Jehovah’s Witnesses And Custody Battles

Feb 20, 2013 by

Jehovah's Witness CustodyThis problem with Jehovah’s Witnesses and custody battles crops up quite often and although I’ve addressed it in the past I thought I would revisit this highly charged subject.

The following was received today:

My ex-wife and I have been divorced for 8 years and have a 50/50 custody arrangement with our 12 year old son.  Prior to divorce, we were practicing Lutherans.  Our son was baptized Lutheran.  I have never wavered with continuing to raise him as a Lutheran post divorce.  My ex also continued in the Lutheran faith up until a few years ago where she started to pursue the JW religion.  Within the last 6 months or so, after she was baptized in JW, she has really ramped up her efforts with our son.

This has affected his schooling as well as extracurricular activities and obviously a major effort to “inculcate” him in the JW way. ALL quite different to the status quot/mainstream ways he was experiencing.  As a result I have pursued legal action to assume full custody as I believe he is being put in a terrible position having to “make sense” of this radical teaching compared to what he has always been used to.   Also the limitations and restrictions, if allowed unchecked, seem to give him little opportunity moving forward as it pertains to succeeding in a mainstream life.  Any thoughts/advice that I can utilize as I plead my case to the courts. Thank you and thank you for this website!

Thanks Anonymous!

I’m going to include an exchange that I had last year with a gentleman who was going through much the same situation only he was fighting the grandparents for custody. I’m including portions of that exchange below:

Hello Doug. My daughter has been systematically stripped away from me by my ex wife’s Jehovah’s Witness parents. They have lied and spent a ton of money over the last eight years to finally get guardianship of my daughter. I still get her every other weekend. Cut to the chase, my daughter got caught kissing a girl in school and the principal called the grandparents. They have been calling her hateful names like queer and faggot. She doesn’t believe in Jehovah’s Witnesses. She wants out and wants to live with me. Any advice?

My response:

You are lucky Anonymous! The grandparents have been unable to brainwash your daughter against you and this is a huge plus for you!

As in any legal matter you should consult the services of a competent attorney…preferably one who specializes in these types of cases.

Depending on the laws of your state this may very well be a simple matter of your daughter petitioning the court to allow her to choose where and with whom she will live.

Different states allow for different ages for this sort of thing and your daughter’s age is crucial in this. If she is still too young to make her own decisions then she can certainly petition the court for emancipation from her grandparents on the basis of their actions in calling her these hateful names or in forcing her to believe a certain religious viewpoint.

Another highly effective method of presenting the court with proof that you are more fit to be her guardian is to have the blood issue brought to the fore. Get the grandparents on record (under oath) and ask them the following:

“If you were in such a position to do so, would you choose to allow your granddaughter to die rather than permit a doctor recommended life saving blood transfusion?”

Being Jehovah’s Witnesses and being under oath they would have to state unequivocally that they would not allow this.

Make sure that your attorney asks these questions while they are under oath, questions them as a hostile witness (yes or no answers only), and that they not be allowed to elaborate!

Again any honest Jehovah’s Witness will have to admit that they will do just about anything to stop a life-saving transfusion from being administered to their loved ones.

They have been brainwashed into believing that a transfusion is an eternal “death sentence” to any Jehovah’s Witness.

With regard to tactics:

Your daughter has options and these options can make her Jehovah’s Witness grandparents crazy.

  • For example she could choose to participate in sports at school (Jehovah’s Witnesses strongly discourage this!)
  • She could choose to run for class president or some other position in the student government.
  • She can choose to read books by former Jehovah’s Witnesses like “Crisis of Conscience” by Raymond Franz a former member of the Governing Body who dissented and left. Jehovah’s Witnesses consider him to be the a proverbial Anti-Christ and anything he wrote to be pure poison to a Jehovah’s Witness.
  • She can choose to attend a church other than the Kingdom Hall. Make sure she brings her new church’s literature with her when she goes back home to the grandparents!
  • Have your daughter start a blog online about her trials and tribulations dealing with her JW grandparents. You and your daughter can do this together. It is great fun I can tell you!
  • Your daughter can whistle or sing Christmas carols, religious songs like “Amazing Grace” and other tunes offensive to JW’s on all levels! I recommend she do so often and at the most inappropriate times like when there are other JW’s visiting the home or during the meetings at the Kingdom Hall. It won’t take but just a few of these episodes and she won’t be welcome back!
  • Give her a huge cross to wear on a chain around her neck. Have her wear it to the Kingdom Hall and in front of her grandparents. Have you ever watched a Dracula movie? Remember what crosses do to vampires? They have the very same effect on Jehovah’s Witnesses! You will laugh when you hear of their reactions!
  • She can choose to join the ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps) or similar military style function in school. The grandparents will have an absolute fit if she does this.

All of these things are engineered to drive your former in-laws stark raving nuts.

They may have won in court but this is psychological warfare. You’re just getting cranked up and the life and mental well being of your daughter is at stake. Are you going to allow these brainwashed psychopaths to put your daughter in harm’s way? No you aren’t! I applaud your efforts to help your daughter and to preserve what is left of your family!

If the grandparents attempt to prevent your daughter from doing all of these normal things then you take them straight to court and notify the court of these matters. Don’t let one single threat or hateful remark go by. Have your attorney contact their attorney with a formal complaint and have your daughter document everything to the letter along with a date and time.

Establish a record for EVERYTHING!

