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October 1, 2014 / 7 Tishri, 5775
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Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities

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His lack of response or reaction does not necessarily mean that he’s not listening or that he fails to appreciate your openness. Some of the best marriages are made of couples that complement one another. Try to imagine both of you as chatterboxes or each of you tight-lipped. Besides, placing too much emphasis on what you perceive as missing in your marriage may be camouflaging all the good. I’ll bet that plenty of wives – especially those suffering from verbally abusive or loudmouthed men – would consider you one lucky woman.

I personally know of a man who said very little and let his wife do all the talking. She’d update him on all the latest doings in their immediate and extended families and was always the life of the party, while he seemed to tune out most of the time. (She once confided, after sixty years of marriage to the same man, that she knows he loves her even though he has a hard time showing it.)

One day she was unexpectedly called back to her Maker and their home became deathly still. He said little, as always, but it was obvious that the pain of her loss and her absence made things go dark for him. His health began to deteriorate and he slid steadily downhill. Though his children rallied around him and his grandchildren made him smile, he actually verbalized his desire to go to sleep and not awaken in the morning; that’s how badly he missed her presence. Before long, God granted him his wish.

Show your husband you love him and care for him, even if he does not reciprocate. Accept him for what and who he is — a caring spouse and father (despite the fact that he is unable to express himself). There is no perfection in this world, but you may want to keep in mind that the continuous dripping of soft water can indent the hardest rock’s surface. One day he may yet surprise you.

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.


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