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Questions about education

20.06.16

Question

Hello Rabbi, 4 years ago we moved to a new place where there is a community of newly religious families, and right in front of our house there is a kollel (married scholars study framework) and a synagogue. We slowly formed relationships with the community, and we gradually began to get stronger ourselves. We are married with one 15-year old girl and very much want more children. I asked the rabbi of the community and he told me to try treatments and I have done 6 unsuccessful treatments. Every time I undertake to keep another commandment and another commandment on myself, and now we observe Shabbat, family purity, kosher food, separating meat and milk, reciting blessings on the food we eat, and my husband prays three prayers a day. I also undertook to dress modestly, I wear long shirts on top of pants, my shirts are not short and I wear a bandana head covering, read the Psalms, give charity, etc., In all this process we have undergone, we’ve grown spiritually, and we have great faith in our Creator that He will grant us our request one day. But our increase religiosity has created a regular conflict with my daughter, because she is not ready for it in any way. If I want to put a long shirt over her pants so it will cover her knees, she opposes it, and she constantly tries to remove my head covering. When I talk about skirts or covering herself modestly, she gets anxious and starts to shout and cry, and becomes rebellious. I do not want to do an injustice to my daughter, and am trying to advance the process little by little, each time gently.

When I ask people who understand such matters like the mikvah lady or the women in the community how come I’ve done so many things and it’s not helping, they tell me to undertake another thing and another thing. I do not know what else to do, I asked the Creator of the universe for direction, but I want to know what else I should do in such a situation. My husband says to do things slowly and surely, and occasionally he calms my daughter down, but without a doubt I feel the child is not at all calm and very hurt. What do you suggest?

Answer

You are fortunate that you and your husband have raised yourselves up in fear of G-d and returned to your Creator. It is impossible to describe the great nachas that you and your husband are causing in heaven by taking all these steps to become closer to your Creator. The One Who formed you loves you and desires your welfare and harmony.

The happiness Above when any Jew returns to the path of his ancestors is extremely great and more powerful than the joy we felt when Gilad Shalit returned from captivity under Hamas.

The worst thing you could do to your dear daughter is to stop strengthening yourselves because of her protests. One who prevents his fellow man from repenting, his sin is very great and it would be a shame for your precious daughter to bear your sins. Therefore, if you long for her best interests, don’t stop your spiritual growth because of her protests.

It is clear that you have to speak earnestly with her and explain that you will always love her irrespective of your new religious life, and even if she will not choose this way, it will not stop your love for her, etc etc. On the other hand, you must not be frightened by her yelling and you should tell her clearly, after you explained to her that you love her and want her happy, that in any case, you will do that you think is proper, and your dear daughter cannot dictate to you what to do, and of course this should be done in combination with words of love and pacifying as above.

May G-d help you to merit having children, and may G-d have mercy on you and give you another child.

 

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