Should I get babtized?
Blackwolf; if I knew then what I know now, I would have never encouraged my son to get baptized , he wanted to my husband was an elder my other son baptized so he did also , he was 17 got df at 18, now every person he grew up with doesn't even acknowledge him he's moving on but I see his pain every day I tell him he can have a relationship with God, and that Jehovah knows his heart there are so many 20 some things that haven't got baptized and they associate with the congregation and just because my son got baptized made a mistake I feel I contributed to his sadness now because should have told him no don't get baptized, that's just my opinion .
I got baptized to please my parents when I was 16. It didn't make them happy. It didn't make me happy. The "friends" I was able to hold onto were only my friends out of obligation. I felt lonely even though I was able to associate with family and friends because I could never truly be myself around them. A classic case of catch 22.
Baptism out of fear won't make you happy. I wish I had just said I wasn't ready, or even the truth. Because by baptism, you're not just binding yourself to god... you'll be stuck in this organization. As it stands, your family might still communicate with you, but if you DA or are DFed, no chance at all.
Would your parents be ok with you getting married right now if that's what you wanted to do? Baptism, like marriage, is supposed to be a lifelong decision. If you're not ready for marriage, how could you be ready for baptism?
My sister and I had pressure to be baptized. She did. I didn't. I never regretted it. She did regret it and resent it, and still does.
I had a discussion with a JW friend a couple of years ago at a transitional point when I was starting to wake up - we were having lunch and she proudly talked about her 11 year old daughter, the good girl she was becoming etc - sadly she was being badly ignored by the other youngsters within the congregation, who come from big influential families in the organisation. My friend said that her daughter was really keen to get baptised.
A friend who was with us that day and in 'excellent standing' said its better to wait until she's older.
And I said something like ' it IS better she waits until old enough to understand what baptism as a JW really means, it's not just a personal dedication to God which begins a life journey - but a vow to obey the organisation.....and for that reason alone, she must be old enough to make that vow whilst understanding everything it means'
Perhaps you could say to your mother that you consider a vow to the organisation to be a very serious situation - many non witnesses get baptised into a relationship to God and call themselves Christians , but JWs are different - we vow to obey men as an extra to the scriptural baptism.
That's serious in a mighty different way.
Here is what you need to say to your parents:
Mom and dad, I love you and appreciate the sacrifices you have made in raising me. That being said, whether I dedicate my life to Jehovah is entirely my own decision and one I do not take lightly. I can't do it for you, I can only do it when it is in my heart and mind to do so and when I am ready. If I did anything else I would just be living a lie, and you did not raise me to lie. Jesus did not get baptized until he was thirty and his parents did not shun him, so I think you can be more patient. If you choose to shun me for not choosing the same religion as you, well that is your choice, but know that it is you who would be choosing that, not me, I will love you no matter what. You had the right and choice when you were young to choose your religion, I am simply asking for the same right.
As far as your friends, getting baptized might make a difference, and then again it might not, but it would also put you in the sight and control of the elders, there are higher expectations and tighter controls, so think about that. In my experience being a young adult and finding friends is always hard, you might shorten the process by getting baptized, but then how much would you have in common with them, since you don't actually believe? The further you go on that path the harder it will be to ultimately break free, you might them find yourself married to a JW girl with children and thirty years old and stuck. Don't limit yourself.
Is there an interest you have that you could explore online and possibly meet others that way? Music, or art or something like that? My son found his wife that way. Please don't limit yourself, you are young and can do anything in life, as long as you don't give in to the temporary pressure.
Getting baptized in the JW religion changes EVERYTHING. It formalizes and 'legalizes' your cult hood, making you subject to shunning, marking, labeling and the ever prying eyes of the elders and under the oppressive rule of the pharisees in Brooklyn.
DO NOT GET BAPTIZED. EVER. You will live to regret it, likely sooner than later.
Should I get babtized?
.....................No Good Can Come From It..
no. N stuff.
I like how LisaRose came at this with a sample of something you could say. I was thinking about this on the way home after I read it earlier at work. Here's what I would say:
Mom, dad (not sure who is involved in the pressuring), I just want you to know that I know you're trying to encourage me and I appreciate it. However, the pressure is discouraging to me and makes me feel like Jehovah can't love me like I am right now. I know that discouragement is a tool of Satan to make people give up and I don't want to do that. So I have to ask you to stop talking to me about it. I want to get baptized when I'm ready and I feel like this is making it about me and you instead of me and Jehovah, so please just let me form that relationship at my own pace.
Anyway, that's the road I would take. First, acknowledge that you know they're trying to help. Then let them know that instead of helping it is actually hurting. Discouragement is a big thing in the organization that is linked with depression and that they are scared of because it takes people out of the organization. Your parents certainly wouldn't want to do that. Hopefully that would be enough to get them to back off.
Thanks everybody!! I will not get babtized. Its just hard to feel like the bad sibling in the family because my younger sister got babtized at 11, yep 11!!! So my parents expect me to be mature enough for it too. They also don't care that Jesus was babtized when he was 30 (their excuse is that people lived longer back then lol). But oh well nobody can force me.
P.S. just so this is clear, I am a girl! :)