November 12, 2017 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm #1401418
Rav Avigdor Miller zt’l
Q: What would the Rav advise me to do if my wife doesn’t dress with צניעות, she’s not so sensitive to dressing modestly, and I would like to help her change that?
A: You should say, “Look my dear Chanaleh, I want to make a deal with you. If you’ll take this dress that you have, and sew on a little more cloth on the sleeves, or make the neckline a little higher, I’m going to buy you a diamond ring.” That’s what you should do. It’s worth money! דבר תורה מעות קונות – Money works to help along when it comes to acquiring Torah attitudes (term borrowed from Eiruvin 81b). Money always helps with the good things like that.
So buy her a diamond ring, and you won’t have to argue with her. She’ll quickly become a צנוע, a woman who dresses modestly, for that. Not everything is as easy as that, and even in this case it really depends on the situation, but some things are easy. And the same goes for a wife dealing with a husband. Whatever it is, you have to be smart when dealing with other people.
TAPE # E-121 (September 1997)November 12, 2017 1:58 pm at 1:58 pm #1401453
What if the wife in this scenario were to say something along the lines of “ that is a very nice offer, but I will feel restricted/uncomfortable with the new clothing so I don’t want to do it. “November 12, 2017 3:41 pm at 3:41 pm #1401523
I don’t think people nowadays are so easy to buy – they value their own values and being able to live as they choose more than having another diamond ringNovember 12, 2017 5:14 pm at 5:14 pm #1401755
Nice thought, but out of touch with reality.
Most women have more than one dress…………
Today’s women don’t do their own sewing and add cloth to lengthen dresses or raise necklines.
I can’t imagine Mrs. CTL or our daughters trading their decision making power for a little diamond ($5,000 doesn’t buy much of a quality stone these days). This is not to say the CTL women wear short lengths or low necklines).
Better to say, ‘darling that dress doesn’t flatter y, why don’t I take you shopping and treat you to a new dress that makes you look spectactular.November 12, 2017 5:15 pm at 5:15 pm #1401757
Orrrrr… the not-tznius clothes make them feel prettier, but a bigger clothing budget for more appropriate clothes and expensive jewelry might make them more confident and be seen as a good trade.November 12, 2017 5:15 pm at 5:15 pm #1401759
What happens if she is already spending every penny I have and I cant afford a diamond ring??November 12, 2017 5:15 pm at 5:15 pm #1401779
gavriel – I suspect you’re right. In any case, I think that this conversation has to come after other conversations, or it will sound condescending. (And it could be that was the Rav’s intention).
First he has to approach her and let her know that her dress bothers him (“I message” not “You message”). And he should make sure to point out why he thinks that it may not be appropriate, citing halachic sources. Then, if she is still having a hard time with it, maybe he can approach her again, and say, “I know this is hard for you, but I am very bothered by your dress. Would it make it easier for you if I bought you a diamond ring in exchange?”November 12, 2017 6:04 pm at 6:04 pm #1401798
CTL, for a gvir such as yourself, the price is $15k.November 12, 2017 6:05 pm at 6:05 pm #1401801
What if she says “No thank you, I am the primary income earner in this household because you learn instead of working, and if I wanted a diamond ring, I’d have bought one.”?November 12, 2017 6:08 pm at 6:08 pm #1401810
RY23, Halacha is all income she earns immediately belongs to the husband.November 12, 2017 6:57 pm at 6:57 pm #1401818
Joseph – it’s not so simple – I think she can choose to not be supported by him in exchange for keeping the money she makes. I don’t know if it’s generally a good idea or not, but it could be in certain cases.November 13, 2017 6:25 am at 6:25 am #1401946
Nice that you can decide I should offer triple…………………….
None of this is an issue in the CTL family, not only do the ladies dress in an appropriate manner, they don’t need to be asked to do so.
I believe that this is an issue a couple should have discussed before marriage, just as sheitel, hat, snood, work, where to live.November 13, 2017 7:47 am at 7:47 am #1401970
CTL, as you see from the questioner, he wants to start being observant in a Mitzvah he and his wife neglected. Same if the they were wearing shatnes until now or eating out in vegetarian non-kosher restaurants. He’d be correct to seek to make his family Mitzvah observant even though he was neglectful until then.November 13, 2017 7:48 am at 7:48 am #1401977
“Whatever it is, you have to be smart when dealing with other people.”
