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April 15, 2012

Fleeing To Freedom: Escaping Haredi Arranged Marriages

Fraidy ReissWhen I was 19, my family arranged for me to marry a man who turned out to be violent. With no education and no job, and a family that refused to help me, I was stuck. By age 20, I was a trapped, abused, stay-at-home mother. Ten years later, still trapped and unhappy, I finally took what became one of my first steps away from Orthodox Judaism: I stopped wearing a head covering. The consequences were swift and severe. My family cut off contact with me; one of my five siblings kept in touch long enough to inform me the others were contemplating sitting shiva for me, or mourning as if I had died.

Fraidy Reiss
Fraidy Reiss

Among N.J. Orthodox Jewish women, child custody fears form barrier to freedom
Fraidy Reiss • Star-Ledger

Where I come from, girls are married off as teenagers to men they barely know and are expected to spend their lives caring for their husband and children. They are required to cover their hair and nearly every inch of their skin, and to remain behind a curtain at parties and religious events.

Where I come from, if a woman wants to feel her hair blow in the wind or wear jeans or attend college, the courts have the authority to take her children away from her.

Where I come from, you might be surprised to learn, is the United States. Specifically, New York and then New Jersey, in the Orthodox Jewish community.

Recently, two women have brought national attention to the fact that Orthodox Jewish women who leave that insular community risk losing custody of their children: Deborah Feldman of New York, whose memoir about her escape from the Satmar Hasidic sect hit the New York Times best-seller list, and Perry Reich of New Jersey, whose custody battle — which includes accusations from her husband that she sometimes wears pants — earned her an appearance last month on the "Dr. Phil" television show.

My story is similar to theirs. When I was 19, my family arranged for me to marry a man who turned out to be violent. With no education and no job, and a family that refused to help me, I was stuck. By age 20, I was a trapped, abused, stay-at-home mother.

Ten years later, still trapped and unhappy, I finally took what became one of my first steps away from Orthodox Judaism: I stopped wearing a head covering.

The consequences were swift and severe. My family cut off contact with me; one of my five siblings kept in touch long enough to inform me the others were contemplating sitting shiva for me, or mourning as if I had died.

Also, perhaps most shockingly, several rabbis informed me I should say goodbye to my children because I was going to lose custody of them during my looming divorce
proceeding.

They were not bluffing. Numerous family attorneys unaffiliated with any religion advised me to stop publicly flouting Orthodox laws and customs.

As the attorneys noted, and as illustrated by Feldman’s and Reich’s experiences, judges look at religion as one factor in a custody dispute and generally view stability to be in children’s best interests. They have been known to award custody to the parent who will continue to raise the children in the same religion as before the family breakup.

Where I come from — that means here in the United States, in 2012 — women fear, legitimately, that they might lose their children if they lose their religion.

Feldman and I each managed to settle and avoid divorce trials, and each of us retained custody of our children. Others have not been as lucky. Reich, for example, remains mired in her custody battle.

Fear in the religious community, therefore, persists. I recently started a nonprofit organization, Unchained At Last, to help women leave arranged marriages, and the most common inquiry I receive is from Orthodox Jewish women who want to leave the religion and are willing to accept ostracism from their family and friends, but are terrified that a judge might remove their children.

For many, their situation seems especially hopeless because they, like Reich, felt pressured to allow an Orthodox Jewish court, a bet din, arbitrate their divorce. The bet dins’ binding decisions and agreements routinely include a provision that the children will be raised within Orthodox Judaism. Secular courts generally enforce those decisions and agreements, even if a mother later realizes she does not want to raise her children in a religion where men bless God every morning for not making them a non-Jew, a slave or a woman.

Where I come from — the United States — the First Amendment is supposed to empower people to choose whether and how to practice religion, without interference from secular courts. What went wrong?

