What percentage of off the derech kids/teens/adults return to Yiddishkeit?

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  • #1451323

    Haimy
    Participant

    I would like to hear from people familiar with this subject how realistic it is that someone choosing a secular lifestyle would later give it up & become frum. The question has tremendous ramifications; before we suggest to people to allow chillul Shabbos, Z’nus, tarfus, V’chol dovor assur into their homes in order to maintain a positive relationship with their non-religious child.
    I don’t know the answer but I think we need to think about it before we condone all forms of issurim within our camp.
    People in the OTD community say that once someone has integrated into the secular world it is rare for them to return.

    #1451355

    WinnieThePooh
    Participant

    I believe for many of these kids, it’s not that they are choosing a secular lifestyle because they think it is better, or have integrated into the secular world, but they are running away from a world in which they were hurt, rejecting what they perceive has rejected them. Their lifestyles are often not considered “normal” even by secular standards. But if they can get past their pain, recover from their addictions, etc they can return to the life they rejected.

    #1451330

    Joseph
    Participant

    A very large percentage of OTD return to Torah Yiddishkeit observance.

    That said, I don’t know that justifies tolerance of the issurim you mentioned.

    #1451345

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    Some would say that it’s valuable to maintain a positive relationship even if you don’t think they’ll become frum.

    #1451390

    Mammele
    Participant

    I second what RY says. On a “practical level” one benefit of remaining connected to these children/young adults, is that dangerous use of drugs/suicide are less likely. So it’s a matter of life and death.

    However, I don’t believe, and don’t think most Rabbis do, that literally EVERYTHING has to be allowed in ones’s own house to try to placate them. Of course, many factors including age play a role, and Rabbonim and experts must be consulted for guidance on an individual basis.

    #1451394

    DovidBT
    Participant

    That said, I don’t know that justifies tolerance of the issurim you mentioned.

    If someone were transgressing secular laws, e.g. committing murder or robbery, would a tolerant attitude toward them be acceptable? Why should we more lenient with halachic transgressors?

    #1451488

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    Maybe because people don’t end up murdered or robbed?

    #1451525

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    There are no statistics and I doubt there ever will be . I suspect more dont return than do return.

    JMO if a family member R’L has gone OTD, you should maintain a good relationship with them, but keep some house rules (Like no bringing in Pork into the house or using the smartphone on shabbos in front of everyone) most will be respectful of the house rules

    If you R’L have a non-jewish grandchild, I have no advice for you

    #1451528

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    If someone were transgressing secular laws, e.g. committing murder or robbery, would a tolerant attitude toward them be acceptable? Why should we more lenient with halachic transgressors?

    Hashem always accepts Tshuva, People not so much. If you break shabbos and really do Tshuva Hashem will forgive you, however if you kill someone you really cannot do tshuva for what you did, the people might never forgive you and you cant undo the damage you did

    #1451580

    The little I know
    Participant

    DovidBT:

    You wrote: “If someone were transgressing secular laws, e.g. committing murder or robbery, would a tolerant attitude toward them be acceptable? Why should we more lenient with halachic transgressors?”

    I cannot believe you think drawing a parallel is logical at all.

    Secular laws involved are social ones. They are about public safety. Getting robbers or murderers away from society is critical to the function of society. Getting involved to protect the public is praiseworthy. And halacha supports this as well.

    In your label of “halachic transgressors”, we have two separate topics. There are those that בין אדם לחבירו. These are similar to the secular laws. If someone poses risk to another, then there is a reason to be intolerant, and to intervene to protect innocent victims. But there are also those areas that are בין אדם למקום. These do not involve me. HKB”H did not create me to serve as his law enforcement officer. Whether someone has failed to put on tefillin today, or ate without washing or benching, is frankly not my business. Yes, there is ערבות, and there is a mitzvah of הוכח תוכיח. If my intervening will restore an appropriate relationship between and individual and אבינו שבשמים, then there is a good reason to mix in. If not, my mitzvah is to stay out of it. The “halachic transgressor” is as much a child to HKB”H as any of us. I will never have the authority or the moral justification to block HKB”H from His child.

    Finally, there is a horrible myth that dominates much of the discussion. It suggests there is a domino effect, where the OTD family member brings others down. This myth is even more emphasized in yeshivos, and is exploited as justification to expel kids all the time. The impact on another child may happen, but it is actually a rare exception. Gedolei Yisroel have been known to take a strong stand on this, and suggest retaining the close proximity and concentration of chinuch efforts on the child who is acting out, even if that means to scatter the other children to live with other family and friends. The Satmar Rov ZT”L once told a Rosh Yeshiva to throw out the other 25 talmidim, and to keep his yeshiva open for the one who was causing trouble. Rav Elyoshiv told a mother to move her other 8 children out of the home to concentrate on the one who was acting out.