This is the key line from the citation.November 13, 2017 5:58 pm at 5:58 pm #1402389
“Look my dear Chanaleh, I want to make a deal with you. If you’ll take this dress that you have, and sew on a little more cloth on the sleeves, or make the neckline a little higher, I’m going to buy you a diamond ring.”
I would be very offended if dh spoke to me that way.
Am I the only married woman who feels that way?
Syag, are you around? anybody?
I do seem to remember something about a husband having an obligation to be very niz’har in the kavod of his wife. The quoted doesn’t seem to follow that advice.November 13, 2017 6:16 pm at 6:16 pm #1402400
The suggested conversation with the wife is probably the most bakovedik possible way to speak to her.
If the neckline and sleeves you are wearing are halachicly too short and violating tznius, and you didn’t change despite your husband simply asking you to, what better way would you prefer than your husband purchase you a very significant gift in return for your following Halacha.November 13, 2017 6:23 pm at 6:23 pm #1402414
Correct me if I’m wrong Joseph, but I think you are a man.
If you’re blessed with a wife, maybe you’d like to ask her.November 13, 2017 6:32 pm at 6:32 pm #1402417
I did and she agrees with what I wrote.November 13, 2017 6:34 pm at 6:34 pm #1402421
☕ DaasYochid ☕Participant
What did you have to buy her to get her to agree with you?November 13, 2017 6:35 pm at 6:35 pm #1402423
golfer – you are so right. Not only would I not want to be spoken to that way, but my husband wouldn’t even try it. If he wanted me to improve on the level of tznius of my clothing, I would imagine he would probably phrase it very differently. Perhaps he would say that he was working on his shmiras einayim and he knows it is his issue, not mine, but would I be willing to wear shirts/skirts that would help him with that goal. maybe.November 13, 2017 7:16 pm at 7:16 pm #1402431
Thanks for asking your wife, Joseph.
And thanks for answering my question, Syag.November 13, 2017 7:22 pm at 7:22 pm #1402434
Sorry to have missed it- I see you asked me a question, Joseph.
I would not want my husband to offer me a bribe for complying with a request. When my husband has an issue with something I do (sleeve length has never been a problem, but other things I do have on occasion made him unhappy) then I prefer that he tell me what I’m doing that he finds unpleasant, what the reason is, and what I can do to change so he’ll feel more comfortable.
I do enjoy receiving gifts (significant and other) from my husband, but not as an incentive to have me change my behavior. We’re building a home here, not running a circus.November 13, 2017 7:42 pm at 7:42 pm #1402443
Golfer, my reading of the questioners question is that his wife wasn’t receptive to the approach you suggested and that he already tried. Now he’s asking the Rov for a suggestion for another approach.November 14, 2017 6:36 pm at 6:36 pm #1403846
Joseph – how would you react if your wife told you:, “Look, my dear Joey, I want to make a deal with you. If you stop posting in the CR and start learning an hour more a day, I will buy you a new car.”November 14, 2017 6:38 pm at 6:38 pm #1403833
DY – lol
Golfer: “I would be very offended if dh spoke to me that way.
Am I the only married woman who feels that way?”
I’m not married, but did you see my post, and how I rephrased things? It’s true that personally, I would probably still be offended by the diamond ring thing, but then again, I’m totally not that type, and I assume we’re talking about a very different type of person than me, so I can’t really say how she would feel.
I guess it depends on the type of person and how it’s said.November 14, 2017 6:52 pm at 6:52 pm #1403854
Lilmod, under Jewish law it is rare for a wife to have money to purchase a car. That said, if that was a realistic possibility I’d cut back my work hours and learn that extra hour for the car.November 14, 2017 7:17 pm at 7:17 pm #1403865
If you really care about your wife, instead of buying her something that is just pretty but not useful like an expensive diamond ring, you should let her wear CZ jewelry and as a gift buy her a slave to help with the sewing and housework. Or pay to have all her dresses custom sewn to tznius standards.November 15, 2017 10:14 am at 10:14 am #1404033
Lilmod, I’m sorry I seemed to imply that being married was a prerequisite for answering my question.