Fraidy Reiss of Westfield is the founder/executive director of Unchained At Last.

~~~~~~~~

Elana Knopp
Elana Knopp

My journey to freedom: Escaping an arranged ultra-Orthodox Jewish marriage
Elana Knopp • Star-Ledger

It was the holiday of Simchat Torah, and as I sat behind the thick, heavy curtain on the women’s side of the synagogue, a friend turned to tell me that her 17-year-old daughter was engaged. As I watched women and girls trying to catch a glimpse of the dancing men through a crack in the partition, I commented on the young age of the bride.

"That’s the way we do it," my friend said, smiling. "Marry them off when they’re young and dumb." She then launched into the usual: The couple would grow up together. They would get to know each other. They would eventually love each other.

Right.

I know all about young and dumb. At 19, I was set up with a boy and we were engaged six dates later, the usual time frame in the ultra-orthodox community. Girls are sent off into marriages without even the most rudimentary knowledge of their own bodies, reproduction or sex.

Girls are taught to marry, have children and serve their husbands, and the indoctrination starts early. College and career are frowned upon — for obvious reasons. College is a way out. Career is a way out. And no one wants us getting out.

Those of us who do wake up are simultaneously horrified and liberated; while we cannot believe we could be so duped, we are incredibly grateful for realizing it.

I was typical in my former community. I was married at 19 and had my first baby at 20. By 29, I had six children, one miscarriage, three sets of dishes and no college degree. It took me years to get up the courage to file for divorce. I was so afraid for so many reasons. There were the usual concerns, such as how I would manage to support my kids, put air in my tires and mow my lawn.

But it was the fear unique to ultra-orthodox women who leave the faith that haunted me: I was afraid of losing my children.

In Lakewood, as in any ultra-orthodox community, there is a rabbinic hierarchy, a hierarchy committed to a radical religious doctrine that controls every aspect of life — from politics and marriage to female modesty, birth control and sex. It is this same hierarchy that condones the kidnapping of children from women who have left the fold.

It took me years to get up the courage to take off my head covering and even longer to leave my house in a pair of pants. And, when I did, my closest friends and neighbors turned against me. I was systematically shut out, ostracized and vilified. In addition, because of my decision to live a truthful, genuine life, my community set out on a witch hunt, spreading rumors, fabricating lies and portraying me as something resembling a she-devil.

There is no place for anyone who deviates from what the ultra-orthodox community believes to be the norm, the correct and the righteous. There is no room if you are irreligious, intermarried, gay, transsexual. There is no room for questions, doubts, opinions or alternatives. There is no room to question authority. And I questioned authority.

As I continued my journey toward freedom, my best friend told me that I confused her — her way of saying that my newfound liberation forced her to question her fundamentalist lifestyle and that the repercussions of addressing those questions would leave her unable to stay in the life she was living. She chose not to question by ending our 18-year friendship.

I think often of a friend who loved to write, who once dreamed of becoming a published author. Her husband disapproved, however, forbidding her to write and deeming it immodest. She called me, frustrated, but determined to obey her husband. "Don’t listen to him," I told her. "Write!" It was then that she called me her "evil inclination." Apparently, I reminded her that she had a soul.

I am proud to act as evil inclination. After all, I have some souls to save.

Elana Knopp teaches English and Language Arts in Plainfield and Edison. She is a member of Garden State Equality and director of Unchained At Last.

Comments

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brava

You deserve The Congressional Medal of Honor for extreme bravery in the face of very evil forces.

The free market of ideas is the enemy of all totalitarians.

What courage these women have!! Unfortunately, though, the usual Chareidi response to them will be to encourage girls to get married at even younger ages. (Wasn't there a Montreal group who has searched out the youngest legal marriage age in the United States? I think they sent children to Missouri to get married at age 15.)

Very courageous women.

It is imperative that religion be removed as a criterion for awarding child custody.

If that happens, I predict, we will see a massive exodus of women from the orthodox world.

The orthodox are on a collision course with history and, as usual, history will win.

It's way beyond time to put a stop to this. The Haredi way of life is nothing less than child abuse. When we hear of Muslims doing it, we're all outraged, but we bend over backwards to accommodate the same behavior in Orthodox Jews. Jews do it because we've been deceived into believing these people somehow represent "authentic" Judaism. Christians do it because the Orthodox (even the Modern Orthodox) vote the way the evangelicals tell them to.

Oh my ! Finally she spoke , this women is the biggest liar
She is nasty nasty.
She married a great guy he had a lot of money
He was doing very well even before he got married
.
This women was angry from the day she was born always screwing and yelling in public just to get attention she used to write for country Yossi magazine ,it was all satire anger veiled in joke.She played games with her husband all the time denying him any sex or companionship .
I want to know why she still hasn't found anyone? Plus her family is extremely wonderful, and so is his

Haha!! No loss to כלל ישראל she is ugly like sin anyhow!!!!

Plus her family is extremely wonderful, and so is his

Posted by: Dave | April 15, 2012 at 07:56 AM


Haha!! No loss to כלל ישראל she is ugly like sin anyhow!!!!

Posted by: Tuchas Lekker | April 15, 2012 at 07:59 AM

That's right, just keep telling yourselves that. Anything to avoid having to see how your holy rabbonim have been deceiving you for generations.

You people are the most colossal waste of natural resources.

you would know,tuchus lekker,as you are no doubt an expert on beauty, since you must be the ugly beast. One can smell your rotten unwashed carcass while reading your words of wisdom. if you represent israel some of us ought to think of leaving judasim to the thieves and paedophiles who will remain in thier faith even if damm ed by their past behaviour.

I as an extreme fundie Orthodox Jew would just like tto set the record straight. For every chareidi dropout there are twenty secular Jews becoming chareidim. So when man bites dog its sensational news. As to women in chareidi society locked up careerwise is false. I know of numerous multi millionaire creative frum housewives that have started businesses from their homes and expanded big time. Watching secular families is truly sad. Kids on drugs,ignorant of their faith,intermarried and traped by superficial sillyness. Frum yidden have a sense of purpose with every statistic taken in Israel found them to be the happiest.

This is, sadly, not an issue only for women who leave the religion. Men who decide to pursue a non-Orthodox or secular way of life also often lose access to their children. The frum community will often invest in very good lawyers to represent the religious parent and if the other parent lacks resources, he or she is likely to lose or just give up.

Why doesn't anyone tout the middle ground. Men who skip the Bracha thanking G-d for making them males. Orthodox women (and their husbands and sons) who do attend colleges. Orthodox couples who date before marriage. Orthodox synagogues, where women, although separated during prayers, can view the proceedings, and are not segregated at any other synagogue functions.

Why is Orthodoxy always portrayed as an "all or nothing" ideal?

Heshy,

Stop pulling statistics out of your ass.

If you don't count all the people who drive to Chabad on Shabbos to get free kiddush and free bar mitzvahs, then the number of chareidi dropouts far exceeds those who are embracing your suffocating and anti-Torah way of life.

By the way, the chareidstan is full of drug addicts and child abusers. We'll never know the real number because all problems are swept under the rug in order not to affect shidduchim.

For every chareidi dropout there are twenty secular Jews becoming chareidim.

And you are basing this fact on what? I call BS.

having read heshy friedman's post i can only add as follows. You are very brave and have a strong sense of forebearance towards your readers mr Failed MEssiah. its probably 20 secular jews leaving their faith in absentia than how heshy tries to portray the situation but you can only take the horse to the water trough.You may continue to expose these corrupt jews but the hardei of new york are a cancer on jews world wide.let the hate replies come on as i am not re reading this particular item forther. Heshy f you are a real asset to your community. Not in ours.

Posted by: heshyfriedman | April 15, 2012 at 08:21 AM

Please do all of New York a favor and throw yourself in front of a subway train.

Why doesn't anyone tout the middle ground. Men who skip the Bracha thanking G-d for making them males. Orthodox women (and their husbands and sons) who do attend colleges. Orthodox couples who date before marriage. Orthodox synagogues, where women, although separated during prayers, can view the proceedings, and are not segregated at any other synagogue functions.

Why is Orthodoxy always portrayed as an "all or nothing" ideal?

Posted by: chief doofis | April 15, 2012 at 08:28 AM

Because these same people have spent the past several decades longing for Haredi approval and allowing the Haredim to define the parameters of their belief system at every given opportunity.

Although I do agree with you regarding level of happiness among the religious versus secular. All fundamentalists - regardless of religion - rate higher on the "happiness" scale. This comes about largely because such individuals have a strong sense of purpose in life and mostly do not have to make any significant life decisions since everything is already decided for them (among other reasons.) That's not a value judgement by the way; fundamentalism works well for a lot of folks. But it also does NOT work for a lot of folks.

Jeff now you sound like Janc, and besides what did the MTA do wrong?

Posted by: zibble | April 15, 2012 at 08:50 AM

you took the words out of my mouth and said it better than i ever could

ChiefD, very well said.

To gefilte fish
I just returned from Israel. My stats are from Israel. The Baal tsuvah movement is growing so rapidly its. Facinating. I recall years ago as a teenager argueing with a great uncle with a long beard who survived the holocaust about the number of baalei tsuvahs there are. He was downplaying the numbers by stating maybe ten thousand worldwide. I as a 15 year old looked him in the eye and told him there will be a million in my lifetime. He smirked at me and waved his hand as if I was living in fantasy land. I told him the power of Torah is greater than fire and that it would outdo the materialistic glamore of modern society. The chickens have come to roost. All over Israel there is a return to Hashem that's catchy. I have grandkids living there and each time I go I see more streets closed on Shabbos and more young people wearing tzizos out and its giving our beloved Creator nachas galore.

If it is so hard to get out almost impossible why do i hear everyday of another one. Either a)Its no big deal to leave and therfore i dont see the reason for media sensation cuz there is no story here or b)there is not as many as it sounds and they are true heroic courages people and each one deserves a mention in a local newspaper.

In the US, it appears that we have taken religious freedom to unhealthy extremes. Women should not be denied custody of their children because they want to enjoy the same civil rights as other Americans. Children should not be denied access to an education needed to function in 21st century America.

Your first amendment right to freedom of speech does not give you the right to yell fire in a crowded theater in order to cause a panic. The courts ruled on that issue a long time ago.

