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Friday, August 29, 2014

A Woman Both Strong and Brave Breaks the Chains of Conditional Love

I wrote my letter of dissociation, in 2009, and I am from Saskatchewan, Canada.  I wrote my letter of dissociation for several reasons.

- I never felt good enough.  As a physically disabled person who uses a wheelchair. I could not fully take part in field service (house-to-house ministry), and I was not putting in a lot of hours, so that was frowned upon.

- I was lonely, and ready for a relationship with someone of the opposite sex, and "brothers" wouldn't give me the time of day.  I tried "courting," as prescribed by the Watchtower Society.  What a joke!

I can honestly say that my experience with Jehovah's Witnesses' version of courting was pretty bad.  I went out with a "friend" of mine, and two other "brothers" from nearby congregations.  It was just disastrous.  My "friend," spent all of her time acting completely socially backwards, throwing herself all over one of the "brothers," while the other "brother" and I just sat there rolling our eyes at her.  I had developed feelings for the "brother" she was fawning over, and it hurt me to watch this.  I did not have time to squeeze in a word edge-wise, and she ended up going on more "courting times" with that "brother," and I had to be there to witness the disaster of what she deemed as "flirty."  It was bad and it seemed that every Jehovah's Witness "brother" I ever liked, either went out with or chose another friend of mine in our "courting group."  I never really experienced a "brother" actually liking me, within the Watchtower Society.  I was often ignored or asked to chaperone and that was all.  After a while, I discovered that the "brothers" determined that I was spiritually weak because of my worldly associations, and they told most to stay away (that I was not suitable marriage material).  I hated every moment of it, and loved "worldly dating."  I found a "worldly" man who did give me the time of day.  We have now been married for five years and have a six-year-old child together.  Even though I am happily married this whole thing still bothers me.

THE TWO BIGGEST REASONS WHY I LEFT:

My grandmother, who raised me, died in 2004, and I became inactive after her death.  I even tried to take my own life.  Some of the "brothers and sisters" came to see me in the hospital, but instead of offering a helping hand, they told me I would have to meet with a Judicial Committee and "explain."  I did, but it was embarrassing, humiliating, having to explain and rehash my pain.  The elders did not take any action against me, but I was viewed as "spiritually weak" and the other "brothers and sisters" in the congregation were told to "find other association."  I miss my friends, and some of them have known me since I was a baby.

My second biggest reason:

I got pregnant outside of marriage and was told that I would have to face another Judicial Committee of elders.  I left the organization in 2008, because I was practically forced into a corner by the elders to write a letter of dissociation, or "meet with us and we'll see if you are worthy to stay."

NO!

I wrote my letter of dissociation in 2009 and have not stepped foot into a Kingdom Hall, since that time.

Even now that I have "broken free," I still feel a hole in my heart for my friends, the people who told me they loved and cared for me.  I just do not understand how when a person is disfellowshipped or dissociates themselves... how the tone in which they speak and interact with that person can change so drastically in a matter of seconds.  Almost six years have passed and this still haunts me.  I still miss them.  I know I should not, but I still do.