Dear Future Mothers In Law

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    Dear Future Mothers-in-Law,

    Let’s talk about a topic that’s taboo for you and a reality for me.



    the legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body.

    If you’ll notice, nowhere in the definition of divorce does it talk about the children of divorce and how it affects them.

    Did the divorce and events following affect me?


    In the way you’re thinking?

    Probably not.

    When you hear, “she has stepsiblings,” you might translate that as a negative. When I think stepsiblings, I think of all the relationships I’ve worked through by working on myself and building others up.

    When you hear, “her mother is divorced,” you might translate that as a negative. When I think of my mother being divorced, I think of the hundreds and hundreds of situations I had to work through. I became a stronger, more understanding and considerate person because of it. I came out on top.

    When you hear, “her father is not involved,” you might translate that as a negative. When I think of my father not being involved, I recall the many times I persevered.

    For any negative association that you may have with any word that has to do with divorce; step siblings, half siblings, stepfather, stepmother, I’ll have a positive rebuttal.

    I may not have had two parents growing up. I may have had a stepfather who I didn’t get along with. I may have a father who wasn’t/isn’t around in a positive way. I may have a stepmother who doesn’t like me just because I exist. I may have half siblings and stepsiblings.

    None of that defines me. Not one little bit of it. You may never want to consider a girl/boy with a blended family. But did you ever think about the things children of divorce have to work through? The situations we’ve navigated? The times we constantly found ourselves being the bigger person at ages that were just too young? That we know how important compromise is? That we can handle real life? That a tough situation won’t throw us off track?

    Toss a hard situation my way, I’ve got it. I’ve worked through so many of them. Many of which I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. I’ve learnt so many skills to be able to handle life. My blended family will always be a part of my life, and that’s okay. Tough situations will come up, and that’s okay. Those situations don’t define who I am. They have helped and will continue to help me become a stronger and better person.

    I’m not here to put down anyone who grew up in a home with two parents.They have their struggles as well. I’m here to defend those of us who didn’t and to show you how strong we are. We’re not damaged goods.

    We know good and well what we don’t want our homes to look like and will do everything in our power to create a healthy and beautiful home for our husbands/wives and our children. Being part of a blended family doesn’t mean we aren’t marriage material or there’s something wrong with us.

    Do your research.

    Don’t discard our resumes because of something we didn’t choose.

    Give us a fair chance.


    Dear OP,

    All of the things and situations you mentioned, are evidence as to why divorce is to be avoided and refrained from to the greatest extent possible.


    Many yeshiva bachurim have this thing where they do 2 days Purim, maybe 3 in israel. They go to for example RBS for Purim one day, then Jerusalem the next. What does the oilem think about this?



    Divorce is a Torah solution to an untenable situation. Divorce is something that HKBH created. Most children of divorce know that as difficult as it is to be from a broken home, they’d be exponentially worse off if they’re parents had stayed together.


    Joseph, divorce is the correct thing to do in many cases. Yes, there are times when people choose it too easily, but there are times when it is warranted. I personally know of individuals that my Rebbe, R’ Bender, encouraged to get a divorce.
    I have a family member who got divorced, after a short marriage. It was even a case where divorce is usually strongly discouraged – she was pregnant. Why? The husband was physically abusive. So they got divorced while she was pregnant, and shortly after, she had a daughter.
    She remarried a few years later, to a wonderful man who also had a daughter. Together they had more children. I don’t think that any of the children feel that the two oldest (who are step-siblings to each other, and half-siblings to the rest) are anything less than full family. The parents love their step-daughters as their own. It’s truly a beautiful family.


    I have a lot to say on this matter, both from a daas torah mesorah and from my experience with children, but i do not wish to offend the OP – there’s no limit to the potential of every individual, and those who rise above their disadvantageous circumstances are heros, admirable, and amazing people. I’ll make a new thread with my observations and what I’ve heard from my rebbeim on the subject, to be read at OPs discretion.


    I applaud the OP for his frankness. Yes there is a stigma against divorce, but it should not be applied to the children of parents who divorce, they were not one of the parties who could not continue in an untenable marriage.

    I practice family law and have handled divorces for many decades. Children of divorce often turn out much better than children whose parents remained in a bad marriage.

    Readers of the CR are aware that Mrs. CTL died over a year ago. I now am considering who I might spend the rest of my life with. Originally, I thought I would be amenable to a widow between the ages of X and Y. I immediately realized I was using some of these same prejudices against divorce. I am not a kohen and have no galactic restriction. I revised my search to include divorced women.