Your first amendment right to pray three times a day and to drink kosher for Passover bottled water (if you can find it) should not prohibit the State from setting minimum secular curriculum requirements for students at religious schools and should not be used to coerce a spouse to stay in a failed marriage.

I have grandkids living there and each time I go I see more streets closed on Shabbos and more young people wearing tzizos out and its giving our beloved Creator nachas galore.

Posted by: heshyfriedman | April 15, 2012 at 09:09 AM

the way they are acting they are giving him a heartburn

I say my "she'lo asani dati" prayer every morning.

The poor sentence construction, logic, and grammar displayed in the comments here and elsewhere make me thankful for my secular education.

Very said, I always loved my Judaism because of all the questions it allowed to be asked and the very different answers those questions could get. It seems, this is all vanishing for a fundamentalist Judaism that calls for obedience only. Not what I want at all...

One does not have to leave orthodoxy to get out of a bad marriage. If she became modern orthodox she can live a very comfortable unbridled lifestyle. Just come down to the Young Israel of Woodmere and the 5 Towns and you will see a lifestyle that is not stifling and integrates very nicely what America has to offer and a reasonably frum way of life.

I have grandkids living there and each time I go I see more streets closed on Shabbos and more young people wearing tzizos out and its giving our beloved Creator nachas galore.

A) It's a tragedy you've been allowed to reproduce.

B) Yes our "beloved Creator" who allows your holy rebbaim to rape little boys while he smiles down in approval because they observe the laws of tznius.

Just come down to the Young Israel of Woodmere and the 5 Towns and you will see a lifestyle that is not stifling and integrates very nicely what America has to offer and a reasonably frum way of life.

Posted by: MO | April 15, 2012 at 10:03 AM

I've met Modern Orthodox people from the Five Towns. You're excellent examples of the phenomenon about which I complain here all the time - Haredism Lite. You've all spent the past five decades looking backward over your collective shoulder, longing for Haredi approval. Newsflash - you aren't ever going to receive it. Tragically, you've remade yourselves in their image. You're Haredim now in all but name.

waved his hand as if I was living in fantasy land. I told him the power of Torah is greater than fire and that it would outdo the materialistic glamore of modern society.

Posted by: heshyfriedman | April 15, 2012 at 09:09 AM

You know what, I couldn't agree more. The Torah will outdo materialistic modern society. What you're not bright enough to realize, because you and your Haredi brethren have been deprived of any common sense, is that you're not following the Torah anymore. You follow Torah Shel Besht, which makes you something other than Jewish. You have your own language, your own culture, and your own Torah. You follow neither Hashem nor his Torah, but rather the hand of your rebbe and your desire to have him "take care" of you because God didn't. Faithless prick.

As a young man, I never would have believed the unholy bonds of ultra-orthodoxy. Then, I began work in an office where I met a gentleman who from all outward appearances was modern orthodox. Our children were in the same classes at the Orthodox Day School. So we'd meet for coffee before the office some mornings. He opened up to me that the MO get up was for one reason. He was bopping a number of the Chareidi women that he'd meet while dropping off his kids.

I could not believe my eyes and ears as I watched these women (and there were many)follow him to a local motel. Why would they go with you? I asked. His response: I poke them in places they've never been poked and most of them have never experienced an orgasm with a man. Let alone oral sex!!! Their husbands haven't the slightest idea what they are doing in bed. These women are not kissed, fondled or touched appropriately.

Is it any wonder that these women suddenly wake up and find they are merely baby machines, resent their husbands and his little pisser that he pokes them with once a month, while forgetting to even shower or make himself attractive in any sense of the word.

jeff- youre the best i love youre oppinions you are 1 thousand per cent right

Heshyfriedman,
Your posts ignore tha empirical studies show that
- 92% of haredi adults describe themselves as "relatively unhappy" with their lives (57% say "extremely unhappy")
- 81% of haredi say they remain in their communities and do not join secular society because they, "lack the skills necessary to function"
- 65% say they would switch religious affiliation if government subsidies were provided for it
- 85% of haredi women would have married Brad Pitt if it were possible (surprisingly 32% of haredi men said the same)

Why do Haredim describe themselves as "happy"? Simple, their brains are left to rot like kim chee, so they're never bright enough to question their fief-lord-idol-king-god-rebbe with any kind of Mosaic effectiveness. They take the Jew out of the Jew and turn him into a Haredi vassal, suitable for little more than sucking infant dicks and throwing loaded diapers at all those who oppose their tyranny. The apologists are worse than Christians. Yes, we know that your unholy hasidic master is very proud of you for upholding tznius and mesirah to the point of harming others. This is what Torah shel Besht taught you. These scumbag Haredi leaders should be rounded up and shot.

The Haredim were taught how to neurologically rewire their reward mechanisms to trigger on the fulfillment of a mitzvah without considering how the addiction mechanism would drive them to insanity when more and more would be required to trigger the same reward. That's why they had to start making shit up, to create additional triggers. It's a cult, pure and simple. They take your will, your life, your individuality, your choice, your mind, and convince you that you can't be trusted with your own soul. You're too stupid to make your own mistakes. They literally rob you of your entire life. Cradle to the grave. Vipers and thieves.

Korbendallas72-A perfect description if there is one:)
They literally rob you of your entire life. Cradle to the grave. Vipers and thieves.

It's all in your head.

