Thursday, September 24, 2009

letter from a survivor

this letter was forwarded to me, with a note to please pass it on:

Dear Rabbi Eisenman,

Thank you for planning the event in your Shul this Motzei Shabbos.

You know me, meaning, you see me in shul and at your shiurim, however, I have never told you who I really am.

I am a survivor.

It began when I was twelve and continued until I was fourteen.

My parents still do not know.

You see me and you see me smile, however, the pain is never forgotten, the pain is always there.

However, I have survived and I thank Hashem for allowing me to survive.

I am enclosing something I wrote for the event you are hosting on Motzei Shabbos.

I know you have and will get ‘flack’ for being so open about this topic.

I know you will get ‘flack’ for allowing survivors to speak irrespective of the fact that they may not be politically correct.

However, you should just know that I and hundreds of other survivors are with you.

I am enclosing something I wrote which describes me and my fellow survivors.

If you want you can send out to the Shul, -please do not use my name.


No one wants to be a loser.

No one wants to be defeated.

We all want to continue living and to still ‘be in the running’.

No one wants to be eliminated.

The Jewish people are survivors.

In every generation there are those who attempt to destroy us.

However, Hashem saves us from their evil hands.

We live in the United States of America.

There is no one here who is attempting to annihilate us.

There is no one here who is attempting to stop us.

However, even if from ‘without’ there is no one who is standing upon us to destroy us; there are people who are ‘within’ us who are hurting us.

There are people who maybe in our homes and in our schools;

In our Mikvaos and in our sleeping quarters -who are attempting to hurt us.

The crime they inflicted on me was inflicted in the private; however, the pain must be known to the public.

They prey on the unprotected and they look for the most precious of our possessions, our children.

Sometimes these people are related to us and they sometimes can be people we are taught to trust and respect.

When I was hurt, others are so shocked they assumed I was lying, that ‘it can’t be’.

However, trust me, it happened.

Trust me, the pain never goes away.

We just ask that you see us and recognize us for what we are- Jews.

Jews who have behaved like Jews have behaved for the last two thousand years; we survived; and we will continue to survive.

Hear our voices, feel our pain- that is all we ask.

Name withheld upon request.

Monday, September 7, 2009

response to "protecting our children"

from one of "my" girls. don't know if it will be published, but she's sending it in!

This letter is addressed to the concerned mother who wrote in to the Readers Write a couple weeks ago about having letters of abuse written in the Yated. My letter is overdue, but the feelings still remain.
Reading your letter that Shabbos, I finally understood why the shame of abuse exists. For a while now I've been meaning to write a letter, as a victim of abuse, just to let people know what I was feeling, about it's negative effects that linger, and beg them to finally do something to protect their children. I'm not blaming anyone, and for me, it's too late. But knowing the feeling and living the pain, shame and confusion, I wouldn't want anyone to have to live through it too. I'm merely expressing my thoughts, and realize I may be asking for trouble, but your letter opened a Pandora's box and compelled me to finally write this letter.
You write, as a concerned mother, and I understand where your coming from. However, I question the validity and practicality of your letter. You say your kids will read things in the Readers Write that you would like to the the one to educate them about-not the Readers Write. I agree with you that it is your right and privilege. However, how young is your child who is reading the Dear Editor letters and who's interest has been held long enough in the state of Obama's affairs, political happenings in the world, the shidduch crisis, the visiting day crisis, various tidbits of information, and various readers' opinions, to stay stimulated until these topics are brought up at the end, on the third page of the Readers Write, approximately 100 pages into the Yated? Aren't they already old enough to be educated?
True it's a sensitive topic of controversial nature, but does that warrant the insensitivity on your part to argue against it on the basis of your 13 year old child possibly reading that letter? I'll blame it on ignorance rather than insensitivity maybe, but how about if I told you that keeping your child uninformed and unexposed can lead them to become perfectly naive, a prime target for victimization? How about if I told you that I am testimony to that-from a young age. Much too young and innocent to be interested in what is written in the Readers Write? How about if I told you about the anger that is harbored against those that saw and didn't do, those that knew and didn't say? Children far younger than that in age and maturity have already been subjected to abuse and its ugliness by then and keeping your children sheltered and innocent is not protecting them.
The courage and pain that goes into writing a letter like that is something only another victim can identify, and I salute her bravery. Kudos to her for opening a small crack of her life to reveal a part of what truly goes on and help people become aware. It's about time someone was able to come out and say something to make a statement that something that is tolerated without meaning to, shunned and shoved under the carpet is NOT okay and shouldn't be accepted and lived with. It's the outlook your letter portrayed that causes the shame she writes about. And that hurt. Please, do me (and yourself) a favor-research the topic. Research the staggering statistics, its profound effects and do something about it other than write a letter about the inappropriateness of such letters in a readers' opinion column.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

