Elder asking for help

by untruth 50 Replies latest jw experiences

  • untruth

    Hello everyone,

    This is my first time posting on here so I’m not sure where to start. I’m trying to keep it as short as possible since I could expand much more. I’ve been in the process of waking up in the last year and a half. I have been an elder for the last 20+ years, having been appointed at a young age. In addition to that I served as a regular pioneer. My wife and I never had children so that we could put the kingdom first. We sacrificed a lot. As a result of the zeal I displayed I have had and still have many “privileges” in the organization. I mention all these things not to boast about accomplishments that are worth nothing but to demonstrate how indoctrinated I was and pretty much believed everything the organization taught.

    It’s been tough to realize how misguided I was, even though I’ve always had lingering doubts, but I kept trusting that the organization knew best. Well the time came when I couldn’t keep pushing those doubts to the back of my mind. So I started doing research with the thought that if the witnesses have the truth then why should the organization be afraid of us making sure of all things. The truth should be able to withstand anything that’s thrown at it. Truth is truth. Never did I imagine I would come to find out that most everything I had been taught was false! One of my first thoughts was that I’ve wasted all these years for nothing! I really wonder how many elders are in a situation similar to mine.

    The joy has vanished from anything I do related to fs or meetings but I think I’ve done a good job hiding my true feelings, since I’m still an elder! It’s getting harder and harder each day that passes to do “spiritual” things. A lot of times during meetings I’m comparing the NWT with the Kingdom interlinear in jw app (this may not be the best interlinear but it has helped me a lot in realizing how the NWT is changed according to the WT’s interpretation).

    The main reason I haven’t come out or faded is due to my wife because I want to help her. It would be hard to find someone with as much belief in what the gb says and also belief about the paradise as her. She is truly hard core when it comes to that. I’m trying to come out slowly to her and plan on using the bible for anything I discuss with her. Until now I’ve been able to show her with a few texts how disfellowshipping, as practiced by the Witnesses, is not bible based. Surprisingly she accepted that Dfing is incorrect! However, she went on to say that it doesn’t matter whether the practice is wrong, what’s important is we obey the brothers taking the lead. Guess what she said next? Yup, “Jehovah will take care of it sooner or later”. At that moment I tried coming up with a crazy directive we could receive from the gb to get her reaction so I said “ok what if the gb out of the blue says we can’t talk to Asian or latino people anymore even though that’s not Bible based?”. What she said next blew my mind. She thought for a moment then said “then we would have to obey what they tell us and I wouldn’t talk to them”. I kept my calm even though I wanted to scream! I couldn’t believe what I had just heard. It kind of left me speechless and couldn’t think of what to say. We left it at that and a few weeks have passed since then. I don’t blame her for thinking that way since that reasoning has been repeated time after time in her from an early age. We are to do what the gb says no questions asked. That’s all we’ve known.

    I’m unsure where to go from here in terms of what to talk to her next. I’ve thought of reading Heb. 13:7, 9 because they show that those taking the lead “have spoken the word of God” (Dfing, as practiced by JWs is not the word of God as she admitted) and verse 9 states that we don’t want to “be led astray by various and strange teachings”. Does this seem like a good tactic or should I go on to another wrong teaching such as not celebrating birthdays, house to house not based on the bible, 1914, etc? She has no doubt that we need to follow the gb no matter what they say so somehow I need to help her understand that the gb is bogus. Help please!

  • blondie

    Do you remember this statement by the WTS?

    "All of us must be ready to obey any instructions we may receive, whether these appear sound from a strategic or human standpoint or not." Watchtower 2013 Nov 15 p.20

    I would look it up in context on www.jw.org

    She has to already have a crack in her beliefs based on what she has seen herself and chosen to make her own decision that it is not in line with what the bible says.


  • sir82

    It sounds like she has a deep emotional attachment to the org. Rational, logical arguments will likely drive her even deeper into it.

    Every case is different, but in general, for cases like hers, pointing out the lack of love & the hypocrisy is usually the best bet.

    Jesus said the mark of his true followers should be love, right? Not preaching, not meeting attendance, not obedience to the GB/elders, It should be pretty easy to point out local, and organizational, examples of lack of love.

    Most importantly, go slow. Use an approach of "I don't understand this. Can you help me? If the organization is all about love, then how can [XYZ] happen?" rather than "The organization is wrong, wrong, wrong, and I can prove it!!!"

    Bring out a point or 2, then let it sit for a week or 2. Then bring up another, let it sit, don't mention it again for a while. And repeat.

    If you are to have success, it will very likely take a good while.

  • pale.emperor

    I would take an interest in JW history. Many JW's collect the old books and photo's of Bro Russel or Rutherford. Find the one about Beth Sarim with Rutherford sitting outside his mansion waiting for the prophets of old to be resurrected to live with him in California. Give a little laugh and say "i wonder why Jehovah told him that".