Anyone can leave whenever they want. The radicals have the right to pressure you to stay, just as you have the right to pressure the Tampa PD to prosecute George Zimmerman. But you are free to leave the marriage, the community, the religion - whatever you want. This is America. Obviously, these two women left, because the right to leave is there. This is America 2012.

In regards to this poor woman's assertion that the courts are taking away your freedom of religion, that is a load of BS. The courts have simply asserted that just as they will give custody of children to the parent who can provide a stable upbringing for the children, they will give the custody rights to the parent who continues to the same religion as before - precisely because this is considered stability.

It works both ways.

It would work the same way if an atheist couple was mired in a custody battle, and the father suddenly decided to become a haredi. He would immediately LOSE custody of the children, because the courts would deem his new-found religion to decrease stability for the children.

TO call this a lack of first ammendment freedom of religion is blatantly false and misleading.

now this is the new world of news.
ex charedi GAY
and unhappy ex charedi girls ?

It requires tremendous courage for her to leave this world.

I myself, wish i had such courage but am stuck in the MO world, which is very similar, in some respects, is worse than the Chareidishi world.

It's possible there is less dishonesty in the MO bec people get an education and are able to have more marketable skills in general.

It's possible there is less dishonesty in the MO bec people get an education and are able to have more marketable skills in general.

Posted by: adams | April 15, 2012 at 11:32 AM

The MO world is not without its problems, but it is not a cult. Elitism and snobbishness is a problem that all klal yisroel has, but they don't suck infant dicks at Temple Beth Abraham, ok?

Oh two crazies? Nice what happened to the lesbO looking kids?

While without a doubt there are a tremendous number of baalei tshuva, almost every BT I come across has children who seem to be not well adjusted. Admittedly this is anecdotal, but I think that as big as the BT movement is, the exodus will be fivefold.

I've met Modern Orthodox people from the Five Towns. You're excellent examples of the phenomenon about which I complain here all the time - Haredism Lite. You've all spent the past five decades looking backward over your collective shoulder, longing for Haredi approval. Newsflash - you aren't ever going to receive it. Tragically, you've remade yourselves in their image. You're Haredim now in all but name.

Jeff -- heeeey, I grew up in the 5 Towns. Ok, ok, before the great 5Town vs FarRock VAAD wars started, but MO is correct about the Young Israel of Woodmere being a really great welcoming group. Of course my perspective is from a few years back, when girls weren't seen as freaks for wearing jeans & not many MOs covered their hair.

And, honestly, MO, I sort of have to agree with Jeff's assessment of the 5 Towns today. If you're just moving there it may seem a great place, but when I went to visit my parents (after a few years away), I was shocked to see the HAFTaR girls looking very Haredi-light (loooong skirts, long tee-shirts, hair all pulled back, style free), & all the women at Gourmet Glaat & shopping on Central Ave looking similar. Yes, I've seen some attempting the "Hot Chani" look, but it's sad & ... not hot. I know most of the OG (thats slang for original gangsta) MO families fled to the North Shore, LI, Deal, NJ & other places, so I'm not sure what the YIofW is like now. But, I do know it's not my 5 Towns any more. And this is from a person who grew up in one of the frummiest homes & whose parents stood out like extreme sore thumbs at all HAFTaR events.

BTW, just to be clear & go back on topic, there are extremely frum families who are able to accept a child who decides not to follow the extreme ortho-chassidish-derech -- even if they're dragged kicking, screaming, fighting, what have you, into facing their children's decision. I'm case in point.

And now, in South-Willi, I can throw a stone on my block & find many, many more cases of acceptance in (what appear to be) the most Chassidic of families. Oddly, (not really) these parents don't loose their children to drugs & whatever else many OTDs fall apart on when their safety net (aka a loving family), is pulled out from under them.

I will say it takes parents, sometimes grandparents & friends who love the children MORE than they love being a bigshot macher in the Shul/ Beis Midrash or group approval. But, if you love that more than your children, I'm not so sure these children had a truly loving home to begin with ... &, perhaps, that's were the problems lay for some of the people going OTD & would have popped-up even if they stayed on the derech.

Of course, that's just my personal experiences ... so, I'm slightly biased & everyone's mileage may vary. And sorry for the long ramble ;~)

And, honestly, MO, I sort of have to agree with Jeff's assessment of the 5 Towns today.

To be clear, I'm talking about Modern Orthodoxy as a whole.

I will say it takes parents, sometimes grandparents & friends who love the children MORE than they love being a bigshot macher in the Shul/ Beis Midrash or group approval.

And how often does that happen?

This Fraidy is a sicko she refused to accept a get from her husband
Is tgat normal? Why all the rishus?
She is one sick women.
By the way if I wouldn't know her personally , I would think she is transgender judging by the pic

Why are you frummies even posting comments here? Shouldn't you be studying Toyreh?

Off topic, but Wow, I have to say I really missed you guys, Jeff, Litvish and the rest...even you, Mendy, who I fear will expire from extreme moth suffocation in the event that you should ever creak open that little used mind you have. I smiled so much last week that my face hurts. Life without vitriol just ain't worth living. We will live longer for it.

Once again, the so called journalist, Friady Reiss continues her lies....I thought journalists have an oath to write the truth..Make up your mind and be honest with everyone...dont portray yourself as a journalist when all you are is a miserable , lying wretch .
