web analytics
July 1, 2015 / 14 Tammuz, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Restoring Proper Values To Your Marriage

Respler-Yael

Dear Dr. Yael:

Despite being happily married for several years, there is one thing that has been bothering me for a while.

When my husband and I first married, we were basically on the same wavelength regarding halacha and hashkafic values. We wanted the same things out of life and wished to raise our children similarly. However, we moved into a community where there are Jews of all persuasions, and over the years I feel as if my husband’s values have changed.

For example, my husband has recently asked me to dress differently and go with him to places we both used to find inappropriate. I want my husband to find me attractive and I want to make him happy, but I do not agree with the way he wants me to dress. While I feel more attractive in those outfits, I know deep down that they are not following the “spirit of the law” when it comes to being tzniusdik. I also understand my husband’s desire to go to a movie or a comedy club, but even if we have a good time together I feel guilty afterward, as this is not something I envisioned us doing.

I know that changing can be a slippery slope – and I am afraid of falling. How do I continue to be happy in my marriage while maintaining my inner sense of modesty? How can I relay this message to my husband without hurting him or our marriage? If things continue as they are, how do I raise my children to have a certain hashkafa when I am not acting in a similar manner?

A Confused Wife  

Dear Confused Wife:

Thank you for your honest and heartfelt letter. You are indeed in a challenging predicament.

This question should probably be posed to a rav with whom you are close. However, a problem will arise if your husband is too embarrassed to agree to this. I deal with similar issues in my practice and, at times, marital therapy can bolster the marriage by accentuating certain agreements that the couples make in their attempt to please each other. This can help ameliorate the situation. Please understand that I can only respond from a psychological viewpoint, even though this sounds like a hashkafic shailah as well.

If your husband sees other women in your community dress in a certain manner, he may want you to do likewise because some men have a competitive streak when an issue concerns their wives. This is not always a conscious desire. It is also possible that your husband would rather see you, as opposed to other women, dressed that way. Perhaps you can explain to your husband that although you love to dress that way, you do not always feel comfortable doing so in public. Thus, consider dressing up in your husband’s desired outfits – in private. If your husband is unhappy with that arrangement, find outfits he likes that you feel more comfortable wearing in public. It may take time and effort, but you may be able to find some outfits that are stylish and attractive to your husband.

As for going out together, take turns deciding where to go. This will show your husband what kinds of places you like. I can’t really address this issue since it is more up your rav’s alley; perhaps, though, you can limit the movies to ones with certain ratings. While it is important that the two of you enjoy going out together, you are correct that everything you see and hear impacts you. So think of some alternatives that you know your husband will find to be fun activities. If these alternatives involve group outings, find new friends with whom to share them. In general, it is not a good idea to always go out in groups or with the same people. Once in a while, this is fine; going out alone with your husband, though, is definitely much better for enhancing your relationship.

Regarding your husband, try to find a shiur he can attend that is given by a rav with a great sense of humor or one who is very charismatic. Your husband sounds like a fun guy who has possibly lost some of his connection to frumkeit. This reconnection with Torah must be done very subtly. (It may be more successful if your husband goes with a friend.) Be very careful when gently pushing your husband to participate in this reconnection, as no husband likes his wife to be his mashgiach. But with much love and some subtle, non-threatening hints, you should get your point across. Say something like this to your husband: “I heard of this great shiur that is being given on Wednesday nights; maybe it would be something you would be interested in.”

If you maintain your practice of dressing and acting appropriately, your children will follow suit. Begin to grow slowly and delicately in the tznius realm, and your husband is likely to change for the better.

I hope my suggestions are helpful. Please consult with a rav concerning any halachic or hashkafic issues. In addition, a frum therapist may help you spice up your marriage so that other possible underlying issues can be addressed – and solved. Hatzlachah!

About the Author: Letters may be emailed to deardryael@aol.com. To schedule an appointment, please call 917-751-4887. Dr. Respler will be on 102.1 FM at 10:00 pm Sunday evenings after Country Yossi.


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 “Restoring Proper Values To Your Marriage”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
investing-in-gold_4548807_lrg
What Sanctions? Iran Receives 13 Tons of Gold From S. Africa
Latest Sections Stories

Anna Henriques, who hopes to one day head back to Jamaica, says, “Rabbi Raskin must be willing to respect what exists in Jamaica. The way to the future is to gently bring in the traditions of the past and at the same time embrace the idiosyncrasies of the Jamaican people.”

Food-Talk---Eller-logo

The Silver Platter has it all: gorgeous photography, oodles of useful tips and, more importantly, incredible recipes that you will find yourself making again and again.

Emmer-052915-History

It may be that seeking to connect with the past is rooted in the impermanence and impersonality of modern life.

It is very hard to build a healthy marriage when you do not have good role models.

My best book is one that hasn’t been published yet.

We tend to justify and idealize this division with pride attributing these tendencies as demonstrating a higher level of kedushah.

Everyone in the kehilla can get involved, she added, and mothers can network with each other.

On her first ever trip to Israel last week, popular radio talk-show personality and clinical psychologist Dr. Joy Browne, whose spirited broadcasts regularly attract millions of listeners across North America, paid a visit to OneFamily headquarters in Jerusalem in order to learn more about the physical and emotional challenges faced by victims of terror in […]

With the famous Touro Synagogue, a variety of mansions, each with its own distinct personality, as well as the beautiful coast, Rhode Island makes for an excellent vacation spot.

To avoid all this waste and unnecessary anxiety, let’s break the task down step by step and tackle each one at a time.

While there are those who insist they need full-color photos to be truly entranced by a recipe, I suggest you get over that particular requirement because the written word here will draw you in and cause you to salivate as you peruse the recipes scattered throughout The Well-Spiced Life (Israel Book Shop).

For those who couldn’t go off base, a personal parcel was priceless in its ability to convey a feeling of home.

More Articles from Dr. Yael Respler
Respler-062615

It is very hard to build a healthy marriage when you do not have good role models.

Respler-061915

When they all try to speak at once, I will ask them to stop and speak one at a time.

In America one has to either be very rich or impoverished to receive care – the middle class seems to get taken advantage of.

Growing up, I saw the respect my parents had for each other. Then I got married…

When I complain, she tells me it is retail therapy.

This therapist kept focusing on how “I could do better,” never on how we could make the marriage work.

Unfortunately, the probability is that he will not see a reason to change as he has been acting this way for a long time and clearly has some issues with respecting women.

Returning to visit my family for Yom Tov has become torturous for me.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/marriage-relationships/restoring-proper-values-to-your-marriage/2013/11/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: