Facebook and a Past life.

  • Pyre85

    Posts: 213

    Aug 22, 2012 10:53 PM GMT
    I was raised Jehovahs witness, which means the only friends I was allowed to have were other JWs, as "bad associations spoil useful habits."
    I fully realized I was gay and what that meant when I was about 15, and knew that none of them would speak to me if they ever found out. I limited my friendships as much as I could, but given that it was a small congregation, I was home schooled, and that again, I could not befriend "worldly people" (non JWs) It was hard to keep bonds from forming with the other kids my age.
    Now, almost 10 years after leaving "the truth" (what they call their religion) quietly to avoid being disfellowshipped (shunned), and 5 years after my secret traveled the grape vine back home and they presumably all know anyway,I've stumbled across quite a few of them on facebook.
    I'm so curious about their lives, and hope against hope that they've left the congregation like me, but their profile is set to private so it's hard to tell.
    It's been kinda sucky having literally everyone I was allowed to be close to before the age of 19 cut out of my life, so the temptation to reconnect and message them is strong. The only thing that matches it is the dread of theire response.
    They quite likely think I am an unspeakable, unholy abomination of a sinner,
    and I really don't want to go thru round two of heartbreak-being blocked with no response or preached to and told to change my wicked ways.
    There's a small chance they may be more open minded than our parents were about homosexuality, but is it worth going back and potentially facing the ridicule, disgust and hatred I fought so hard to avoid in the first place?
    Oi. I dunno.
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    Aug 22, 2012 10:58 PM GMT
    What do you have to lose? Just start sending them friend requests. If they won't accept the requests, you at least have certainty. If you don't contact them you will always wonder.
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    Aug 22, 2012 10:58 PM GMT
    Pyre85 said
    There's a small chance they may be more open minded than our parents were about homosexuality, but is it worth going back and potentially facing the ridicule, disgust and hatred I fought so hard to avoid in the first place?
    Oi. I dunno.


    It's hard on the heart when you lose family and friends just for being who you are. IMO, the ridicule, disgust, and hatred simply aren't worth it. Who knows? Maybe they will try and contact you but until then, keep some room open for new friends and relationships without the drama and disappointment.
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    Aug 22, 2012 11:00 PM GMT
    If churches had to follow the same rules as other businesses (which they are), they'd be sued for false advertisement because none of them have actually "witnessed" Jehovah.

    That said, just be glad you're not around them. In my experience, they're among the most hateful religious cults groups out there...if you're not a member...but they'll "be nice" so you don't know how they really think.
  • IAmTheOneWhoK...

    Posts: 154

    Aug 22, 2012 11:07 PM GMT
    Honestly dude, the people who were your best friends when you were a teenager are not the same people years down the road. You've both changed. You're probably not gonna have much in common and there will be awkward phases since neither of you is sure who the other person is anymore. Just from my experience.

    I moved away from my middle school for 8th grade. Moved back to that area for high school sophomore year (just 2 years later), and I'm a really friendly guy who can be friends with nearly anyone. But I didn't manage to re-connect with a single person from my middle school. Made all new friends after my old ones would ditch me or leave me out of the gang when they would all hang out despite the promises of how much fun we'd have during phone conversations before I moved back. The grass always looks greener, but truthfully, trying to re-connect to your old buds probably won't be some big emotional moment for you, whether they choose to talk to you or ignore you. But good luck.
  • Pyre85

    Posts: 213

    Aug 22, 2012 11:08 PM GMT
    paulflexes saidIf churches had to follow the same rules as other businesses (which they are), they'd be sued for false advertisement because none of them have actually "witnessed" Jehovah.

    That said, just be glad you're not around them. In my experience, they're among the most hateful religious cults groups out there...if you're not a member...but they'll "be nice" so you don't know how they really think.

