Couples Having Shabbos Guests

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  • #590634

    neatfreak
    Member

    I was wondering what people thought of young couples (shana rishona or childless) having other young couples over for a shabbos meal? Why is this any diffrent then a young couple going over to a couple with a few children, but the children are all sleeping on Friday night?

    I understand the issue of not getting too familiar with other people’s husbands or wifes , but

    1. what if you will only talk to your husband or the woman guest (being a girl)?

    2. and why isnt that a problem with people with kids?

    thanks

    #707918

    Joseph
    Participant

    There is a tznius component that must also be considered prior to young couples inviting other young couples for Shabbos.

    #707919

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    There is a tznius component that must also be considered prior to young couples inviting other young couples for Shabbos.

    But what is it? Why is it different if the couple has kids or not?

    If you tell me that it’s wrong period (kids or no kids) then I understand (even if I don’t necessarily agree). But I’m curious (as is the OP) for the reason for the differentiation.

    The Wolf

    #707920

    Joseph
    Participant

    Wolfish,

    I didn’t intend to say it is necessarily different whether there are children or not. Sorry for that confusion.

    #707921

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    I didn’t intend to say it is necessarily different whether there are children or not. Sorry for that confusion.

    S’ok. 🙂

    There are plenty of times when I am less than clear as well.

    The Wolf

    #707922

    Jothar
    Member

    I heard that it is a problem for young couples because the young couple hasn’t finished bonding yet, and the guy/girl is looking at the other girl/guy and thinking she/he is better than his/her spouse. After a few years you have bonded and it doesn’t bother you.

    #707923

    neatfreak
    Member

    thank you jothar.

    does this also apply if you have been married for a few years but are childless?

    and how could it be that after a few years it is ok? People can still compare even once they are married 20+ years.

    #707924

    neatfreak
    Member

    Also is it ok for a young couple to have bachrim over from the yeshiva? how is that not an issue?

    and while this is less comman, what about having girls over? in E”Y there were many families that didnt have sem girls over till they had x number kids (depended on the person)

    #707925

    Joseph
    Participant

    “and how could it be that after a few years it is ok? People can still compare even once they are married 20+ years.”

    Absolutely.

    #707926

    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    This is unbelievable. You mean Chareidim now have a new “issur” on inviting guests? Where did I miss this one in Hilchos Yichud? Does that also mean a couple cannnot invite a yeshiva boy or seminary girl for Shabbos either? Is this the same “issur” as mixed seating at a wedding? Was Reb Moshe a bad Jew because he had mixed seating at all his kids weddings?

    #707927

    neatfreak
    Member

    the story is: i live in a yeshiva neighborhood (my husband learns there and all neighbors are affiliated with the yeshiva). we have bachrim over every couple weeks and i would like to invite over some other young kollel couples that live nearby. i asked one and she said her husband never would go for it. so before i ask oters and possibly brand myself as “off the derech” i wanted to see if anyone knows anything about it.

    My husband is ok with having couples over but he did tell me that those that take issue with it are right to. he said that things have gotten worse over the years and thats why in the recent years there are no yeshivish mixed seating weddings anymore and that the mechitza in the yeshiva was changed from a seperating wall to one where you cant see over.

    i can understand why people say no because tey think its a tznius issue for the husband to be around other people’s wives, but what i really don’t get is why that changes as you get older and also why its ok to have bachrim over- i mean your wife is there!!

    #707928

    Pashuteh Yid:

    Nope only fools.

    Every one who is a real ben torah realizes that in a few weeks we will be reading from the TORAH that avraham had guests and not only that, he didn’t have children.

    But he was only the father of judaism and not someone great, like Joseph, or his rabbi, from where he gets his nourishkeit from.

    #707929

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    Just invite people over. If they say no, then be understanding of their concerns/customs. That’s all.

    Don’t worry about being branded as “off the derech” for showing kindness and sociability. Or, look at it this way… if they would be so judgemental as to brand you as “off the derech” for inviting you over, then you’re probably better off without them anyway.

    The Wolf

    #707930

    To reword myself, I should not have said fools. The Wolf put my words in a much more eloquent way.

