web analytics
September 23, 2014 / 28 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities – 12/12/08

By:

Chronicles-logo

Dear Readers:

To no one’s surprise, families are going through trying times as singles anxiously await their life partners. This column has heard from suffering mothers whose hearts ache as they watch their children rejected and dejected, singles/parents experiencing difficulties out of the norm, and well intentioned “as I see it” criticizers.

Last week’s column featured an eye-opening letter from an exasperated single, who – in her early 30s – is keenly conscious of the clock that ticks in sync with her diminishing procreative capacity.

So powerful is her nurturing instinct and so strong her desire for family life that she has opted to widen the parameters of her shidduch guidelines and is dating a man who she describes as kind, generous, smart, funny, honest, serious and mature − but not observant.

Dear Thirty-Something,

Only one who walks in your shoes can claim to feel your pain. And how exhilarating it must be to have the company of a man with such a winning combination of attributes! Your own intelligence and crisp clarity of mind are discernable in your methodical articulation of your dilemma.

Yet, while laying out your case in favor of forging ahead in “new” territory, you concede that doing so may come at a high cost to your principles, as you will be compromising the mores of the belief system that has been your guiding compass from childhood on.

Your inner struggle is apparent. “I am not oblivious to the consequences,” you state outright. You furthermore are “taking the risks quite seriously” and admit that the pros on your list do not outweigh the cons. You speak of the strong probability that you will not delight in Shabbos zemiros or Torah discussions at your table and the likelihood that you will be making concessions on halachos. These unsettling thoughts have you crying out at intervals in your letter – “What do I do?” “What more can I consider right now?” “But what am I to do?”

Your uneasiness is justified. You yourself don’t put much stock in your friend’s lukewarm aspiration to be religious “when he is married; however not at this point in time.” Let us examine the stark reality up-close: When you date, you pick the site, you choose the time and the activity, and when the day is done you both retreat to your respective abodes, to your own individual lives and agendas.

Life together, on the other hand, is altogether a different story. Once the honeymoon phase wanes, there is only so far you will go before coming to a fork in the road. How many rifts will it take before you realize that love doesn’t conquer all? How many “compromises” will you make before your admiration for your beau’s brains, generosity and maturity begins to dwindle?

Whom will your children emulate as their role model? Whom will your son look up to, lean on and learn from (and with)? How long before your own enthusiasm for your religion and rich heritage begins to wither; before the fabric of your culture will start to unravel? And if you will manage to keep strong and hold on to the practice of your faith, how long before your respect for your life-partner gives way to frustration and resentment of a spouse who does not share your value system?

Then again, there is a possibility that it may work out. Perhaps if he were faced with the real prospect of losing you, the holy spark within his soul would awaken him to earnestly commit to a religious way of life. (If he has had an upbringing in such a setting, this would increase the chance of his coming around.)

Otherwise, you must ask yourself whether you are ready and willing to chance jeopardizing the lives of innocents who will be born totally reliant on you, whose neshamos will come into the world with the natural expectation to be nurtured, taught and primed by their parents in the ways of Toras Hashem.

As an adult you have the right to choose, to decide how to live your life. However, there is something not quite right – amoral, in fact – in knowingly endangering the sacredness of innocents whose charge you will be entrusted with.

You claim to be G-d-fearing, religious and serious. Surely, then, you take your religion seriously. You feel that matchmakers are not as concerned with you (older singles) as with the younger generation. Do you mean to say that you have actually entertained the thought that your Maker, the Arbiter of all matchmakers, is less interested in you than in the younger generation? Believe purely and simply that nothing is beyond His capability; beseech Him purely and simply to guide you in the right direction; rely on Him whole- heartedly to lead you where you were meant to go and He will relieve you of the enormous burden of uncertainty.

If all your friend can offer is a “maybe one day I’ll think about becoming observant,” your projection as to how your future with him will play out may prove prophetic. Notwithstanding that the choice is yours to make, be forewarned that the consequences of that choice will be with you a lifetime − and the hands of the clock cannot ever be turned back.

If it is children you yearn for, consider the option of becoming a foster or adoptive parent to a child who has already been brought into the world but has been shortchanged and is in desperate need of a mother’s love and nurturing. The satisfaction and benefits of such an arrangement can be vastly fulfilling.

On behalf of our communities everywhere: We applaud your achievements, admire your resilience, and appreciate the contributions you selflessly endow us with. May you continue to enhance the quality of the lives that you touch and merit to do so with your zivug at your side − as you go on to build a bayis ne’eman b’Yisrael.

About the Author: We encourage women and men of all ages to send in their personal stories via email to rachel@jewishpress.com or by mail to Rachel/Chronicles, c/o The Jewish Press, 4915 16th Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11204. If you wish to make a contribution and help agunot, your tax-deductible donation should be sent to The Jewish Press Foundation. Please make sure to specify that it is to help agunot, as the foundation supports many worthwhile causes.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities – 12/12/08”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Drone Intercept Along Syrian Border 1
Israel Shoots Down Syrian Sukhoi-24 Fighter Plane Infiltrating Israeli Airspace
Latest Sections Stories
Calmer Times. Breslov chassidim on erev Rosh Hashanah in 2012 at the grave of Rav Nachman in Uman.

As optimistic as Menachem Rosenberg is – and he said he is going to Uman – he’s sure that this year, most of the travelers will not tour other religious sites or places in Ukraine.

Three sets of three-day Yomim Tovim can seem overwhelming – especially when we are trying to stay healthy.

Plotkin-092614

Is a missed opportunity to do a mitzvah considered a sin?

Teens-Twenties-logo

The sounds and scents of the kitchen are cozy, familiar, but loud in the silence.

Everyone has a weakness. For some people it is the inability to walk past a sales rack without dropping a few hundred dollars. For others, it’s the inability to keep their house organized.

Not enjoying saying no, I often succumbed to requests viewing them as demands I couldn’t refuse.

His entire life was dedicated to Torah and he became a pivotal figure in the transmittal of the Oral Torah to the next generation.

When you don’t have anyone else to turn to… that’s when you’re tied to Hashem the closest.

While we all go to restaurants for a good meal, it is dessert, that final taste that lingers in your mouth, that is the crown jewel of any dining experience and Six Thirteen’s offerings did not disappoint.

Today, fifty years and six million (!) people later, Israel is truly a different world.

There will always be items that don’t freeze well – salads and some rice- or potato-based dishes – so you need to leave time to prepare or cook them closer to Yom Tov and ensure there is enough room in the refrigerator to store them.

In Uzbekistan, in the early twentieth century, it was the women who wore the pants.

This is an important one in raising a mentsch (and maybe even in marrying off a mentsch! listening skills are on the top of the list when I do shidduch coaching).

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/chronicles-of-crises/chronicles-of-crises-in-our-communities-127/2008/12/10/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: