Kollel Life – Reality?
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February 3, 2015 4:38 am at 4:38 am #1065861
Surely after all this time you know his opinion.February 3, 2015 5:17 am at 5:17 am #1065862
Your last sentence just said it all, ffbb613. If it doesn’t work out, you hope he will be open to compromise. In my very humble but honest opinion, that is where you need to do some solid unbiased thinKings and it. What if you see kollel life is not working from YOUR end, because you envisioned it differently, but HE is perfectly content and does NOT want to compromise? Do you say, “whoops, my bad! I never realized it could be so hard!!!” and then what? To do this successfully, you need to make a real PLAN together, one that addresses all these things. At the end of the day, please discuss this fully with your parents and his, because no one who is giving you blanket encouragement in the CR, plans to support you financially. It’s easy for us to tell you what to do, but we are not your Plan B.February 3, 2015 5:25 am at 5:25 am #1065863AZOI.ISParticipant
oomis: ” It’s easy for us to tell you what to do, but we are not your Plan B.”
1000000+February 3, 2015 7:42 am at 7:42 am #1065864rewMember
FFBBT613, sounds like a painful situation. Seems like he’s ready for marriage and knows what he wants from life, and you just want his friendship. That’s why, as others mentioned, it’s not good to have a boyfriend yet. You need your personal growth. and that’s not an insult! That is a fact! EVERYBODY does. You asked in your 1st post “Is it ok to ask him to compromise?” the answer is NOT on his learning. Welcome to life! You’ll have to find somebody more suitable when your ready. Let go this friendship and find someone else. Ashkenazim and sefardim do not have the same mentality.February 3, 2015 2:03 pm at 2:03 pm #1065865
This is what concerns me FFBBT613 there are phases of life when we are born are parents take care of all of our needs when we grow we learn to do certain things on our own like dressing ourselves for instance then as we get older we learn to be more and more independent, after childhood is early adulthood this is where you stop being a child and start being an adult, my point is this you want to be a couple but you are not an individual yet you should have some time before marriage where you are self sufficient and then you should in my humble opinion think of getting married, this is not to imply that you are not mature enough for marriage but just not grown up enough imho i hope i have not hurt your feelings in any way.February 3, 2015 2:14 pm at 2:14 pm #1065866
Goq, in the yeshivish community, most girls get married without ever having lived independently (unless you want to count a year in seminary).
In chassidish communities, it’s even more true (in fact they’re often quite dependant on their parents for a year or more after marriage).
Even in MO communities, many girls live at home until they get married.February 3, 2015 2:23 pm at 2:23 pm #1065867
I know DY isn’t it sad?February 3, 2015 2:27 pm at 2:27 pm #1065868
No, not at all.February 3, 2015 2:33 pm at 2:33 pm #1065869rewMember
Independent does not have to mean living alone. My mother A”H made us all work summers in H.S. (in the city or in sleep-away camp) no difference, just earn $ and calculate how to spend it. Just the concept of not being spoon fed everything.February 3, 2015 2:37 pm at 2:37 pm #1065870
It is sad, you need to be on your own a bit to know how the real world works. You have to remember to pay your rent/mortgage con ed etc. Mommy and daddy arent going to do it anymore and you have to learn the consequences of not doing these things. Its not a potch from Tatty.February 3, 2015 2:43 pm at 2:43 pm #1065871
Independent does not have to mean living alone. My mother A”H made us all work summers in H.S. (in the city or in sleep-away camp) no difference, just earn $ and calculate how to spend it. Just the concept of not being spoon fed everything. “
This bears repetition.February 3, 2015 2:46 pm at 2:46 pm #1065872
Ha Ha DY.February 3, 2015 3:58 pm at 3:58 pm #1065873
Goq, I wasn’t joking.
ZD, that’s the case whether you move out before or after marriage.February 3, 2015 4:19 pm at 4:19 pm #1065874
Its better before because if you get into trouble before marriage, Its much easier to get out than if after marriage and with kids.
If you cant pay your landlord when single and have to move, its not pretty but its doable, however with a spouse and Kids its much more difficultFebruary 3, 2015 5:05 pm at 5:05 pm #1065875
Perhaps I missed the response to this somewhere along the line. In the opening post it is written “The boy I have in mind currently wants to learn in Kollel the first few years of marriage.” Is this a two way feeling or is this a little fantasy word of yours where you confuse boyfriend with serious prospective husband. Does he see you as a legitimate spouse, or are you his “girlfriend”.
You state that you see yourself as possibly being married, in college and working to support a husband and g-d willing eventually a growing family.
Are you able to physically handle being a wife, student and employee all at the same time?
