The woman stood at the bedroom door, holding out a big pink stuffed bear as if it were a peace offering.
“It’s okay, Maitel. You can trust me. I’m trying to help you.”
Maitel* hid under her bed, her trembling petite frame trying to stay as still as possible. Where were her parents?
“Don’t you want to live in a better home, where you will be happier? Where the adults can care of you?”
Maitel closed her eyes, pretending that the woman wasn’t there.
“Okay, come on, let’s go. Either you walk to the car or I have to carry you. It’s your choice.”
The woman scooped up Maitel, who kicked and screamed with all of her strength.
She saw her younger siblings, peeking out from their bedrooms, wide-eyed and confused. Little Pessi was crying and trying to reach for her.
“Just let me say goodbye to Pessi! And then I promise I’ll go to you. Without fighting. Please!”
The woman put her down.
“It’s going to be okay, Pessi,” Maitel bent down and hugged her 3 year old sister tightly, tears streaming down both of their faces.
“Don’t worry! Everything’s gonna be okay! I love you always.”
And with tears streaming down her face, Maitel had no choice but to walk away from her family and home.
When Maitel Vizel was torn from her family many years ago, she knew that this was the last time she would see some of her siblings. Maitel’s parents had seven children, one of whom was severely autistic, and genuinely struggled with parnossah for years. Then, when her mother got sick, things became even harder, until social services had to place all of the children into foster care.
The memory traumatizes her until today.
Boruch Hashem despite all that she has endured, after many years of therapy and some incredibly caring mentors Maity learned how to create healthy, loving relationships, and today is engaged to an incredible man. But unfortunately, after all that she’s been through, Maitel is facing yet another difficult challenge: Getting married without her parents’ assistance.
“Maity calls me every day, asking me what she should do, how she can possibly get married without any financial help at all,” explained a family friend.
“It could break my heart. How can a girl get married without any help?…She is the sweetest girl, and she has no one to help her with the basics- A Kallah dress, a hall, a Kallah teacher, etc.”
All Maitel wants is a simple life together with her chosson but her parents have no money, and she can’t get married without a tremendous amount of support from the public. A wedding fund has been set up by the Vaad HaRabbanim to help this sweet girl who has been through so much get married and start a life with her chosson. Those who wish to participate in this rewarding opportunity can do so by donating via Maitel’s wedding fund for a limited time.
*Several story details have been changed for illustrative purposes