August 26, 2012 5:28 am at 5:28 am #1182182
aries2756-I’m glad to see you are still following this thread. Please give your opinion. I just hung up on my son. It’s after 8am, and he hasn’t been home since yesterday afternoon! I called one of his friends’ cell phones to see where he is, and my son just called me back. I asked where he is, and all he said was that he’s at a friend’s house. He wouldn’t tell me where he is, or which friend. So I didn’t feel the need to continue the conversation, and I hung up on him. Right now, I have so much anger toward him. I don’t feel we can continue with Twisted Parenting bc it’s just making fools of us, not to mention that we need to spend endless amounts of money on him to buy him ‘gifts’ to make him happy. My second son keeps asking where he is, and when he sees his brother never slept home, he suddenly ends up not going to tefillah either. I am completely beside myself. My husband is blaming me that things are getting worse bc he feels that we weren’t strong enough, that our reaction was too accepting and now he’s just taking advantage. What on earth should I do???August 26, 2012 11:07 am at 11:07 am #1182183
It’s after 2pm, and he’s still not home. Should I call the police?August 26, 2012 2:18 pm at 2:18 pm #1182184danielaParticipant
What does your husband say? What does the rabbi say? The decision whether to call the police is not something to be asked from an internet board. For what is worth, I believe he will come home safe, later or tomorrow, and start again taking advantage of you, as long as you allow him, and I am afraid longer than that: now you (and he) have to fight against a habit. It has been weeks or months without him being held accountable for inadequate behaviour.August 26, 2012 5:07 pm at 5:07 pm #1182185🍫Syag LchochmaParticipant
daniela – My brother has no children and sees things just as you do.August 26, 2012 5:08 pm at 5:08 pm #1182186
He finally came home at around 630 pm. I asked Avi how to handle it bc truthfully, we were really furious!. I didn’t exactly embrace him like Avi said, but I didn’t get angry. I was kind of neutral, like nothing major happened. I know it’s not good enough for TP, but it was the best I could do.August 26, 2012 5:15 pm at 5:15 pm #1182187
Why were you angry at him? Can you articulate that for us please?August 26, 2012 5:39 pm at 5:39 pm #1182188
W.O.W I have not read the manual of twisted parenting so I don’t really know what was happening in your home. I also don’t know the protocol and procedure about calling the police. What happens there when you call the police? He is not really a missing child nor is he a runaway. So would the police help you?
I have avoided calling the police on kids in my neighborhood and called Hatzolah instead who helped to intervene especially when a child was drunk or high.
I dont believe in accepting unacceptable behavior, nor do I believe in not holding people accountable for their actions. I also don’t believe that he hates you, but I do believe that he is manipulating you. Going OTD is one thing being completely inconsiderate is another and they don’t necessarily have to go hand in hand. If you are going to follw TP you are going to have to believe in it 100% percent. I imagine that it must be much harder to do that when you are not part of the group, not able to hear the stories of the other parents and how they are coping, and not being able to speak with Avi face to face.
I would suggest that you calm down first and keep telling yourself that he is alive whether he is home or not. You are more angry with his chutzpah than you are concerned about him right now. So please take a couple of deep breaths and calm down.
I am a big believer in writing as I mentioned before. Since you can’t have a conversation with him, it might be beneficial to write him a letter. Let him know that you love him with all your heart and soul, and let him know that under all his anger you do believe he loves you too even though he is not showing it right now. Also let him know that you understand his pain and frustration and that he is at a crossroad in his life where he is confused. He is running away from what he feels caused him pain into the unknown because he is trying new things that are exciting to him but were foreign to him before.
Although he is confused, hurting, and exploring, he does not have any more of a right to hurt you or the rest of the family than those who hurt him. You are a family who love and care about him and when his friends move on and he finds new ones as the years go by, his family will not change, they will still be his family. The consant in his life, the ones he can always count on. And he is still a member of the family and always will be. Neither his pain, frustration nor confusion gives him the right to be inconsiderate, rude or offensive.