    The ultimate rejection of kicking a child out of the home is the nail in the spiritual coffin. Yes, I call it retzichoh. No, I did not originate this. Gedolei Yisroel said it.

    Stop worrying about “halachic transgressors”. It is not your business. Just leave a path for them to return when they are ready. And if you do want to intervene, get in the business of helping bring HKB”H’s children back to him, not push them farther away. They are not less בנים למקום than you or me.

    #1451566

    Me12345
    Participant

    Most teens at risk are not adopting a secular life style. They are partying and having a “good” time. In 9 out of 10 cases a teen will go off because it is their way of dealing with their issues and when they mature or get tired of their partying they come back. By kicking them out and not tolerating them you can close the door to then returning. Of course if it is affecting other family members (or in general) consult with a professional.
    1 thing to remember is that if he/she was a yeshiva bachur/bais yaakov girl before the chances they will go right back to the way they were before they went otd is very slim.
    The key is accept them, support them and if your a parent of such a child it doesn’t mean that your a bad person but you never know what you might’ve don’t to cause thjs

    #1451542

    Joseph
    Participant

    “Maybe because people don’t end up murdered or robbed?”

    Robbing or stabbing Hashem is not as bad as doing it to a human?

    #1451707

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    Humans are mortal.

    #1451722

    Joseph
    Participant

    Remove mortal matters from the discussion. Why should greater tolerance be given to one who steals from and curses Hashem than one who steals from and curses his parents or neighbors?

    #1451735

    Takes2-2tango
    Participant

    I think we should be more worried about ” in the closet Otd’s more then out of the closet!
    By dealing with regular otd kids you are not nipping the root of the problem problem. Unfortunately our chinuch system which most swear by has failed us miserably.

    #1451776

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Unfortunately our chinuch system which most swear by has failed us miserably.

    Considering the way some parents fail miserably in their duties, I would say that by and large the yeshivos and Bais Yaakovs are doing an excellent job.

    #1451796

    roger green
    Participant

    the video of rav edelstein shlita shows that you must embrace and love every otd under EVERY circumstance!

    #1451784

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    Joseph, the same reason we give greater tolerance to storms at sea than storms on land.

    #1451785

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    Haimy I’m confused as to what your point is.

    You conclude ” once someone has integrated into the secular world it is rare for them to return.”

    Isnt that an argument to do whatever we can NOT to have them integrate into the world? and rather to keep them at home , even if it appears that we “condone all forms of issurim within our camp.

    you somehow seem to have reached the opposite conclusion

    #1451794

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    Chinuch succeeds for those students who fit the mold, However for those who do not fit the mold it has failed.

    For example for those who are able to learn all day, its a success, but for those who cannot it has failed and has no other alternative for them

    #1451795

    Takes2-2tango
    Participant

    Unfortunately our chinuch system which most swear by has failed us miserably.

    Considering the way some parents fail miserably in their duties, I would say that by and large the yeshivos and Bais Yaakovs are doing an excellent job.
    —————————-
    Of course you are entitled to your opinions but the sad fact is if you go around taking a pole and the person is not afraid to relay his true feeling (for social pressure reasons) you will have slot more who agree with me.

    #1451806

    mdd1
    Participant

    The little I know, your Western society attitude in not in accordance with the Torah. A transgressor is not as much of a child of HKBH. We are his law enforcement officers, just in this country we can’t do it.

    #1451812

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    For example for those who are able to learn all day, its a success, but for those who cannot it has failed and has no other alternative for them

    If you want to define success as learning a whole day, then of course for those who can’t do that, the system fails them.

    However, under any normal definition of success, which includes klei kodesh who aren’t learning a whole day, and ehliche balabatim who are shomrei Torah umitzvos and koveia itim, saying that the system has failed is demonstrably false.

    #1451815

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    but the sad fact is if you go around taking a pole and the person is not afraid to relay his true feeling (for social pressure reasons) you will have slot more who agree with me.

    Perhaps if you would, you would get those results. I believe if I would, I would get vastly different results.

    I think you know the wrong people.

    #1451824

    mdd1
    Participant

    Little I know, remember Pinchas ben Elozar ben Aharon Ha’Kohen?

