web analytics
July 14, 2014 / 16 Tammuz, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim's Restaurant in Tiberias Restaurant in Tiberias Enriches Holocaust Survivors’ Wellbeing

The generosity of Mrs. Lee Steinberg of New York helped establish the Meir Panim Free Restaurant in Tiberias.



Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities – 12/04/09

By:

Chronicles-logo

Dear Rachel,

The article by the abused wife (My suffering seems endless / Chronicles 11-6) brought tears to my eyes. I have been a victim of the same community bullying for several years now. My name has been besmirched all over – as far as Europe and Israel. Simple things like going to shul and communal gatherings are taboo for me. People whisper, call me names and look upon me with disdain and horror, as if I am some hardened criminal.

This is because I divorced a choshuva (honorable) man with a condition that I was not told about before we were married. Good people have tried to set me up with shidduchim, but when my name is checked into, it is met with slander.

The community has even managed to alienate my only child from me. Where is justice? Living here has become a daily nightmare that is almost indescribable. (I cannot afford to leave because rents are astronomical.)

Looking for employment has become another difficulty for me. Prospective employers check out my name and hear only evil and slander, which render me unemployable. Even my father was told not to have anything to do with me when he was at a family simcha.

People have stooped so low as to throw eggs at my door, and little children take the liberty of calling me names. This is all learned from their parents.

The Rabbanim are in cahoots with my ex-husband’s family, demeaning me with their looks and stares. When will this disgrace stop? At the end of our lives, we all have to speak to the Ribono Shel Olam. How will those held responsible for the destruction of another human being defend themselves?

I know that there are other men and women being subjected to this evil, and I want to make people aware of the character assassination and slander that have a stranglehold on our “religious” communities.

Snubbed is not the word

Dear Rachel,

I am writing in response to the young Orthodox woman who had written her sad story about having married a very abusive man whom she ended up divorcing a couple of years later.

Her ex-spouse continues to abuse her by spreading malicious gossip and falsehood about her and her family. This has caused her irreparable harm, including being ostracized by her former friends and the members of her community.

Despite this difficult situation, this young woman has refrained from speaking lashon hara about her former husband, choosing only to confide in her therapist and immediate family members. She has suffered deeply, due to her ex-husband’s malevolence in ruining her name (while she takes the “high ground” and keeps silent). You responded by commending her for her admirable behavior in refraining from speaking lashon hara, and you told her she could walk with her head held high as a result.

I will have to disagree with you on this one, Rachel. I too was stuck in an abusive marriage – for over 25 years. Some of the reasons I remained in the marriage were due to the messages I received when I was a young innocent girl in Yeshiva: work to keep the shalom bayis in your home at all costs; be dan l’kav zchus (give the benefit of the doubt); and refrain from speaking lashon hara.

Unfortunately, when one is married to a sociopath/con-artist/pathological liar, keeping these mitzvos can end up hurting the victim and causing much suffering and pain. My willingness to be dan l’kav zchus my ex-husband over and over again set me up to be betrayed in a never ending cycle.

My refusal to speak “lashon hara” to anyone about his abusive, noxious and illegal activities ended up working as a cover for him so that he could actually continue in his evil ways. My ex-spouse continues to abuse me through my adult children to this day, by trying to poison them against their own mother. He plays the “victim” and continually tells them how I destroyed the family unit.

The religious leaders in my community think the best way to handle this is to take the “moral high ground” and keep silent. This tactic has left my children even more confused and angry at their mother about the divorce.

On the contrary, I have come to believe that keeping silent in the face of evil behavior is nothing to be proud of. Keeping silent and “living a lie” in these kinds of situations only serves to protect and enable the evildoer.

I see no reason why this woman should continue to suffer this way. It is no “mitzvah” for her to enable her abusive former husband to continue his destructive and evil activities.

When it comes to the laws of lashon hara and being dan l’kav zchus, one needs to use common sense as well. I believe these are very important mitzvos, but they can be misused and abused when it comes to protecting evil behavior.

I should’ve known better

Dear Victims,

The complex laws of Shmiras Halashon are not cut and dried. The need to seek advice or just to lift a heavy burden off your heart… to get an evildoer to change his ways, to protect others from harm or to clear your name and reputation – are some of the mitigating factors that make speaking out permissible (within halachic parameters).

Each of you has been horribly wronged and is being unjustifiably vilified. The impropriety of some supposed religious leaders is deplorable, to say the least. Yet, it is hard to believe that an entire community is corrupt. A respected and reliable confidante (ideally a Rebbetzin, under the given circumstances) should be sought out. The mere act of sharing can relieve much anxiety and can furthermore serve to set the record straight, besides offer the benefit of gaining some effective guidance.

Don’t despair or give up; reach out beyond your communities, if need be. Chaveirim kol Yisrael Jews the world over are connected.

* * * * *

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, 338 Third Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11215

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 – 12/04/09”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Does "proportionate response" mean Israel should have attacked a Gaza fuel station after a missile from Gaza exploded at a Ashdod gas station and seriously injured one man?
Israel Guilty of Disproportionate Attacks by not Wiping Out Hamas
Latest Sections Stories
Aaron in front of Gush Katif-related school history project.

He wondered what it was like to live in Israel, to be religious.

Eller-071114-Book

The Open Kitchen is so appealing you practically want to eat the pages as you turn them.

Schonfeld-logo1

In reality, Baruch is one of many children who can be described as twice-exceptional. He is both gifted and struggling with a learning disability.

Since there is no “happenstance” in our world, we can only say that something of great import is taking place in the Holy Land.

Alternatively, you can try your absolute hardest to listen whenever she says anything.

As queen of the Maghreb, Aures Damia reigned in peace and prosperity until 702.

Some yeshivish couples do not believe in going out with other couples, but that does not mean that the women cannot have social lives.

That rescued little boy is Israel’s former chief rabbi, Israel Meir Lau, now chief rabbi of Tel Aviv.

An SRO crowd recently celebrated the 22nd Anniversary Breakfast of Congregation Bais Naftoli, honoring Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell and community leader and philanthropist Ira Frankel.

Zimmer was popular with veteran teammates like Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese and Duke Snider – and with a rookie lefthander named Sandy Koufax.

Of course it is disingenuous to tell a person from a non-rabbinic, non-rosh yeshiva home to make an effort.

Israel’s coastline may be short, but there are still some real estate pearls waiting to be realized, offering cheap alternatives for sea front living. All you have to do is go further from the boundaries of Tel-Aviv and the Dan Block.

Explosive children or those with ODD are easily frustrated, demanding and inflexible.

    Latest Poll

    Israel's Iron Dome Anti-Missile System:





    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/chronicles-of-crises/chronicles-of-crises-in-our-communities-209/2009/12/02/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: