Tuesday, September 05, 2017

// // 1 comment

Going Off the Derech (Path)

    by Reb Gutman Locks   
       

Going Off the Derech (Path)

 

Ch wrote:

     Shavua tov Reb Locks,

       I immensely enjoy reading the Mystical Paths blog and especially your wonderful stories of kiruv. With a heavy heart turn I to you (of course to Hashem always) asking your advice in how to deal with my 22 yr. old son who has unfortunately gone off the derech.

     My husband and I have raised our son and our other children in a good Jewish home full of taharah, shmirat shabbat, kashrut, tefillot, (spiritual purity, guarding Shabbat, kosher food, prayer,) etc. My son is very intelligent and special and was very gentle and naive but unfortunately after a couple of years in the army he became someone we hardly recognized. He began dating a female soldier for a long period of time and even ran off to Greece with her for a vacation. He has removed his kippa and stopped putting on tefillin and going to Beit Knesset at all. For Shabbat he makes sure to be away so I have idea what he does or where he is. 

     I am in constant anguish and have prayed and cried to Hashem for guidance and comfort. The problem is that he has four younger brothers and a sister who look up to him and are very influenced by him. My husband repeatedly asks him to put on a kippa in the house but he just ignores his father. We've been to family weddings and gatherings in which he comes without a kippa and my embarrassment just kills me.

     In November he is finishing his army duty and plans on going off to the States since all my children are American citizens so he now has an American passport which he just received. I am even more terrified of him hooking up with non-Jewish girls and the like. I have since been sick with worry and now have diabetes and high blood pressure just from all of this. 

     I would greatly appreciate any advice on the subject as all I know to do is to beg and pray to Hashem to help us. 

Thank you,

 

Gutman's response:

Shalom Ch,

   This is such a serious, difficult problem to heal, and I am sorry to say, all too common. Briefly, my opinion on this is that you have two major priorities, one even more serious than the other.

    The first is to protect the family, particularly the younger siblings from the older boy's wild influence. This is the single most important objective and you have to do this no matter what is required.

     Number two, it is also essential to have the older boy know that you still love him and will try to help him in any way you can, but he has to respect the wishes of his parents when he is at home or around the younger children, or he may not be by them. This must be enforced or you will be inviting his attitude to, G-d forbid, spread to the rest of the family.

     I strongly suggest that besides the present Torah teachings you provide for your family that you have someone teach the younger children the more spiritual aspects of Torah observance as this will protect them from the older boy's huge mistake. When Torah is taught only on a physical plane it often becomes a burden, especially to the children, and especially when they mix with the secular children who seem to be having so much fun with their "freedom" to eat, drink, or touch whatever they want. Spiritual Torah teachings will bring joy and more awareness of Hashem's presence to the family's Torah life which will protect them from the enticing empty world.

      Hashem bless your family to come back together in peace.

   Have a healthy, happy, and successful New Year

Gutman

 

1 comments:

thlh s said...

i am facing immense hurdles all ways.
my rebtzn sent me a book, about 3 or so months ago. somehow i did not open and read it but a few days back when everything seemed so futile, i opened and and the answer to anyone's problem is there. emunah.
the book is: The secret to miraculous salvations.
please dont miss this re your son also.

a life transforming method of attaining simcha and bitachon which generates incredible yeshuos.

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