Help with fading, please...

by longgone 26 Replies latest jw experiences

  • scratchme1010

    Is there anything that I can do or not do that could maybe prevent the worse from happening to yet another family, this time mine? I've already been greatly helped through this all these months by reading this forum. Thank you for listening.

    Yes, go back. Seriously, return to attend meetings.

    I think the way you are fading is a little too rushed and impulsive. Fading is not just stopping going to meetings. All the things that you posted should have been taken into consideration first, before taking any actions. Fading is a process that requires a lot of decision making and thinking about all the consequences (like straining your relationship with your father) as well as all the things that you will have to deal with and are willing to give up.

    As a born in, I understand not having a reliable frame of reference about the world outside. It's fundamental to start getting to know what you are getting into by coming into "the world". If you are a born in, trust me, chances are that you have a rather naive, tunnel vision view of how the world is and works. The process of fading also involves preparing yourself to what you will be facing once out, especially when/if once bad things happen to you. Life brings challenges and those challenges may make you question your decision of leaving.

    Furthermore, leaving all your family and all you have known all your life is going to bring you down. Have you prepared to deal with the emotional toll that it may take?

    You don't mention anything about your reasons for leaving or what exactly triggered your decision,and it's important for you to look at what are the reasons why you are willing to walk away from everything and everybody that you grew up with.

    Fading and leaving is a process; it takes time, planning and preparation, especially if you want to maintain a workable relationship with JWs you love and are still in. I strongly suggest to maintain the hypocritical charade and pretending to care while you build support outside, learn more about what your life will be once leaving, and keep yourself in the life of those you love.

    It's not an easy process, so just stopping attending meetings may be a little drastic.

    Go back, return to meetings for the time being, is my suggestion.

  • notalone

    I am also a born in 4th gen close to 50. Stay away from the meetings, you have been programmed to return. Things will be said that will only heighten your imposed guilt and open you to their control. I understand your concern for your father, but you also mentioned a sister. One of the big traps is there is always someone who will be upset with you for not behaving the way they want you to. You can't please all of the people all of the time. As any witness understands those who don't love truth will fight against you.

    You sound like someone who values truth. Does you father value truth and instill that love in you? Honor him by remaining a person of integrity. You don't have to hit them with everything you have learned or every decision you make. This is sadly another programing tool to control us. As they themselves bring out, they do not tell a new study everything at once but they do it when they are ready. So follow this example and only say what will be beneficial for them. This is something I do. There is a site called Borean Pickets they discuss recent meetings and point out inconsistencies. I also follow any new announcements on this site. I then proactively slip this into conversations and use terminology that makes JW's feel safe. Example: "It's just like they said in morning worship the other day... You know what was brought out in the convention this summer... " I made a point that I am having trouble getting out right now but this is giving me the opportunity for 'deepening' my personal study with an interlinear and looking at the Hebrew and Greek. Go on and on about words and definitions. Guess what, most witnesses are not scholars so they will just tune you out. I did in depth research on the words translated as sin.and shared it with everyone, they just smile and nod. But the best advice I can give is keep proving to yourself this is not the truth. Look up everything and keep records so that you can look back and see what you have accomplished. I have several folders and periodically opening them and just scanning them strengthens my resolve.

  • Happeanna

    As everyone mentioned above keep your cards close to your chest. There's no need to give them ammunition against you. Keep up to date by finding out a tiny bit of whats going in in JW land.

    It took me 8 years to fade completely , I too am third generation all male family members elders pioneers etc. after being left now 16 years (where does the time go)

    I used the tactic of really busy, not well , but how are you brother so no so, how is your wife children dog cat or whatever , people love to talk about themselves. As soon as I have sorted out these few personal issues I have you will see my smiling face once more

    ok it's not true but it works, no need to be confrontational at this stage or any other stage until you wish to or want to.

  • longgone

    Thanks everyone for all of the above thoughts. I apologize that in my effort to keep a reasonably short post, the complete situation I'm in is far more complicated than I described. I can certainly use all of your above advice and the references on fading, as that is what it I'm trying to do, but after the fact, a fade turns out to be a combination with hiding. So hard to explain, please bear with me. I do need help emotionally with this.

    First though, I have researched the WTS teachings and other religions enough to know that they wrong in my opinion. I have no doubts on that, and I want nothing to do with religion, Christan or otherwise.

