Stuck Being A Witness

Here's how my story begins. I was raised in a very conservative Jehovah's Witness household. My parents decided they wanted to keep me in a "clean environment". So they took me out of public school when I was in the 3rd grade, and begun home schooling me. I was never really shy but that action made me shy. Two years after that we moved out of our small town into a bigger city. We lived there for two years and then we moved again. This town was small and the only people I knew were a few other witnesses that were around my age.

At the age of 14 I decided I would become a baptized Jehovah's Witness. This basically meant that I’d be living a life of strict religious rules. I never really thought that I'd have any issues with that because I hadn't even considered breaking any of Witnesses rules. It all seemed so logical at the time. I'd lived in such a closed environment that the thought of living my life any other way hadn’t even entered my mind. As funny as it was though, I started having doubts about god's existence about six months after I got baptized. About two years after that when I turned 16 we moved again into a city. I never really had any dealings with a non-witness from the age of 8 until I turned 17 when I got my first job. Although I formed friendships at work, I found it impossible to carry those friendships outside of work. And I was even worse at trying to show interest in the opposite sex. I just didn't know how to handle myself in those situations.

Fast forward to today. I'm now 21 and now all I can think about is whether God exists or not. I've read countless amounts of book, articles, and websites on the subject. And I now label myself as an agnostic. Jehovah's Witnesses are a very closed group and very quick to shun. If someone makes even the smallest misstep they could be disfellowshipped.

One night I was having a discussion about how or lives are going and where we want them to go. I told her how I had been doubting God existence and that I'd considered leaving "the truth". I also told her that she was the first witness I had ever told that to. After we talked for about two hours she convinced me that I don't want to leave "the organization” because I would lose all of my family and friends. But the real reason why I agreed is because I knew that I wouldn't be able to form any new friendships.

However, about two weeks later she gave me an ultimatum, go and talk to one of the congregation elders about how I felt or she would. I’m not mad at her for that because she has had that idea drilled into her head all her life. The elders are supposed to be wise and able to fix anything. I told her they weren’t going to be able to help me and it was going to be a waste of time.

I was right. After having a few heated arguments about the universe’s beginning and faith, I’m still an agnostic. I told my friend about it and she was ok with it for a while. After about three months though, she decided that she couldn’t deal with it anymore. I knew that she had feelings for me, but I only viewed her as a friend. She told me that it really hurt her to know that at any moment I might decide to leave “the truth”. So she said that she wasn’t disowning me, that we just couldn’t be close friends, nothing more than saying “hi” and “bye” to each other. I’m not mad at her for that either. I put her in a rough position by telling her how I feel about God. I do miss our conversations though.

This whole situation has been bugging more than it should have though. I do want to eventually get married and have a family. The only problem is that I can’t form a relationship with a non-witness woman. I’ve tried and I just don’t have the social skills to do it. But on the flipside I can’t lie to a woman that’s a witness and tell her that I believe in God. I do that to all my friends and family, and it is eating me up inside. And also wouldn’t be able to tell her that I don’t believe in god. The she’d probably just distance herself like my friend did.

So as it stands right now I’m in an un-marriable heck an un-dateable state. Hopefully someday I’ll be able to find some kind of happy solution to my problem. At the very least figure out how I can live my life in the way that is the least miserable for me. I doubt that I’ll ever be truly happy though.,sc

theox theox
22-25, M
7 Responses Mar 5, 2010

I'm with you. I'm in a very difficult situation myself right now. I was born a JW also and got baptized when I was 10. Now... I have too many issues to even know where to begin. I hope you can find happiness somewhere.

Dating is not easy as a witness. Then to add a layer of "being social".. what is that?? Jdubs keep such a tight grip on your life, and control every aspect. I am sorry you are in this spot. Don't freak about all of this. I'm 40- you have plenty of time. Just enjoy yourself, and you be you. I was DF'ed on July 17th of this year. I am still deprogramming, but I think that the bible was put together by pre-Catholic christians to suit their agenda. God? or is it just "The Universe"... struggling with that one. Have you read "The God Dilemma" yet?

