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Tuesday, March 28, 2006


teach them DILIGENTLY to your children (Devorim 6:7)

Picking up on a terrifying post by Ex semgirl I’d like to add my two cents here.
She tells the story of a girl who was not prepared properly prior to her marriage as to what her duties would be.
Even sadder is the story of her husband, who, perhaps through no fault of his own, lacked sensitivity and basic human decency when she voiced her distress.

This story hit a chord with me, and as if I knew the protagonists personally felt their pain.

It’s not uncommon to ask a Chosson(future groom) or a Kallah(future bride) about to be wed who their “madrich(a)"(teacher) is.
While this is a quite indiscrete question, nevertheless somehow it’s not taboo.

For most frum youngsters, even those that were exposed to the larger world through movies and the internet, what is taught by ‘the teacher’ is completely new and often the last word on the subject as even parents often desist from adressing the area under discussion.
Therefore it’s vital that youngsters about to be wed have a understanding, sensitive and mostly intelligent guide.
In fact in my opinion each Chosson and Kallah should see two different teachers, thereby gaining insight from both and discovering that it’s ok to ask questions and discuss whatever is on their mind.

As painfully expressed in ex semgirl’s post, and as evidenced by the faces of many newlyweds right after the wedding, it’s clear that in general a better understanding of what is going to happen is needed.
Even more important is to relieve the pressure on the them, absorbing something that is essentially a culture shock takes time, in practice it must also be given time.

Parents and friends make sure you children, siblings and friends see a competent intelligent reputed Madrich, not a jingerman(young man) who knows how to learn, not a lady who would know because she has 15 kids, no your child, your friend needs a professional madrich(a).Preferably two.

Although I cannot relate to your post from the perspective of my own life, it seems to me that you, as always give some sound, practical, and if I may pragmatic advice to those who are about to wed.

Enjoy the day.
Barbara- thanks for the compliment.
Besides passing time, shouldn't blogs be places to share aqquired wisdom ?
I think they should.
Part of the problem is that the way kids are raised and taught in yeshivas these days they have no clue how to talk to people of the opposite gender. You can't talk to your wife the way you would to your chavrusa. Does anyone teach that to the guys?
Oy... I have to go read that story but... this is very important. Why isn't this really addressed in yeshivas.
I know of one chosson who was actually taught the importance of such common courtesies as greeting his wife with a 'hallo' or 'good morning'. How sad that these basics actually have to be taught.
I know that here in GG we have Rebbetzin Joanne Dove who teaches kallahs and she works in conjuction with certain Rabbis in the area. She is an amazing teacher and tells her girls EVERYTHING in the most beautiful way. Now if we could just clone Joanne for other cities...
I have to agree with FrumGirl.
I really think that these things need to be better addressed in Yeshivos and it is the obligation of the boys Rebbe to address it, as well as the girl finding a good madrich.
To some level, perhaps you can even put some of the burden on the shadchan. The job should not be just to introduce girl and boy, but to take them all the way to the chupah.
Additionally - let's not forget theat "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree". The boy or girl will likely have similar manners to their parents, and treat their spouse similarly to the way their parents did each other. You wanna have kids - you need to be responsible and bring them up and teach them proper manners.
i dont know where this is, but where i come from i think the problem is the opposite, people are too exposed!
Suzan-Indeed they really should, I’m glad you agree with me.

A frum-That’s the heart of the issue, the young man and women need guidance, the otherwise simple
function of talking is sometimes necessary to be expounded on.
Having patience should be stressed unequivocally.

Frumgirl- Because everything discussed with the Madrich(a) is taboo is Yeshivas, but truth be told it wouldn’t be such a bad idea. You can never start to early to lean things you’ll need in life.

Jemima3- This should actually be taught by the parents from the age of 5, but if it’s necessary than by all means the madrich should talk about that.
Thanks for stopping by.

Kasamba-I don’t know if cloning is possible yet, but she could train a few women in becoming as good as she is.
The communities outside of GG badly need that.