I actually Loved your comment!
Looks like a marriage license is not an indicator of superior brain function, good writing skills, or a great sense of humor. You showed me!….November 15, 2017 2:44 pm at 2:44 pm #1404283
Joseph: I did and she agrees with what I wrote.
According to your belief system, a woman must agree with everything her husband thinks, so this doesn’t prove anything.November 15, 2017 3:10 pm at 3:10 pm #1404291
flowers: 1) I was simply courteously doing what golfer requested I do by asking 2) You’re incorrect in any event.November 16, 2017 5:23 pm at 5:23 pm #1404985
“Lilmod, under Jewish law it is rare for a wife to have money to purchase a car. ”
She can sell the diamond ring and buy a car with it.November 16, 2017 5:24 pm at 5:24 pm #1404988
“Perhaps he would say that he was working on his shmiras einayim”
I’m not sure why shmiras einayim should be a problem regarding his wife, but that gave me a good idea.
He could say, “Chanala, you are so attractive, and that dress is stunning on you! Since it looks so good on you, I am concerned that it could pose a problem if you were to wear it outside. How about if you just wear it at home, and I’ll give you money to buy another dress that you can wear outside?”November 16, 2017 5:29 pm at 5:29 pm #1404986
Golfer – thanks for all the compliments, but I suspect that we are actually talking about different posts!! 🙂
That’s what happens when posts are posted out of order!
I have a feeling that you thought I was referring to the post (#3846) (that seemed to) immediately proceed the one in which I asked if you saw my post (3833). That post (3846) was actually written after 3833, so it was not the one I was referring to. I was referring to a post much higher up that had been written a day or two before.November 16, 2017 8:18 pm at 8:18 pm #1405087
Many a car was purchased by a wife
Many a Bar Mitzvah was paid for by a wife
Many a Chasunah was paid for by a wife
Paid for out of the knippel……………………
Mrs. CTL and I own separate businesses. We each see our joint personal tax returns, neither sees the other’s business tax returns or bank statements.November 17, 2017 11:16 am at 11:16 am #1405247
Whatever it is, you have to be smart when dealing with other people.November 20, 2017 6:45 pm at 6:45 pm #1407676
APY – +1!November 21, 2017 7:15 am at 7:15 am #1407907
I have a neighbor who I could see this working for. Personally my husband and I wouldn’t take that approach because in a sensitive topic, you have to be very careful with how you say things or you are less likely to be effective and more likely to be lashed out at.
In this case, the attitude I feel coming across is I am perfect and you need to work on yourself and I’m willing to pay you for it. See how generous I am?
I think this is usually wrong and that’s why I’d find it offensive. As has been brought up before, usually people marry a spouse with a compatible level of yiddishkeit, so if he found her less than tzniusdik look attractive, then he is part of the problem and shouldn’t be playing tzaddik now.
What would be taken much better by me, would be something like, “Chanale, I know when we got married, this is how you dressed and I was fine with that. However, you’ve helped me grow so much that now, your way of dress bothers me. I know it would be hard for you to change so can we make a deal? I will stop watching movies/non Jewish entertainment, or some other comparable kabbala, and you will go shopping, and buy a new tzniusdik wardrobe?
Here I would feel motivated because a) we are in this together and if it gets hard for me, I know he is working hard as well.
B) he is not making himself look good at my expense.
C) I get the zechus of helping him improve as well.