    #1451829

    JJ2020
    Participant

    Haimy- machlal Shabbos and the like is not acceptable in a Jewish home period. Your kids should be and feel welcome. If they are doing something outside the home that’s one thing but bringing in an avodah Zara into the home is not acceptable. We do not compromise our beliefs for “kiruv”. We set an example. And it happens to be that is the best kiruv.

    #1451836

    The little I know
    Participant

    mdd1:

    Your problem is that you know nothing about the metziyus of the problem. These are not baalei aveiroh at all. These are people suffering from a dreaded disease. They are reacting with psychiatric symptoms to events and situations that drove them to rebel or escape. They are running away from people like you who consider everything they do an aveiroh. As a choleh, which is how Gedolei Yisroel recognize the problem, they are not responsible. It is then an aveiroh to treat them as chot’im. There is a chiyuv to be mekarev them and help them do teshuvah.

    Yes, I know a whole lot about Pinchos and Zimri. Zimri was not a choleh. He was a baal aveiroh. And Pinchos knew that, and had the capacity to recognize it. He was the grandson of Aharon Hacohen who knew more about making shalom than you or I will ever be able to grasp. And Pinchos reached a non-impulsive decision, which even Moshe told him was a הלכה ואין מורים כן, that it cannot be carried out as an instruction but rather by the tacit recognition that this was needed.

    Until you understand something about the OTD problem being rooted in an emotional situation, all the rest of your arguments are irrelevant. And the Gedolei Yisroel that all say this have reached their conclusions based on having learned to recognize the experience of these kids. Sure, it is unpleasant to see your own child violating Shabbos, dressing in ways that are grossly different from your mesorah, and acting out in ways that are hair raising. But they are sick, not evil. They are not apikorsim at all.

    Now picture the coming of Moshiach, where he will be searching the corners of the world for the Yidden, children of the Avos, to gather together and bring to Eretz Yisroel. And you will volunteer to ride shotgun and throw out some of these precious neshamos, who suffered in their illnesses. Is that what you hope to do? How about those who toil relentlessly to restore the cleanliness of these neshamos, all from the same חלק אלוק ממעל as you, me, the rest of Klal Yisroel? They get first class rides and special schar for working to complete the family of Hashem Yisborach, לבל ידח ממנו נדח.

    Lastly, HKB”H never employed you to enforce his halachos. He did give you a mitzvah of הוכח תוכיח, but not to ostracize or punish anyone. Have you ever had a child of yours that was sick ח”ו? Did you toss him/her out with the garbage at curbside, or did you go to the doctor? If the child engaged in behaviors that were upsetting to you, did they get taken back to the hospital for a refund? Are any of your children more or less of your child? That statement of yours is absurd, and has never been acceptable by anyone with a minimum of Torah achievement. Who can you quote that would ever support that ridiculous statement – that an OTD kid is less child to HKB”H? Just one reputable name?

    #1451848

    Haimy
    Participant

    This is part of my question. At what point do we concede that the person has found a different lifestyle for themselves & we swe should not sacrifice our own standards for them. Are we deluding ourselves that by allowing chillul Shabbos amongst other severe issurim in a frum home will somehow bring them back? This was implied by the video posted by Rabbi Hoffman in his latest article.
    I personally believe that a modicum of halachik observance be expected from a non observant family member. This was not the message I heard on the video.

    #1451852

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    If you want to define success as learning a whole day, then of course for those who can’t do that, the system fails them.

    However, under any normal definition of success, which includes klei kodesh who aren’t learning a whole day, and ehliche balabatim who are shomrei Torah umitzvos and koveia itim, saying that the system has failed is demonstrably false.

    The problem is those who cannot learn are made to feel substandard and this is before Kollel, this is when they are younger . Tell a 14 year old who cannot learn all day he is a failure and punish him for it , See where that takes you

    #1451864

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    It took me this long to figure out what “taking a pole” meant. I was imagining someone literally taking a pole.

    #1451879

    hml
    Participant

    I know kids who were OTD then returned in their early twenties. I know kids who are in their thirties now who are still OTD. Every situation is unique and needs to be dealt with sensitively & individually.

    Generally, I would advocate welcoming them but asking them to keep their smoking, laptop & phone use in their rooms. As for clothing – again, it depends on the individual. But if a teen knows he is loved regardless and there is a connection with the home & family, there is a much greater chance of return.

    One last thing… if a teen from a Chassidishe home decides to cut off his peyos, wear a kippa sruga, but still keep Shabbos & Kashrus, is he OTD? Or his he finding his own derech?