    It is hard to undo centuries of bias against divorce, but HaShem gave the laws of Gittin in Torah shel Beal peg for a good reason.


    To common saychel, the oilem thinks you posted in the wrong place.

    ☕️coffee addict


    Ujm wasn’t saying never should people get divorced, he was saying try to avoid divorce as much as possible (something which the Gemara says too, מזבח ירדה דמעות)

    Dr. Pepper

    @ 4980112t

    The shidduch process is really a filtering process if you think about it- you date someone to see if they’re for you or if you need to filter them out. While rejection (especially for something that you had no control over and made the best out of) is painful and frustrating- it does help you filter out those who you wouldn’t want to be related to anyway.

    You seem to have taken a challenging situation and made yourself a better person (and potential wife) out of it. May הקב”ה help you find a husband (and mother-in-law) who appreciates your fine qualities.

    הצלחה רבה and גמר חתימה טובה.

    The little I know

    There are matters that need to be faced in the aftermath of a divorce.

    1. The children will always be affected. This can happen in multiple ways. To explain them all would take a book, not an essay to publish to the internet. Many children are resilient, and do not bear much scarring. Some may even make lemonade out of their lemons. And some situations can diminish the magnitude and variety of negative effects.

    2. Despite the increased divorce rate, the stigma is still as strong as ever, and perhaps more. And this may be without regard to the success of coping and resilience.

    3. There are many concerns in the consideration of a shidduch. I would strive to see my child that lacked good modeling for marriage to enter a family that does have a better than intact home. Rejecting that child because of a label might be unfair.

    4. In the frum community, we have grown to recognize a dynamic that is highly painful. Divorce is intended to be an event that is “krisus”, and complete severance. However, as batei din and attorneys know too well, that is plenty that follows the completed gett and divorce. There is bickering that continues on, sometimes for years. Yes, loving feelings are certainly not dominant in divorce. And negative judgments of each party on the other are standard. But the bitter fighting that continues, usually with the kids as the pawns in the middle, is devastating to all. It wastes lots of money, and places the children in horrible positions. If there was a small chance of a prospective shidduch having such issues, I would think at least twice before accepting such a shidduch for my child.

    5. With all the animosity between divorced parents, it is not surprising to see the rampant forms of parental alienation. And this totally disgusting practice is often with support from rabbonim, askonim, toanim, and occasionally attorneys. And there are also lots of do-gooders that offer advice that is damaging and provocative. The justification of this abhorrent behavior is malignant, and speaks to someone’s core moral values. Nowhere in the calculations that produce parental alienation is there consideration of what Torah value is. Oh, there is often use of vocabulary that sounds “as if” the conclusion is true Torah direction. But is it really so?


    Hopefully, and presumably, you meant “Dear Potential Mothers In Law.” Or “Dear Future Mother In Law”.


    @Coffee Addict

    There are many people who should be divorced but stay miserable because of מזבח מוריד דמעות. I’m not ח”ו arguing on חז”ל, but do you think there are no דמעות when people are miserable?

    Shimon Nodel

    The mods apparently are anti mehudar mikvahs


    I love how AviradeArah has such a need to give his two cents that he wants to start a whole new thread on divorce. If you don’t want to offend children of divorced parents then don’t post anything at all. Most of us are not desperate to hear what you have to say.


    Marx – and I’m the one who gets accused of “sinat chinam” all the time – keep on proving the yeshiva world right!

    Dr. Pepper


    In short someone is in pain that she’s being judged harshly for something that she didn’t cause or ask for. While she feels that it made her into a better potential spouse she’s not being given the chance to prove it.


    The reason for not wanting a child of divorce as a potential daughter/son-in-law, aside from all the garbage that goes on, or even in an amicable divorce, is that the child grew up seeing the towel thrown in and therefore if something goes awry they are more likely to do so too. Though if the child grows up in a remarriage that works out nicely i dont see why this would be an issue.


    pekak, amputation is a very valid medical solution to ailments. Yet, when your arm is ailing, you don’t start considering, thinking about or contemplating amputation. And even if and when amputation does become a necessary consideration, you try to consider every which possible way to avoid amputation.

    Regarding your second comment, you are sadly mistaken. But it is a common error. In fact, in most cases children are better off living in a difficult parental home environment than in living in a broken home.

