Don's Story

The first 8 years of my life were the best of my childhood. For the first 7 I was an only child. Then God gave my parents a little girl. When my parents brought her home from the hospital I was the first one to hold and feed her in our home. 3 weeks later at Christmas I must have gotten around 50 presents, life couldn’t get much better then this for a kid. And it didn’t. It went from a Heavenly childhood to a living Hell in very short order.

About a year after this happy family scene my mother started getting regular visits from the Jehovah’s Witnesses. My mom had apparently not been satisfied with her marriage and with life in general. I say apparently because my mother’s priorities were in the right place before the Witnesses arrived at our door. She put her children’s happiness first in life. She never argued with my father in front of us. I remember just one incident in the first 8 years of my life. After a couple years of associating with the Witnesses my mother changed for the worse.

When I was 10 years old my parents bought a second house which we moved into and they rented out the first. This is when my mom started going regularly to the Sunday meetings at the Kingdom Hall and this is when my childhood ended.

My mother who had always been so nice changed almost over night to something I could not understand at the time. She was always depressed and went out of her way to show it even to us kids which was not like her at all before she came into the “truth”. (This term the truth is what Jehovah’s Witnesses say in private to each other when referring to their Religion.) When just the her and the immediate family were home she would usually slam doors, shout out swear words, stay in bed all day if it was not a work day, (later she quit work and stayed in bed most of the time) even disrupting the family deliberately by breathing in a growling manner. This was quite unlike the mother I had the first 8 years of my life. She also started calling my sister and myself things I don’t care to repeat.

Eventually she started dragging my sister and myself to the Kingdom Hall. I thank God she didn’t get baptized when I was growing up other wise it would have been even worse for me and my sister.

My father never went to the Kingdom Hall, but let my mom take us kids. On several occasions I begged my father not to let mom drag me down to the Hall. But he always backed her on this. So I had to go. Years later I understood why he didn’t stop her from taking me. This was the only time my father could have some peace was when mom was not in the house at this point in time. My father became a workaholic, staying away from the house as much as possible. Looking back through adult eyes I fully understand now, but didn’t when it was happening which added to the confusion. I used to say to my father “why do I have to go if you don’t believe it.” I never got an explanation.

So for awhile my sister and I went every Sunday with my mom. Then one day my sister’s teacher contacted my dad and informed him that my sister refused to salute the flag in class. My dad was upset. He informed my sister that if she wanted to be a part of his life that she would salute the flag. My sister’s total existence in life at that time depended on my dad’s approval especially since my mom had become inaccessible emotionally for the family. My dad around that time got my sister involved in Gymnastics as a way to counteract the influence of the Kingdom Hall. This worked well because my sister never again took a stand for the Jehovah’s Witnesses and did not have to spend as my time in the Kingdom Hall as I did. This served to isolate me from my father, my mother, and my sister. I lived in a house with a family, but when I was with them instead of my friends I felt alone.

Eventually after repeated meetings I became a believer myself. This happened about the age of 12. But by this time I was drinking Wild Turkey and smoking pot behind my parents back. It was tough going to the Hall with long hair and my street clothes. The rest of the boys at the Hall had 3 piece suits so I stood out like a sore thumb. For those who are not aware, kids that appear different at the Kingdom Hall are usually shunned by other kid’s due to the parents of these kid’s labeling the so called out cast as “bad association.” By the way bad association also includes all non JW kids!

This shunning that was practiced against me at this time combined with my low self esteem made me believe I was going to die at Armageddon. From about 14 on I had thoughts of suicide constantly. Only 2 things kept me from doing this. I felt that if I could live long enough to move out of the house that things would get better, and I kept myself stoned enough not to feel the full impact of painful existence that happened to my hole family under the influence of the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

To add to the torture of my low self esteem at the time I reasoned that I was not good enough to be around all these Holy people at the Kingdom Hall. I also began to resent my mom for bringing to the Kingdom Hall and for not living by the things that were being preached there. I began to resent the whole family and considered my friends my only real family.

I became a latch key kid just before we moved to the second house and after doing my chores I would often times disappear to a friends house or to the creek by the house. I can remember getting in trouble for going without asking and then get in trouble for telling them “how can I ask anyone for permission when nobody’s home.” So I went anyway especially to the creek to get some peace and to survive. Sometimes I would go to the creek with friends, half the times I would go by myself. The times I was at the creek by myself I felt so close to God. Eventually one day when I was asked by my father “why I did not respect him by leaving without asking “ I told him that “at the times when I did this it was either get some peace and quiet or kill myself.” After I explained this he lightened up, not because he caves in to emotionally blackmail, but because he became a workaholic to get some peace too, and made me obey my mom’s wishes about going to the Kingdom Hall to get some peace. I did not figure this out for several years though.

