So it has been a couple of months since me and my family have attended a meeting. We have received a few calls and visits. But what do you say when people ask "Where have you been"? It is so odd and awkward..
What to say? I Don't want to go to meetings anymore?
Home, out having fun, how about you? Where have YOU been?
Ask back "what do you mean?" then they'll get more real and we'll....haven't seen you at meetings.....then you respond sarcastically, honestly...whatever your mindset and who is doing the asking. A simple just prefer not to discuss my personal choices with you should do the trick.
you could say you found out the truth about the truth----leave them something to think about.
I've been asked recently why I've stopped going on field service, I replied that my conscience won't allow me after I learned some things about the org but I don't want to discuss it as I don't want to give anybody else cause for doubt about the 'truth'.
I'm hoping that response will plant some seeds.
I used to keep it short and blunt (in my usual style i guess) and then change the subject.
In the early days when fading it was "taking a break"
Later when I'd quit it was "I've quit"
A life skill worth learning though is that you are under no obligation to answer other peoples questions. As dubs we were programmed to be honest to the point of incriminating ourselves when asked questions by fellow believers especially those with perceived "authority" over us.
"not your business" throws them off guard.
or another way is to answer with a question of your own.
people often feel at pains to be able to give excuses for not doing something they dont want to do, there really is no need at all.
Be non-comittal - talk but don't say anything.
You've been busy at work/strugling to find time/etc.
Don't admit to doubts, don't have any discussions on 'spirituality'. They will go away.
To "drift away" you still have to make some kind of statements here and there. You can say "I don't wish to discuss it." You can say "Thanks for your encouragement." You can give the impression that you will be back soon (and then don't be back soon) or give the impression that you will not be back soon.
I pushed back a bit more and said "I have doubts I need to work out." I scared the body of elders enough with that type of talk that they wanted to avoid me. That won't typically work for others. But you never know. Now, you can say how you read about the Australian Royal Commission or that you have to meditate upon overlapping generations or even how the Governing Body asks us to obey directions without questioning them. You can say you have been disturbed ever since "they" took congregation funds away yet ceased the worldwide building.
Many who fade away simply say "We are fine, we know how to reach you if we need to." That's a non-answer that indicates you probably won't be back soon.
Don't engage in anything specific.
Simply say : "I'm doing well thanks. Enjoying life and all I need to take care of. How are you?"
Then they will talk about themselves, and that's it......
I suppose it depends on the motive they have for asking. If they are genuinely interested, although I doubt they are, then you can say 'roving about on the earth and from walking about in it'.....see what I did there?
If it's culties just trying to guilt trip you back to the 'meetings(tm)' with their patronising, self agrandising manner, tell them: '1 Thess 4:11'.