The last article you wrote in the Forward was one long myriad of lies and you know it....you said you refused a "get" and challenged the Rabbi's to give you 25 million and then you would consider it....you're so full of crap, it would take 10 dump trucks to haul away the crap you spew.. Name the rabbi or rabbi's, you liar! And if you try to convince anyone that it's true, at the very least you're an extortionist!

Your marriage was NOT arranged.There was no matchmaker!! ....You were a rebel and took advantage of this poor guy..Your husband treated you like a queen and you know it...He slaved 20 hours a day so that you could go to college and not have to take out any college loans.
Why dont you tell people how you lived in a beautiful house, drove a beautiful car and spent till your hearts content?

Why dont you tell people how tolerant your husband was while you threw your childish tantrums?

Why dont you admit to everyone that he never said a word when you stopped covering your hair and started wearing jeans? Why dont you admit that he never said a word while you drove home from work on Shabbat?

Do you know why? I will tell you and everyone else why!

Because then Fraidy Reiss wouldn't have some great sensational story. She would just be a girl who decided to go off the derech. Not a big deal and definitely nothing sensational about that, I'm afraid.
Who would want to join her failure of an organization if all she was is a confused girl who couldn't say the truth if she tried.
So you decided to lie about everything : An arranged marriage, a lie about your "get", a lie about an abusive husband, lies about your family and the community..... Lies, Lies and more Lies!!You're an opportunist, nothing more and nothing less! Oh, and a Liar!

 

 

 

 


Why is Orthodoxy always portrayed as an "all or nothing" ideal?

Posted by: chief doofis | April 15, 2012 at 08:28 AM

I don't know. Why can't orthodoxy let me eat a cheeseburger?

Posted by: Tellin it like it is!! | April 15, 2012 at 12:54 PM

Right. Isn't it interesting that every time one of these stories surfaces, you people crawl out of the woodwork to condemn the woman who tells it as a liar, a curveh, mentally ill, etc. Not once can I recall reading a comment by a frum person who said, "Yes, she's telling the truth. She speaks for those who can't." Not once.

Of course, I suppose that's because all REAL frum women are perfectly happy with their lives. In Frumville, the sun is always shining, the streets are paved with gold and no one ever leaves.

OTD, if you want to eat a cheeseburger, you can become a Karaite- you can Google "Karaite Judaism" on the internet.
However, warning: they still won't let you eat pork or shellfish. They're actually quite frum in their own (Tanach-only) way.

This is neither here nor there, but I think that she is beautiful.

This is neither here nor there, but I think that she is beautiful.

Posted by: Michael from Lakewood | April 15, 2012 at 01:09 PM

I agree. Of course, the reactions here display the rabid denial and overall state of arrested development that characterizes the Haredi subculture.

Heshy, if your claim was true, rabbis wouldn't be stressing having huge families. And your generalizations of secular people are very strange.

Actually, loathe though I am to admit it, Fraidy uses words in a very vague and ambiguous manner. Did they arrange the marriage or the wedding? Was her husband violent aganst her, or does she want us to assume it by using the word "abuse " in close proximity since she doesn't mention it occurring ten years later? And they settled with Fraidy getting custody. She writes this article (the only one I have read) such that I get the feeling that I am being manipulated. She learned well from her former community.

dh, I assume writing is a new endeavor for her. I'm sure they didn't teach her English language skills at Beis Wherever.

Also, it's a brief article for a secular news site. She had to summarize.

- 85% of haredi women would have married Brad Pitt if it were possible (surprisingly 32% of haredi men said the same)

Posted by: Eli, what me messiah? | April 15, 2012 at 10:44 AM
----------------------------------------

I have a stat too: 61% of frummies believe this kind of humor acceptable, and better than that abominable Reb Mendel.

thanks for the comment.

Their lack of education and exposure (no pun intended) trivializes what we know to be a horrible problem, which I suppose is one of the benefits of a closed tyrannical segregated movement. The gift that keeps on giving.

What a loser. And poor Jeff. He hates everything to do with Judaism. I really do feel so sorry for him.


Heshyfriedman,
Your posts ignore tha empirical studies show that
- 92% of haredi adults describe themselves as "relatively unhappy" with their lives (57% say "extremely unhappy")
- 81% of haredi say they remain in their communities and do not join secular society because they, "lack the skills necessary to function"
- 65% say they would switch religious affiliation if government subsidies were provided for it
- 85% of haredi women would have married Brad Pitt if it were possible (surprisingly 32% of haredi men said the same)

Posted by: Eli, what me messiah? | April 15, 2012 at 10:44 AM


WHERE are these studies published? I would like to examine them.

Show me all of these OTD individuals 20 years later, side by side with their "imprisoned" and "underpriveleged" family members.

A year or two later is too early to decide about happiness, accomplishment, success, freedom, and the long term effects of their life choices.

brava

Posted by: ruthie | April 15, 2012 at 06:29 AM===================================

but what about kashrut and shabbos? i can see how someone has these cultural issues, but to me they seem divorced from Yiddishkeit. perhaps this is why i see Yeshivah University, and those communities as a good thing. I have no personal need to attach labels like "modern" because it really has nothing to do with the philosophy of modernism. modern is simply an incorrect label. they are simply following a different and more rational method.

and these days, you find that a lot of the various orthodox cultures are no where near as bad as the impression one gets based solely on an aggregation of negative news

Gevenezer,
As I thought today was "pull statistics out of your butt day" (see heshyfriedman posts), they are published in place not amenable to easy examination outside of a proctologist's office.