    #1451880

    Joseph
    Participant

    TLIK, Why so harsh about Reb Zimri? Gedolei Yisroel (the very same ones you cited) say he too was a choleh. Zimri’s childhood rebbi was much too harsh with him. He gave him underserved petch when all Zimri needed was love. Zimri’s rebbi embarrassed him instead of hugging him. No wonder his difficult childhood resulted in what happened later on. He was a baalei aveiroh at all. Zimri was suffering from a dreaded disease. He was reacting with psychiatric symptoms to events and situations that drove him to rebel.

    Yet Halacha l’maaisa today is that we now here in America are deputized to be a Pinchos in our times. Check the local copy of your Shulchan Aruch. The very same S”A that tells us that, today, we are to (physically if necessary) punish wayward Yidden who violate בין אדם למקום.

    Now about your rosy picture of Moshiach. Have you read the Seforim HaKedoshim about him? It will be a time of great tribulations. The Seforim tell us that Moshiach, even he comes, will expell the Jews who are undeserving. And that can be many, when a majority. Do you remember that by Yetzias Mizrayim fully 80% of the Yidden, bring undeserving, were caused to perish prior to the Geula?

    #1451868

    mdd1
    Participant

    Little I know, I was not necessarily speaking what to do le’ma’ase. I was just addressing the wrong hashkofic statements and the twisting of the Torah. One name? Look in Rambam, Hilchos Teshuvah where he speaks about the greatness of teshuvah and there he describes how HKB’H views a sinner before he does teshuvah. (I don’t remember which perek off hand.) What to do practically under the circumstances is one question, but theoretically if there is a need for pressure to be applied to the ba’al aveirah there are plenty of sources for that.

    #1452174

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    if a teen from a Chassidishe home decides to cut off his peyos, wear a kippa sruga, but still keep Shabbos & Kashrus, is he OTD? Or his he finding his own derech?

    Forget the kippa for a second; that just politicizes it. If he reduces his observance to a minimum, that’s not finding his own derech, that’s doing what’s easier.

    #1452194

    The little I know
    Participant

    mdd1:

    We have a fundamental difference. I believe we are understanding the issue completely differently. You believe we are discussing baalei aveiroh. I do not. I believe we are discussing a choleh.

    #1452212

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    I believe we are discussing a choleh.

    When did HKB”K remove everyone’s bechirah?

    #1452232

    Phil
    Participant

    “Yet Halacha l’maaisa today is that we now here in America are deputized to be a Pinchos in our times”

    YWN’s very own “Barney Fife” trolls in such a nasty manner because he’s convinced himself that he’s been officially deputized to criticize other Jews. He would do well to remember that this is the very definition of the baseless hatred that is preventing Moshiach from coming. Other than the gedolim of a generation, nobody has been put in charge of criticizing another Jew. On the notably few occasions when our leaders have to criticize, they can manage just fine without anyone else’s help.

    #1452235

    Avram in MD
    Participant

    The little I know,

    You believe we are discussing baalei aveiroh. I do not. I believe we are discussing a choleh

    I think the reality, predictably, is in the middle of these extremes. Can hurtful experiences at the hands of parents and schools help drive a child off the derech who otherwise would have stayed on, R”L? Certainly. At the end of the day, however, in the absence of a severe disorder, a young adult is responsible for his own choices, and cannot endlessly abdicate his responsibility by blaming mommy and daddy, or Rebbe Meany. Hashem gave him those parents and teachers, and yet he is still obligated in the mitzvos.

    #1452245

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    I think the reality, predictably, is in the middle of these extremes.

    I disagree with you on the semantics. Someone who doesnt have a severe disorder is not a “choleh” (shoteh would probably have been the more halachically accurate term) but is in fact a baal aveirah. There’s really no in between.

    I think what you’re trying to convey is that some people have much harder nisyonos than others, and that’s certainly the case.

    #1452240

    Avram in MD
    Participant

    Haimy,

    The question has tremendous ramifications; before we suggest to people to allow chillul Shabbos, Z’nus, tarfus, V’chol dovor assur into their homes in order to maintain a positive relationship with their non-religious child

    I don’t accept the premise of this statement. I think it is incumbent on parents to try and maintain a positive relationship with their child. At the same time, as managers of the home, the parents have a right to set rules and expectations for what happens under their roof. Having different beliefs does not make it ok for a child to defy rules or severely disrupt the home.

    “This is a kosher kitchen. Please do not bring that food in here.”

    “This home is Shabbos observant. We expect everyone here to put cell phones away. It can be used later tonight after havdala.”

    Nothing unloving or even judgmental in those statements.