Chakiraman-You’re right, but what a boy or girl takes from home is something the madrich can do little about, it’s the ‘new’ things that need to be addressed correctly and efficiently.
Indeed I think it’s a great idea t have the Shadchan involved until the actual marriage.
Thanks for commenting

Keep on smile’n- Well I was talking about youngsters that were brought up in strictly religious homes.
Do you think that Frum men do not know how to love? Sometimes I see these couples who are good friends, but I don't see that love-bond. Maybe I've just seen too many movies?
nemo that's a pretty sweeping statement. what do you expect to see? frum couples tend to keep all signs of their intimacy private. I would say if you see good friendship between couples that's a great basis for a loving relationship.
these things are not allowed to be talked about in yeshivas. I know about a boy and a girl who got married and she was so terrified she refused to go to the mikveh. the chosson kallah lessons from what I hear, even though I haven't had any yet, are just a formality. t be honest, I'm just as terrified of what to expect.
To some level I would agree, though I think that's an extreme case. The Mikvah is not that bad, it's not much worse then a swim other then someone watching you in the buff...
The yeshivos need to control the kind of talk that goes on. Most boys and girls are just plain old normal and the yeshivos are trying to protect them from being "nichshal".

The chosson kallah classes are supposed to be very informative and are not that difficult. I think it's more of a crappy awakening more then anything else. Those 2 weeks a month kinda suck, though they say its really spiritually healthy (but g-d, it's tough some times!).

Bottom line - you've got to have a good Rebbe or Mechaneches. That'll really make all the difference in the world. It's really not too bad.
Eshet, didn't anyone tell that girl that unless she is physically attracted to the guy, she shouldn't consider marrying him?
Eshet- you don't have top worry, unless you don't fancy the guy in the physical way.
BTW I just spoke to Rebetzin Dove who says that there actually is a network of FABULOUS kallah teachers all over the world! When the time comes my lovely Eshet- I will refer you to them!
I would never know...

After a friend of mine came back from his 'chosson classes' we had a long shmuz, it seems that at least the place he went was very well rounded and informative, and more 'open' then I had expected.
Though it was touched on in an earlier comment, it needs to be reiterated. Much of the blame can (and should) also be placed on the parents.

Sure, it isn't the most comfortable conversation to have (I remember when my father had that chat with me), but it's a parent's responsibility.

In addition, it should be visible from a children's perspective as they grow up how a husband and wife treat eachother. Kids pick up on things we don't normally think about.

Finally, there are different kinds of chosson and kallah teachers and yes, it's possible for some of them to be better than others. I was extremely lucky with who I had and I believe that my marriage is much stronger because of it. One should take care in choosing a teacher that best matches the student.
Man run's into his lawyer's office. The IRS is after him, tax fraud. He needs immediate advise.

The lawyer calms him down. He begins to tell him a story:

There was once a Chassidishe girl about to get married. She's never been exposed to anything before, and she wan't to learn the ins and outs of the chosson/kallah stuff {C"V to say the dreaded 'S' word}.

She goes to her older married sister, Suri, and asks her how she does it. Suri goes on and on, telling every raunchy detail of her's and her husbands romance life. Tells her the wild stuff, positions, etc.

The Chassidishe Maidel is all excited now and she goes to mom to confirm this. "Mom, is it true what Suri says?" The mother is aghast and she tells her daughter no, you've got to be Aidel in the bedroom, a true Bas Yisroel, Shulchan Oruch to the word. {The end}

The client asks the lawyer what the point of the story is.

Lawyer replies, "Listen, either way you are getting screwed..."
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prag, this is a wdie spread problem. How do you conquer it? its to big... I guess we start with our own kids. I hope I could direct them in the right way. there are many blogs about this issue. Its just very very sad.
The Rabbonim, Rebbeim and Moros also have a responsibility to look out for their Talmidim and make sure that they're educated and prepared properly.
I really think that parents should talk to their children as they go thru their teen years and explain how the body works.