When I turned 18 I had to move or die. These were the only choices I felt I had. I wanted to wait until I at least graduated, but a couple days after my 18th birthday my mom blew up at me for not asking permission to leave. I told her I was 18 and it wasn’t going to work that way ever again. Well, she threatened me, telling me wait till dad gets home. I was afraid of my dad. Many times I was beaten silly just to shut my mom up. My dad told me point blank one time when I asked him “why he was so mean and why he bothered to have me in the first place if he didn’t want me.” He said “most of the spankings I got was just to shut my mom up, that I wouldn’t get half the punishment I did if it weren’t for her and that he had to sleep with her not me.” So even though I was 18 I was still scare silly. So I left and came back after my dad got home and before he could say a thing I told him “I was moving out.” I asked “if I could use the truck to move.” He said “no.” I asked “if he would drive me.” Again he said “no.” So I put some of my clothes in a paper sack and walked a couple miles in the rain to my friends house. The next day I had to page my dad because the bank would not release my money to me even though I was 18. So I removed every cent I had from this bank, used what I needed to buy my first car, and eventually ended up having to live in this car for awhile. Years later I asked my dad “why he wouldn’t drive me to my friends house.” He told my “he didn’t want me to go.” I explained to him that if I didn’t have the courage to leave that night he would have found me dead in the morning.”

For several years I stopped going to the Kingdom Hall. One day I fell in love with a girl I met around the corner of the Shop I worked at. For me it was love at first site, but she was to young then and I had promised God to try and do right by her as I had had a couple of disastrous relationships. So after about 3 years of being her friend and closest confidant she surprised me by asking me to meet her mom. By this time I was just getting out of a relationship and had kind of given up hope of being with this nice young lady.

The meeting with her mom was one of my more fonder memories of that time. When I got there Fawn the girl I was there to see was inside the house. The garage was open and a lady I thought was Fawn’s sister was there with her boyfriend. She informed me that “Fawn was inside getting ready” but did not introduce herself to me. I assumed she was Fawn’s sister as she was young looking and very beautiful. While I was talking to what I believed was her sister I was more relaxed and a little freer of speech then I would have been with her mother. But said nothing I would regret though. One thing I did do was send a message to what I thought was Fawn’s sister by talking pleasantly with her, but not looking her why much. I wanted her to understand I was there for Fawn only. Her boy friend was walking around the garage with a big smile on his face. Years later using hind site I figured out that Fawn’s mother had every intention of meeting me, but no intention of approving of me. Well just the opposite happened and that is why her giant boy friend was practically laughing the whole time!

We dated for several months with her mom’s approval and things went well until one day Fawn asked me a question. I had been her closest confidant for years before we started dating and she trusted my opinions. On this day she asked me “what I thought about the Jehovah’s Witnesses”as her mom was studying and wanted her too. She was looking for a logical answer she could use to tell her mom no, but her jaw nearly hit the floor when I told her “ if you are looking for the truth the Jehovah’s Witnesses are the only place you will find it.” This was the last thing she expected a party animal like me to say. She and I had almost no contact after that for a couple years and I still had not gone back to the Kingdom Hall since I turned 18. Well 2 years later I ran into her at the corner store we met at. She told me “that the Pope declared 1986 the year of international peace and security.” Well even an unbaptized believer like myself new what that meant. It meant that Armageddon was a matter of months if not days away. You see the Watchtower has taught for years that as soon as the Governments declare peace and security on the earth then Armageddon will come. So I went back to the Kingdom Hall for the first time in 6 years.

After going to the Kingdom Hall for a few months Fawn shows up at my Kingdom Hall for a visit. After the meeting we talked and I walked her our to her car. We had not dated for 2 years at this point. Out of the blue she tells me still loves me and wants to date. I almost cried my eyes out when she said this because I had not stopped loving her and yet I had given up on ever being with her again. So we went to a Jack in the Box had a couple shakes and talked like we used to and exchanged phone #’s and agreed to date again. She paid me the highest compliment at that time telling me that she had dated a couple of Jehovah’s Witnesses guys and that they did not treat her with the respect I had. She indicated that they wanted more on a first date then she was willing to give before marriage. The next day after not getting a call from her I called her and was informed that the Elder’s of her congregation told her “that because I wasn’t baptized she could not date me!” I cried after I hung up that phone. I hadn’t felt that abused since I was a child. After a couple weeks I stopped going to the Kingdom Hall.