Staying out all night might seem cool to him, and if his intentions were to keep everyone else up worrying where he was, thinking that an Arab slashed his throat somewhere in an alley, then he accomplished his goal. If his intentions are to destroy his family while he finds what he is looking for then he should make that clear from the start so you can all have a family meeting and he can hear what everyone has to say about it. If his intentions are only to heal his wounds then he needs to find the time to speak to you and figure out a way that will give him the opportunity to do that without being inconsiderate, hurtful and destructive to the entire family while also explaining what kind of support he needs.
Whatever choices he chooses to make, he will have to live with the consequences that follow good or bad. Since he is making these choices on his own he will have no one to blame later on for bad choices or big mistakes so he needs to appreciate the power of choice and make hs choices wisely.
I would encourage any of the children who miss him and want to see him or speak to him to write to him as well.
HatzlochaAugust 26, 2012 7:25 pm at 7:25 pm #1182189
PBA-I was angry that he could care less that he made his parents crazy with worry, not knowing where he is, who he’s with, nor when/if he’s coming home. What 16yo stays out for 25 hours without contacting the parents, or letting them know where they are and that they’re ok? And he told us he may do the same thing again tonight!August 26, 2012 8:48 pm at 8:48 pm #1182190
So were angry because he made you worried, or because he didn’t care that he made you worried?August 26, 2012 9:21 pm at 9:21 pm #1182191
PBA-Both.August 26, 2012 9:23 pm at 9:23 pm #1182192
Do you think he stayed out all night specifically to make you angry, or even though it made you angry?August 26, 2012 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm #1182193
I think he stayed out even though it made us angry. But what’s the difference, it just shows a lack of sensitivity, respect and decency. As it turns out, he was sleeping at a friend right across the street! Why couldn’t he tell us?
aries2756-you said you don’t believe in accepting ‘unacceptable behavior’, but what’s the choice? You sound too sensible, your arguments make sense, but sensibility is beyond him. It won’t have the effect you’d expect.August 26, 2012 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm #1182194
Well, I think it does make a difference which one it was.
If he was staying out despite that it made you angry, then it means his real purpose was to do whatever it was he was doing (or maybe to assert independence). In that case, he couldn’t tell you because you would get upset at him and forbid it.
If he was staying out specifically to make you angry, then he couldn’t tell you because not telling you was part of the whole point.
In any event, though, you are correct that it doesn’t really make a difference on your reaction. If the reason he isn’t telling you where he goes is because you will get upset at him, then certainly getting upset at him for not telling will not accomplish anything. If the reason he isn’t telling you is to get you upset, then certainly getting upset does not accomplish anything.August 26, 2012 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm #1182195
W.O.W it is not your job to think like him, it is your job to think like a caring adult. It is very important to show that you care. Accepting his abuse of you is not a show of caring, it is a show of not caring. Respecting his right to make choices is caring, accepting abuse in the process is not caring it is ignoring.
What do you think he tells his friends ” my parents don’t care what I do”, which is so far removed from the truth. Of course you care but you are allowing him the space that he needs. One young man as he matured at 23 and looked at his old photos told his mom “I can’t believe you LET me wear a long pony tail at that age, I look ridiculous!”. Let???did the mom let? Did she have a say at the time? He made his wn choices as your son is doing but one needs to hold kids accountable for thir choices and their behavior. They are making this homie for themselves but it is not fair for the family to suffer the consequence any more than you making the choices and him suffering the consequences. So no it was not right that he didn’t say “mom, I’m safe Im across the street at a friend you don’t need to worry.”. By the same token you can tell him “thank you, I appreciate the information and knowing that you are safe. You dont have to worry I won’t do anything to embarrass you even though I know where you are. As long as I know you are safe I can relax and not worry. We can now both get on with our on business. I love you . “.
