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Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities – 1/26/07

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We encourage women and men of all ages to send in their personal stories by e-mail to rachel@jewishpress.com or by mail to Rachel/Chronicles, c/o The Jewish Press, 338 Third Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11215.

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Dear Rachel,

It is not often that I find myself writing to a columnist, but in this instance I felt the need to let you know that your response (Chronicles Dec. 8) to “I did not choose to be what I am” (Dec. 1) was right on target.

I write to congratulate you for keeping a proper perspective of the big picture and for not letting emotions blind you. You are to be commended for your spiritual fortitude and courage in taking the correct stance without fear and with trust in Hashem and His ways.

The Torah is the very code that defines compassion – its guidelines compassionately steer us away from the excruciating pain of a homosexual lifestyle.

I wish you continued hatzlacha in your noble work.

Anonymous father of an SSA

Dear Rachel,

Could not wait to read your response to “I did not choose” The article was written b’tuv taam. The fact that we always get steadfast responses in The Jewish Press, al pi haTorah, is mechazek and excites − in that we do have the “right way.”

I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Keep up the good work.

SSA Agunah

Dear Anonymous Father and Agunah,

Thank you for your words of chizuk. I humbly submit that it is with the help of G-d that I persevere with a task that is both challenging and rewarding.

I avail myself of this opportunity to thank all the readers, including the author of the letter (Did not choose), for taking the time to convey their positive feedback.

My prayers are with all of you who are in pain … to be granted a complete refuah.

Reaction to The Plight of Agunos:  A Male Perspective (Chronicles 12-29)

Dear Rachel,

G-d bless the person who wrote the article (Male Perspective of Agunah plight). I’m someone who went through the exact same thing. I was married with two children, thrown out of my house after six years of marriage, and I was accused of things that are unprintable.

To make a very long story short, I remarried (thank G-d). She got married (to the person that she was seeing while we were still married), had a baby and got divorced again. I guess my point is that it is so true that man is deemed guilty until proven innocent. And just because she decides that she doesn’t like you anymore, suddenly you become this monster abuser.

Not sure what else to say I’m not too good at this as I’m not much of a writer, but the guy who wrote was right on.

Been there, big time

Dear Rachel,

I think it’s great that you feature both genders’ views on this sad issue. Men and women alike can be very mean and heartless during the Get process, hurling nasty accusations at each other.

The best thing to do when one divorces is to get out fast and walk away. Nastiness just serves to prolong the agony and hurt the children (if there are any involved). I lost a bundle of money refusing to drag out the proceedings for my child’s sake. I sure could have used the bucks, but no amount of money would have been worth the mental stress our son would suffer.

The blame game has to end − by the spouses and their families. Accept that the marriage is over, pick up the pieces and move on. Stop the destruction!

No one seems willing to cease this madness. And the kids are the ones who end up losing out!

Been there, too

Dear Been There’s,

The impression one may get from reading your letters is that it’s all fire and brimstone out there. Many couples, to their credit, part ways amicably and sensibly. Unfortunately, there are also many who cannot see clearly through the thick haze created by anger and bitterness. The fallout of all the ugly mudslinging, by supposedly mature adults, is devastating all around.

A profound lesson to take to heart:

A tailor once delivered a new garment to the home of Rabbi Shalom Dov Ber Schneerson (Rashab), who was then only four years old. Noticing that a remnant piece of cloth remained in the tailor’s possession, the child pulled at it, thus causing embarrassment to the apologetic clothier. When his mother reprimanded him for shaming the tailor, the Rashab wept bitter tears.

A while later, the youngster asked his father, the Maharash, how one would go about atoning for the sin of embarrassing another. Unfamiliar with the incident, Reb Shmuel Schneerson asked his son what specifically he was referring to. The child fell silent.

When his mother asked him why he did not answer his father, the young Shalom Dov Ber replied, “Not enough that I caused a person shame, should I compound it with lashon hara about him?”

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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