Leaving the Jehovah’s witnesses has been a journey. There are so many reasons why I eventually left but what got the ball rolling my friend who was also a pioneer at the time had doubts. I remember being disfellowshipped ( Ex-communicated and shunned) and my place of work was mostly witnesses. All the Jehovah’s witnesses including my so called friends shunned me on the job. It made my job very difficult since networking was a big part of the job. The Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWS) in my area ate lunch together every day and discussed the watchtower and daily text.
Fast forward, I was disfellowshipped for immorality and apostasy for stating I kind of didn’t believe in 1914 and not ratting on someone who took a blood transfusion. (My judicial meeting was wild that is another story) I truly believed in everything else. I was so distraught because I knew I couldn’t be reinstated unless I figured out how to believe in 1914. So I was going to meetings still researching trying to make myself believe.
One day I was crying and emotional about my friends not eating lunch with me anymore until the friend who was a pioneer surprised me by standing up to my other Jehovah’s witness friends and had lunch with me in public every day. She was threatened by the “friends” . They were trying to rat her out for continuing to fellowship with me.
I didn’t tell her the full reason I was disfellowshipped because I was embarrassed but she sympathized with me . One day she asked me if I believed in 1914. I was taken aback because I was trying to go back and had decided I would just believe. I didn’t know what to say and she seemed nervous . We were kind of both feeling each other out I think lol . I told her not really. She told me flat out she didn’t believe it and to go to an apostate site to sort out what I thought. After a few months of her asking me to go to the site .I went to the site fully prepared to save her from “apostasy” 😅. After being a PIMI jerk online to the other PIMO in debates because I was indoctrinated I wasn’t won over but I couldn’t refute their arguments. This group was so patient with me. I have no idea why they put up with me. So I started a journey of re-examining all the teachings in secret. It caused so many problems in my marriage because I was sneaking, using a different email , talking to other PIMO Jehovah’s witnesses in a discussion board all types of night.( I had no idea about Ex- Jehovah’s Witness Facebook groups) He thought I was cheating for sure . It’s crazy I’d rather him believe I was cheating on him than him knowing I was going on apostate websites 🤦🏽♀️
I had a thought today. I always accredited my waking up to being born again or finding the real God. But looking back I believe that it was learning how to think and willing to take a risk. I took a philosophy class in college that stuck with me. It was the most exciting thing I had ever learned up to that point… critical thinking. That class stuck with me.
I didn’t go further in college because the elders told me I was setting a bad example as a pioneer by 1. Pursuing a degree in journalism 2. Encouraging others to go to college 3. My pioneer schedule didn’t include weekends and I was not supporting my congregation’s field service arrangements by not meeting up with the group because of my college schedule. So I thought I was making a choice for Jehovah by quitting.😓
Learning how to learn and learning how to think critically is still an ongoing process for me. But I am thankful for my pioneer friend who is now an Ex- Jehovah’s Witness who took a risk on me ❤ And the PIMO Jehovah’s witnesses who are still PIMO to this day but never gave up on me.
I am using what I learned in my journey out of the Jehovah’s witnesses in my journey in re- examining the case for Christianity.