Can you handle all of the above emotionally?
What expectations do you have from your spouse (whoever it might be) in this relationship, do you for example, expect help with housekeeping? Shopping? Cleaning? Laundry?
Your current boyfriend, what are his expectations from his spouse? Is he expecting to be married to supergirl who has 36 hours a day to earn a living, attend college classes and do the appropriate course work, keep a clean and neat home, and have three meals on the table ready when he is hungry? If yes, are you prepared to be that person? Forget luxuries, I am talking about basics.
Have you ever thought about these things for yourself? Have you discussed it with your long time boyfriend, now handpicked spouse to be?February 3, 2015 5:44 pm at 5:44 pm #1065876
ZD, I don’t think it’s okay for a single to stiff a landlord either. I also don’t think we have a crisis in any of our communities of families having to move for lack of rent (although I have heard of a few cases, which had absolutely nothing to do with where they lived before they got married).February 3, 2015 5:47 pm at 5:47 pm #1065877
I know DY i went a little overboard in my response to the op oomis and you are correct you dont have to live by yourself to gain independence.February 3, 2015 6:17 pm at 6:17 pm #1065878
I didnt say anyone should stiff a landlord, However if they are forced to move its better for a single than a couple with kids.
People who dont pay rent have no idea how expensive it is.
I am a landlord and I am renting out an apartment. What I am charging is quite cheap for NY and you would be suprised how many people think I am ripping them off, they have no clue what rents really costFebruary 3, 2015 6:44 pm at 6:44 pm #1065879
ZD, so what you’re saying is that before getting married, someone should know what rent costs. I agree with you.February 3, 2015 7:18 pm at 7:18 pm #1065880
They dont know what anything costs especially relative to income however with rents I have first hand knowledge. I can see the look on peoples faces when I tell them the rent which is very resoable, the space is small however. Its no mansion for sure and probably more cramped than what they were used to living in. They think they are going to get a house for next to nothingFebruary 4, 2015 3:45 am at 3:45 am #1065881
In general, it’s possible to find a bare bones basement in Brooklyn for under $1100 for a couples starter apartment. I’m not sure about lakewood. (I think I have four years to find out, and I’m not looking forward. Chas veshalom,I daven about shidduchim regularly, and hope the hardest part will be the money. There are many parents that wish they had to put together money for an upcoming chasunah.) In general, if the couple can put together a down payment, I recommend them to buy a house as soon as possible, and rent it out until they need it. The cost of refinancing usually equals two months rent, so you have limited risk involved.February 4, 2015 3:55 am at 3:55 am #1065882FFBBT613Member
@ apushatayid- he is not just my ‘boyfriend’ we are serious about marriage, however our current financial situation is not ideal at all, and I need to graduate High School, and he needs to finish Shana Gimmel to get his Bachelors in Talmudic StudiesFebruary 4, 2015 11:55 am at 11:55 am #1065883
When the couple sees that $1100 starter Bare Bones apartment, they think it will look similar to what they lived in before they were married, and if course its not.February 4, 2015 1:31 pm at 1:31 pm #1065884
I quickly skimmed through this thread, and now want to add my 2 cents.
I agree with some posters who said that people come back from yeshiva/seminary brainwashed into thinking a kollel lifestyle is the only option that is “right”. I have no problem with someone sitting and learning – with a few caveats. First, they should come to that choice on their own, not be pushed into it. Second, the husband MUST have some means of supporting a family when the time comes.
In the Ketubah, it says the husband will provide for his wife. Yes, the wife can choose to work so the husband can learn. But what happens if she decides it’s too much for her, and needs him to work? Does the husband then decide to go to school for a degree? You’re then looking at college bills when you’re already paying rent/mortgage, for diapers (possibly), food for a family, and possibly even tuitions! Not to mention that the schooling can take a few years! If a husband doesn’t fulfill the ketubah, the wife has the right to ask for a divorce! Is that what we want?
A man should have the means to support a family. Once he has that in hand, he can go learn if he wants. But he needs something to fall back on!
A good friend of mine learned in kollel for a number of years, until his wife told him, “I’m working 2 jobs, we have 3 kids, and I’m burned out. It’s time for you to help out!” He immediately enrolled in school for the next semester, and found a job in the meantime. The job was ok, it brought in some money, but not enough – it was supposed to help him out while he was in school. But you know what? He was paying a mortgage, 2 tuitions, and day care. It wasn’t enough. He went to our Rosh Yeshiva, R’ Bender shlita, and asked him, “Why didn’t you warn us? Why didn’t you tell us how hard it would be? We were told to sit and learn in kollel, that it’s the best option. Now look where I am! My wife is ready to have a nervous breakdown, I’m not far behind, and I have 2 years before I finish my degree! You need to tell people the reality of what a kollel life is like!”