I'm in the same position 21 and just not convinced anymore. This is the problem, re read your post. We're always putting so much pressure on ourselves along with 'what ifs' that we don't have a second to figure out what we think apart from what were told. I feel anxious all the while because I'm too scared of disappointing everyone to say I'm not sure anymore. Why should I have that pressure all the time without just being able to get on with things? It's not a good sign if the second I stop and thing I feel like a bad person or unsure. I'm still not sure what I think.

The Book " HOW TO WIN FRIENDS AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE" (AS Brainyblonde mentioned) is a great book, so worth reading when your trying to learn good social skills.

Im a jw too. I just find it so dam lonely. THey talk from the stage how jws are known for there love amongst themselves. Ive been back here form a marriage breakup and total loss of my 5 children and i dont see this amazeing love amongst themselves unless your in the right clicks, with the sucessful ones who generally make good money for themselves. Im getting more and more bitter towards these people. Im alone and disappointed with it all. Life sucks so big time for me at the moment as like it always has. I never see any of them now unless i go to them. A big Pride thing. God its boreing life for me abd being jw dont help. I cant face people now. im mixed up, burnt, grossly lonely, irritated by people, in trouble for drink driving,desperate and waiting to die hurry up please.

You sound like an old man. Please relax and take it easy before you give yourself an ulcer. I think you're too young to think about marriage. Few if any are ready to take that step at 22. Being awkward about it is totally normal. (btw, if its a BIG problem socializing and making friends then you might have Aspergers Syndrome, look it up)<br />
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Are you going to college? Technical school? Do you have a stable job? How about your plans, do you want to travel? See the world? and what about kids? Are you ready to devote a good portion of your life to them? Geez... I'm 24 and I think that's still wayyy too young. Never mind kids...<br />
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I'm sorry your parents did that to you. There's no such thing as a "clean environment". My mom's a JW but she didn't try to isolate me from the world. There are still good people there and we're in the world. : ) She lets me make my own choices and if there's a problem we talk it over. My JW relatives are like that too. They even have some have friends who are not JWs. <br />
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I'm currently studying the bible with a sister. If you ever go back to being a JW then associate yourself with brothers who aren't as zealous as the other people you've known. That might take some of the pressure off. I too have questioned my beliefs like creation, existence of God, etc when I took a physical anthropology class. Regardless, I still strongly believe in Jehovah and I'm trying to live my life by bible standards. If you remain agnostic or become atheist then I still hope you have a happy life, you've gone through a lot. Just say what's on your mind to your parents, they will still love you if they're good people. Why is telling your friends a problem? <br />
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As for disfellowshipping... I've known people who know girls who got knocked up and did not get disfellowshipped, and I've known a guy who was disfellowshipped five times because of homosexual activity and excessive drinking but he's back now. So I don't understand the "smallest misstep" thing you mentioned. (I'm in SoCal btw) <br />
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Everyone has different personalities and goals, but life is what you make of it. Do what you can, when you can. I'm climbing a rock wall this wed.s. XD YOU'RE SO YOUNG!!! Go see a movie, buy a wii and play smash bros till 2 AM!!!! Have fun!<br />
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My best wishes go out to you. : D<br />
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Write me if you can.

Hi there. I like your comments and agree wholeheartedly.<br />
Please could you help me? I just finished writing a book called, “The End is Nigh...Again (But this time we really mean it). It’s a tongue in cheek, real life saga about the life of a second generation Jehovah’s Witness that pokes fun at the organisation that to this day continues to completely screw up the lives of decent people. <br />
I have uploaded the entire manuscript to a site called Slush Pile Reader. It's designed to help up and coming writers to get published. You could really help me by registering at the site and then voting for my book. Of course, it's there for you to read too. What happens is that the book with the most votes gets published automatically.<br />
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It would be fabulous if you could take the time out to visit the site, vote for The End is Nigh...Again and help me further expose this religion for what it really is. Yes, it's time to fling open the doors of the Watchour Trifle and Cracked Society and let the world see that it's really not what it's cracked up to be.<br />
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Thanks so much for your help. All you need to do is click the link below and register. Once done, you can then find my book in the category “Religion and Spirituality” and vote by clicking a little icon on the manuscript page.<br />
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Gordon Smith <br />
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http://www.slushpilereader.com/index.php?option=com_manuscripts&view=books&order=latest&genre=Religion+%26+Spirituality&Itemid=5