By locking your man-cave you are setting a boundary your wife seems unable to respect.
JW Wife not listening
I dont know about the lock. I dont care for it. Pioneering is a drag. Pioneering with 3 small children is horrific. I camt imagine why she woukd choose that. Guilt no doubt. Wanting to be a better person, but not knowing it has nothing to do with that, and everything to do with her family.
I sant to make this very clear. You NEED to make sure you take care of the lids furing meeting times. Whatever you do.....do that. Otherwise on the long run you risk loosi g them to. I grew up distant from my father because afyer all......he was going to die at the e d of the world......any day now. From a very young age, i decided this meant i couldnt be close to him.
Your kids being exposed to this high control group......is the most important thing for you to consider.
At meal times, do you pray or does your wife say the family meal time prayer? Does she thank Jehovah for the food, that you provided? Does she ever directly thank you for all that you do for her and your children?
Do you or your wife pray with your children before bedtime? If it is your wife, what does she teach the children to pray about? Does she say the words "We are looking forward to the end of this system of things" and also "When all of Satan's system of things will be destroyed"? Because that would mean she is teaching your children to pray for your death and all the other 7.5 billion people on this earth that can't be politely bothered reading a Watchtower magazine and going cold calling to recruit so they can count 10 hours a month on their time sheet.
If she doesn't pray at all with the children that is fantastic.
I know it is an inconvenient truth for you right now because you are young with a small family to look after and you have an unbalanced, dysfunctional wife who really doesn't understand you. I am a stranger but from what you wrote I do not believe your wife loves and cherishes you at all.
She is victimizing you.
Having a 3 yer old child in bed with it's parents must be preventing you from having intimate closeness with one another. I think your wife likes it like that. Your wife has a track record of sleeping with other men. When are you intimate when you have a 1, 3 and 6 year old if not in the marital bed at night... But not when you have a child sleeping with you. Your wife would not be the first pioneer who used her "pioneering time" to seek and entertain her lover. If you are not being intimate with her, who is?
Other than that you're mad at her, does she know how you really feel when she treats you like that? Rage or anger usually masks and expresses profound sadness and pain. She might understand that more than outbursts or just discussions of anger. It sounds like you two don't really hear one another. Again, counseling could help here.
I'm not a fan of the lock. You shouldn't have to lock your room from your wife. You have bigger problems than MasterLock can fix. Relationships are about love and respect. Boundaries are built on that, with consequences for crossing them. It's tougher in a marriage because you're supposed to be a team, not a power dynamic.
I know this has been touched on but as far as the headship card goes you're actually viewed as a enemy to her spirituality. The society says the man is the head of the household BUT... you are an "unbelieving spouse" so your headship only covers physical and financial matters. Spiritual matters she is to look to the elders as her head, and she is the spiritual head of the children as is taught in JW land.
If she continues to pioneer she'll end up on the stage at a assembly to give her experience about pioneering despite obstacles. You being the main obstacle as a you will now be classified an "opposing unbelieving spouse".
I really hope you can get ahead of this because this is the exact issue that ended my parents marriage.
I don't envy your position right now and I've just gone back and read your previous posts - I haven't read everyone else's comments on this post so I might overlap or contradict other's comments.
What I can say is that I pioneered (regular when it was 90 hours a month) for ten years, and it is hard work! When I was single it was much easier cos you only have yourself to worry about. But when married (and I was working three days per week to help support us) it was exceedingly hard and I teetered on burn out for the first 18 months of marriage. I was always so tired which made me not much fun to be around!
I can't help but think that your wife is pioneering to try and make up somehow for the mistakes she has made in the past. You might find that she has some deep guilt issues and hasn't forgiven herself for her past actions. I think she is wrong to have not seriously considered the impact of this decision on you, your children and herself. It is going to be tremendously difficult to meet the hourly requirement and yet be a good mother and wife, let alone a sane individual!
So what can you do?
Ok - so here is my disclaimer, I'm not a therapist or counsellor and I certainly don't want to offend in anyway but I want to present something to you, a bit of a devil's advocate thing. And I don't know the dynamics of the relationship you have with her - so again please forgive me if what I suggest is just not going to work for you.
I want you to think about things from her point of view. She's messed up right? And I say that with absolutely no judgement - I want to give her a big hug actually and tell her: "sweetheart, stop whipping yourself!". I might be entirely wrong here but with the history that you have shared with us, I interpret it that she is trying to make herself worthy somehow. And that's messed up. She won't see that of course because she's indoctrinated. But she is being told by the congregation, by the society and the peer pressure around her, that she has to do MORE - in fact, as a JW, you can never do enough, you always have to reach out to do more, sacrifice more, flog yourself harder - and even then, you still can't be said to be doing enough.
