Photo Credit: Jewish Press

Dear Mrs. Bluth,

I’m living a lie and its getting harder and harder to conceal the truth from my family and friends. I’m hoping that you can help me find my way out of the turbulent whirlpool in which I live and in which I sink deeper with each passing week.


I am a twenty six-year-old bochur, the youngest of three boys, the older two have been married and divorced. My parents have placed their hopes on me to be the one to marry and stay married, and to give them grandchildren, but I am terrified of getting married because I see the misery my brothers went through with their ex-wives and all they suffered during their ill-fated marriages. My oldest brother is still working two jobs to meet his monthly alimony and child support payments and is a broken man. My brother, three years older than me, has been banned from seeing his little daughter and his wife has re-married and moved to another borough. He told me that marriage is a curse and had he known this before, he never would have married.

I know that my parents are desperate for me to finally marry a girl who will stay and be like a daughter to them, bear grandchildren they can watch grow and have nachas from but I can’t find the courage to even date anymore after I see the pain, hardships and misery my brothers have and still go through from their ex-wives. Shadchanim are stopping to call with prospects for me, which is also a heartache for them and I hurt to see their pain. I am torn as to what to do. I’m terrified of getting married and terrified of staying single, and more than anything, I am saddened watching my parents waiting for me to bring them their long awaited nachas. Please advise.


Dear Friend,

How sad is all this misfortune that everyone in your family is suffering. I wish there was some way to turn back the clock and start over without all the mistakes each family member made and that there was a ‘happily ever after…’ for your two older brothers so you would not be so fearful of marriage.

I feel deeply your parents’ pain, living through their two older sons unhappy marriages, painful and costly divorces and alienation from their grandchildren. It’s no small wonder that you are terrified of marriage having witnessed this too, with the added burden of everyone’s expectation that you be the one to find a wife who will be a keeper and produce offspring that will make the family whole and complete. No wonder you feel pressured and weighed down carrying such a heavy burden and that dating and marriage are the farthest thing from your mind. But it doesn’t have to be so.

You are not destined to make the same errors in your life that your older brothers made, which led them down the path to divorce. In your letter, you describe two very self-centered men who viewed themselves as lord and masters of their homes and their wives as servants to cater to their bidding. That’s not what marriage is supposed to be and it would serve you well to seek professional help so that you will see clearly that marriage is a partnership based ona love, respect and mutual consideration.

You sound like a nice young man who is living for others and not yourself. Once you understand what marriage is and the beauty and comfort a loving relationship will offer, I’m sure your fear of dating and searching for you will break free of your inhibitions and allow you to find your bashert. Here’s wishing you hatzlacha in this endeavor and I hope you will let us know, in the not too distant future that a “Mazel Tov” is forthcoming.


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