A couple years later when I moved I started going to a different congregation. The one Fawn was in to be exact. But I stopped going and after awhile I gave up on becoming a Jehovah’s Witness. I eventually married out of feelings of guilt to a gal I had dated and got pregnant before I met Fawn. The marriage was a living Hell. I can only say that I was certainly not presenting my best self as a person to my ex-wife, nor was she presenting her best. 2 years after we were married I started going to the Kingdom Hall again. I assumed Fawn was married by then because I always considered her a great catch. So when I ran into Fawn at a Circuit Assembly I introduced my wife and 1 year old son to her. I could see the hurt in Fawn’s face, she excused herself rather quickly and I could tell her heart was broken. That is the last time I saw her.

I got baptized and did all the right things as far as the Watchtower Society was concerned. But I was starting to finally mature as an adult and things were not as they seemed when I was a child. I had put the Watchtower Organization on a pedestal above reproach. But now things were not adding up. I could not believe that God was gong to kill everyone who didn’t believe our message, but I never spoke of this with anyone because I knew asking questions after you became baptized could give you a negative label. I had a hard enough time getting invited to people’s homes due to the fact that I was a single parent by the time I was baptized.

Also, since no Jehovah’s Witness kids lived on my street I could not bring myself to tell my son he couldn’t play with the neighborhood kids, so I broke with Jehovah’s Witness teachings on this point as I felt it was wrong to isolate a child like that. I regret I was wishy washy over the birthday thing usually letting the parent think I was going to let my son go and then no showing them. I never actually agreed to send my son and then backed out I just sort of let them reach their own conclusions and then did my own thing. Eventually the invitations pretty much stopped. (Funny thing is as soon as I stopped being a JW forever, and before my neighbors found out I had, all of a sudden there were a flood of birthday invitations, God sure works wonders doesn’t He)

I remember before I was baptized I was studying with a Ministerial Servant who was never on time. He was always about 30 minutes late to the Bible Study he was conducting at my house with me. (a Jehovah’s Witness Bible study is in reality a Watchtower Bible and tract Society Book study and not a Bible study in any real sense of the word) I offered to change the time the on the first occasion that I brought up his tardiness. The next 3 times I brought up his tardiness we argued and I was always made out to be the bad guy for bringing this up even though I am a single parent and his tardiness cut into my ability to properly get my son ready for bed. The last argument we had over this issue I was told by him that “I could not possibly be right due to the fact that he was a Ministerial Servant and was not even baptized yet, so how could I possibly be right.” A week later he was appointed Elder. This is the mind set of this Cult, non baptized people are all wrong and even baptized people’s opinions are less then those of the Elders who are by Jehovah’s Witnesses beliefs are appointed by Holy Spirit and thus almost considered infallible even though they do not teach this, they live this!

About 3 weeks after this I was baptized. It didn’t take long for all the pedestals I had placed the Elders on, and the Watchtower Society on during my childhood indoctrination to be knocked out from under the Society. Just before the donation arrangement came around I began to have questions about the amount of money charged for the publications. We were always told that the price charged was just to cover the cost of printing. Well, when I found out I paid more for the magazines and books then the pioneers did I had some major doubts about the truth of the statement that the Society didn’t make anything off the sale of these publications.

I also had trouble with the Jehovah’s Witnesses beliefs that all non JW’s are going to die at Armageddon. They also believe that those who stop going to the Kingdom Hall will die at Armageddon too. Yet, they believe the non Jehovah’s Witnesses that died before Armageddon will be resurrected. I knew to many kind and loving people who were not and never would be Jehovah’s Witnesses and could not believe that God would murder them simply because they didn’t have the right religious connections!

There was a study book that came out around the time I was getting baptized that I refused to place each time that book was the offer of the month in the Kingdom Ministry as monthly guide for Jehovah’s Witnesses in the meetings designed to train them to place the literature. It gives out lines for placing the books or magazines that the men from Brooklyn want the rank and file to place for that month. The book was called “Revelation its Grand Climax at Hand.” I never told anyone of my refusal to place it, I just never got any extra’s for my book bag. Instead I would place the magazines and not that book. This book claims that the Bible book of Revelations applies to the Jehovah’s Witnesses and the work they have been doing. They even claim the seven trumpet blasts in Revelations foretold the Conventions the Jehovah’s Witnesses had in the 1920’s. These conventions were pushing the teachings from the “Millions Now Living Will Never Die” booklet that Rutherford wrote. This booklet prophesied the resurrection of all the Biblical people mentioned in Hebrews chapter 11 by the fall of 1925! So in this book they were praising as fore ordained in the book of Revelations that these conventions in the 1920’s that were publishing false prophecies were a mile stone in Bible prophecy! Of coarse they omitted that and only bragged about the slogan “advertise, advertise, advertise the King and the Kingdom, but left out what they were actually advertising in the 1920’s! I did not know all of this when I was a believer, but the stuff in that book was just to crazy for me to place it.

I had quite a bit of trouble believing that the Elders were appointed by Holy Spirit. I just knew this was not the case. That it was how well you brown nosed the local Elders and the CO that determined your being appointed Ministerial Servant or Elder. I did not mention this at the Hall either as it would not have done any good anyway.

For years I had guilt feelings because I resented the Circuit Overseers visits. I didn’t like how the congregation jumped through hoops for these bastards while they walked around the Kingdom Hall liked they owned the place for the 2 weeks out of the year they were there! The Circuit Overseers would never be happy with the effort of the Congregation, there was always things we need to improve on! (Circuit Overseers go from congregation to congregation more or less as the eyes and ears of the men in Brooklyn who are in control of the entire membership of Jehovah’s Witnesses earth wide, these overseers have more authority then the Elders of the congregations they police) For years I had been told by the Watchtower that Jehovah’s Witnesses have no paid clergy, then I find out that the Circuit Overseer is not only paid by the leaders in Brooklyn, but also reimbursed for their expenses by each Kingdom Hall they stay at!

The Circuit assemblies held 2 times a year for 2 days per time and the District Convention held once a year for 3 days were about the most boring and useless meetings I went to. There is a lot of pressure to attend these meetings. Failure to make these meetings were compared to failing to appreciate the rain God provides to grow the food that feeds your family! Increasingly these meetings were more about how “dangerous the Internet was”, “how to donate your belongings to the Watchtower Society”, and how dangerous TV, Nintendo, and pop Music was to your spiritual standings with Jehovah”. And after lunch if there was not enough money collected they would announce that too! Which is a hypocrisy, because in the Watchtower the Society brags about having no collection plate to pass around! I guess peer pressure and emotional black mail doesn’t count as a type of collection to them!

The Memorial celebration they have once a year is not all that memorable either! In 99% of the Kingdom Halls no one partakes of the emblems which means by Christian standards that they don’t quite recognize that Jesus died for them. In fact only about 6,000 partake of the bread and the wine, the other 12,000,000 think they have a secondary calling. The Bible does not teach this, yet the Watchtower does. The memorial is the last meeting I remember attending 2 years ago. Surprisingly I left as a believer. The Jehovah’s Witnesses would call me inactive at that point. For about 10 months that was my status, an inactive Jehovah’s Witness. Then I bought a computer that was Internet capable. At first I did not research the Jehovah’s Witnesses online. Instead I researched the ex-Mormon sites in order to Witness to them more effectively. Partly because I liked debating with them when they came to my door, and partly because I had intentions of going back to the Kingdom Hall at that point in time. One day while going through the ex-Mormon site I clicked on a linked section called “other Cults”. It lead me to several ex-Jehovah’s Witness sites. I was curious and did not believe any thing these sites would tell me would change my mind. How wrong I was. I read every article on every site I could find. I read several books by ex-JW’s and started buying the old Watchtower publications to verify that the things said about them were true. I came to the only logical conclusion, that the Watchtower was a false Prophet as stated in the Bible at Deuteronomy 18:20-22.

This was around a year ago. It has been 2 years since I set foot in a Kingdom Hall.

In the year that I have discovered the truth about the Watchtower my life has been blessed. Years worth of guilt and pain have been healed. For the first time in my adult life I feel comfortable inside my soul. I haven’t felt so close to our Creator since I was a child before the Witnesses came to our house. I have built a good sized Watchtower Library with books going back 100 years. I use it to help those still inside that are having doubts, and those who have loved ones or friends who are in and want to verify the things they read about the Watchtower.

All I can say at this point in my life is “thank God for the Internet.” If it wasn’t for the truths printed online for free, I would still be enslaved by the Cult known as the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.


Read Don's Disassociation Letter