Gay & Lesbian Stories about Jehovah's Witnesses

The most recent submissions are posted at the top. When the file gets too large, the older stories will be added to "General Story Archives."

Hi there, Randy!

I was raised as a 4th generation witness in Georgia. I'm now 28, and the long and short of it is this: Having the family clout of 4 generations behind me, I was able to do pretty much as I wished, although I honestly did believe I had the truth. I chose to be celibate, didn't date women, and was best friends with another "celibate" gay teen. Everyone thought we were dating. No one would approach me about it, though. It wasn't until after I quit 3 years ago that a friend mentioned that to me.

I did pioneer during my late teens, and was accepted to Bethel in 1990. I worked there for 3 years and enjoyed most of the experience. Unfortunately towards the end of my stay, I was pissing off the elder in my congregation, a "Bethel Elder", who thought he was just a bit higher than everyone else. I challenged him on several occasions when he didn't follow protocol and decided that I was "spiritually weak" and needed a bible study. I laughed in his face and went to my overseers in Bethel. They laughed as well. This went on for several months and I decided that it was time for me to go, so I left in 1993.

I finally left the organization in 1996 after moving to Nantucket Island, Mass. in hopes of becoming "spiritually stronger". See, I'd been exploring metaphysics and been discovering natural abilities that I'd ignored or, more correctly, not recognized (we all have them too!). This gave me a great insight into what I thought I knew to be truth. I examined what I knew as a witness against common sense, I began questioning the god of the bible and asking such questions as "Why would an all-knowing god be so wishy-washy? Why would God kill the children for the sins of the parents? What was the point of killing the baby born to David and Bathsheba when it was the innocent one?"

This led to more examination within myself...then I started to look at other "spiritual" publications. It started out with New Age stuff, but has progressed ten-fold since to all kinds of different things. I've gotten much more insight into what I feel is true spirituality, being connected with your own spirit first, then realizing that it can give you guidance in life if you just listen to it. It's called intuition and we all experience it. We just don't always know it for what it is.

After I moved to Nantucket for my "spiritual healing" as a JW, I was really awakened to the conflict going on inside myself. Not sexually, but doctrinally. I couldn't reconcile the ideas and teachings of the Witnesses against what I was starting to feel myself. But, I held on to the idea of "It doesn't matter what the words say...just keep your faith in Jehovah and everything will work out fine. I still have my spirituality." Well, that just didn't happen.

I was sitting at the kingdom hall and we were reading from the July 96 Kingdom Ministry. I wasn't paying attention to the meeting and was reading something else when I came across the Society's definition of spirituality. It was an article in the June or July Kingdom Ministry about increasing your time in field service, and it said 'increased field activity helps build your spiritual stature'. These were the words I'd been looking for. They said in the article that you earn spiritual stature by going in field service. Gee...I always thought spirituality couldn't be earned...I started laughing out loud right there in the meeting during the talk, I got up with the congregation looking at me, eyed a couple of people and walked out.

They knew the minute I made eye contact with them what I was doing. I went to my office, typed up a 5 page letter and disassociated myself. I told about things I'd seen as a boy, as a teen, and as a Bethelite, that convinced me that they didn't have what I needed any longer. I told of experiences that my family had endured at the hands of the politically influential and the battles that had been fought and lost in the interest of holding position. I released a lifetime in those pages. I told them not to contact me, that I knew what I was doing and that my name was to be announced at the next meeting. They did exactly that. That same month, I "remembered" that I'm gay and that I could, for the first time in my life, experiment with my sexuality. I've always felt a little bit underdeveloped, since I started doing at age 25 what most kids did in their teens, which is explore themselves and sex. But, I'm dealing with it now at 28. I moved back home to Georgia that winter. It was difficult being out "in the world" for the first time, I was under-educated, wasn't under the protective wing of the Organization, and left to fend for myself. I had the opportunity to move to Seattle and I took it. I've developed a life, friends, and even a boyfriend or two over the two years since I came here. I'm happier than I've ever been, even though I feel like an inexperienced kid sometimes. I'm still learning a lot, I have a decent job in the student loan biz with incredible benefits and a retirement. I don't feel guilty about working for a future in "the world", because it's the reality.

It's where I live. It isn't the world that's scary anymore. What scares me is ignorance, willful ignorance, people who don't want to expand their mind. I will never be like that again.

Jason E.
Seattle WA

"A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still."

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