That is holding him accountable while also allowing him space. As I said just because he is hurting that does not give him th right to hurt everyone else. He does have the rich to ask for support and understanding.August 27, 2012 7:09 pm at 7:09 pm #1182197
aries2756-so, for the next time he leaves the house, and I ask where he’s going or when he’s coming home, his answer is usually that he doesn’t know. What should my response be? He doesn’t have a conversation that lasts more than a few seconds, so there’s no time to get in all the sensible things you say. I can ask him to call me later when he knows, but it won’t happen.
He started the low pressure ‘yeshiva’ today with his chevra, ripped jeans and all. Let’s see what happens..August 27, 2012 7:20 pm at 7:20 pm #1182198
PBA-probably you are right, if he had told me where he was staying, I wouldn’t have liked it, even though I would have been reassured that he was local. Maybe Avi Fishoff is right after all. Next time I should just say, “Hey, that’s great! Thanks for telling me. Have a great time! Love ya!”August 27, 2012 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm #1182199hudiParticipant
Then what happens if he tells you that he’s going to a dangerous place? what would you say? maybe it’s better not to know…August 27, 2012 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm #1182200danielaParticipant
Am I the only one who does not think it is normal that jewish people have the chutzpah to utter words, and to their parents no less, such as “I can’t believe you LET me wear a long pony tail at that age, I look ridiculous!”?August 27, 2012 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm #1182201
W.O.W., the point is that he should be considerate enough to let you know and hopefully he will feel badly if he lies. You really don’t know if he is telling you the truth or not, and what can you do about it. The best that you can hope for is to try and instill in him a need to still be considerate. So yes the best you can do, whether you predict that he will or wont, is to continue to ask him to be considerate.
So when he leaves ask him to “please call me later to touch base”. If he says “I don’t know where I will be”, say “it doesn’t matter call me from wherever”, if he says I don’t know when I will be home or if I’ll be home say “call me later before I go to sleep so I won’t worry, its the least you can do”. If the Chevra wants to stay in this yeshiva they probably wont be able to stay out all night and still go there. However, they can stay at each others homes and still go there.August 28, 2012 11:48 am at 11:48 am #1182203
write or wrong – Our daughter would leave and not tell us where she is going and when she will be home. As parents we had many sleepless nights. Once we started Twisted our relationship grew and we built a trust. She still goes out but lets us know every move.
See and listen to Rabbi Benders Speech. He is not as extreme as Avi but he is on the right track.August 28, 2012 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm #1182204
aries2756-If I say these things to him, but he still doesn’t call or tell me where he’s going, what do I say when he comes home the next day? It’s really all falling on deaf ears.August 28, 2012 2:16 pm at 2:16 pm #1182205interjectionParticipant
Tell him how afraid you were for his life. Tell him you trust that he didn’t put himself in a suicidal situation but a parent’s love their children is inborn so you don’t have a choice but to be afraid for their welfare.August 28, 2012 4:27 pm at 4:27 pm #1182206
interjection-again, that’s too sensible. He’d just tell me not to be afraid, and he’d blame it on me being a native New Yorker.
Speaker-I can relate to the sleepless nights. How long have you been doing TP? Isn’t the eventual goal to bring them back to the derech? When can you try to do this, or do you let it ‘happen on its own”….does it happen on its own?August 28, 2012 5:47 pm at 5:47 pm #1182207🍫Syag LchochmaParticipant
write or wrong – Don’t underestimate how much is heard regardless of the response. Interjections words can be said without expecting an answer. I do that often in difficult situations as I mentioned above. They hear.August 28, 2012 6:42 pm at 6:42 pm #1182208
write or wrong – We have been doing Twisted 9 weeks. My daughter is not coming back to the derech at this point but there are no more fighting or sleepless nights.
The house is very calm and back to normal. She is now very respectful of all – parents as well as the siblings. Am I happy?