My mother explained things to me as I was growing up and there was never a question that she would not answer. She was careful and polite in how she answered the questions. When I got married I felt that I was informed and prepared for life with my new husband. It helped that he was sensitive to my needs.
Is it really that prevalent..that it should be considered a crisis.
Eveyone I know..had a lovely Chassunah Night...of course ..a little awkward..but Nothing crazy..
David - why would you think your friends would tell you the truth? How do you REALLY know there was a lovely chassunah night???????? Personally my chassunah night was the most petrifying, not because i wasnt prepared,(i did not grow up that sheltered) However in general of what will happen and if it will hurt. David how do you know the real truth????
Must, the quickest way for me to get my son out the room is to say, "It's time to talk about the birds and the bees..."
Oh my..Chaverah...go easy on the question marks..lol
If you love the person youre marrying..you can't wait to be intimate with them..no?
and if you have a sense of humour....u get over the awkward moments..It took us about a month to get it right..but it was fun and exciting regardless
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DAVID -????????????????(just joshing!)ok. valid point. However it doesnt answer my question how do you REALLY know what went on in someone elses bed. People indulge(is that the right word?) in their stories, and the real real truth gets lost. I beleive the first night is scary more then exciting. The second...... well thats MUCH better! Sounds like you have a good marraige, they say if you can laugh and have humor during sex, you have a truely good and intimate relationship. congrats!
i sont think ill be attending any of these 'classes'
I have older siblings... i get educated from them. I did have a teacher in highschool/seminary who mentioned a few aspects of married life and how present ourselves for our husbands. In my community there are classes out there for girls who are not yet married. I have yet to attend but perhaps those communities need these classes as well. As for me... at least i have family. and boy do i get educated!
The content of this post is all so strange and mystical to me! If i had been raised with that kind of mystery and importance surrounding sex, i think i would have been absolutely terrified to ever do it!
Interesting comments. I think the education and open mindset must start at home. You cannot just wake up when the kid is in yeshiva/sem and start teaching them open mindedness in this area. It is far too late.
And to get this education from a young age you have to educate the parents so that they will educate the child...
Everyone, Chakirman Jemima 3-Thanks for giving your opinion on the subject, it’s obvious that a combination, of good and sensible parenting along with good sensible madrichim and a little input of the shadchan is perhaps an ideal solution to this problem.

Evangelia-That's exactly the problem many girls are afraid it will hurt or feel(very) too embarrassed, it's important to teach them that it's a natural thing not necessary evil so to speak.
Secular girls don’t have that problem as almost everything is explained in teen magazines and movies.

Ex semgirl-If instead of in obscure blogs this issue would be raised in important Jewish forums than perhaps finally parents would understand the importance of getting an education on how to educate, unfortunately that sounds a lot like science fiction.

Sorry to post this, but your email is not working: I have a new post that might interest you, and I am curious what your thoughts would be.

Thank you,
So well said...

"If instead of in obscure blogs this issue would be raised in important Jewish forums than perhaps finally parents would understand the importance of getting an education on how to educate"

This should be as simple as Torah Umesorah, the OU, and other jewish education organizations getting together and creating an acceptable curriculum to educate the parents, as needed.
Myself included!
I don't want to find out what I didn't know about parenting, once it's too late.

This should be taken on a general parenting basis as well.
ok just to comment on what kasamba said to me, and a few other people's comments, very rarely is there love involved in the begining of a chassidishe marraige. I have an idea that things might be different for me, but I'm not shocked if they're not. b"h I have people to talk to who are caring and understanding enough to let me know what will happen, but the idea still terrifies me. to be expected, no?
You sound "chutz min haklall". You don't sound at all like the type who could go through with that type of process - although, maybe you are comfortable with it.
Eshet, do you mean there is no physical attraction?
My chassideshe cousins (My family are the 'moderenas', cuz we don't wear a sheitel and a hat!) used to sigh longingly thinking of their chussons!
Isn't that the idea behind the B'show? To see if the couple could be physically attracted???
That's true, young people think they know the world, but they know little about themselves and others, especially their future husband or wife.
When I've got married my husband and I each had a seperate madrich. In Zurich most of the Kallahs go to this one great madricha, but she herself is quite religious and obviously also prepares you for a religious marriage which is not really were we are and were standing.
Wow; I never even knew about such things!

I did know about "kallah classes"; but my guess you just talked about the technicalities of taharas hamishpacha...that sort of thing.

For women and men who were not born observant and who are not virgins; I think we should have special madrichim. Is there such a thing?
There a lots of great Madrichim to be found...
Whatever your local is, you should be able to find an Orthodox Rabbi who should be able to point you in the right direction.
Barbara-I’m headed to your blog

Chakiraman –I’m not so hopeful of that happening so fast, but as parent you can prepare yourself, read Rabbi Twerski’s books, read other books, talk to children and parents etc..
Give yourself no chance of making huge educational mistakes.

