We talk a lot about conditional friends on here

by cappytan 44 Replies latest jw friends

  • Finkelstein

    I think most JW's don't have real friends, only a facade of friendship that from day 1 is mutually understood to be with limits and conditions.

    Well said Splash

    And the conditions of that friendship are rigidly controlled.

    JWS are molded and designed by the WTS strategically to uphold a predefined image in support of the WTS. Any diversion from that definition you will quickly find yourself unfriended by a devout JWS.

    Walk the walk, talk the talk or abruptly loose your JWS friends.

  • Finkelstein

    One thing I've noticed too over the years is that JWS will stand by their brethren in spite that person behaving irresponsible and hurtful to others, dismissive to their actions as tuning a blinds eye as it were as long as they are attending meetings and are assumed as a JWS.

    Unfortunately many also hide behind that compelling assumption of righteousness.

  • truthseeker100
    A true friend is someone who catches you when you fall. Turns his back on you when your'e wrong and leads you to greater understanding. Doesn't demand respect but earns it!!
  • EdenOne

    Cappy made an excellent observation: Unconditional friendships are utopic. We all establish certain conditions to keep a friendship going, or starting a new one. It's only natural and human.

    However, humans normally establish these conditions in freedom of conscience. Each one can decide for himself what are those conditions, and even change those conditions if he/she feels appropriate. The problem with Jehovah's Witnesses is: they don't have that freedom. They are subject to relentless undue influence via indoctrination and threat, in order to dismiss friendships based on criteria that they didn't establish themselves in freedom, but was imposed upon them, under threat of penalty. Such penalty may range from a vague 'displeasure from Jehovah' to a very real disfellowshiping.

    Because their religious experience is served as a complete package to them, Jehovah's Witnesses don't have the freedom to accept the theology while choosing to reject what the religion dictates in terms of choices of friends. The total obedience demanded by the religious leadership implies that their criteria for terminating a friendship must replace any other criteria previously held by the individual Jehovah's Witness, or, in case of a born-in, that criteria becomes the only criteria that person has ever known. Thus, the way the JW believer deals with friends who no longer share the belief system or even slightly escape the religious norm stems, not from their personal choice exercised in freedom, but from the very nullification of their individuality.


  • steve2

    Yes, even long-lasting friendships have conditions - so stricly speaking the phrase "unconditional friendship" has a lot of poetic license.

    However, those conditions are most likely congruent within the friendship and not primarily imposed on one or other of the partiesin the friendship by authoritative others.

  • cognac
    Yeah, but their conditions suck...
  • PlatinumFix
    I think the question is would a good friend sleep with their friends partner? What does it say about the guy who was probably sleeping with both women? And what does it say about the friend who was acting like a good friend whilst having sex with their friends husband behind her back?
  • sparrowdown

    Yes. Friendships are conditional.

    That is exactly why I am no longer friends with "the friends," and I'm not talking about Monica, Joey, Rachel, Phoebe, Chandler and Ross. I have raised my standard for friendship, I have introduced conditions into my friendships now.

    In the congregation you are expected to be "friends" with everyone JW, enforced friendship based on psuedo cult-unity. And brainwashed cult members don't make good friends.

    In fact I would say true connection in the cong is impossible.

  • LisaRose
    I agree, all friendships are conditional, its just that most friendships don't disolve just because you change your religion. And when you have friends you feel especially close to it hurts, no matter how much you know they only did it because of the cult. In my mind it doesnt mean they were conditional friends, it just means your frindship wasn't as important to them as their loyalty to the organization.
  • 3rdgen

    I spent this past weekend with my daughters closest friends who are in their thirty's. After finding out it was my first Halloween and why, they all wanted to know what triggered such a drastic change in me and my life.

    Of course, they didn't want or need the long answer so I really had to think on my feet. I said there were many many factors but the first brick in the wall to fall was how my second husband and I were treated by the congregation when we married 16 years ago. He was an elder and I was exemplary but there was no bridal shower no party not even a greeting card. I explained that we were all but shunned by our "friends" but had no clue why. Years later i found out my scripturally divorced apostate DFed ex called the elders and told them he had been sleeping with me and I was not free to remarry. I told daughter's friends that not one of my so-called friends bothered to ask ME if the rumors were true.

    Her friend's reply was "What conditional friends!" I agreed not wanting to split hairs. In the context of our discussion they were right. Yet I completely agree there are deal- breakers for most any relationship.

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