unbelieving husband and 3 little kids is pioneering, why can't you? She's the perfect jw pioneer example. That's hard competition for just a worldly hubby. You can't cajole her to drop it. You need to outmaneuver the propaganda. I know that's a lot to hear, and I wish you and your family (that's at stake) best of luck. You resign yourself to what is, or you get knowledgeable and change yourself. Btw, you obviously love and care about your family, don't give up. We all escaped the mind control, and with loving help and compassion from you, so can your wife, and your kids!
Lost generation has a good point about headship, but the other view is worldly hubbys don't hold much clout. They represent satanic opposition and while need to be respected aren't really given it. Worldly husbands aren't invited to committee meetings for children or wives, to my knowledge, for example. The religion wedges out the worldly mate, and makes it very difficult to compete in affections. Jehovah is first in your heart over your mate, and to witnesses that means the organization
I went back and read your thread about her cheating. To me you either need to get marriage counseling or it's time to part ways. She has no respect for you, and I think that you have little for her, and she's definitely given you reasons for that. I'm sorry man. If one of us says no to something then no is the answer. We don't go behind each other's backs. That's messed up and says a lot.