Shall I disassociate myself too? I’m the only one left now.

by Theonlyoneleft 15 Replies latest jw experiences

  • jws

    I used to live that life. My mother died while I was still a JW and 18. My father died over 24 years later. And I still have 2 older sisters in.

    I left with my father and his second wife very much in, very gung ho. And two sisters also involved, though one less so.

    I didn't see them all the time. I knew I was mostly a different person from them too. But they were still my family. They knew I didn't go to JW things, but I wasn't disassociated or disfellowshipped either. So we could hang out, do things together. I personally liked that. I know all of the talk of assemblies and hall talk annoyed me. But the talks with my dad and sisters on other things made me happy. Dad's gone now and I called and talked with him almost every Sunday for years before he died. I really appreciate that I had that. And I know if I disassociated myself, I wouldn't as he wouldn't have talked to me. We came to an agreement to not talk religion and had a relationship for nearly 20 years after me leaving until he died.

    For what it's worth, I thought it was worth it to tow the line and "behave" when I saw them. I didn't have to rub their faces in me celebrating birthdays or holidays. I could avoid controversial things for the few times I saw them. It's not like they made me go to meetings or anything. Some of the conversation was even a little nostalgic. Hearing about their friends that I knew and/or liked. Their talk about the religion could safely go in one ear and out the other. Didn't like it, but so what? They were family and it wasn't ALL JW stuff.

    When they're all gone, I still don't think I'll disassociate or disfellowship myself. Why bother? That's the JW rules, their laws. I stopped playing by their rules years ago. If they think I'm still an inactive member, so what? If they consider my baptism valid, so what? I don't care. It means as much to me as the Rock and Roll Air Force membership I used to have for a local radio station. I don't feel I have to track them down and officially quit. Who cares?

    Wait it out. In your lifetime, the JWs may be gone.

  • slimboyfat

    If you feel like seeing people, then see them, and when you don’t feel like seeing them, excuse yourself. Isn’t this just how normal relationships work? I don’t see any point making any sort of dramatic announcement about it, or burning bridges. Isn’t it always better to keep on good terms with people, and leave a way open for the future, even if you end up not having much to do with them.

  • Theonlyoneleft

    Thank you jws for sharing your story. Enlightening!

    thank you to all of you that are challenging my clogs on my way of thinking. 😊

  • OnTheWayOut

    I agree with Slimboyfat above. No sense in actually burning the bridge. You can distance yourself from them as you want to, but you just never know what the future may bring. It may be that they have some dire circumstances where they want to turn to you. (Hey, you never know.)

    If that never happens, it's pretty much the same result as DA'ing yourself. But if it could happen, they won't turn to you unless that old bridge is still there.

  • peacefulpete

    The best advice I was given 20 years ago when I confided in an older man that had become like a father was simple, "Take what they give you". What that means is, relationships can change and still be important. Some times we have to back up and realize the whole world has its isms and sects, avoiding everyone we disagree with is not the best answer. I have relatives I see at holidays that are zealous Lutherans and while I'd prefer not to listen to all the stories of church functions they are busy with, it is often the topic of conversation. We at the same time talk about work and pets and house remodeling etc. Do I want to be around them year round, nope. But reconnecting once a year or two has importance to me. If you realize you are in control of how much you are around them and what you talk about, (can always change the subject) being around most religious people is tolerable, even sometimes a good family moment..

  • Theonlyoneleft

    Thank you. It’s true that if any of my family Wakes up or Fades... I’m the only one left that they can really turn to.

    Maybe I’ll always be the only one left of the five. Who knows? ☺️

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