    ☕️coffee addict


    I don’t think I was clear

    Divorce is a LAST RESORT

    Don’t tell me people are miserable because of מזבח ירדה דמעות people can get divorced (and even should if one side is a stubborn jerk but the other side shouldn’t run to get divorced if they don’t want to work on it and then call the other person stubborn



    I actually enjoy and appreciate Avira’s straight and Torahdik prespective. edited That goes into the klal of “miskabed bekloin chaveroi”.
    And we all know what it says about that in Chazal.


    Why do you feel the need to bash someone’s pain? I think everyone else understood OP’s words perfectly. You included. It is ok to be empathetic even if you don’t have a quick fix for their problem. It is after all one of the 3 simanim of our Jewish yichus. Showing and feeling rachmonus. It is being “noisei be’ol im chaveiroi”

    The little I know


    Your statement is a generalization. It is often true. Just as often, it is not. Having witnessed (or experienced) the negative effects of divorce, there is tremendous motivation to avoid and prevent it. The challenge is that we reach conclusions because of the label “divorce”, and fail to evaluate the situation to determine the true dynamic.


    @4980112t Thank you for your brave words!

    Divorce is still such a taboo topic throughout modern society.
    Perhaps it’s because people fear it and the difficulties that go along with it, that you are all too familiar with. There’s no magic formula to avoiding it so you are unfairly penalized by association.

    It is unfair that you or any child of divorce bears the stigma from the decisions of others. It is also unfair to you that after having your own childhood uprooted you are now delayed in putting down the roots of your own family as an adult which you deserve more than most for that same reason.

    I’m sorry things are hard for you, and I hear your pain. I wish I could help fix it, but just bringing awareness to the issue is a step in the right direction. I would be proud to be your future mother-in-law.

    Sam Klein

    So let’s be really honest here and give true answers to this question

    Question: why has DIVORCE become so popular just recently in the last decade or two? What has made it start happening so much so often versus earlier decades when it was not popular?

    Please only reply if it will be with TRUE HONEST ANSWERS

    Thank you

    The little I know

    Sam Klein:

    There is a hybrid of multiple factors here, and there is no single answer that holds merit. It is the synergy of many issues that has this painful outcome.

    First, our population has grown, bli ayin horah. Even if percentages had been the same, the actual numbers would be higher.

    Second, we know of more divorces today because of the rapid, effortless communication that provides these troves of information everywhere.

    Third, today’s divorces get lots of press. You may inquire from those involved, whether via rabbonus and batei din, or via court, lawyers, and litigation. The intensity of divorces has skyrocketed. Each such case ends up costing lengthy and bitter battles in either the beis din arena or in the court. This costs fortunes, and there is an industry that is enriched by this.

    Fourth, there is an undercurrent that affects individuals and even helping organizations that is prominent. It is a culture that has its roots in the western societies. One feature of this is victimhood. While cases of abuse and domestic violence certainly exist, there is a rish to claim the victim status, whether it is true or not. Our world gives royalty and power to one claiming to be the victim. The other individual is either defensive by definition, or needs to protect him/herself from being buried by falsehood and baseless accusations.

    Fifth, divorce, by definition, involves negative emotions. While the strategies used might be irrational, they are driven by negative passion. So we see things as baseless claims, demands and corresponding withholding of financial support, custody battles, and use of children as pawns in malicious and vicious wars.

    Sixth, we have grown much more entrenched in a throw away society (in עברית, known as חד פעמי). Unrealistic expectations in marriage with poor skills to manage relationships can lead to the decision to simply toss it away. While not every struggling marriage can be repaired (and some should not be), many can. It requires much work. Aside from the actual work, there needs to be willingness, capacity to compromise, and the curtailing of the ego that blocks this.

    Seven, outsiders need to be blocked from the interfering roles. Many who may be well intentioned, tend to interfere, providing advice and direction. Support is not the same as guiding, recommending, or suggesting to someone in marital struggle to take divisive actions. These individuals might be family. Others can include askanim, whose claim to be volunteers and focused on the spreading of peace in Klal Yisroel is a tragic lie.

    Eight, the role of those who prepare children for marriage, including parents, mechanchim throughout yeshiva and school years, and chosson and kallah teachers is of primary importance. This role was once much less involved, and focused on only detailed issues including halachos. Much less effort was devoted to the formation of a cohesive bond, with the requisite communication and emotional connection. That doesn’t work today, for a variety of reasons. Much more needs to be in place for a couple to smoothly create their home and build it as a מקדש מעט.

    I bet there are more issues to add to this list.

    Dr. Pepper

    @Sam Klein

    This is a very important issue that needs to be discussed.