    Yeah. yes and no. As a member its pretty decent, but you get all the drama and gossip that any small group in regular contact with eachother breeds, only its all about who is missing more church than they should, or can you believe they watched this movie, I would NEVER watch something as sinful as that. etc.
    And knocking on peoples doors, there definitely is a little bit of contempt for those who won't listen at all. It's only natural though. Anyone who believes they know all the answers to the universe: where it came from, why there's suffering in the world, how it will all end, and holding the promise that THEY and they alone will be the ones surviving Armageddon....well. That can go to your head pretty quick, and make you think far less of other people who refuse to accept "the truth" they are so diligently trying to spread through the world. After all, eveyone who doesn't accept it is going to die at gods hands, and they wont. Why would you think well of such people, no matter how many times youre told to love your fellow man?
    Ugh. I feel icky just talking about it.
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    Aug 22, 2012 11:37 PM GMT
    Pyre85 said
    paulflexes saidIf churches had to follow the same rules as other businesses (which they are), they'd be sued for false advertisement because none of them have actually "witnessed" Jehovah.

    That said, just be glad you're not around them. In my experience, they're among the most hateful religious cults groups out there...if you're not a member...but they'll "be nice" so you don't know how they really think.

    Yeah. yes and no. As a member its pretty decent, but you get all the drama and gossip that any small group in regular contact with eachother breeds, only its all about who is missing more church than they should, or can you believe they watched this movie, I would NEVER watch something as sinful as that. etc.
    And knocking on peoples doors, there definitely is a little bit of contempt for those who won't listen at all. It's only natural though. Anyone who believes they know all the answers to the universe: where it came from, why there's suffering in the world, how it will all end, and holding the promise that THEY and they alone will be the ones surviving Armageddon....well. That can go to your head pretty quick, and make you think far less of other people who refuse to accept "the truth" they are so diligently trying to spread through the world. After all, eveyone who doesn't accept it is going to die at gods hands, and they wont. Why would you think well of such people, no matter how many times youre told to love your fellow man?
    Ugh. I feel icky just talking about it.
    Go for broke in contacting them.. you have NOTHING to lose and only to gain.. either friends or confidence in yourself!

    Go get em tiger!
  • Pyre85

    Posts: 213

    Aug 22, 2012 11:49 PM GMT
    Oh I forgot to mention one complication, I fooled around with one of them when I was younger, and hes married now. But we were best friends besides the sexual stuff, He's married now and one of the ones I want to see again most-because of the friendship, not the sexual stuff. (tho that was as hot as two guys who have no f----ing clue what to do with each other can be lol)
    I worry not only about the rejection by him, but also causing the poor boy to panic about me divulging our activities to his wife or whatever. Which I would never do. I'm pretty sure hes straight to the core, but was horny enough to get it where he could, and would never want to mess up his life like that.
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    Aug 23, 2012 12:27 AM GMT
    Pyre85 said
    paulflexes saidIf churches had to follow the same rules as other businesses (which they are), they'd be sued for false advertisement because none of them have actually "witnessed" Jehovah.

    That said, just be glad you're not around them. In my experience, they're among the most hateful religious cults groups out there...if you're not a member...but they'll "be nice" so you don't know how they really think.

    Yeah. yes and no. As a member its pretty decent, but you get all the drama and gossip that any small group in regular contact with eachother breeds, only its all about who is missing more church than they should, or can you believe they watched this movie, I would NEVER watch something as sinful as that. etc.
    And knocking on peoples doors, there definitely is a little bit of contempt for those who won't listen at all. It's only natural though. Anyone who believes they know all the answers to the universe: where it came from, why there's suffering in the world, how it will all end, and holding the promise that THEY and they alone will be the ones surviving Armageddon....well. That can go to your head pretty quick, and make you think far less of other people who refuse to accept "the truth" they are so diligently trying to spread through the world. After all, eveyone who doesn't accept it is going to die at gods hands, and they wont. Why would you think well of such people, no matter how many times youre told to love your fellow man?
    Ugh. I feel icky just talking about it.
    Back in the 90's, there was a JW group that woke me up from a terrible hangover and asked if I'd like to talk about all the problems in the world. I told them to STFU and talk to Bill Clinton about that, cause I had nothing to do with it. icon_lol.gif
  • Pyre85

