16 Sivan 5779 / Wednesday, June 19, 2019 | Torah Reading: Shelach Lecho
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Aliza's abusive husband's behavior toward her is carrying an important message that Hashem is desperately trying to give her, for her own ultimate good...


Dear Racheli,


I am a religious woman married to a religious man that doesn’t treat me well. He insults and degrades me whenever he’s not pleased with what I do. If his food isn’t perfect, or the house is a mess, he thinks he can talk to me like I’m trash. I have tried to ask him to meet with a marital counselor, but he thinks I’m overreacting. I’m broken and confused. I learned that if we’re married, that means we’re soulmates. If Hashem let me marry him, it must mean I’m supposed to stay married to him. So why is Hashem letting him treat me this way??




Whoa. Hold up, Aliza. Your question is FULL of misconceptions about married life. Don’t worry, I’ll clarify everything.


First, I’m sorry that you are suffering so much! You should know that it is not Hashem’s intention to make you suffer. He wants you to be happy and to enjoy being married!


Second, it seems to me that you are torn. Deep down, you know you shouldn’t tolerate his abusive behavior, but your mistaken ideas on marriage seem to be keeping you in the relationship. First clarification: there is no reason for you to ever, ever, tolerate any verbal and/or physical abuse. EVER!


Second clarification: your idea of soulmates is not completely correct. Soulmates are simply two souls that have a tikkun, or a spiritual correction to accomplish together. There are different levels, or degrees of soulmates. Not everyone has the same type of correction with each other. Your spouse and children are your closest soulmates, which makes sense because these are our most challenging and complex relationships. The idea that two people fall in love and live happily ever after is Disney’s version of soulmates. It’s not reality.


In your case, obviously your husband and you have a tikkun together. But, remember, Aliza - he’s just a stick in Hashem’s Hand. His behavior toward you is really just a message that Hashem is desperately trying to give you. We’ll get to that message in a moment.


Regarding child abuse, I can’t even begin to speculate why a child is born to an abusive parent. I’m not the Arizal. For cases like these, we just have to do our best to believe that Hashem has His reasons.


But, when it’s an adult who is the victim, there is most certainly a clear lesson Hashem is trying to teach them. In order to understand what it is, let’s briefly describe how a person that tolerates abuse feels about himself. He might think he’s worthless, he’s persecuting himself, maybe he feels it’s his fault, he doesn’t recognize any of his good points, he feels sorry for himself, he doesn’t think he deserves better, he doesn’t feel in control of his life, and he doesn’t feel strong enough to retaliate or leave.


Do you feel any of these things about yourself, Aliza?


So what is the lesson Hashem is trying to teach people that suffer from abuse? VALUE YOURSELF! Recognize your self-worth! You shouldn’t put up with abuse from anyone! The fact that you would allow a person to treat you like garbage, especially a person who claims to love you, shows that you don’t think you are worth much at all. Furthermore, the fact that you think he might actually love you highlights even more how little you love yourself. I promise you - he doesn’t love you. He also needs help, because a normal person doesn’t abuse someone he supposedly loves.


Third clarification: Hashem is not doing this to you! Aliza, Hashem is standing on the sidelines because He gave us free will to make our own choices. But, I can promise you that He’s screaming, “ENOUGH! Don’t take it anymore! You deserve better than this!!” But what can Hashem do? You make a new decision every day to stay with this man. So please don’t make the mistake of blaming Hashem for keeping you in this situation. I’m sorry to say that you’re doing it to yourself.


Aliza, I apologize for the tough love, but this is really love. If you didn’t have such a terrible husband, how would you ever fix this deep emotional problem that you have? How would you ever know that your self-esteem needs to be built up, and you need to value yourself? This is what Hashem is trying to get you to do, and unfortunately, it’s a very painful lesson.


A person with a healthy sense of self-worth wouldn’t put up with such a spouse, especially when there are children involved. If you have children, do you realize what kind of example you’re setting for them? Children learn about marriage primarily from their parents. Do you want them to end up in such miserable marriages? They might very well do so, if you continue to tolerate being mistreated.


Now, I realize that for a woman, especially with children, to leave a marriage no matter how horrible it is, is a very scary reality. There are so many questions and unknowns she will have to deal with. But, what’s the alternative? To stay in a marriage with a man who’s mentally and emotionally killing you? And what if he starts hitting you? When will you decide to say, “ENOUGH!”


Know Aliza, that leaving him is only the first step. Hashem just used him as a stimulus to get you to start doing some serious inner work. You need to address the real causes of why your self-esteem is so low. I would suggest you meet with one of Breslev Israel's two Emuna Therapists, Dr. Zev Ballen or Rebbetzin Yehudit Channen. They will give you spiritual guidance and help you build yourself up, so you will come out of this a new, strong, confident, and happy woman - which is what you deserve to be! You can contact staff@breslev.co.il to schedule an appointment.


Warmest Wishes,




* * *

Feel free to send Racheli your questions, particularly in the areas of marriage, dating, child-rearing and women's role; write her at racheli@breslev.co.il 

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  With Hashem's help you can do this....
Rebecca6/18/2017 9:19:16 PM

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