I am writing in response to the family therapist who wrote that “so many parents sit in my office and are often surprised to discover what has been replaying for years in their child’s world” (Letters to the Editor, April 3).
I teach in a noted girls’ high school and am grateful that the principal here speaks to the girls who get thrown out of class with remarkable sensitivity and truly seeks to understand that girl’s perspective and builds her up instead of just yelling at her or worse. The school I taught in before this unfortunately followed a different model. The words you speak to the troubled talmidos are etched in their hearts forever. I know, because I was one of them. You mentioned a hotline concerning listening to our children. If all mechanchos would listen to the words of Rabbi Krohn (641-715-3800 and then dial 811504# option 1) they would understand that each child or student “needs to connect with you in a loving way, or else they may chas v’shalom seek acceptance from negative influences or seek friendship from the wrong crowd.” And for those not in chinuch, simply look over your shoulder! There are older singles, families with money or health issues, r’l, lonely seniors, baalei teshuvah who do not have the luxury of “family to go to” that we might take for granted, teens at risk, or maybe just someone you will bump into in the street who doesn’t have as many friends like you do. If we will be outgoing, friendly, with a bit more of an “out of town” style, we can uplift a friend, talmidah, family member, or neighbor and bring a smile to their face. As the Rambam says, true simchas yom tov is being mesameiach those who can use an extra boost. And a smile, a good word, or a friendly “Gut yom tov” costs … NOTHING!
Thanks for your superb publication!