R’ Bender agreed with him, and told him it’s one of the biggest problems in the yeshiva world today – that they purposely don’t tell the bachurim that, for fear of scaring them away from the kollel life.
Just to note, R’ Bender is amazing at helping out these families. I won’t go into details, but he provides tremendous assistance to the people in his kollel, when they decide it’s time to go to school so they can support their families.February 4, 2015 3:35 pm at 3:35 pm #1065886
So does Rabbi Bender now insist that all of the members in his kollel go to school?February 4, 2015 3:54 pm at 3:54 pm #1065887
I said I didn’t want to go into details.February 4, 2015 4:08 pm at 4:08 pm #1065888
Okay, so maybe his yungerleit are an exception because he helps out.
Does he think the entire Lakewood is one big mistake?February 4, 2015 4:15 pm at 4:15 pm #1065889
DY: I believe that Rabbi Bender’s Yeshiva has a vocational school affiliated with it (but you or DA would know more).February 4, 2015 4:18 pm at 4:18 pm #1065890
yayin yashan bkli chadash – Al Pi the shitah of Daas Yochid, you should just hold out for a shver who will support for 5-10 years so you can stay in learning.February 4, 2015 4:27 pm at 4:27 pm #1065891
No, he doesn’t think the entire Lakewood is a mistake. He just acknowledges that there are many problems with the system as it exists, and doesn’t have answers for fixing it.
I can tell you that Rabbi Bender is different than most Roshei Yeshiva today. When I was in Darchei, he actually encouraged me to go to college. He told me, “You’re not cut out to sit and learn! Go to college, so that you’ll be able to support a family.” R’ Altusky (the Rosh Yeshiva who gives the highest shiur in Darchei)tried to convince me otherwise.
I once asked R’ Bender about why we have the kollel system we have today – it hadn’t existed before! He told me that after the Holocaust, the Chazon Ish said we needed to rebuild. Many Rabbonim had been lost, and we needed a foundation of Rabbonim to exist as frum Jews. He said we should encourage full time learning so we could have that again. He said that should happen for 3 generations, and then we’d have what we need. We could then go back to the way things were, with most people working to support a family, and only the elite learning full time.
But, R’ Bender said, that message wasn’t publicized. Full time learning was pushed, and the reason wasn’t explained why. He said it’s about time to switch back (and he told me this over 10 years ago!), but people have had it drilled into them that full time learning is the only way to go. They think it would be terrible to switch back to the way things were for centuries!
He told me it’s a big problem, and he doesn’t have the answer for it. His words were, “I try to help my bachurim. What can I do with everyone else?”February 4, 2015 4:29 pm at 4:29 pm #1065892
gavra: Yes, Darchei has a vocational school. However, it’s not for everyone. It’s more for the boys who aren’t doing well in the General Studies department, and likely wouldn’t do well with a college education. (At least that’s how it was when I learned there.) For the boys who do well academically, they offer many different AP courses, so the boys can get a head-start on college, and get accepted to prestigious schools. I actually passed a bunch of AP exams, and got a huge academic scholarship based on that (along with my grades and SAT scores.)February 4, 2015 4:33 pm at 4:33 pm #1065893
Gavra, I did see a PR video for it. I don’t think it’s an alternative to kollel, I think it’s a program for high school boys who have trouble in a classroom setting. Unless there’s a different program you’re aware of. DaMoshe – any input?
And FTR, I don’t think I’ve ever said anyone should “just hold out for a shver who will support for 5-10 years”.
Also, it seems to me (I could be wrong) that YYBK was coming from the perspective of a prospective shver, not kollel yungerman.February 4, 2015 4:45 pm at 4:45 pm #1065895
I’m not here to say whether or not kollel is right for each individual – that is for each individual to discuss with their Rav/mentor.