This is a very hard pill to swallow but we see a very bright future. We have tried everything before Avi and it only backfired. Avi is very extreme but with very positive results.
Did you get his audio files? It is well worth listening to them.August 28, 2012 7:08 pm at 7:08 pm #1182209Shopping613 🌠Participant
Write or wrong, I don’t know much about these things so all I can do is wish you the best of luck with your son! Hopefully bezras hashem he will come back in the end! Hatzlacha!August 28, 2012 7:51 pm at 7:51 pm #1182210
Syag Lchochma-you are right.
Speaker-I know, it’s a nightmare of a pill, and we’re all choking on it. Baruch Hashem that harmony was restored to your home! So where do you go from here? Do you just keep up with the same ‘twisted’ approach indefinitely? Or is there another level of dealing with things from this point on? (I’m only on page 285 of the manual).
Shopping63-thank you!August 28, 2012 8:15 pm at 8:15 pm #1182211RebRYMember
I have not read all 20 pages of this but I would like to add my opinion. I am a ger and recognize that the frum community is messed up. I don’t blame any OTD kids because it does not surprise me when a kid goes OTD. Seeing how rov frum people are I can’t understand why a kid would want to be frum. A kid is like a blank piece of paper and you can teach him anything, so if a love of Hashem and Torah is instilled in them from a young age and they see they have erlicher parents who do everything out of Love for Hashem and not just as a burden. A father who learns every extra second he has and who makes erlicher bruchos and not just a shuckel with the lips saying all 10 words in one breath, and talks about Hashem and a mother who dresses tzniusdik and not like rov “frum” women today with their long sheitelech and tight clothing with the skirt barely covering the knee. If I would have known more and had more experience with Frum people I would not had became a ger but now It is my belief in Hashem and Torah and wanting to do his rutzen that keeps me frum, not the frum community.August 28, 2012 8:24 pm at 8:24 pm #1182212
At the support groups we all talk it out. Doing it on this forum will not resolve your issues. You need to sit face to face and talk to other people who are living the nightmare.
My daughter who was sick wrote a very inspiring book on her cancer ordeal. It may be worth your while to read it. I am sure it will give you chizik.
Ask the moderator for my email and I will send you the link to her book.August 28, 2012 8:45 pm at 8:45 pm #1182213
RebRy-That’s so sad!! Unfortunately, there may be some frum people getting it wrong. But hopefully, it’s not the majority! At the same time, there are many wonderful frum people getting it right, even so, it is no guarrantee that their kids will stay on the derech. I know a few amazing families, and we are in shock to see that they too have a kid off the derech. The mother is tsniusdik, the father is gentle and yirat shamayim. And all their other kids are on a good derech, exempliary children anyone would envy. But there’s one who’s lost. Obviously, we should all take an honest look at ourselves to make sure we are walking the right path. But it’s just too simplistic and easy to blame the frum world for all the kids who go off the derech.August 28, 2012 8:54 pm at 8:54 pm #1182214
W.O.W., you just can’t judge or try to figure out what will get through to him or what won’t. You just have to try and since you are speaking at him instead of with him it is best to write him a note. A note he can read when he chooses and as often as he likes. Things might slip out in speech or heard incorrectly. A note can be read incorrectly true, but then it can be read again when one is in a different frame of mind. It can be read quickly or slowly. It can be read when one needs more support or less. Keep the notes and letter coming. Keep sending notes filled with love and support, but still write what your own perspective as well. As long as it is not about religion it is fine. Always speak about your love and how special he is to you. Always tell him that you love him no matter what, because he is part of your heart and soul, he is part and parcel of you and that can’t change no matter what choices he makes, and no matter what clothes he wears.August 28, 2012 8:58 pm at 8:58 pm #1182215
Speaker-I do wish I could benefit from the groups in NY. If there was a way to come, I would. I even wondered if maybe there was a way to do it through Skype, but with the time difference, it may be too difficult.