    Posts: 213

    Aug 23, 2012 12:32 AM GMT
    Thanks for the advice guys, I feel a lot less stressed about the whole thing already icon_biggrin.gif
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    Aug 23, 2012 12:37 AM GMT
    Pyre85 saidThanks for the advice guys, I feel a lot less stressed about the whole thing already icon_biggrin.gif
    Always remember: If they don't like you after knowing you're gay, they never liked you to begin with...they only liked the idea of you agreeing with them on everything. icon_wink.gif

    BTW, I was raised strict Church Of Christ. They're even worse than JW when it comes to making friends outside the church (or at least, my family was).
  • waccamatt

    Posts: 1918

    Aug 23, 2012 2:27 AM GMT
    Honestly, I would make a new set of friends and leave them behind. It is rare that you remain friends with those from childhood after a certain point, anyway. I know it's rough, but you'll be much better off if you surround yourself with people that totally accept you as you are and support you.
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    Aug 23, 2012 2:52 AM GMT
    OP I think you are looking for closure and reassurance in some pretty tough places!..

    I understand we all need to reconnect with our past lives somehow…But under these circumstances honestly it could be awkward!

    Why do you feel this pressing need to reconnect?
    What are you expecting to find if you reconnect with these people?

    The people you mentioned seem to be wrapped up in privacy or are leading totally different lives!..(Will you be well received?)

    It sounds to me that you are already on your way; you are starting to “Deprogram”! “Going Back” could be a traumatic experience for you!

    My options if I were in your shoes...
    I would keep moving forward… heal more … find myself and then see how I feel about “Going Back”

    Hope it works out for you..! Hugz
  • O5vx

    Posts: 3154

    Aug 23, 2012 2:57 AM GMT
    Wow, this is something I could relate to a lot. Being brought up in an Islamic family, I often think about how many of my friends would react if I was to come out. I think about this all the time, but I know I won't find the answers to this questions until four years from now.

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    Aug 23, 2012 3:00 AM GMT
    Either way, in your life you will have to learn to stand on your own, despite your situation. You could've been in a gay friendly and accepting family, you have to do what is right for you. In consideration of your family and the twisted mind fuck you got from being isolated from people, I'd recommend working with a therapist to get you situated into the ways of the outside world.
    My grandmother tried to keep me under her wing by manipulating me a lot of the ways you were, but not based on religion and trust, but on fear of what is out in the world... you have to stand apart from that, and see passed it.
    You can't make your family accept what they will not, you can only hope they do. If they don't, be ready for it, and strike out on your own. Over time you'll find your way. Trust in yourself, you're your own best advocate for anything and everything you deserve in this life.
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    Aug 23, 2012 3:02 AM GMT
    O5vx saidWow, this is something I could relate to a lot. Being brought up in an Islamic family, I often think about how many of my friends would react if I was to come out. I think about this all the time, but I know I won't find the answers to this questions until four years from now.

    If they're American-Islamic (including Canada as part of the Americas) they'll probably be ok with it.

    If they're middle eastern native Islamic, not so much.

    One of my good friends from Pakistan had to take an arranged marriage to prove his straightness, and would be killed by his family if he ever divorced and came out.
  • O5vx

    Posts: 3154

    Aug 23, 2012 3:05 AM GMT
    Anocxu saidOP I think you are looking for closure and reassurance in some pretty tough places!..

    I understand we all need to reconnect with our past lives somehow…But under these circumstances honestly it could be awkward!

    Why do you feel this pressing need to reconnect?
    What are you expecting to find if you reconnect with these people?

    The people you mentioned seem to be wrapped up in privacy or are leading totally different lives!..(Will you be well received?)

    It sounds to me that you are already on your way; you are starting to “Deprogram”! “Going Back” could be a traumatic experience for you!

    My options if I were in your shoes...
    I would keep moving forward… heal more … find myself and then see how I feel about “Going Back”

    Hope it works out for you..! Hugz


    I could understand a lot of what is going through. A church of people you have connected with over the years are in that situation. To have them think the worst of you is absolutely heart breaking...so you always find ways to reconnect and try to let them know that you are not a bad person and you have not changed as an individual.
  • O5vx

    Posts: 3154

    Aug 23, 2012 3:06 AM GMT
    paulflexes said
    O5vx saidWow, this is something I could relate to a lot. Being brought up in an Islamic family, I often think about how many of my friends would react if I was to come out. I think about this all the time, but I know I won't find the answers to this questions until four years from now.