So with that in mind rathernotsay, I would recommend that you show love, unconditional love, because she is not getting unconditional love from the JW community. I know that because as soon as you stop giving every drop you have, you start not being on the inside, you start to be judged and regarded as weak and a bad associate. If your wife fails as a pioneer, she is going to feel that and she will need support. I think you will accomplish a lot more by showing love. Speak gently and kindly. She does need to know that she is violating your personal rights by discarding your personal possessions but do so gently, calmly, with love. Statements like: "honey, that item really meant a lot to me and I treasured it. I feel that when you throw that away, what I feel doesn't matter to you. I know that's not true but that's how it makes me feel". I know that is a very female approach - but you're trying to reach a female so use a female approach. Speak the language that us woman do.
The way you both communicate is really important here. It took my hubby and I a good 10 to 12 years to work out our communication style without getting defensive with each other - and that was without the added pressure of raising little ones! But it is possible - a lot of the time you have to let go of the anger and be willing to try and see things from the other persons point of view and appeal to one another without heat.
Alas, I have lots of other thoughts on the subject but I fear I have more than exhausted my allocated time slot! Feel free to PM me if you think I might be of any remote assistance. I would love to help in any way that I can.
Much love & best wishes & hugs to your little ones,
Lots of good advice here.
I wanted to say something about respect for private property. It's not very common!
Kids in school here in the U.S. are not taught to keep their hands off of other people's property. They are taught to "share." And not to be "selfish." Most of them don't know the meaning of the phrase PRIVATE PROPERTY.
Why should a person lose their rights to their own property simply because they get married? Early in our marriage my husband wanted to sell my sewing machine - he pointed to it and said We need to get rid of that, you never use it.
I said It's MINE, not yours. If I want to use it or if I don't want to use it, is none of your concern. The same goes for HIS property. I ask him if he needs this paper or that holey shirt, I don't throw it away without asking!
The same goes for property that we share, that we've purchased together.
Courtesy and respect in a marriage include respecting each other's belongings. I'd be locking my things up in a room or lock box or storage facility if I couldn't feel like I had control over them.
a also have a zealous JW wife trying to indoctrinate our kids. I also have never been a JW.
My first comment is that you seem to be mixing JW issues with other issues you are having.
It would seem to me that the first decision you have to make is whether you are going to stick with this girl. If you are going to break up, it would be better to get that part over with a.s.a.p., rather than let it drag out. In making that decision, remember that it is unlikely she will ever change the way she is; it is either cope with that, or leave.
If you are going to stick it out, I would suggest that you tell her that she can do as much pioneering as she wants, as long as she continues looking after the kids. Try to make it her job to take the kids to any sport or after school activities. Ie don't challenge her religious beliefs, but don't let her avoid her responsibilities either. Make sure you keep control of the finances, as well.
In relation to the non JW issues (throwing out your stuff, kid in bed etc), I have the impression from what you write (and I could be completely wrong) that you are calm and level headed, and try reasoning to persuade others of your point of view. Sometimes the only way to get the message through is to get (or feign) vocal anger to communicate something is not okay. It shouldn't be like that in the real world, but it is.
The other thing to do is to "know the enemy", by reading sites such as this and jwfacts and learn as much about this religion as possible. It helps for dealing with your wife's friends and also in bringing up your kids.
Finally, you would have read that the majority of kids brought up in this religion drop it as an adult. I have a suspicion that the drop out rate is much higher, if one of the parents is worldly, involved in bringing up the kids and is demonstrably a good person.
I hope that helps.
And one last thing; tell her she can't go into your "man cave" without a tea towel on her head.
Hi there. Since you have the elder's number, feel free to contact him and let him know what is going on. Explain your situation exactly as you described it on the forum--that you aren't against her activities, but it is too great a hardship on your family to have your wife pioneer, and you can also explain the disrespectful behavior she has been displaying towards you. If he has been helpful to you in the past, he may ask her to step down from pioneering, or possibly do a smaller amount of preaching work. He also may counsel her on her disrespect of you. Normally going this route isn't helpful, but in your case, you need to fight fire with fire.
Someone suggested professional counseling and I say go for it--if you can drag her into there. Good luck.