However, what I can say is that I think we are getting an extremely one-sided view here, since the people sitting happily in kollel (with happy wives and families as well) are not usually posting their comments in this forum.February 4, 2015 5:00 pm at 5:00 pm #1065896
If your learning is completely dependent on someones support, you should probably find a job. Life happens, and you don’t want to be left holding the bag without a clue how to take care of yourself.February 4, 2015 6:07 pm at 6:07 pm #1065899
Btw DaMoshe – Lapid also holds that only the elite should be learning.February 4, 2015 6:18 pm at 6:18 pm #1065900Sam2Participant
AJWC: That’s not a Ra’aya for anything. He also thinks the sky is blue. Does that mean it’s green?February 4, 2015 6:26 pm at 6:26 pm #1065901
You know what problem I have with the expression, “You’re not cut out to sirt and learn,” ? The fact that there is an underlying implication, that if someone’s talents and kochos lie elsewhere than in sitting and learning, it should somehow make him feel embarrassed. I would rather that a Rov say to his talmid, “Hashem gave you talents to pursue a career in such-and-such. That’s a gift, just as ability to learn full-time is a gift. Use the gift wisely, that He gave you. Hatzlacha rabbah.”February 4, 2015 6:42 pm at 6:42 pm #1065902February 4, 2015 6:49 pm at 6:49 pm #1065903
Daas yochid: you are correct. Holding out for a shver with money, besides for being an unrealistic solution, won’t marry of my daughter. Maybe at some point in the next couple of years I’ll win the lottery, but at this point, I’m not the shver with money people are looking for. I have bitachon that things will work out.February 4, 2015 7:10 pm at 7:10 pm #1065904
@ FFBBT613 The only question you answered is “are you serious about getting married”. You still did not answer if you considered what life would be like with all those demands on you and what type of reciprocal commitment you expect from your spouse. In truth, you do not owe anyone here, least of all me, answers to those questions. Those are questions you should answer for yourself together with the one you believe is destined to be your spouse and you have come to a mutual understanding and agreement.February 4, 2015 7:12 pm at 7:12 pm #1065905
And your point is???February 4, 2015 7:21 pm at 7:21 pm #1065906
Gavra, some of the words in that post are indeed the same as the opinion you attribute to me.February 4, 2015 7:31 pm at 7:31 pm #1065907
My point is that please only quote live people unless you can give us a clear source for your words. Please don’t twist what the Chazon Ish has said. There’s no expiry date or elite club for ‘vehigisa bo yomom v’layla’
Once you start quoting dead people – well the biggest charedi politic parties are both backed and supported by the same dead Rav.
I’m not saying that everyone is able to learn in Kollel all day, but if you can it’s a beautiful thing and please don’t put that down.February 4, 2015 7:59 pm at 7:59 pm #1065908
It is not Bittual Torah to get a job and workFebruary 4, 2015 8:29 pm at 8:29 pm #1065909
ajwc: I’m not putting it down. I’m just saying that pushing people to do that, and saying it’s the only “proper” choice to make, is just wrong.
I have a cousin whose husband sits and learns all day. She works hard, but doesn’t make enough to support the family, so they rely on help from others.
My wife once asked her, “Doesn’t it get hard? Don’t you sometimes want your husband to help out financially?” She replied, “Oh, no! The greatest gift I can give him is to work hard all day so he can sit and learn! That’s the purpose of a good wife, to make sure her husband learns all day! It’s my greatest joy to give him that!”
Honestly, a response like that (and the manner in which she said it), sounded like a cult follower.February 4, 2015 8:48 pm at 8:48 pm #1065911
She’s saying that because she’s experiencing the beauty of having a husband learning Torah. You can call it a cult – following the cult of Torah.
No one is saying it is the only proper choice – but it is a beautiful choice and you can’t refute that.
If you read what you just wrote now again then you will see that you are putting it down.February 4, 2015 9:16 pm at 9:16 pm #1065913Avram in MDParticipant
My wife once asked her, “Doesn’t it get hard? Don’t you sometimes want your husband to help out financially?”
I feel like your wife’s question to your cousin was somewhat inappropriate, and her “strange” response had more to do with discomfort at the personal intrusion than brainwashing.February 4, 2015 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm #1065914
Please answer the following Math problem
A couple gets engaged and the father of the Bride offers to support the son-in-law in Kollel and their kids. The couple have 10 child K’H 5 boys and 5 girls.
The Womans father passes and now it becomes time for their children to get engaged. The husband has been in Kollel his whole life. The 5 boys marry girls whose father supports them and now the girls want to marry Kollel guys and have this couple support them
Figure each of the girls has 5 children each for a total of 25 kids. Add in the daughters and their husbands for a total of 35 people and the original couple for a total of 37 people.
How can someonme who learned in Kollel their entire life support 37 people and It doesnt take a Lapid or me to tell you its impossibleFebruary 4, 2015 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm #1065915
My wife once asked her, “Doesn’t it get hard? Don’t you sometimes want your husband to help out financially?”
Something similar once happened to me. The wife of a long time kollel guy asked my wife, “Doesn’t it feel horrible to be married to an ama’aretz? Don’t you sometimes wish your husband learned?”. She answered that she’s very proud of her husband who helps out financially. Her husband then commented that it sounded like my wife was in a cult.February 4, 2015 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm #1065916OURtorahParticipant
oomis- beautifully written!!
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