From your experience in the groups, are there families whose child actually came back to the derech? So far, the manual mostly talks about improving the relationship between parent and child (which is also good). But hopefully, it doesn’t end there, and the kids actually return. I’m sorry for the suffering you must have gone through with your daughter, but Baruch Hashem she has a happy ending to her story! I would love to read the book if the mods would let you send me the link,
Mods???????August 28, 2012 9:30 pm at 9:30 pm #1182216
write or wrong – Last week we were zocha to be at a wedding from one of Avi’s group. It was amazing to say the least. The kid may not come back the way you vision it. He may wear a strimel or a kipa sruga but he will come back.
Always remember this needs to be done with both you and your husband otherwise you fail at it.August 29, 2012 5:40 am at 5:40 am #1182217
aries2756-a note is a good idea bc it’s more permanent. I’ve been puting it off bc I would have to write it in Hebrew, and I’m not so great at writing Hebrew. But I will try.
Let me ask you, what should my reaction be if I find out that he and the chevra are hanging out with girls in some kid’s house? It was such a shock to me when he told me. Speaker, what would the TP reaction be? I just couldn’t think of anything positive to say when he told me, and probably failed the TP approach. I can’t seem to give the ‘right’ response when taken off guard like that. I told him he was playing with fire..August 29, 2012 2:21 pm at 2:21 pm #1182218
write or wrong – What made us contact Avi was that my daughter got to the point of hanging out with boys. She spends weekends with them.
Before Avi she left the house when we thought she was sleeping. Now we at least know where she is.
I wish I have answers but this gets worse before it gets better.August 29, 2012 2:24 pm at 2:24 pm #1182219
write or wrong – I will stop responding to this thread – you are welcome to contact me thru the Mod or you can ask Avi for my info.August 29, 2012 2:31 pm at 2:31 pm #1182220gavra_at_workParticipant
I have not read all 20 pages of this but I would like to add my opinion. I am a ger and recognize that the frum community is messed up. I don’t blame any OTD kids because it does not surprise me when a kid goes OTD. Seeing how rov frum people are I can’t understand why a kid would want to be frum. A kid is like a blank piece of paper and you can teach him anything, so if a love of Hashem and Torah is instilled in them from a young age and they see they have erlicher parents who do everything out of Love for Hashem and not just as a burden. A father who learns every extra second he has and who makes erlicher bruchos and not just a shuckel with the lips saying all 10 words in one breath, and talks about Hashem and a mother who dresses tzniusdik and not like rov “frum” women today with their long sheitelech and tight clothing with the skirt barely covering the knee. If I would have known more and had more experience with Frum people I would not had became a ger but now It is my belief in Hashem and Torah and wanting to do his rutzen that keeps me frum, not the frum community.
This is so true, it needs to be repeated. Children can tell a lie from a mile away. If you are honest, then your children will respect you. If not, how can you be surprised if they don’t? That is not to say that it is foolproof (and I don’t know specifics), but consider it a “segulah”.
Very well said.August 29, 2012 2:39 pm at 2:39 pm #1182221
gavra_at_work – Your are correct that Children can tell a lie from a mile away. That does not cause OTD. Something happened to the kid for this to happen.
I have met many parents that have OTD kids. The common issue is trama.
No normal kid goes OTD.August 29, 2012 2:58 pm at 2:58 pm #1182222
Speaker-before you leave(!), that’s one of my biggest questions. Isn’t the most common trauma, physical abuse/molestation? And if yes, then if that never happened to a child,it seems that anything else would have been less traumatic, making less of a need for TP?August 29, 2012 3:09 pm at 3:09 pm #1182223
Speaker, I disagree the common issue is hypocrisy. That usually leads to trauma.
