Teen At Risk

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    Why whenever a teenager starts asking questions on Judaism do we label them as a teen at risk? Maybe they just want to understand Judaism better and when they ask they are not attacking Judaism. And even if they are why d? When one labels them do they honestly think that this will help bring them closer to Judaism? Its basically telling them that, if you start asking questions you will be labeled and therefore you will be an outsider. I think its hurtful to the Teens and we should stop labeling them.


    Brilliant and sensitive post.

    While by far, most Rabbonim and people of importance in Chinuch and Yiddishkeit are sensitive and intuitive, unfortunately, some Rabbonim and people of importance in Chinuch and Yiddishkeit are not sensitive and intuitive at all. Humans are humans.

    Sometimes its the little guy, with no fame or notoriety or degree, just a big kind heart and sharp brain, who is very sensitive and intuitive and deals best with people in difficult situations.

    🐵 ⌨ Gamanit

    I was a teen with a lot of questions and was not labeled teen at risk. Some teachers ignored my questions altogether, some just repeated what they had said previously as if that were an answer. I did have a few teachers that were really great. They either answered my question or told me that they don’t know the answer and they’ll try to look it up for me for the next day… I did make sure to put on my most innocent face when asking a question though. If a teacher suspects that the question is being asked just to disturb the lesson even if she’s a good teacher she’ll be angry.



    Most kids today who are obsessed with their music texting twitter facebook and instagram as well as movies…are not mentally deep enough to have real questions on anything. I think most of them have very basic questions although they are harder to answer than theological questions.

    Why don’t my parents love me?

    Why do my parents abuse me?

    Why are my Rabbeim and Morahs mean to me?

    Why do kids make fun of me or bully me?

    Why doesnt anyone show me and love and tell me I’m wonderful and a good person?

    Why does the community tolerate molestation and abuse?

    Why are people who are supposedly Rabbis committing acts of atrocity and getting arrested for fraud?

    The list goes on but I will stop here. The point is most kids have no questions on the actual religion but rather on the way they see it being practiced today by most people and especially by people of authority who know a lot better and don’t live up to their requirements.

    🐵 ⌨ Gamanit

    WIY- I guess that’s why my questions were different. They weren’t questions about what other people do, or should be doing.


    That is true WIY. And then those questions lead them to question Judaism.



    Exactly! For instance, If learning Torah leads to behavioral refinement and a strict moral code…why do blogs like failedmessiah have so much to write about.

    And since there is no good “Torah True” answer it leads to questions about the foundations of yidishkeit.


    Plenty of kids who are “obsessed” with social media and media in general are also extremly well read and can see there are some “holes” in the Mesorah as presented to them. Current modus operandi is to shame them into believing lest they be labeled “at risk”


    WIY, teens were labeled before there was texting or facebook. You take validity away from teens with real questions when you lump them all together. They want to feel like the individuals they are.


    Ive heard questions like:

    How do we know that Hashem has a definite preference for Orthodox observance of the Torah, if you can be a good person and respected Jew and not be Orthodox?

    If someone enjoys Shabbos better with music, why cant they listen to music? They use air conditoning and heating, etc

    Why are Frum kids taught to hate all Goyim and that MOST Goyim and freye Jews do bad things, almost likened to dogs?

    Why do we look down at Jews less Frum than us?

    Why did Hashem create those who have urges for same gender relationships, if its an abomination?

    Why dont Frum Jews marry Gerim and BT’s if youre supposed to be Mekarev them? The Frummer people are, the less likely theyll marry Gerim or BTs. Many Gerim and BTs leave because they feel hypochrisy.

    Why in much of the Frum world has fanciness (keeping up with designer clothing and decorating to the extreme), almost become a Halacha to be kept in many very Frum circles?

    Why are Menuvalim (people who do improper things of all kinds publicly, etc) honored by Yeshivos?

    The list goes on….

    The answers I’ve heard is you have to believe… if you believe there are no questions, if you dont believe, there are no answers or something similar…

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