    #707931

    Joseph
    Participant

    neatfreak: You are correct in your concerns.

    #707932

    squeak
    Participant

    neatfreak, I think you have confused the cause for the effect.

    #707933

    artchill
    Participant

    I know that Yeshiva Chofetz Chaim holds of this idea. It is valid and the point should be understood well.

    #707934

    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    All those who claim things have gotten worse lately, have obviously not read Tanach. Some of the stories there would make a sailor blush. The yetzer hara has been around for a long, long time. That didn’t stop previous generations from being menschlach.

    #707935

    squeak
    Participant

    If I may elaborate by using a famous quote,

    The more you tighten your grip, the more systems will slip through your fingers.

    #707936

    rabbiofberlin
    Participant

    I would have a belly laugh at this posting if it did not indicate the (truly) dangerous way in which some jewish circles (mainly chareidi) are drifting. To find evil intent and dubious motivations in every act of someone is totally NOT torah-dig.clearly, “heve dan es kol odom lekaf zechus”

    If you feel that it is inappropiate to invite couples because of the possible inferences, then it should be across the whole spectrum. People’s inclinations do not stop when they have children or as they grow older. Mayb even qite the opposite.

    The fact is that this has never been mentioned in halacah, it surely goes against the grain of one of the biggest mitzvas (hachnsos orchim) and it brands (unfairly)every person.

    #707938

    truthsharer
    Member

    neatfreak, there are no longer mixed seating litvisher weddings because of the Chassidishe influence.

    #707939

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    It is valid and the point should be understood well.

    Agreed. I don’t think people should be ridiculed for holding this point of view.

    As I said, if they say no, then be understanding of their concerns.

    But, by the same token, I don’t think neatfreak should receive the “OTD label” for seeking friendship.

    The Wolf

    #707940

    neatfreak
    Member

    Wolf: while its all very nice to say im better off without them, at this current time they are the only people in my neighborhood and im stuck here for the time being.

    #707941

    Joseph
    Participant

    The weddings in Lita were not mixed seating either.

    #707942

    telegrok
    Member

    if having a shabbos guest is going to make the husband’s/wife’s heart stray, then that person is probably not committed enough to the marriage and should not have gotten married in the first place. More and more the Torah observance community is fast losing its grip on halachig observance that walks hand-in-hand with common sense.

    the result is that the joy of yiddeshkeit is replaced by an ever-quickening spiral downward toward exclusion of anything that does not fit the narrow strictures imposed by that month’s “chumrah club.” Is it any surprise so many kids are falling so far off the derech?

    EDITED

    #707943

    mepal
    Member

    The more you tighten your grip, the more systems will slip through your fingers.

    Excellent.

    #707944

    oomis
    Participant

    I wonder what Avraham Avinu would say.

    #707945

    Joseph
    Participant

    You mentioned Avrohom Avinu?

    Sarah Imenu went inside and did not wish to interact with or even be seen by the guests.

    #707946

    neatfreak
    Member

    About 2 months ago we went to a family friday night. they have 5 kids with another on the way, who were all asleep, so it was just us and them. And I spoke with the mrs. and my husband spoke with the rabbi. and that was that. i have no urge to talk to and man invited over, rather i would like to talk to the ladies.

    #707947

    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    In most normal families, the men and women there talk to everybody. Whatever the topic is, everybody participates together.

    #707948

    squeak
    Participant

    Joseph,

    There is no such place as Lita.

    Were you ever at a wedding in Lithuania? There’s not much resemblance between weddings there and then and weddings here and now.

    #707949

    Joseph
    Participant

    PY: We are talking about Jewish families here.

    #707950

    Joseph
    Participant

    squeak,

    Lithuania.

    I know.

    #707951

    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    Are Jewish families abnormal?

    #707952

    squeak
    Participant

    Joseph,

    Do you also know that your parallel is fallacious?

    #707953

    haifagirl
    Participant

    I’m with PY on this one. In most homes I’ve been in, and they include homes of some very choshuve rabbis, the men and women speak to everybody.