    This is what I have to keep to myself completely, other than with two of my sisters and fortunately my children.

    At the start of my post, when I said that I think the local elders will leave me alone, is because coincidentally at the VERY same time I was was coming to this conclusion I was still attending meetings and in good standing.

    A rather unusual thing happening between myself and another "sister" in the congregation.

    I'm not going to put quotation marks on all the JW language to follow, or use the sarcasm and irritation I feel about the situation. In itself it had/has nothing whatsoever to my decision. But, it does put me in the potential of being df'd. This sister is a pioneer of decades. Widowed and lonely. She is physically and mentally strong , as in pushy. We had been friends for some time, but she started demanding more and more of my time and refused to leave me alone when I tried to decline her every and constant requests to go in the ministry with her and studies. This happened multiple times a week.

    Unfortunately, I allowed myself to be intimidated for nearly six months. I was falling apart, about it. My adult children saw what was going on and were concerned about the situation. I have a therapist (of many years) who I told about it intermittently. She eventually recommended I consider a restraining order because she was stalking me. Really. I tried to talk with the sister about it, following the rule of going to the person first before going to the elders. She acknowledged her behavior, but continued calling me, she yelled at me in my own house.I live alone. She mocked me and humiliated me more than once when no one was around to see it hear.

    I finally broke down and told her to stop calling me. She didn't. I blocked her. I missed meetings. I got physically sick, couldn't sleep decently for weeks. I didn't want to take legal action because I didn't want to "bring reproach on Jehovah's name and the organization." Yet, I was desperate and finally asked for an elders help. Because of her shining reputation she managed to make me look bad for avoiding her! So much for trying to putting up with one another. I guess that means any one can do anything to another person in the congregation and it's ok if the elders are on your side. I was accused of stirring up contentions in the congregation, even though I never told anyone in the KH what she was doing. Not even a hint. I was about to be escorted to the back room but because I broke down crying, I was able to leave the Hall in one piece.

    In the following few weeks I came into the meeting late, stayed in the back, left early. I did attend the Memorial. A couple more to make it look like I was still ok with the organization. My adult daughter (who had successfully faded many years ago) had in the course of the several previous weeks felt I could take the shock of telling me I was living in a cult. And pedophilla was rampant and being covered from the law and the members. I immediately went to the library checked out stacks of books about cults. I requested interlibrary loans. It all came together. My life had been devoted to lies. I thought I was alone on the planet. I was scared, I began looking on the internet at apostate sites. This was all happening within me at the same time as the whole stalking thing was going on. The elders think I left because of the incidents I related above.

    This is where I blew it. When an elder came knocking I didn't answer. A few weeks later another. I had been pushed and intimated for so long. I had recognized the evil in the organization before the elder scene. I was so emotionally unstable over the whole thing, I pretty much blasted him, while not saying anything against the organization, I did have that much presence of mind somehow, but told him in no uncertain terms never to come to my house again. Of course, I had not been to meetings for about a month. So, this is where it stands. Local elders and anyone who saw what happened at the KH think I left in a huff about the situation.

    My family far away thinks,(because I've told them) it's because of my severe long term anxiety issues. They think this is why I don't go.

    Which is where the deception comes in that I feel so bad about. They don't know I told an elder to stay away from me. They don't know what I know about the organization. If I were to say anything subtlety about it would be tuned out. Which is what I would have done in the past.

    If I were open about it, it would quickly turn into the situation I described at the outset. So I'm basically hiding from the elders and fortunately rarely cross paths with anyone. They have calls in my area, so there will never be any holiday decorations on my door, a small price to pay. I went to vote away from the area where I wouldn't have been seen. I avoid anyplace where the sister could be. My heart pounds when I see a car that looks like hers. Since she came to my house again about a mouth ago, I yelled at her to stay away from me.I was truly scared. I decided I couldn't live in fear of her anymore so my therapist made an appointment with me to see an attorney. The attorney said her behavior is consistent with stalking and she feels that she is dangerous. If I pursue a protective order I would have to see her in court. She would without a doubt inform the elders. Last winter, before I ever went to the elder about it, I discussed it with my own brother who has been an elder for decades. He told me that "we" don't take this kind of thing to "worldly" people and I should just pretend I'm fine with her outwardly. So that was his recommendation. Of course, I haven't told him that all these months later I felt I had to.