W.O.W. regarding the girls, what can you say? It was expected and it is normal. It is more normal for sixteen year old boys to be hanging out with girls than for them to be taking drugs. I mentioned before that you need to be prepared and be one step ahead. These things should not shock you. Your reaction should have been “I’m glad you told me” which of course opens the line of communications. He should be able to talk to you about all the changes that is happening to him.August 29, 2012 3:11 pm at 3:11 pm #1182224
Speaker, BTW, I got some of the audio files from Avi. Thanks for mentioning it.August 29, 2012 4:18 pm at 4:18 pm #1182225
write or wrong – I will no longer respond – I will communicate thru email or phone.
aries2756 – Kids who are bullied in school and alike also go OTD.August 29, 2012 4:48 pm at 4:48 pm #1182226gavra_at_workParticipant
gavra_at_work – Your are correct that Children can tell a lie from a mile away. That does not cause OTD. Something happened to the kid for this to happen.
I’m not saying that it did. I have no idea what happened. I do know that if the children see the parents only following the Torah outside the home for others to see, then they will have no reason to follow it both inside & outside.
No normal kid goes OTD.
Sheker or Scotsman, I’m not sure which. Yes there is a “reason”, but it could be as simple as the Rebbe telling the Bochur that “if you can’t learn Gemorah, you will be nothing”, and the child is broken, because it is hard. That is not an “abnormal” child (perhaps an abnormal Rebbe). It may be someone figuring out that the outside world DOES have what to offer (after being told from age 2 that they are all insects who are Mezaneh all day). That is not “abnormal”. I could go on and on.August 29, 2012 6:47 pm at 6:47 pm #1182227
Speaker that is because the adults in the school do nothing to stop it, that is hypocrisy.August 29, 2012 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm #1182228ThePurpleOneMember
WOW- did you ever hear of the school called A.C.E? maybe it would be good for your son… its a jewish school comprised of 16 boys and doesnt focus on judiasm but rather the person and builds the boy and the goal is for them to eventually come bak on the derech.August 30, 2012 5:11 am at 5:11 am #1182229
aries2756-you’re right, I probably should have thanked him for telling me. Next time he opens up, I will. The problem is that there’s so little interaction between us, and he hates if I ask him any questions, even very benign ones. He started this low pressure yeshiva, but any time I try to find out anything about it, he gets angry.August 30, 2012 5:13 am at 5:13 am #1182230
purplicious-I did hear of it, but the only school my son consented to go to, was the one that some of his friends from the chevra was going to.August 30, 2012 5:04 pm at 5:04 pm #1182231
W.O.W. you are doing a dance right now. You think you know what he is going to say or how he is going to react and he is probably feeling the same way. When he tells you something you react the way he suspected you would and not the way he needs you to right now and so you are both wary of each other. So when you ask him something he is on guard probably with the attitude of “when I tell you something you get mad why do you ask or want to know”.
Maybe it would be best to “write” him a note apologizing for your reaction. “I am sorry I reacted with such harsh words when you told me about the girls. Although it is not what we do, and it is not recommended to mingle at such a young age for obvious reasons, it is normal and quite understandable. I am very glad that you told me. You can talk to me about anything. I am new at this chapter and I might make mistakes but I love you and I am here for you so give me the chance to adjust to it.”August 30, 2012 6:15 pm at 6:15 pm #1182232ThePurpleOneMember
WOW- ok then i just happened to see a short video promoting it and i just thought it would be great for him… if your son is not answering your questions regarding how the new low pressure yeshiva is working out then maybe you should contact his rebbe or principle or someone inside the school to see if its working out. IMO i think he would be embarrased to admit to you that this schools fantastic and he really likes it and wants to keep shabbos from now on…August 30, 2012 6:18 pm at 6:18 pm #1182233
But if parents are able to take their egos out of the equation; if parents are able to stand down; if parents are able to even prostrate themselves and admit they were wrong or apologize to their children, then there will be plenty of room in the house for everyone. Their OTD kids will want to stay home. And the actions of such parents are worth Asorah Zohov Milayah Kitores.
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