This is neither here nor there, but I think that she is beautiful.

Posted by: Michael from Lakewood | April 15, 2012 at 01:09 PM

I don't know about beautiful, but to quote Springsteen:

"Show a little faith, there's magic in the night
You aint a beauty, but hey you're alright"

Posted by: Eli, what me messiah?
====
Thanks for lightening things up here a bit.

Some more stats:

37% of Chabadniks believe the rebbe commutes between his Ohel and the long Island Jewish Cemetery via a sled pulled by reindeer

23% of Satmar would become a Jehovah's Witness if the pay were OK and they could keep all receipts for peddling Awake! magazine.

76% of all FM readers get stoned, stinking drunk and watch hot channy porno on VIN after eating shabbos cholent.

98% of rebbes have a shabbos goy to set fire to the homes of rebellious souls on shabbos and shmini atzeres.


Gevezener Chusid-USE YOURE NOODLES A BISSEL SAYHEL,YOU DONT SEE HE IS OBVIOUSLY MAKING THIS UP ITS A JOKE EVEN I SEE IT:))

One more important Stat (that is true!)

If your parents didn't have children, there is a high probability that you won't either.

Litvish, gevezener chusid. Stop with your out of ass studies, for you are filling our brains with pure bull shit .

Posted by litvish:

37% of Chabadniks believe the rebbe commutes between his Ohel and the long Island Jewish Cemetery via a sled pulled by reindeer

It is 38% douche bag, like if anyone gives a damm.

There are 2 kinds of people: Those who say there are 2 kinds of people, and those who don't.

Jeff,
I find your comments to be extremely offensive.
Why do you need to use abusive language and name calling?
Has it anything to do with projection or self esteem issues?
You won't win any debates with those tactics

Unfortunately, Jeff appears to be quite deranged. I hope he gets help soon.

I find comments by frumma to be extremely offensive.

trader-Did it occur to you that poeple like youreself who see jeff as deranged are the real deranged one

Shmarya, they're beginning to talk to me the way they do to you. I think I feel flattered.

Do I get a key to the executive washroom?

Jeff, rock on I love your comments!

Jeff,

Do you have self esteem issues? Your manner of speaking presents with very low self esteem.

You may want to speak to a doctor.

Why do you need to use abusive language and name calling?

I live in a community that I believe to be under attack by the enethical practices and lies of Chabad. I further feel that if any group chooses to set itself morally abovell others,there are blighted tract as though they are, and when they fail to do so AND justify those failures it is an embarrassment to all Jews. I find their contention that they represent "true Torah Judaism" to be offensive, and their open contempt for anyone who does observe EXCACTLY as they do o be moreso. And I find the race between the various Haredim groups to see who can be more "observant" (with garbage such as Glatt kosher salmon......) to be an open violation of Jewish Law.

And I greatly appreciate this site in its steps to keep them honest, but.......

But in spite of all that, I really would like an answer to your question, because I am afraid I don't understand how crawling into the sewer with the rats makes you better than the rats.

All the frumma trolls (probably the same asshole on this thread using different idiotic names) always have the same stupid retorts- "you need help", "you have low self esteem", "you are offensive", "you are a self-hating Jew", etc.

How ironic, because these are exactly the mental problems that frumma have.

This lady was treated like a queen I ate by her house more than a few times
All she did was curse rabbonim while her husband was sitting quietly embarrassed or sometimes he joined in with her or against her .
No matter which side he would take he was always respectful of her .
He is known as a man ready to help anyone , while she is known as a fowl mouthed piece of garbage.
Her husband was always the life of the party , while she was always the vomit at the end.
Anyone who knows her and her husband knows that it's all a lie
She is an evil person , very very few people like that , pure evil.
The only thing her husband has bad is his taste women.
Her in laws created a life dedicated to others
She used to yell and scream in that house all the time they never said one word , I was there .they accepted her as is , this bile piece of trash.
Her mother and siblings are the nicest people around .
Tge only true thing is that her father is terrible and made her mother suffer.
This women is one of the most depressed ,angry , ugly people I have ever met

Heh--At first I thought the photo of Fraidy Reiss was a "before" picture, because her hair is so dark and thick it looks like a sheitel and she is wearing such heavy makeup and that buttoned-up long-sleeve shirt.

Posted by: 800 mohel | April 15, 2012 at 07:00 PM


honestly! that's how people who are a bit different and strong minded are spoken about by jealous mediocre neighbors ALL THE TIME. good morning!

I will say it takes parents, sometimes grandparents & friends who love the children MORE than they love being a bigshot macher in the Shul/ Beis Midrash or group approval.

And how often does that happen?

Jeff -- I honestly don't know group statistics, that's why I said it's only my experience. But I do know that on my little block in South-Willi there are 3 known OTDs still living at home who 'change clothes' for crossing Broadway. One is a girl, 2 are boys, & their parents publicly support them. I'm sure there were lots of tears, fighting, threats, etc ... but when push came to shove they sided with their children over the bickering brothers in charge.

Now in the frum community that I fell out of grace with (& perhaps the MO, but I'm not as familiar with the politics, just the 5 Towns variety) over the past 20 years, I get the feeling that there's a need to be stricter, harsher, more observant ... almost as if they feel they're being questioned on their piety when placed side-to-side with the "ultimate" (in their eyes, quite possibly/ probably the Chassids). And this crackdown & moving farther & farther right (IIRC, someone on this blog mentioned that their mother is Orthodox but as things moved rightward, she stayed the same, she is now viewed as MO) has strained a lot of things. Families have to make a choice ... & if they are siding with crazy hashkafahs over their children's health & happiness, the backlash will, eventually, come back to bite them. It happened in shtetls in Europe, & it will happen here. I just feel for the children caught in the middle who aren't complacent, the ones who have questions, aspirations or just aren't cut out for a frum lifestyle. Oddly, I also feel badly for their families too (though, from what I've read in several blogs & news stories not all families deserve this sympathy).