    May I respectfully ask that you start a new thread as to not hijack the OP’s thread (unless the OP feels that it ran its course).


    These quotes were found in an article titled:
    “13 Saddening Children of Divorce Statistics for 2022”
    written by Marija Lazic and last updated on 2023 May 20:

    “Children are more likely to experience behavioral issues if parents divorce when the child is between the ages of seven and 14.”

    “Children with divorced parents are twice as likely to attempt suicide.”

    “Children with divorced parents are four times as likely to have trouble fitting in.”

    “Teenagers whose parents divorce are more likely to experience mental health issues.”

    “70% of prison inmates incarcerated for long-term sentences grew up in broken homes”

    “Children are at a greater risk of living in poverty if their parents get a divorce.”

    “Children with divorced parents are twice as likely to drop out of high school.”

    The little I know

    Square Root:

    The child being raised in an environment that is lacking one of the essential elements of the intact family, is ridden with instability rrlated to conflict, illness, and the like is apt to experience negative effects. This is universal, and it is not debated.

    The couple that is engaged in the process of marital conflict, separation, and divorce is generally concerned about the effects on the children. But the judgment is that the kids will be better off when the parents are no longer fighting constantly. So they perceive divorce as the lesser of the evils. Sometimes they are right, and sometimes not. That the kids emerge with issues is almost always true.


    I’ve seen both sides of this.
    I have a friend, who I’ve known since I was young. He is now in his 40s, and has never been on a single date. He doesn’t want to get married. Why? Because his parents can’t stand each other. They constantly fight. But they live in a chassidish community, and were told that divorce is not an option, so they stayed married. He did not see a healthy relationship between his parents, all he saw is fighting, so now he doesn’t want his life to be like that. So he refuses to date at all.

    On the flip side, I have a close friend who got divorced. They had one daughter together before they split. It was not an easy split for him, and he had a lot of tough feelings towards his ex-wife. But he told me, “I put those feelings aside, and I deal with her as nicely as I can, because we have a child together, and she is the main priority. We have shared custody, and she sees how we interact with each other. So I treat my ex respectfully, because that’s what is best for my daughter.”

    Sadly, there are cases where a child is used as a pawn against one parent in a divorce. But that doesn’t mean the divorce is wrong – the actions of the parent are the issue, not the divorce itself.

    In some cases, a parent may claim that a child is being used against them, or that there is parental alienation. Sometimes, removing one parent from the kid’s life was a decision made by a beis din or a court, for the child’s best interests, but the parent can’t accept that. So they start a social media campaign, trying to paint the other parent as a monster, to put public pressure on them. That too is wrong.

    Shimon Nodel

    That’s like saying I don’t feel like eating matzah on pesach because one time somewhere someone choked a little. Your example of how it’s better to divorce doesn’t make much sense. edited


    The nastiness shown here to the OP is beyond comprehension. A human being expressed true pain and the majority of the responders here chose to pour salt on her wounds. I recommend that the theead be deleted. Att: Mods Deleted, not closed.

    Other than huju’s comment the negative comments were toward divorce, not the OP. The comments about the suffering of the children was exactly the OP’s point, but that she overcame it. If I missed something please let me know.


    Shimon, my point is that every case should be judged on its own merits, and the use of children as pawns doesn’t reflect badly on divorce, it reflects badly on the individuals involved.


    I guess the illustrious mods are neither divorced nor children of divorce. If the mods were they might read the thread differently.

    I have witnessed enough to traumatize me. I ask again for what I’m missing. It can be a private post.


    DaMoshe > He did not see a healthy relationship between his parents,

    R Pliskin addresses this in his book “Marriage” (highly recommend).

    You ask such a person – did you ever witness a healthy family, but only a couple of days a year being a guest somewhere, majority of my memories are of unhealthy one.

    Then, a solution: continuously play in your mind positive experiences you had, and then majority of your memories would be of healthy events and you can apply them to your family life.


    Marriages used to be grand affairs and bar mitzvas just shnapps with herring. Now, it reversed. How come?

    Bar mitzvas used to be just the first time of putting tefillin on, now it may be, R’L, the only time – so deserves a huge celebration. Marriages, to the opposite, used to be once-a-lifetime …


    Statistics of bad outcomes of divorces need to be compared not to the happy marriages, but to unhappy marriages that did not end in divorces.

    One thing to consider: according to R Twersky, if one parent is abusive (including verbal) and the other parent does not stop the abuser (maybe because s/he can’t), children might later forgive the abuser (it was beyond his control) but blame the second parent for not standing up to it.

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