another letter

this is a letter to the yated, written by a big supporter of AUS, in response to the letter "to mommy and totty," titled "suffering in silence" by the yated.

Dear Editor,
I am not an activist or much of a letter writer, but after reading the letter "suffering in silence" in last week's Yated, I felt I must take pen in hand.
A special "hotline" that's swamped with calls, a website where dozens of frum, young abused women give each other chizuk. What has happened to the goy kadosh? This is not the first "Suffering in Silence" letter. Why are our children afraid to talk to us? Is it because we don't listen?
Please, Roshei Yeshiva and Mechanchim: too many yeshivaleit think shmiras einayim is some "chassidish mumbo jumbo." If they don't learn the chomer ha'issur in yeshiva when/where are they going to learn? It's a slippery slope-looking, touching, and then....R"L.
Parents: when children come to you with horrible allegations, listen! Investigate! Get in touch with the rabbanim and mechanchim who deal with this problem. And get your child help! Whether or not the allegations are true, your child needs help.
And parents: where do you stand? What magazines and other reading material do you have in your home? Unfortunately, there are no longer any "kosher" secular magazines. No, not even Good Housekeeping or Reader's Digest. What radio stations/music is heard in your home? Need I mention the internet?
We have lost all sense of propriety and we have to turn the tide.
It's Chodesh Elul. Let's take a long hard look at our lives and strive to bring more kedusha into our homes, and above all, cry our eyes out to the Ribbono Shel Olam for siyata d'Shmaya, and stop this plague that's destroying our children.
A Concerned Yid

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Stop the Chain

from here:

a shortened version of this letter was also printed in the yated.

Abuse is more common in the Jewish community than most people think it is. How can I say that? Well, I am a survivor of abuse, and including myself, I know of five people who were abused within a two-block radius. That is five people too many. Dov Hikind reported getting hundreds of calls from abuse survivors. This means there are probably thousands of Orthodox Jewish people who were or still are being abused.
The abuse that I suffered could have been entirely prevented if I had been educated about this topic at a young age. I went through the Bais Yaakov system and not one teacher discussed this topic. If I had been told the basics about the difference between good touch and bad touch, then my abuse wouldn’t have started in the first place.
As a result of not knowing, I suffered in silence for four terrible years. I am now traumatized for life. I get triggered every single day. Even just walking out of my house brings horrific memories to my mind. I now suffer every day from depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and borderline personality disorder.
Schools need to teach their students about this topic. Parents also must be educated, especially about the warning signs and symptoms of abuse. Without knowledge, the chain just continues. Shoving the topic under the rug does not make it disappear. Is the Jewish community afraid that something terrible will happen if they educate their children? I asked my therapist why she doesn’t go to schools to teach children, on a basic level, about the topic of abuse. “Schools forbid me from coming,” she replied. Atrocities are being committed because Jewish children are not being educated on the topic of abuse.
The writer Guy Finley once said, “Trying to forget a fear is like trying to hold an inflated basketball under the water. It takes all of your strength and attention, and in time it must pop to the surface.” Making believe that abuse doesn’t occur in the Jewish community makes the situation worse. It rears its ugly head in other ways. For me, my body is covered in scars since that was the only way I knew how to deal with so much inner pain.
The chain can be broken if our Jewish children are educated. Education is the only road to prevention. Without education, the chain just continues. Do something about the situation. Stop the chain. Today.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Seeing the Positive

not sure what the main point is in this one, but it was published in the yated, from a survivor.