BUT AGAIN, this is a small group & this is only my experience ... a lot of other people may have very different experiences.

Ruthie, the frumma trolls here are too stupid to realize how typical they sound.

@WoolSilkCotton

Ruthie, the frumma trolls here are too stupid to realize how typical they sound.

Sadly, many those of the opposite ilk aren't sounding a lot more intelligent in this thread.

Asking you, because you've been here a long time and I respect your opinion...........

How is being vulgar and denigrating of and toward an entire group of people, the majority of whom are "it" because they genuinely feel it is the best way they can honor God, and who are every bit the victims of their own leadership as are the people they (the leaders) defraud, abuse, steal from........ Productive in sharing them the flaws of their leadership?

From where I am sitting, it would seem to me to serve only to make them circle the wagons and close their minds - or the exact opposite of what might be productive.

Not surprisingly, Dave, Sick of Crazies, Know Fraidy, and 800 Mohel are all the same person.

That's called sockpuppeting.

And it just got you banned.

Have you noticed that the non-frumma trolls all say the same things, and always agree with each other. They always believe every spin that Shmarya creates, and will never ever have a nice word to say about people who don't agree with them. Sort of like a bunch of mind-controlled zombies. Hell - they could all be the same troll!

The frumma trolls on the other hand don't always agree with each other, and will sometimes argue bitterly (satmar vs zionists - as an example) you have litvish vs chasid, chabad vs everyone else, ger vs everyone else, satmar vs everyone else, NK vs everyone else. M.O. Vs haredi. Pro-fisher vs anti-fisher, pro-hikind vs anti-hikind. There is lots of diversity amongst the frumma trolls.

Amongst the non-frumma trolls - they're all divorced, gay, hates all things haredi, agrees with every rant of Shmarya (cognitive dissonance???) No matter how off-base shmarya is, and no matter how much the facts prove shmarya wrong, there is not a thing right with haredim, ever! This gay, divorced, hateful, angry, depressed, non-frumma troll goes by many names: APC, seymour, jancsipista, Jeff, Yakov, yassi, rebitzman, alter kocker, WSC, Litvish, Bassie, Ruthie, Shoshie, etc.

All the frumma trolls (probably the same asshole on this thread using different idiotic names) always have the same stupid retorts- "you need help", "you have low self esteem", "you are offensive", "you are a self-hating Jew", etc.

How ironic, because these are exactly the mental problems that frumma have.

Posted by: WoolSilkCotton, rock star and sports superstar | April 15, 2012 at 06:57 PM

WSC has given my response as well.

Why can't there be a decent non abusive name calling discussion?
There are some very decent commenters from both sides that keep the debate civil and interesting.Notably, one of those,Mendy Hecht got the boot, for some minor infraction.

Is this site going to be a market place of ideas or just beneath the belt bashing and an online escape for people with personal issues?

Jeff -- I honestly don't know group statistics, that's why I said it's only my experience. But I do know that on my little block in South-Willi there are 3 known OTDs still living at home who 'change clothes' for crossing Broadway. One is a girl, 2 are boys, & their parents publicly support them. I'm sure there were lots of tears, fighting, threats, etc ... but when push came to shove they sided with their children over the bickering brothers in charge.

I suspect it's a rare phenomenon, Fred. Fundamentalists will nearly always side with the group or the authority figure to the extent of abandoning their children. That's the reason they're also called "authoritarians".

Now in the frum community that I fell out of grace with (& perhaps the MO, but I'm not as familiar with the politics, just the 5 Towns variety) over the past 20 years, I get the feeling that there's a need to be stricter, harsher, more observant ... almost as if they feel they're being questioned on their piety when placed side-to-side with the "ultimate" (in their eyes, quite possibly/ probably the Chassids).

This is what's happened to all of Orthodoxy. Under Haredi influence, it's moved inexorably to the right.

This gay, divorced, hateful, angry, depressed, non-frumma troll goes by many names: APC, seymour, jancsipista, Jeff, Yakov, yassi, rebitzman, alter kocker, WSC, Litvish, Bassie, Ruthie, Shoshie, etc.

Posted by: groogle | April 15, 2012 at 07:56 PM

I take exception to that. I'm not divorced!

Give 'em a bit more rope and they'll all hang themselves.

Rabbinic Judaism just spawns more bearded wonders, those who say Pirkei Avos one moment and the next come to FM to satisfy their yetser horo.

They just have this tayve to come here. Is VIN not good enough?

Well, actually, it's about as exciting as the sex life of a typical haredi couple.

Even the Manhattan prostitutes have a haredi surcharge they are such lousy lays.

Imagine having sex with your grandfather dressed as an 18th century Polish nobleman.

And the stench.

Oy, don't get me started on the stench.

Raboyno shel oylem!!!

Litvish-I would say reboine dekula alma :))

I am offensive and I find the above comments frum.

WSC--- In reality, there are 10 types of people----those who understand binary and those who don't.

Jeff - do gay men enjoy sex?

(Nobody else answer the question unless you are gay. I want to hear the answer from a gay man)

froogle:

You must not actually read what I write. Your characterization is bizarre. And, I don't think there is one person here, even who disagrees with me vehemently, who would say I ever troll. That's just absurd. I am the polar opposite of a troller.

Posted by: groogle

Gey avek.

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