Why the Need for Perfection?!

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  • #2020312
    bored_teen 💕
    Participant

    Something I have noticed is that we in the frum community feel the need to pretend that our lives are amazing and we have no issues. to pretend that mental illness, addiction and domestic violence never happen. Do people think that acknowledging our issues is somehow a lack of bitachon or a sign of ungratefulness?!

    #2020332
    Reb Eliezer
    Participant

    We do acknowledge our current situation, feel it could get worse Gam Zu Letova, put the effort into improvement and pray to bear fruits.

    #2020345
    ujm
    Participant

    Is the OP suggesting that mentally ill drug addicts who beat their wives should be public about all that?

    #2020349
    bored_teen 💕
    Participant

    No. That’s not what I’m saying at all and I think you know that. What I am saying is that I have personally heard people express shock that mental illness is a thing in frum communities and I just read an article in a Jewish magazine about women who were too sheltered to notice signs of addiction in their husbands. I believe being Frum and being aware can go hand in hand.

    #2020352
    ujm
    Participant

    OP, shouldn’t mentally ill Yidden feel free to be open to the public or at least to their friends and family about their illness, no less than physically ill Yidden may be about theirs?

    #2020357
    Shimon Nodel
    Participant

    Step outside your comfort zone. Get to know other frum communities, where these issues are confronted and not shied away from. There are a handful of frum Jews outside of Borough Park.
    Also, we don’t cover up our suffering, but we also don’t wallow in misery. A Jew fixes the problem while hoping for the impossible. Am Yisrael is itself one big nes!

    #2020377
    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    Ujm- that’s what she said. (Assuming she from the hearts)

    #2020408
    AviraDeArah
    Participant

    I think people shy away from open discussions of these issues simply because it’s unpleasant, a downer, etc and frum yidden are usually upbeat and positive. I’m not saying that it’s the right way, just I think that’s the cause of it, not arrogance or a desire to portray an unrealistic perfection.

    There’s also a stigma in the world in general regarding mental health issues, because try as we may to frame it as no different than physical health, there is a difference and people’s wariness is understandable, albeit harmful to those who are suffering and who want to feel normal and comfortable with who they are

    #2020490
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    A member of the family who is a psychologist doing counseling in the NY metro area, including many professionals n the frum tzibur, found that her practice surged during the pandemic. That itself was not surprising given all the new stress points in people’s daily lives. However, she felt that the quasi-anonymity provided by virtual therapy (she stopped seeing clients in her office) was also a big factor in making it easier to seek help. The same trend has been observed in the secular community in general. Unclear if the trend will continue long-term but for now, its hard to even find qualified professional help for those who have decided to confront their ghosts.

    #2020532
    philosopher
    Participant

    Every time I hear the term “mental illness” it makes me mentally ill. Everyone has issues, we are here to grow. It’s ridiculous that everything and everyone has turned into a “mental illness”. The term “mental illness ” is for people whose brain cannot compute normally and they don’t talk and act coherently. Everyone else has challenges that they have to overcome. It’s so nausciating how the surplus of therapists, pshycotherapists and psychologists has created this illusion with everyone having some sort of diagnose.

    This is due to the influence of the goyishe world. Now the overdiagnosed US population is getting their national “suicide prevention hotline”. The reason there are so many suicides is because everyone is diagnosed as a victim in one way or another instead of being taught that we are here for a purpose and that purpose is to use our God-given talents to make the world a better place. Instead, all these professionals do is hand tools to these poor victims to enable them to feel worse.

    #2020553
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    Philospher: But tell us what you really think!
    On a serious note, there is clearly mega “over-diagnosis” in the seemingly endless stream of new four digit insruance codes established by the national associations representing psychologists and psychiatrists but your statement is a bit overbroad as well. Indeed, I would submit one can get analyzed and cured here in the CR for much less than the cost of an hour on an uncomfortable couch in a wood-paneled room with an oriental rug on the floor and someone chiming in every 10 or 12 minutes asking you “how do you feel about that”?

    #2020563
    AviraDeArah
    Participant

    I agree that people are over diagnosed though… you’re presenting two extremes which are equally debilitating

    #2020562
    AviraDeArah
    Participant

    Philosopher, I disagree sharply – many people can be rational and have functional lives, but live in emotional pain. Anxiety, OCD, bipolar, and much more are real conditions – perhaps calling it illness is too much; it’s more like maintaining and optimizing mental health. Ask any mashgiach in a yeshiva about emotional pain and mental health, and they will never mach avek what people are feeling. It’s callous, insensitive, and insulting to tell people to just “grow up” and stop being tortured by their conditions.