    At this time, I have the choice to take her to court, the elders will side with her because she is a holy pioneer. I was merely a low hour publisher who is a nobody. If I were to legally besmirch the organizations clean outward appearance I could be of.

    So there it is. An attorney, my therapist, my adult children who have left the bOrg all consider this woman dangerous. Yet she is a pioneer in good standing, sitting in the in the KH, singing little songs, including "The Life of a Pioneer" which always seemed to me yet another way to make everyone else feel worthless if they aren't. I left because the WTS is reprehensible on so many levels.

    Again, I'm sorry about this being so long, but it does help to know I'm not a lone apostate. Without the internet and forums like this, where I know people understand how sinister the cult is and how ridiculous it is to have to keep independent thinking concealed for the rest of my life, I really can't imagine how I could deal with the potential consequences. Thank you again for listening.

  • Sliced

    Welcome!! You are not alone!! I am doing the very same! I can't state it any better than all the above comments. Things do get better over time!

  • scratchme1010

    This is where I blew it. When an elder came knocking I didn't answer. A few weeks later another. I had been pushed and intimated for so long. I had recognized the evil in the organization before the elder scene. I was so emotionally unstable over the whole thing, I pretty much blasted him, while not saying anything against the organization, I did have that much presence of mind somehow, but told him in no uncertain terms never to come to my house again. Of course, I had not been to meetings for about a month. So, this is where it stands. Local elders and anyone who saw what happened at the KH think I left in a huff about the situation.

    That is precisely why I posted what I posted. I'm in no way, shape or form, advocating for you to remain an active JW. But, for what you post, seems like you are taking a number of random actions without planning. So don't expect a good result or a good reaction from people in the congregation if you take actions like that.

    The pushy, predatory elders KNOW how they expect you to react, so giving them ammunition that way instead of having a plan to leave is not going to make things end on your favor.

    For real, I really, strongly believe that at this point people in the congregation have to feel that you are still an ok JW in good standing while you prepare yourself to leave.

    Please consider that option.

  • freddo


    I think scratchme's advice would be good before you've done what you've done. But not now - returning to the vomit you have left behind now will increase your anxiety levels and put you in the path of the lunatic pioneer sister once again. Run Forrest Run! Pour your feelings out to those who know the score in your family and on here.

    I was an elder for over 25 years. I've done scores of judicial and appeal committees and had different pathetic titles over the years including PO/WT/Secretary. You cannot be DFD for telling an elder to leave you alone. However strongly. You cannot be DFD for taking out a restraining order. Do you need a restraining order? Just shut the door on her and don't take her phone calls. Forever.

    Use this stupid sister and her stalking of you to your advantage. Ignore every attempt by any elder to engage you in conversation. Firmly tell them to leave you alone.


    When JW hierarchy are dragged in front of courts (like the ARC investigation into their disgusting child abuse record) they lie like a rug and in their literature equate such behaviour with Rahab and the spies and hiding printing presses from the Nazis.

    Learn to lie to them without feeling guilty. Rahab protected the spies AND HER FAMILY. You are protecting your sanity and your family relationships from the mind controlled cultists that will throw you under the locomotive in their service not to God but to the GB and its Golden Calf jwdotborg!

    Rant over!

  • notalone

    Thank you for sharing so much of what you are facing.You are not alone. There are many of us. Last year I sent an email to all the elders in our congregation stating that due to my family's mental condition, and so to make sure we understand everything, that all future communication be only through letters or email, that there would be no personal interactions. This spring two elders showed up at our door and attempted to enter our home. We immediately contacted our lawyer that sent cease and desist letters through registered mail including a requirement not to discuss us with anyone. We were then told by a friend that they contacted bethel and were told to leave us alone. In your case I would included all persons that have 'stalked' you. They will spread rumors about you, but these were not really your friends anyway. Reach out to people who accept and value the person you are.

  • Heartsafire

    Not alone, I'm sorry I think my fat thumbs down voted you. didn't mean to!

  • Crazyguy

    I think you have two options, one you can just stay away from meeting altogether and the next time the elders come around just say you've been stumbled and you need time to work through it. Option two , switch to another congregation and get your records moved then fade away. Either way don't say much of anything at all and the elders will just think your a spiritual week pathetic woman, because the organization can do nothing wrong.

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