    Then leave it.

    Little seeds.

  • fizzle

    Hi untruth,

    Good to have you on the forum.

    I'm an ex elder ... I started waking up about 9 months ago ... It's really tough going - and as you say gets harder each day.

    I'm in a similar situation to you regarding my wife... All we've spoken about so far is the new generation teaching... She agrees that it just doesn't make sense... I'm at a loss as to what to talk about next.

    I also wonder how many elders feel the same ... There must be a fair number waking up as Elders are a lot closer to the nitty gritty of the org than standard pubs.

    Feel free to PM me... We might be able to help each other.


  • Tallon

    Hello Untruth

    First of all, welcome to the forum. Unfortunately we have all been hoodwinked, deceived and fed blatant lies. I'm still in the process of fading, been inactive for going on 3 years. You know your wife better than anyone else, so best to take things slow, leaving seeds for thought which hopefully will help your wife.

    There are many other forum users who will come along and be in a better position to offer advice.

    Looking forward to reading your future posts.

  • Crazyguy

    It's tough when the mate is so indoctrinated. I would remember the scripture that was supposedly written by Paul that said don't be slaves of men.

    You planted a seed with the dfing and how it's wrong maybe you can plant another and over time more and more. It's going to be tough depending on your age you may have to stay and make the best of it and trying to enjoy your life around it . Maybe having kids is still possible if not try to have fun with her instead of all the spiritual crap. You only live once don't waste the years you have left .

  • zophar

    Dear Untruth

    I have similar circumstances except older and longer time as an elder. Glad you woke up about 20 yrs younger than I did!

    I have found it helpful to mention how many of the terms we use are not even in the Bible. Like overlap and organization etc. Also, why did we adjust so many times if Jehovah was leading. Generation, we have changed our understanding at least 6 different times. Or Superior Authorities, we said at first it was the governments, then Jehovah and then back to the governments...how is that "tacking" or an adjustment, why would we be directed away from a more correct understanding to an incorrect one and then back to the correct one?

    You have a real challenge ahead of you and I am sorry for you. My wife finally started agreeing with me when she didn't have the answers herself. Also, I have been able to voice opinions to more open minded ones in the cong without acting like a doubter but just, "I can't get my head around this overlapping generation understanding, how about you?" Amazing that this seems to be a signal for them to open up and freely express their doubts, then when alone I comment on this to my wife, "seems like they are struggling with this too." Very helpful, since it is them saying it as well not just me.

    The recent WT Study on undeserved kindness opened the way for some good discussions as well. I mentioned how I used to belittle the, "saved by grace" comments would get in FS but really, they have it right. How nice not to feel condemned or pushed, but just enjoying God's favor or undeserved kindness and being less hard on myself thinking I'm never good enough.

    I use the Interlinear a lot as well and I always strive to share interesting things I learn from this publication, produced by the FDS, to show the inconsistencies.

    I hope things work out for you. This is a long journey if you wish to preserve your marriage and you will have many ups and downs. I really empathize with you.

  • paradisebeauty

    Hi untruth,

    Why do you say going house to house is not based on the Bible?

  • Giordano

    Untruth I applaud your courage and determination. Were you looking over your shoulder while you made your introduction? It is a nerve wracking business to discover the truth about the truth (TTATT). Stay calm and always clear your browser.

    First off I want to compliment you on the clarity of your writing. Keep in mind that this is an international forum and for many of our contributors English is a second language. For others....... education was not as important as meeting attendance. Add in people commenting while they take a five minute work break or big fingers working that small keyboard on their phones. Some posts are a mess but if there is truth telling it's better to accept their thoughts then dismiss a messy post.

    My rule of thumb is to always look at the point of view........ is it honest?

    Does the poster care about getting to the truth of a subject?

    You were very honest in what you said and the burden you have taken on. Welcome to this forum.

    Rule number one in getting a Mate out is don't challenge their faith directly. They have to think it through themselves or they will never accept that they do not have the truth.

    Number two don't make your love for that person conditional on accepting your new status.

    Accept what you can about the status quo until you can't.

    Don't become a drama Queen against the WTBT$.

    Accept that your not smarter then your fellow worshipers your just awake.

    Get rid of your theocratic ego........... it's not about privileges it's about living a life worth living.

    The JW's live a short life until they wake up when they are 70 and look around them and wonder why.

    You are in the long game now. You will get to 70 or 80 or even 90 if you plan for your future, take care of your health and build a support group from people living an honest life.

    A JW has to adopt rational ignorance to get along with the Society and their followers: "Rational ignorance is refraining from acquiring knowledge when the cost of educating oneself on an issue exceeds the potential benefit that the knowledge would provide."

    In the world ex JW's live in ignorance is not helpful.

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