Eshet-Love per se is indeed rare, but for youngsters who actually go on dates, feeling of attraction, respect and joviality
are often present, and that is a good base to work on creating true love, not just infatuation, which stops existing as soon as the infatuating factor ceases to be there.

Kasamba-Always a cute sight what you describe only it’s not real love yet but from that love grows.

Emanuel-Well being married is an ideal time to get to learn your spouse, their likes and dislikes etc…
Hoh-Regardless, I’m sure they also gave you some helpful tips for a happy marriage.
Why did you go if you were not religious?

Misshona-Well technically kallah classes are only that, but in recent years it was realized (thank G-D) that youngsters from frum homes need more than just the Halachos, they need guidance and badly so.
I’m sure it does, I mean it’s basically an experience thing, and I believe there are lots of Madrichim who gave classes to BT’s and Geirim already.
Chakiraman-for BT’s and Geirm perhaps a visit to the local Lubavitch center could also be enlightening.
There is No codified Halacha that a married woman must cover her hair totally and constantly whenever she steps out of her house.

The Halachah has been MISinterpreted. When the Halachah refers to "Covering hair," it does not mean "Cover your hair with hair!" and "constantly for life." The Halachah is that:

A married woman is required to cover her hair when:

(1) she lights the candles to welcome in Shabbat and Yom Tov – lechavod Shabbat ve Yom Tov, and

(2) when she goes to the Synagogue, because that is the place of Kedusha.

The Halacha does not require anything more from married women. This is the true interpretation of the Halacha.

The misinterpretation of the Torah is completely Assur, and a twisting of the Torah.The Torah must remain straight.
In ancient times, a woman would only cover her hair upon entering the Beit Hamikdash.Similarly for the Sotah-otherwise she would not be required to cover her hair ordinarily, day to day.

It is very important for people to know and realise that when a married woman covers her hair with 'Real Hair' the woman is covering herself with 100% Tumah. This is totally against the Torah.

Nothing could be more nonsensical than for a Jewish woman to cover her hair with someone else's hair -who was not Jewish as well!She can never fully be sure that this 'hair' has not come from meitim-despite any guarantee by the seller.This 'real hair' is doubly and in some circumstances, triply Tumah.

1.It will contain the leftover dead hair cells from another person - however much it has been treated, the tumah is still there.

2.This other person (likely to be a non-Jew who most likely was involved in some kind of Avodah Zarah) may have eaten bacon, ham, lobster etc, all of which are totally forbidden as unclean and non-kosher foods in Halacha.

3.If the woman happens to be the wife of a COHEN, then she is bringing her husband into close contact and proximity with meitim and Tumah Every day, and throughout their married life. This is clearly strictly against the Torah.

There is nothing more degrading and demeaning to a woman than to make her cover her hair FOR LIFE upon marriage.It is an abhorrent practice.
Any man who makes such a ridiculous demand on his wife, or wife-to-be, should similarly also be required by his wife to wear: long white stockings, even in the summer; a fur streimel; grow a long beard; wear a black hat and coat constantly, and cover his face when he speaks to his wife.Wigs -"la perruque"- were merely a fashion item in the time of Louis XIV-they are not for the Jewish woman!

Rabbi Menachem Schneeersohn tz”l, gave the directive that a married woman must cover her head with a “sheitel.” This needs to be corrected. Rabbi Schneersohn a"h, was a Tzaddik, – but on this – he was, unfortunately not correct.

It is extremely unhealthy and unhygienic for a woman to cover her hair constantly.The hair needs oxygen to breathe.A woman's hair will lose its natural beauty and shine, she may have scalp problems, some of her hair may fall out, she may get headaches, and she may end up cutting it short like a man, when she always wore it long, in order not to have too much discomfort from her hair covering.

Do you think that HaKadosh Baruch Hu commanded this of women? I can assure you that He did not.The commmandments are not meant to cause so much repression and oppression in women.Was Chava created with a wig? Of course not! Did she start wearing a wig? Of course not!