    It could be that in previous times, people didn’t have enough free time to develop these issues…batalah mayviah lidei shigayon, but the way to deal with it is through hishtadlus, like anything else, and as conventional wisdom goes, keeping busy is a very big part of it, but definitely not the whole thing

    #2020577
    DBS
    Participant

    Philosopher, the existence of these mental illnesses really aren’t debatable seeing as people who are diagnosed with them literally have different brain structures. This is not so for all of them, of course, but it is so for people with anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, or anorexia, as well as others.

    #2020576
    bored_teen 💕
    Participant

    Ujm- that’s exactly my point! I don’t understand why illness or hardship in general has to be hush hush! It happens to the best of people.

    Shimon Nodel- I actually don’t live near Borough Park or New York for that matter. You’re telling ME to step out of my comfort zone but thats pretty much what I’m saying. We should address issues that may not be comfortable. Also, I think there is a big difference between wallowing in misery and acknowledging that our lives aren’t perfect!

    Avira DeArah- That’s a really good answer!!

    Philosopher- I do agree that in our generation we have a victim mentality where it’s “cool” to have issues. But saying that doesn’t erase the people who have actual problems live Avira DeArah mentioned (OCD, Bipolar, Anxiety etc.)

    #2020713

    While there are certain mis-diagnoses, I think, mostly occurring in schools, as we discussed here before – there is no denial that there is a lot of denial in the community. R Twersky and others write about it, including hesitancy due to stigma on shiduchim, etc. Frankly, CR seems to be working in part as group therapy, maybe we should be recommending it in lieu of AA.

    #2020725
    opinionated-2
    Participant

    Because of shidduchim.
    Which I agree, is ridiculous, but let’s face it, reality
    But that’s the whole reason, beginning to end. There’s no other reason.
    Think about it and you’ll see that I’m right.

    #2020772
    philosopher
    Participant

    Gadolhadorah, agreed. A cure for all “mental ailments” is available for free in the CR.

    #2020834
    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    “A cure for all “mental ailments” is available for free in the CR….”

    Although some days, you come away with some new meshugaas not yet diagnosed by the American Psychological Association. A possible cure for my TDS (2022 ICD-10-CM Diagnosis Code F43.2) has just entered Stage 1 clinical trials and will not be available until 2024 at the earliest.

    #2020980
    Participant
    Participant

    The Need for [pretending there is] Perfection is because once it’s in the open it becomes expected, normal, etc.

    #2021030

    From R Twersky’s “Dear Rabbi, Dear Doctor” p. 240, shortened
    Depression in Jewish families is far more prevalent than realized. ..often kept secret [as well as other conditions],. choice is between shidduch with a family with a known case or the one that kept it secret [or other condition]. One father discussing this mentioned “while there are no cases in our family”. I had to restrain myself from saying “foolish man! I treated your wife before she married you!”

    many opt not to reveal problem, some may claim that a posek told them so. Poskim I consulted said it is unthinkable that anyone would give such a ruling… vilolatin of “lo sonu”, do not deceive, and probably of lifnei ever.

    if condition is not likely to recur, then maybe no need to disclose. If likely to recur, I can not see how info may be withheld. I asked several poskim to issue a statement about it. They all said – no need, as no posek will ever advise withholding.

    A marriage which begins with violation of trust is headed for a trouble. He brings a case when a wife dicsovered her husband’s pills, who said his parents told him not to disclose. As a result, marriage survived, but in-laws were cut off from the family. In another case of wife’s undisclosed depression, beis din justified a get.

    In case of a family member with a disease, it is a question for geneticists, one told me that information should be made available but should not serve as an impediment. Everyone has something in their genetics.

    I do not believe that the shadchan need to be told. But when it becomes a serious consideration, after several dates, the only thing to do is to reveal

    As far as others, ask a [posek]. My understanding of Chafetz Chaim that if someone knows important information, he is required to tell the other party even if not asked

    #2021244
    philosopher
    Participant

    Gadolhadorah, I think you are mistaken. TDS may hit you in full force when Trump starts campaigning in 2024.

    #2021413

    Some say that having one case of tds gives you natural immunity. And only small number of people have long tds. I am not so sure… Wear mask and blinders just in case

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