I’m getting more mad at ultra-orthodox people

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    Ephraim Becker

    A mother told me that her 16 year old autistic son that I was friends with in Boca Raton moved out of the house and now has a job.

    Meanwhile, I’m 25 years old and stuck at home with my parents and not knowing how to be independent or know how to make friends. My ultra-orthodox Yeshiva, Yeshiva Darchei Torah, didn’t allow any internet access in homes which made it impossible for me to learn the way I need to learn and be independent. I also thought that friends were just classmates and didn’t realize that there’s the whole hanging out part. I never knew what was wrong with me until 17 years old when I found out that I’m autistic via a paper lying around in a special needs school.

    I’m seeing all the ultra-orthodox people with special needs in residence homes while all the modern orthodox people with special needs are having better lives than their mainstream counterparts. I had every wish ignored and was pretty much treated like a baby in my Far Rockaway ultra-orthodox community. My family and community is as old-school as ever and tells me that I won’t get a good job and move out of the house without a college degree. Well my Modern Orthodox 16 year old friend from Boca Raton on the autism spectrum did just that and I’m very upset that everything I want in life as little as a friend is a fight. I’m keep in getting broken promises on social groups for people on the autism spectrum and they don’t get back to me.

    If you reply about Hamaspik and other organizations, it basically says on the site that the goal is to put them in residence homes and all the pictures on that website are people with Downs Syndrome.

    I told my parents when I was in Darchei that I never liked the school and they just wanted me to be ultra-orthodox and do what my community does. They think that because they were successful with a non-verbal autistic person there that it would work for me also. That person is still non-verbal and is, I think, in a residence so I don’t see how he was successful.

    I’m now getting old and possibly even too old to make friends and even get married eventually.

    The whole neighboring Five Towns is going to the right and moving more towards ultra-orthodox. I’m really mad now because 25 year old can’t hang out with friends the same way high school people do. My sister’s friends keep on saying “Hi” to my sister’s and it frustrates me a lot. Ultra-orthodox just don’t really help people with special needs the way I want them to. I don’t want to see them in residence homes. I want to see them as people who just learn differently. Seriously, the residences homes are filled with Hasidism and I’ll be next if I don’t get off the derech or move out fast.


    To the opening poster: Your story is a sad one. Consider reaching out to your nearest Chabad House. If they cannot help you, they will probably put you in touch with someone who can.


    The ultra orthodox people are the ones who realy care and love you. In life you will see they are the really happy people around


    Do you really think a 16 year old belongs on their own? That sounds like a very unhealthy family dynamic that may have driven him out. Even in the secular world, 16 year olds are only on their own if they’re abuses, thrown out, neglected, or runaways. Comparing yourself with him is not a good idea.

    There are exceptions to every rule. We all know people who smoke and live till 90 without developing cancer, but that doesn’t mean that you should do so. In general, unless you want to go into business, college is a good form of hishtadlus (in a kosher setting, which nowadays is very accessible) to have a self sustaining job.

    . Having internet at home may have helped you learn, or you may have fallen into the countless pitfalls that an MO kid does, or gotten addicted to video games. An MO kid who was failed by the system can just as easily wish and hope he was raised charedi, thinking of how much better his life would have been if he would have been exposed to authentic frumkeit at an early age – I am one such person, but I don’t allow myself to think that way, because Hashem puts us in whatever situation we were supposed to be in, and ultimately it is in that setting that we accomplish our shlaimus and mission.

    Your post reminds me of a dear talmid of mine. His mother wasn’t frum and decided that being in a Yeshiva was the one thing holding her son back from getting better in his middos and disrespectful behavior, because her friends’ kids were in public school and were supposedly all very respectful towards their parents.

    What she was missing was that her son came from a broken home, had severe physical issues, was in yeshiva learning how to be ehrlich and had to come home to her mother’s “partner” living with them, among other problems both internal and external that were affecting her son’s behavior. I worked with her for months to convince them to keep their son in a Yeshiva, and b”h they did.

    We need to address our problems באשר הוא שם, the way we are at present – we need to move forward in serving Hashem and not get bogged down by vengeance and ill will towards what we view as the causes of our problems.

    I apologize for being a little harsh, but know that I’m speaking out of genuine hope for your success and happiness.


    I personally know some successful, high functioning, autistic ultra orthodox people. One of them being my close friend. I don’t know why you weren’t given the help you need. The ones I know were given one-on-one therapy at an early age to teach them the skills they need to be successful in life. Each case is individual. You are looking at what you think your parents did wrong and saying this is what the whole community does wrong. IMHO you should get a therapist that specializes in autism to help give you guidance on how to deal with people, and to help you figure out where you would like to go next in life. It sound like your floundering and groping always thinking the other way will be better. Start working on your life the right way with a licensed professional.


    Ephraim, can you think of ways you can develop your independence without necessarily going against your parents? For example, take care of the house when others are out. Help your siblings in their studies. Get a college textbook from the library and study from it. You would know a good example better than we can suggest. If you find some successful activity like that, you will gradually learn how to do those and your parents will move forward also.



    I’m so sorry for your pain. It must be so hard to be in your situation.
    You seem highly intelligent and capable.

    Forgive me for mentioning an organization, but please hear me out first:
    There is an organization that has job placement services. Maybe getting you job will give you a sense of satisfaction, as well as put you in contact with other people that you can try to establish friendships with?

    I’m not sure if you even need job placement or if you feel you could navigate getting a job on your own, but if you think the resource might benefit you, please contact Makor.
    This organization also has married couples living on their own in semi-assisted apartments, and from what I understand, is that they’ve helped people on the spectrum find suitable shidduchim

    info @makords.org (remove the spaces)



    From what I’ve seen on your website and Github you are a very talented programmer. I highly reccomend that you build on that and work on your professional profile and constantly share your work. Through that opportunities will come in terms of work, it will start small but before you know it you will have alot of work.

    There are alot of talented people who have your challenges and you should not view it as a limitation.

    You will get through this challenge!

    Ephraim Becker

    The problem is that a therapist can’t really help me if my parents aren’t involved and they’re telling me why it’s their business to go to an appointment with their 25 year old son. I’m also embarrassed that despite my mother being on the board and my grandfather being the co-president of Ohel, that people in Camp Kaylie saw me as someone that gives people a hard time. My mother told me that she looked everywhere to try to find me a program and other friends on the autism spectrum but couldn’t find me any. I was also sent to Yeshiva Darchei Torah growing up not knowing that I was on the autism spectrum and wondering why I was being taken out special for resource room and being told what to do and didn’t understand so I worked against the resource room people. The Far Rockaway/five towns Orthodox community pretty much frowns on mental health.

    Ephraim Becker

    Chabad has a Friendship Circle but it’s only a kiruv organization and never see native chabad people in them. There’s a chabad autistic person my age that’s in a residence home against his will and is complaining nonstop on how people are treating him.

    yaakov doe

    The term “ultra orthodox” troubles me because it implies that people in that group observe more than 613 mitzvos. I’ve only see it used as a derogatory by people who are not frum. Othodoxy covers a wide range of Shomer Torah UMitzvos communities.


    yaakov – shades of observance are generally not in a number of mitzvos observed, but in degree of adherence or weights of different observance area. If someone denies one mitzva he is already an apikoires.


    My son’s agency is having a shabboton for all adult men and boys this shabbos. Similar program in two weeks for the females, they generally have 2/3 get away shabbosim a year.
    The Ultra and chasidisher social service agencies give great service.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Are you sure Darchei doesn’t allow internet? Didn’t I see that they held their dinner online?


    Darchei Torah has a fancy website.

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