A question about fading....

by Tornintwo 37 Replies latest jw friends

  • Tornintwo

    I understand that many on this forum are undertaking a slow fade, over months, years even.

    Can I ask what is the benefit of that instead of a fast fade?

    as I understand it, the elders only have to deal judicially with people who are still active witnesses, known in the community as witnesses, having contact and influence with witnesses etc. so surely the sooner you stop attending meetings the better. Because then if you do something 'wrong' (be it celebrations, 'apostasy', associating with df'd ones, or immorality etc) the elders hopefully won't chase you to deal with it judicially because you are no longer considered a member of the congregation. At least that is the case where I am, once your gone, they don't seem to care that much.

    Have I missed something? Maybe is it an attempt to preserve family relations that needs a slow fade?

  • cappytan

    You've got it right on the family relations part. That's the reason for a slow fade. Ease into it.

    My fade ended up being fast. It was hurried along by some determined work in applying to jobs out of state. When I got one that was acceptable, we moved and immediately completely faded...we haven't even moved our cards yet...I don't know if we ever will. Family are clueless, or if they do have a clue, they don't let on.

    Eventually, though, I know the question will come up. At this point, I'm ready to just be straightforward and blunt with them.

  • DesirousOfChange

    as I understand it, the elders only have to deal judicially with people who are still active witnesses, known in the community as witnesses, having contact and influence with witnesses etc.

    Exactly how that is applied varies greatly from one elder body to another. If they have a grudge against you (for example your "faithful" ex-wife/hubby wants to get re-married), they can hunt you down for an indefinite amount of time until they finally put you "out". Pub Record Cards are now kept "forever" by your last Cong. Formerly they were to be destroyed after 8 years.

    You can only "fade" if they "let you fade".


  • FayeDunaway

    Yes, family is the primary reason. Also it prevents a disfellowshipping for apostasy...if you go slow, they are less likely to suspect something.

    So it all depends on you and your circumstances, torn in two. I remember you were a convert and wanted to take it slow for your daughter's sake. She seems to have mostly come out of it, and your husband has eased up, tho he is still a believer. So the only thing you have now may be some witness friends you occasionally see.

    What is the worst that can happen, if they do Df or DA you? If you are tired of fading and ready to face the possible consequences, just stop. If the elders in your area don't give a lot of attention to people like you, you may be safe anyway.

  • TheListener

    I faded slow so I could keep my family. The only problem with fading is that it never really ends. The elders can do what they want as far as finding you years and years later and disfellowshipping you for some trumped up reason.

    I've always sort of envied those who DA or DF because once they're out they can freely do what they want with their lives.

  • GrownMidget
    as I understand it, the elders only have to deal judicially with people who are still active witnesses, known in the community as witnesses, having contact and influence with witnesses etc.
    That is pretty much how it should go based on the elders manual. It all depends on many factors. Family, friends, your status, your activity level, how nosy the elders are, how much they want to sanction you and many others.

    Pretty quickly after my judicial committee, I somewhat quit going. I still agreed with an elder to study with me to "strengthen my faith", but during the first visit I realized that he's not allowing me to have my own faith supported by the "spiritual food", but instead it has to be exactly what he has been taught by the organization. Because of the abusive nature of the organization and my past, I started to cry in front of him and as a man that is often seen as a very big sign of weakness yet it is not. In this context I felt humiliated. I decided that I don't want this. Later I texted him that I no longer want to study and he texted me back asking what is the reason. I said that I simply don't want and that emotionally it is too heavy. It was over after that and I was never contacted by the body of elders anymore. I have now officially faded, with only few conditional friends cutting me loose.

    Personally, I consider dissociation as the best solution. It's the way where you decide your faith, not the elders. Some say that it's playing by the rules but personally I beg to differ due to the next point. Which is, that way you don't have to hear about the witness herp-derp hype anymore. Down side, just like in the disfellowshipping is that you lose family, friends and all the other social contacts. If you have no family/friends in or they have already cut contacts, might as well just announce officially that you no longer agree. I still want to write the letter myself, but feel that right now in this time and moment I am not ready for it.
  • tim3l0rd

    I wanted to abruptly "fade". I was determined to. My wife wanted me to talk to the elders about my doubts. After talking exposing to them that I was having doubts, I didn't want to raise any apostate flags by quitting cold-turkey. I went back to a few meetings and to an assembly. My attendance has definitely dropped though. I'd move to another area, but can't right now.

    My wife wanted to change congregations, so we're doing that. My attendance at the new congregation will most likely continue to decline.

  • Tornintwo

    I haven't attended at all for about 3 months now, my daughter hasn't for 2 months. No contact by elders yet since the c.o. Shepherding call when I was first doubting..'touch wood'. You're right I'm fortunate I don't have extended family who are witnesses, only my husband who thinks the devil has got to me!

    I was just wondering more for my daughters sake more than anything, any judicial action would be very damaging as she is vulnerable, so I would fight it tooth and nail if they tried.

    I do have an ex jw friend who has been inactive for about 3 years. She goes to the memorial and odd meeting, is very close to her prominent jw family (elder & pioneers) because they work together , but is living an 'immoral life', nobody bothers her because she's not 'seen' as a jw anymore. Although some witnesses avoid her of course, there's been no attempt at judicial action.

    But I can see there seems to be great disparities between countries, cultures, even individual congregations about the way these things are handled by the 'spiritual policemen'

  • Chris Hannover
    Chris Hannover

    The key to a good fade is not talking about your doubts, not acting disgruntled, and not openly adopting some other belief system (religious, political, spiritual, philosophy, or conspiratorial).

    Whether you're fading fast or slow, just always smile, be positive, and act excited to see every JW you see while hinting at (but not directly stating) you're dealing with depression or health problems.

    Whatever you do, never say anything negative about the organization, the elders, the GB, any other Witness, or your own personal experiences.

    Remember the Miranda Rights, "You have the right to remain silent, anything you say can and will be used against you..."

    Don't give them any weapons to use against you & they will lose interest.

  • freddo

    The old "write this in the margin but it's not official" game (elders book) that we got from the CO from time to time at elders meetings said 2/3 years of inactivity was about right for not chasing up "serious wrongdoing" unless it disturbed the congregation. (italics mine)

    But if there is a spouse in who wants to remarry "scripturally" beating the drum and getting the elders to dance that can extend for many years - even for life!

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