    #1452251

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    “This is a kosher kitchen. Please do not bring that food in here.”

    “This home is Shabbos observant. We expect everyone here to put cell phones away. It can be used later tonight after havdala.”

    Nothing unloving or even judgmental in those statements.

    No, but that doesn’t mean the troubled teen won’t perceive or treat it as unloving or judgemental.

    #1452277

    Avram in MD
    Participant

    DaasYochid,

    I disagree with you on the semantics. Someone who doesnt have a severe disorder is not a “choleh” (shoteh would probably have been the more halachically accurate term) but is in fact a baal aveirah. There’s really no in between.

    Point taken, but with the caveat that I would then argue that there are different “degrees” of baal aveirah, and one’s nisayonos plays a role in that.

    #1452266

    Avram in MD
    Participant

    DaasYochid,

    No, but that doesn’t mean the troubled teen won’t perceive or treat it as unloving or judgemental.

    There comes a point where poor receipt of a message is the child’s problem, not the parent’s. That said, the parent must take great pains to be loving and respectful of the child. Tone and nonverbals can be more powerful than the actual words.

    #1452255

    Avram in MD
    Participant

    Joseph,

    Yet Halacha l’maaisa today is that we now here in America are deputized to be a Pinchos in our times. Check the local copy of your Shulchan Aruch. The very same S”A that tells us that, today, we are to (physically if necessary) punish wayward Yidden who violate בין אדם למקום.

    How about we “check” our living and breathing rabbeim before going off and petching people? They know the Shulchan Aruch a lot better than us, and that is the proper way for a Jew to obtain guidance.

    #1452284

    Takes2-2tango
    Participant

    Question:
    To all holier then thous.
    We all agree that hashem is our ultimate father.
    When a petson does an avaira publicly or in Private , does hashem throw him to the dogs? Does hashem throw him out of the shul he once davenef in? Who are you to decide as a father to disown your son for being a ball avaira.
    You as a father are a human just like your son . You too slip here and there in yiddishkiet .perhaps its only in private so no one sees you . But hashem sees you
    Does he throw you to the dogs? Does he strike you dead? Are you better anf smarter then hashem who watches all you do behind closr doors? Think very hard before throwing your child out of your house. Just remember. What goes around comes around. Hashem works is very wonderous Ways

    #1452293

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    Forget the kippa for a second; that just politicizes it. If he reduces his observance to a minimum, that’s not finding his own derech, that’s doing what’s easier.

    For some people they love Chumras and feel it makes them closer to hashem, for others its a major turn off and drives them away

    #1452298

    Avram in MD
    Participant

    Takes2-2tango,

    To all holier then thous.

    Who?

    We all agree that hashem is our ultimate father.
    When a petson does an avaira publicly or in Private , does hashem throw him to the dogs? Does hashem throw him out of the shul he once davenef in?

    Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

    Who are you to decide as a father to disown your son for being a ball avaira.

    Whoh, hold the horses there for a minute. Not even Joseph, who’s trolling the thread, has said to disown anyone.

    Think very hard before throwing your child out of your house.

    I’ve read a lot of discussion in this thread about tolerating or not tolerating certain behaviors in your house, but nothing about throwing a child out. Can you point me to an example?

    Just remember. What goes around comes around. Hashem works is very wonderous Ways

    So twice in your post you attacked the mysterious “holier than thous” by saying that Hashem doesn’t punish sinners. But now you use Hashem’s vengeance as a threat? Seems ironic.

    #1452567

    Phil
    Participant

    “The very same S”A that tells us that, today, we are to (physically if necessary) punish wayward Yidden who violate בין אדם למקום.”

    Mods,

    I realize that Joseph exists to troll but this really crosses the line. To post this kind of statement, even in jest, demonstrates a proclivity to aberrant behavior. Please, contact the authorities immediately so they can investigate and ensure that he isn’t acting violently against family members!

    #1452575

    JJ2020
    Participant

    There is a difference between having a home in which you keep Shabbos and disowning children. It’s completely normal for a home to have basic rules that must be followed. The 10 commandments isn’t outrageous rules. No one is going to die because they didn’t turn on the lights at their parents house.

    #1452604

    etzhar
    Participant

    TLIK
    ” The Satmar Rov ZT”L once told a Rosh Yeshiva to throw out the other 25 talmidim, and to keep his yeshiva open for the one who was causing trouble. Rav Elyoshiv told a mother to move her other 8 children out of the home to concentrate on the one who was acting out.”

    These are amazing quotes. I would be grateful for chapter and verse please or were they said in public or private?

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