Difficulty fading out
Hi! This is my first post on here so I apologize that it is like an essay!
My husband and I are currently 'fading out' of the truth. We stopped preaching in May 2016 and limited meeting attendance in January 2017 and stopped completely in June 2017. My main reason for this was my whole life I have been doing things to please others, even getting baptized to please my mum. I finally feel like enough is enough, we have two lovely children and I have to put them first now, and I want them to enjoy holidays like Christmas and birthdays etc. I don't want them to have to endure the hell of being different at school.
Anyway, so I have put up a Christmas tree for the first time (out of the way of the window so no witnesses passing by can see!) And my children were so excited. We also took them to the local Christmas market and then took them to the cinema to see a Christmas film. We did this all with caution as the elders are still on our tail. We didn't post photos on social media or mention it to our witness family. However, one of my best friends, who is a witness, spoke to me this week and basically said she knows what we have been up to and her 'conscience' has made her go to the elders. Not only am I distraught that someone I used to consider as my best friend could do this, I am confused as to why!! Months before this I'd explained to her that we no longer wanted to carry on in the truth and whilst she was upset, she said we had to do what we thought was best for our family. So why now is she sticking her nose in and going to the elders?
Anyway, so my question is, has anyone else had hassle from witnesses and elders when trying to fade? Is it going to be this hard forever, constantly checking over our shoulder that a witness isn't watching us. Checking out the window when the doorbell rings in case it's an elder! I feel like I am still controlled by the religion even though I no longer practice it!
Thanks in advance!
Hi Emily..welcome to the site.
yes lots of us have and elders cannot be trusted in any way shape or form, at the first contact they make towards you tell them in no uncertain terms we are not interested in meeting with them or discussing any accusations that might have been made against you, if we have any issues we will contact you, after that do not answer any calls, texts emails etc,and inform them not to make anymore contact with you, you are being very sensible with social media profiles etc, also any remaining contact you have with your jw friends and family be very careful what topics you discuss and be prepared with the idea that conversations could be recorded, be careful with that Christmas tree also, but good luck with your fade you've made the right choice, just be very careful, the bottom line is when you are in this fade mode jw's of any level cannot be trusted.
Hey @Emily1987 Please watch this clip of Geoffrey Jackson and equip yourself with this knowledge, either to put forward to your ex-best friend, or the elders if they impose themselves upon you.
At around 01:35, Jackson tries to claim that inactive members have the right to fade out and live as they please since the Witnesses do not run a "police operation" of harassing members who just want to be left alone.
Hi Emily. First of all, welcome!
second, I strongly suggest you download a PDF of the elders secret guidebook Shepherd The Flock Of God. If you google it you'll find it easy.
DO NOT accept an elders visit. As you'll see from the elders book they need two witnesses to hear you say you're no longer a JW and they can announce you from the platform.
Sadly I think Jackson's video makes little difference to how things are handled on a local level. If you refuse to engage then you may get left alone but I suspect the minimum will be a local needs talk that will effectively rubber stamp shunning you. If you engage then any admission of celebrating Xmas will give them the licence to use the "disassociated by one's actions" card or even force you into DAing yourselves. You could easily be DFed as well if you get into a protracted argument.
You may have the right to fade but this only works if you shut up and don't get caught breaking the rules down the line. Faders out for years and well off the radar have more freedom but 6 months is not enough especially when you have "friends" ready to dob you in.
BTW, has your "friend" seen your tree? If not you could push back on "two witnesses" and ask why she did not speak to you first etc. But in my experience these tactics have limited value and you just end up DA/DFed.
Sorry not to be more positive...
Sorry - Welcome as well!
Hi Emily...ex elder here. If you want to avoid an announcement from now on in.
Do not talk to the elders. Do not talk to your friend. Hide your Xmas celebrations and gift buying. Deny everything that you are accused of and refuse to discuss it. Repeat ...
Do not talk to the elders. Do not talk to your friend. Hide your Xmas celebrations and gift buying. Deny everything that you are accused of and refuse to discuss it.
Maybe three to five years down the line you can really be viewed as inactive. But even then saying or being seen to do the wrong thing by friends or relatives who are JW's can be the short path to a DF.
Welcome Emily. I wish you and your family all the best.
Now is the time to plan your strategy, so that you don't get "caught cold" by JW predators.
You have a P.M.
... Maybe three to five years down the line you can really be viewed as inactive. But even then saying or being seen to do the wrong thing by friends or relatives who are JW's can be the short path to a DF.
Hi Emily, and welcome to the forum.
Some great advice has been given however, pay close attention to the snippet, above, which Freddo posted.
Everyone has their own unique set of circumstances and unfortunately there is no easy way out of the Org. Basically, and I'm by no means making light of the situation, you can either go down the fade route, like myself and many others on this forum and have to continually be on your guard, or you can DA yourselves (and be damned with the consequences) and live your lives the way you deem appropriate.
No matter what stance you take, there will be repercussions one way or the other.