A female Twitter user took to the social platform to share her experience when she decided to stop being a member of Jehovah Witness.
She said that particular move she made resulted to losing her friends, having bruised relationship with her father and more.
She said she was told it was the beginning of her downfall and more.
Read what she posted below:
”When I stopped being a Jehovah’s Witness, many people told me that I would never succeed in life, giving me examples of people who left & didn’t turn out fine. They said I owe my life to God for everything I’d become & that turning my back on him was d beginning of my downfall.
I’m not going to lie; leaving was very hard for me because the fear mongering actually worked. I got depressed and started isolating myself, and I was told that the depression was just a tip of the iceberg because nobody turns their back on God without losing their sanity.
I was told that if I didn’t come back, I had a lot more coming for me. And I kind of believed it. Because the only support system I had ever known in my life at the time were all Jehovah’s Witnesses. How was I going to survive if I left?
But I decided to sacrifice it all. I couldn’t pretend that I was happy to go to gatherings where every other religion was labelled “false”, where women were told that they were inferior to men, where gruesome stories were read out loud and normalised to the hearing of children.
It was hard. A 22 year old first child with 5 siblings who looked up to me. I had a lot of promise. But I was going to fail everyone. Jehovah’s Witnesses strongly advice against higher education because of rebels like me, and I had seemingly proven them right.
I wondered what the implications would be for my siblings, most importantly. Because they would no longer have a big sister to look up to. But my heart was burning. It burnt for years. I was basically surviving on antidepressants and I lived close to my biggest trigger.
So yeah, I let go of everything. I lost all my friends. Even lost my family at some point. I started life again like it was from the scratch. Building new friendships in a world full of wolves. Almost every single friend I have today were friends I made from 3-4 years ago.
It was hard AF. Kind of explains why some people who leave find it difficult to survive the shock. I wasn’t sure I was ready for what was coming, but I had to face it anyway. I just had to.
I risked being shunned, which would mean that every single person in my family (and in the entire JW fold by extension) would no longer talk to or communicate with me unless I repent and come back. I saw how this turned out for many, & I didn’t want to be part of the statistic.
Thankfully, I wasn’t shunned (though it might happen in future) but my relationship with my family, especially with my father who used to be my best friend, was severely bruised. What is left of it today is scars that I have to spend the rest of my life looking at.
I am certainly not living my life to prove anyone wrong. I swore that that would never be my fate. I’m just living. Doing my thing. I still think about all the dreams that I had to give up because I was told that my service to God was more important than my ambitions.
Sometimes I mourn what would’ve become of my life if I hadn’t given up those dreams. But I’m going to reclaim whatever left of it. I still have time.
It’s just amazing how fear is religion’s biggest weapon, and not just peculiar to JW.
“If you leave God, you’ll suffer. You can’t succeed without him.”
“If you don’t pay your tithes, you’ll lose your wealth.”
“If you disobey him, you’ll go to hell.”
So when I talk about religion, I’m not just here to rant. I’m talking from a place of anger. And trauma, trauma that I have to spend the rest of my life healing from. I talk from a place of pain. And regrets. And sadness. And rejection.
From a place of deep loss.
One day I’ll write about the heavy price I had to pay for turning my back on a place that was not good for me. I’ll write about this pain. I’ll write a proper story, not a twitter thread. About people like me who are still trapped.
But today is just a day for sad reflections.