Disclaimer 1: I dress tzniusdik and my husband doesn’t watch movies or sports
Disclaimer 2: HaRav Miller said you have to know who you are talking to so I am not in any way negating what he said, as this is included within that, I am simply giving another approach/example.November 21, 2017 11:22 am at 11:22 am #1408081
These days, buying a diamond ring is a bad financial decision.November 21, 2017 11:50 am at 11:50 am #1408089
Do you see getting married as a good financial decision?November 21, 2017 6:00 pm at 6:00 pm #1408543
noNovember 21, 2017 6:57 pm at 6:57 pm #1408572
I do because all financial brachos are in the merit of the wife, so if you get married and are a mentch of a husband, you have allot more money available to you:):)November 21, 2017 7:00 pm at 7:00 pm #1408593
What about for girls?November 21, 2017 7:31 pm at 7:31 pm #1408614
For the girls even more, you are the one who effects how much Parnassa is brought down from the spiritual to the physical for the whole family! On another note, once you get married you have a husband to support you and take care of you and buy you things you wouldn’t buy yourselfNovember 21, 2017 8:21 pm at 8:21 pm #1408669
In return for being supported by her husband, what is the girl’s obligations to him?November 21, 2017 8:32 pm at 8:32 pm #1408677
To be a wife. A woman risks losing much more when she gets married, and a man had only to gain. She’s the one who gets pregnant, she’s the one who is more vulnerable, and she needs her husband’s support and protection. Therefore, under every chuppah the husband had to obligate himself towards her in the kesuba, while she doesn’t write one for him, because she’s already giving him everything by marrying himNovember 21, 2017 9:01 pm at 9:01 pm #1408689
“she’s the one who is more vulnerable”
I wonder if that’s true… I suspect that men may actually be more vulnerable, although perhaps less likely to acknowledge it (which would make them even more vulnerable).
What do the men and married women here think?November 21, 2017 9:20 pm at 9:20 pm #1408696
Buying a Diamond Ring may or may not be a bad financial decision. It depends on the individual, purchase, amount paid, whether bought for investment or jewelry purposes, etc.
In general, the ring one buys for a spouse is not an investment. It is an adornment, not something one expects to sell later at a profit.
That said, my father and grandfather often bought jewelry at distressed prices from customers and clients because they were good investments. Sometimes the pieces went directly into the vault, sometimes spouses were allowed to wear them but with the understanding the pieces were investments and would be sold at a later date.
I can’t hazard a guess how many times over 40 years as a family law attorney a divorcing wife has offered her diamond ring as payment towards her legal fees. I don’t accept them, because a judge could later rule they were marital assets. However, I have been offered some lovely pieces at good prices from estates we have handled. Sometimes, an executor will shop a ring around to 4 or 5 local jewelers and tell me the best price he was offered was $XXXX. I have my estate jeweler look at the piece(s) and tell me if I can make a profit offering 10% more than the best offer. If so, I can have the executor submit the quotes from the jewelers and my 10% overbid to the Probate Judge for approval.
I currently have about 30 good sized stones in the law firm’s vault. With current interest rates so low, these have been good financial investments.November 21, 2017 9:21 pm at 9:21 pm #1408695
Can both of you please define what you mean by “vulnerable”. You may be using different definitions. Are you saying she’s more vulnerable than she was when she was single?
You wrote “to be a wife”, but my question really was what exactly does that entail.November 21, 2017 9:21 pm at 9:21 pm #1408694
I’m not telling lofty I’m saying very practical. Let’s say the marriage fails CVS. The man walks out, healthy strong, and now he’s single with no family to support. He’s not lifting, he enjoyed it while it lasted and now he’s free to move on.
Meanwhile the woman is most likely in the midst of a pregnancy/recovering from a birth, has young children dependent on her and can’t work full hours.
Who needs the protection more when they get married?
I’m not talking emotionally, could be hard on anyone, I’m talking about why the chachamim mandated the husband to commit to the wife and not the other way around. Because if either is entering it just for fun, to see if it will last, a woman is much less likely to do that because there are more practical consequences for her…November 21, 2017 9:52 pm at 9:52 pm #1408712
After a divorce, the wife has a harder time in the short term because the practical aspects are usually more complicated for her – the finances, and taking care of the kids. But the husband has a harder time emotionally, and I think I learned that studies show that it’s harder for the men in the long-term.
I was talking about the emotional aspect. Emotionally, I think men need marriage more. That’s why single guys have a much harder time than single girls. And I think that women could potentially hurt their husbands more on an emotional level. I’ve never been married, so I could be wrong, but that’s my impression.
But I guess we don’t disagree, since you were talking about the practical/financial side.
However, nowadays, it’s less true than it used to be, since most women work today.
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