Another one bites the dust...
Sounds like your wife has a serious emotional attachment to this cult. My husband does as well, so I sympathize with you. Please focus on your health and happiness first. Limit stress and conflict as much as possible. Do you like comedy? Sometimes I just hop onto YouTube and search comedians. Anyway, some good belly laughs work wonders at improving health and blood pressure. Get better friend:)
I usually just lurk here and don't comment very often, but I had to sign in to say that I feel for you man. That kind of anxiety and stress is the worst. I know the exact feeling in your chest that you describe, and the depression, though mine was from a really stressful job. As soon as I left that job (got laid off - best day of my life) my condition magically disappeared within a month, but it does come back once in a while when I get stressed out, and the situation you're in is exactly the type of stress that triggers it. I don't really have any advice, I just wanted to say that I can relate and I know exactly how you feel. I hope that somehow soon you're not under so much pressure, nobody should have to live like that. Stupid damn cult, free to leave, my ass!
Thanks everyone for your kind words. I am going to retreat for a bit, try to get better. I am definitely done with meetings, at least for the time being. At the end I do know (after 17 years of marriage) that the thing that probably hurts her more is the fact that we are not going to be together at the meeting (keeping company). Depending on how I feel I may drop in every now and then but attitude (and attire) will be completely different. I also have to prepare to deal with the fallout with the rest of her family. I do not have any relatives in the US myself and my family are not JWs but most of hers is.
Good luck STA. Definitely continue to take care of your physical and mental health. Your wife won't like going alone and the questions and looks she'll get but hopefully the congregation and your wife will get used to it pretty quickly.
StarTrekAngel, I really feel for you. I'm in a similar situation, my hubby is an elder and I don't want to have anything more to do with it all. Sometimes we have words, sometimes I feel he understands. On the whole it's very difficult, I feel bad when he goes to the meetings and out in the FS without me but know I just can't do it anymore. I go to the odd meeting if I feel I can cope.
I've found the best way to deal with it is to try and be the best wife I can be in other ways (even if I fail at least I'm trying). Long weekends away are good when we can connect without the 'elephant in the room' getting in the way. I try and focus on things that have nothing to do with the WT and if he brings anything up I try and deflect the conversation, or just go along with what he's saying, showing interest in people we both know and like. I've given up on doctrine, scandals or anything that might cause an argument. There is more to life than religion.
Try and rebuild your relationship without the religion getting in the way. respecting how the other feels and going along with it helps a lot even if it's frustrating at times. If you truly love each other then it will work out.
Hey, so sorry to hear there StarTrek buddy. Hope you get better soon.
Marriage is tough. And when someone changes it is tough on the other mate no matter what that change might be. You can't blame your wife. But religion, or not accepting someone else's faith, is something that can come between any two people no matter what that faith is. Keep your head up. Try to find some things to keep your mind busy or you'll let your mind drive you crazy.
<<She also admitted that she could not bring herself to the idea that she could let her children die because of blood, which gives me some peace of mind.>>
Why not study this issue with her. See Cofty's recent postings on the subject, reminding her that the WTS was wrong on vaccinations, organ transplants and blood clotting factors.
STA: Sorry about your situation. Please see a cardiologist.
Hang in there buddy. And I agree with this:
For your own health and well-being, you need to stop going to the meetings. Let her go alone.
I was going through something similar not too long ago, the anxiety of everyone in my family against me, and wife (pioneer) being one of them. She has changed so much I hardly recognize her now. When she was with me on the receiving end of the my families behavior, I think her rose colored glasses with the cult came off. She saw my health (mental, emotional, and physical) being assaulted by her beloved religion.
A lot of this anxiousness comes from feeling trapped. You need to try to change your perspective so that neither of you feel trapped.
saying that she never thought she'll belong to the group of women who show up to meetings alone.
This shows me progress but still being so early on in waking up. You guys need to band together to get healthy and stable. The FOG of this org plays on everyone not wanting to be humiliated or embarrassed by being weak or in danger. When I got passed that, shit man, I felt w world better. I look at witness as pathetic, scared, sheep. I don't give 2 f-cks what they think. And I never give a sign of weakness or sadness because I am not, I am happy healthy and far more adjusted than most all of them and it shows, I am proud to be an inactive fader in their midst. So I enjoy putting that in their face (in a nice way). they can think whatever they want, I am doing me. many socialize with me often, at first I think it was weird for them, but i refuse to play by the cult road map. She needs to see this and so do you. You have to find that place.
lions don't lose sleep
over the opinions of sheep
Hang in there my friend.