    #707954

    Joseph
    Participant

    squeak,

    You missed the overall point.

    Was the Lithuanian standard to have intermingling?

    #707955

    SJSinNYC
    Member

    Squeak, you make me laugh.

    NeatFreak, if you just want to speak to the women, how about inviting htem over for tea/dessert after the meal? Or shabbos afternoon dessert type of thing? This way you only have the women over.

    #707956

    truthsharer
    Member

    Joseph,

    There is a famous story with the Chafetz Chaim. A chassidishe rebbe (forgot who, very famous) was going to be in town for Shabbos and asked to stay by the CC, but he said that he’d appreciate if the men and women ate separately. The CC wrote back that he is more than welcome to come, but in his house the family eats together on Shabbos.

    #707957

    jphone
    Member

    “Sarah Imenu went inside and did not wish to interact with or even be seen by the guests.”

    Yet Avraham Avinu did not refrain from leaving his door open for guests.

    So, are we to conclude that since we are not avram avinu we should abandon hachnosas orchim? Or perhaps, we should tell our wives to lock themselves in the kitchen for the duration of time the male guests are in the house? Or, perhaps we are to conclude that we should arrange for separate seating when having company?

    #707958

    squeak
    Participant

    SJS, I hope that’s a good thing!

    #707959

    truthsharer
    Member

    Joseph,

    Did you recall there was a famous picture of the CC sitting at a train station published in some biography? On the internet someone posted the original picture which included his wife standing around.

    I hate to break the news to you but Lita was not what you imagine it to be.

    #707960

    Joseph
    Participant

    truthsharer: So take your wife to the train station.

    #707961

    neatfreak
    Member

    Also no one has yet addressed why there is no problems with having bachrim over. i have never heard of a family that doesnt for tznius reasons. I have heard of not having girls over – but never about boys….

    (aside from once there is a bas mitzva girl in the house)

    #707962

    lgbg
    Member

    when couples invited another couple for a shabbos meal or even for a supper, how are they seated? Never could figure that out.(only a newborn involved)

    #707963

    neatfreak
    Member

    the best is to have one side of the table against the wall. then the host and hostess sit at either end and the guest couple sits on the open side- man by man- woman by woman.

    or if that is not an option the host sits at the head the guest husband and wife sit next to each other and the hostess sits across from them, just more over to the woman and perferably put flowers or something in between guest man and hostess.

    i learnt that in seminary

    #707964

    cherrybim
    Participant

    truthsharer – I think that was the Chofetz Chaim’s home in Radin and he was speaking to Rav Elchonon Wasserman.

    Anyway, Sara was m’karev the women and Avraham the men. But while Avraham was a terrific host, Sara wasn’t interested in overdoing the hachnasas orchim thing.

    #707966

    telegrok
    Member

    I think the best seating arrangement is to have the men at the far end of the table with the women close to the kitchen since they need to spend their time there, anyway.

    Better yet, just have the women eat in the kitchen.

    #707967

    squeak
    Participant

    Joseph, perhaps you think that I am missing the point, but I believe otherwise.

    I think that it was the cautious familiarity between Jewish men and women (which was the norm) that enabled them to interact with one another in a permitted way. It is precisely because now men and women are kept so far apart that they have no idea how to interact with each other when happenstance brings them together.

    I am not encouraging frum people to let their boys and girls mingle so that they will know how to deal with members of the opposite gender. I am saying that once separations are so rigidly enforced, those separations must be enforced for life or they will act like teenagers no matter what age they are, no matter what their marital status.

    It is precisely because young men and women DID have interaction with one another in your grandparents’ time (with properly established boundaries, but less rigid, of course) that they had a realistic understanding of the opposite gender and were able to act appropriately.

    #707968

    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    Joseph, I have eaten thousands of meals both at the homes of others when I was single and married, and at my home after I was married, with both singles and couples, and I have never seen any inappropriate incident at the table. Certainly, the idea of someone starting up with somebody else’s spouse, is the most far-fetched thing I could imagine. Maybe you should join my circle of friends, and see how well-behaved they are with no need for any of these newfangled separation practices.

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