Please Wake Up.

Use the spark of intelligence that Hakadosh Baruch Hu gave to you and blessed you with.

And give your wig back to your husband if you wear one.
1. To all the women who are wondering about the sources:

We have all been created, "Betselem Elokim" - "in the image of Elokim."
This means that we have been given something called "intelligence." The source is the very first Parsha, Bereishit - 1:27. It is time that people use the spark of intelligence and Kedusha with which Hashem has blessed them.

If your rabbi will tell you to go and jump into the depths of a glacier, presumably you would do that too – and give me a source for it?

“According to the Zohar”, I should also be covering my hair with a wig when I have a bath. “According to the Zohar and the Gemara” and all the sources that have misinterpreted the Halachah, and MIStranslated the Zohar, I should also have been born with a WIG on my head.

These sources and translations are incorrect, as they have deviated very far from the true and correct interpretation, of the Halachah.
2.Remember that the Jewish women are very, very holy. They are much more holy than the men. Look at the exemplary behaviour of the women at Har Sinai.

The women never sinned at the Eigel, and so are greatly elevated. Many of the men, unfortunately, ran after a calf made out of a lump of gold – after they had just been given the Torah, and seen the greatest of all Revelations. The women refused to give their gold for the avodah zarah of the men.

The women were greatly elevated after such a wonderful display of Emunah, and they are regarded very highly in Shamayim.

That is why women are not even required to pray. They can pray at home on their own. Nor do women have to make up a minyan. That is how holy the Jewish women are. Men have to pray 3 times a day to remind them of their Creator.

The men are telling the women to put the hair of a non-Jewish woman who may have eaten things like snakes and sharks and alligators, and has worshipped in churches, Buddist temples or Hindu temples : on their own Heads. They had better wake up.

If the men don’t want to wake up to the truth, and the true interpretation of the Halacha, the women will wake them up – whether they like it or not.

3. Many righteous women influenced their husbands for the good at the Chet Haeigel and at the time of Korach.

It was these righteous women who succeeded in bringing their husbands back to their senses.

And because of these great women, the lives of their husbands were saved. Those men therefore turned away from the madness of avodah zarah, and the rebellion of Korach against Hashem's choice of Aharon, as Cohen HaGadol.
4. Look at the Jewish women in history, and remember how holy they are.

(a) Yaakov, who was the greatest of the Avot, came to marry the 2 daughters of Lavan, Rachel and Leah. Lavan was not exactly a tzaddik. Yaakov went to Lavan, of all people, to marry his 2 daughters – not 1 daughter, but his 2 daughters. Nothing could be greater than that.

(b) Rut, who came from Moav, became the ancestor of David Hamelech.

(c ) Batya, the daughter of Paroh, was given eternal life because she rescued Moshe from the river. No one could have been more evil than Paroh.

(d) Devorah, was a Neviah, and also a Judge.

Women who came from such adverse backgrounds, were able to become builders of Am Yisrael. That is how holy the women are, and how much more elevated they are than the men.

This was never the case with men. It never happened the other way round.

Don't tell me it is holy for me to wear a WIG! Hair over my own hair? This is ridiculous!

Similarly, don’t tell me it is holy for me to plonk a permanent head covering on my head for the rest of my life. This is equally vile.

Please Wake Up.

Use the spark of intelligence that Hakadosh Baruch Hu gave to you and blessed you with.

And give your wig back to your husband if you wear one.

5. Remember: Not a single “dayan” or “rabbi” has the slightest bit of interest in correcting the situation for the women. Therefore, the women will have to correct the situation................for ..................themselves.

Whether you wish to accept the correction – which is true – is up to you. Are you going to live by the truth? Are you going to use the spark of intelligence that Hashem gave to you and all women? Or are you going to follow rabbis and dayanim who tell you to wear a wig in a Heat Wave – and you thank them for it as well?
The next things the "rabbis" will come up with is to tell the woman to wear a CARPET on her head. Not a sheitel AND a hat, but a Carpet. Or you could go for 5 shaitels on your heads and a rug.

And do you know what the Jewish woman will say to her husband?
"Yes, husband! I am now wearing a carpet on my head!"

You women must either be extremely thick, or petrified.
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