The more wacky and insane you can show these Jehovah’s Witnesses to be the more likely it is that you’ll get full custody.

This is a psychological war of attrition! Eventually you and your daughter working in tandem will wear the poor grandparents out. Then they will simply give up and your daughter will be yours!

You may just be surprised when they drop your daughter off at your home because they simply won’t be able to handle these constant threats to their own fragile mental states!

Make no mistake: your job, and that of your daughter’s, is to make the grandparent’s lives absolute hell on earth. Have them walking on eggshells at every turn. Document every cross word, nutty response or insult. Make them accountable. Make them sorry they asked the court for custody!

You are fighting for your daughter. She is fighting for you. This will bond you two together for the rest of your lives. I’ve been in this situation myself and I have both my wife and daughter to show for it now!

Above all Anonymous, have fun with this! If you’d like to share your success stories with us whether funny or serious please do so! We’d love to hear from you.

Doug Shields is an activist against religious oppression, control and manipulation. He has many years of experience dealing with this issue because he was an active Jehovah’s Witness himself for over twenty-three years. Doug has been privileged to help elders, ministerial servants, full time pioneers and even a circuit overseer to find the strength and determination to finally face the real truth and leave the organization.


  1. Anonymous

    Wow your quite the trouble maker. Your hatred for the Jehovah’s witnesess is scary. You might want to attend a angry management course also go talk to some real Jehovah’s witnesses because you are uninformed. You are a slanderer. Thou shall not bear false witness. You will be judged on that.

  2. Twenty-six years in the JW’s left me all too well informed Anonymous.


  3. Anonymous

    I have been a witness now for 15 years. Started studying when I was 30. With my eyes wide open I looked for faults. Found none with their doctrine. Maybe your parents approach was to strict and not balanced and you feel you have missed out. When you love God more than the world it is easy to live by his standards. But it looks like to me, you love the things of the world more. All that said, the main reason I’m a witness is they are the only religion that teaches Jesus is truly the son of God that’s what you have to believe to be saved not some Trinitarian lie. The truth will set u free.

  4. Of course! The fault has to be mine. Right?

    It couldn’t be your beloved Watchtower. Right?

    Maybe you can’t see the cracks in your Watchtower because you’re not looking for them. Just judge those who do find the cracks as being morally defective, unworthy of God’s love.

    Keep judging everyone there Anonymous. You make a GREAT Jehovah’s Witness.


  5. Anonymous

    I never said you were morally defective or unworthy of God’s love, that’s the farthest thing from my mind. I never judged anyone. I called to your attention the commandment thou shall not bear false witness. I don’t know what the organization was like when you were a child and I’m sorry you are still so burden with having to carry this hatred for the Jehovah’s witness organization but you are misleading people with your personal opinions and misinformation. Maybe you should now that your an adult go back to the kingdom Hall and see it’s nothing like you feel it is. Please forgive me if I hurt your feelings. Sincerely, V.

  6. Perhaps not in so many words Anonymous but let me quote what you actually stated:

    “When you love God more than the world it is easy to live by his standards. But it looks like to me, you love the things of the world more.”

    You outright stated that I love the world more than I love God. That is pure judgment of another regardless of how you want to spin it. You don’t know me. You have absolutely no idea what I love or don’t love. You just chose to judge me just as many other JW’s do as a matter of course. You also just stated, without any facts to back it up, that I’m willfully misleading people. I think anyone reading your post would agree that you’re pretty much calling me an intentional liar.

    I won’t ever go back to the Kingdom Hall because I refuse to subject myself to the mistreatment I received at the hands of so called “spiritual men”. I won’t attend because I have no need to do so. I have known for quite a long time that the Watchtower doesn’t have “the truth”. I’m free of the bonds that held me down for so many years. Why would I go back to that now?

    You didn’t hurt my feelings V. You merely made my point that Jehovah’s Witnesses, for the most part, engage in the wholesale judging of others as a matter of daily life. It isn’t your fault. You’ve been taught to do this over time by the Watchtower leadership. Anyone who dares disagree with a JW regarding their beliefs is relegated to the “goat” class and called out as a liar and accused of being misled, or worse, intentionally misleading others. This is all done without giving any thought or consideration to anything other than that they disagree with the Watchtower’s teachings and have the audacity to voice their opinions (something strongly discouraged in the JW ranks). JW’s then apply the label of their choice i.e. “apostate” or “goat” etc., as they’ve been taught to do, and then they judge them and that’s that.

    This is in direct opposition to the words of Christ when He so aptly stated: “Judge not lest ye be judged.” Matthew 7:1-3 NIV

    It also conflicts with the wise words of Solomon in Proverbs 18:13 where he stated:

    “When anyone replies to a matter before he hears the facts, it is foolish and humiliating.” New World Translation

    Yet this is exactly what JW’s do when they encounter anyone who is more knowledgeable about the Bible than they are. They immediately shut down when anyone calls into question the ethics and agenda of the Watchtower leadership. They make a snap judgment based, not upon the facts, but upon their emotions and the intense fear they feel when they are called out by someone who knows a little something about the Bible, Jehovah’s Witnesses, their teachings and their history.

    Now, if you ever want to openly debate anything that I’ve written on this blog then you are welcome to do so. However, I take full exception to your accusations of my attempting to mislead anybody and I challenge you to prove your assertions in front of the world and my readers.

    I’ll be waiting.


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