    If they're American-Islamic (including Canada as part of the Americas) they'll probably be ok with it.

    If they're middle eastern native Islamic, not so much.

    One of my good friends from Pakistan had to take an arranged marriage to prove his straightness, and would be killed by his family if he ever divorced and came out.


    It is not middle eastern, but African.
  • camfer

    Posts: 892

    Aug 23, 2012 3:07 AM GMT
    I seriously doubt that any of them are going to preach to you. They will either renew contact with you when you give them the opportunity, or not. You're mature enough to handle it either way.

    I am totally out and had one JW employee for a couple of years. She'd pull her kids out of school if there was a Halloween party. They didn't celebrate Christmas or Thanksgiving. She'd bring her faith into every conversation she possibly could. I'd just ignore it all. She ignored the fact that I was gay. Together we got a lot of work done on the farm. She'd try to witness to any new employees, but I'd already given them the heads up about her faith.

    What I took from the whole situation is that JWs are very ethical people who tend to behave in a very prescribed manner as dictated by their faith. If you are outside their faith then they are really not too concerned about you unless they think there's an opening to "convert" you.

  • FuriousGeorge

    Posts: 181

    Aug 23, 2012 3:13 AM GMT
    There is no universal answer to a situation like yours; everything is about context. That being said, based on what you've said, I think you'll only find pain by going down that road. If the church is really as exclusive and judgmental as you've depicted, you're going to take twenty thorns for every rose you find.

    Sure, maybe you can set a new example and stage a revolution, but not everyone has the stamina for that. Some people just want to find acceptance, not be activists, especially with hostile crowds. It doesn't sound to me like you really want to reconnect with a bunch of homophobic friends, try to change their minds, and get beaten down in the process. I too would be daunted by that.

    Food for thought: perhaps you want so badly to talk to these people again because you haven't made enough of an effort to find new, accepting people. Perhaps you're feeling alone, so your natural urge is to reconnect with people you already know and alleviate that loneliness. I'm speaking from experience here. Try reaching out to new people and socializing more, and you'll be amazed at how quickly you stop worrying about these old, potentially toxic connections (not to rag on old friends, just that your description of them sounds pretty unhealthy for you).

    Message me if you wanna chat.
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    Aug 23, 2012 3:17 AM GMT
    WhyWhySee said
    paulflexes said
    O5vx saidWow, this is something I could relate to a lot. Being brought up in an Islamic family, I often think about how many of my friends would react if I was to come out. I think about this all the time, but I know I won't find the answers to this questions until four years from now.

    If they're American-Islamic (including Canada as part of the Americas) they'll probably be ok with it.

    If they're middle eastern native Islamic, not so much.

    One of my good friends from Pakistan had to take an arranged marriage to prove his straightness, and would be killed by his family if he ever divorced and came out.

    His parents still live in Pakistan and are very wealthy. They'd get an overnight round-trip ticket, and be out of the country before anyone found his body.

    Yeah, they're that strict. icon_sad.gif
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    Aug 23, 2012 3:45 AM GMT
    Personally, it sounds like a can of worms I wouldn't want to open. I think it would make things awkward for the as well as yourself. It's sort of pitting their beliefs against your "alternative lifestyle." Is it worth the stress and worry? I would say perhaps reach out to that guy, who's married now, if you really want to reconnect with them and not with the others, unless they were really close friendships as well. Otherwise, I think new friendships are made and ended based on different stages of our lives. I have lost contact with most of my middle and high school friends, mostly because I've changed and it would just not be comfortable being around them now. In any case, life goes on. Good luck either way! icon_wink.gif
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    Aug 23, 2012 6:51 AM GMT
    I think you are a passionate man who is on a diligent quest to find himself… Past present and future..
    Thanks for the msg...Glad I could help!
    ..icon_biggrin.gif