I would like to address the sensitive topic that has been discussed the past few weeks, as my experience has been very different than the general concencus.

I, too, was hurt by an older person whom i trusted. It hurt. My father zt"l always told me when i was growing up that life was hard. He used to take me to the hospital to visit people who were ill. He took me every friday to help prepare food for people who didn't have any. He would tell us about tragedies in people's lives, and we would say Tehillim together. He used to say, "Life is hard, but as long as you put on tefillin each morning, life is fun."

I think my father inoculated me from getting too down in life. Who am i to withdraw from society because I got hurt, when everyone around me has their own problems?

I've been married now for ten years and have five children, boruch Hashem. I can still feel the pangs of pain of a little bewildered kid inside me, but it is overwhelmed by the feelings of gratitude I feel to my father zt"l.

Name Withheld

Someone To Turn To

this letter in this week's yated is quite interesting. i've never heard of such a person, and would love to know who they are. it's a bit unrealistic to think the way this person does...

In my community, there is a person who is an address for abuse. He controls the abuser (even if he has left the community) or the parents of the abuser, and he makes sure the abuser goes into therapy. [my note: is it really possible for anyone to fully control an abuser? i think not...] A much respected therapist travels for the community about once a week for this purpose. I was fortunate that I heard about his work. When my child was mishandled, I had an address. But, if I hadn't known about him, who knows if i would have taken action?

Is there a way to ensure that such shomrim do exist in each community? It is probably better for the shomer's identity to remain anonymous to the general public in order to allow him to carry out his avodas hakodesh in a discreet fashion. But rabbonim of all serious (in size) kehillos, poskim and frum pediatricians should all be informed of the work the shomer does. Any person in need of contacting the shomer could be in touch with rabbanim or pediatricians to seek out his contact number.

Name Withheld for Obvious Reasons

Believe Them

another great letter from the yated!

I would like to thank the "Happy Girls" who have shared their personal experiences with us. Dear girls, while I have not been in your shoes, I would like to share what your letters have done for me.

As a mother, it has made me aware of the importance of speaking to my children, each according to their own level of understanding, about recognizing uncomfortable situations.

To all mothers and fathers, please believe your daughters and sons if they come to you with stories that are difficult to hear. They are not making them up. No one would experience the humiliation if they weren't desperate for help. And when they do come to you, figure out a way to protect them. Other than Hashem, no one loves them more than you do. Hashem has entrusted you with these beautiful neshamos and it is your job to keep them safe. No one asked for this to happen, but it has, so take care of it. Ask advice anonymously if you don't know what to do, but davening is not enough.

"Happy Girls," thank you for opening my eyes and helping to make me a better mother. Please get help and stop this horrific abuse. No one is allowed to touch you without your permission.

E. F.

on the note of "no one is allowed to touch you without your permission", be aware that a child CANNOT GIVE PERMISSION FOR SOMEONE TO TOUCH THEM SEXUALLY!! they have no understanding of it! some of us "gave permission" and then couldn't stop it. it's a very sensitive topic...

They Must Be Aware

this letter is taken from the yated. i don't know who wrote it, but it's a great one!

Dear Editor,

I would like to respectfully disagree with the mother who wrote in to criticize the yated for printing the letter from "Happy Girl" in the Readers Write section because her children read i and she did not want to expose her children to these horrors. I think the Yated generally uses very good judgement in what is printed, and this time was no different. The letter, by the way, contained no objectionable content. It did an excellent job of saying things without saying them.

I understand that I am not yet a mother, so I might not be completely qualified to contribute my comments, but I will nonetheless.

It is imperative that children of all ages, both male and female, be aware of this issue. Reading it in the Chinuch Roundtable and reading it in the Readers Write are two different experiences. Here, they are able to "hear" it directly from the victim, one of their peers, and can possibly believe that it exists. Kids don't want to believe that the people they are raised to trust are capable of hurting them. Unfortunately, it is a lesson that must be taught before it is too late.

When my mother tries to tell my teenage brother what to do if someone in yeshiva or camp approaches him in an innapropriate manner, he immediately dismisses her and promises that these things simply don't happen (not just that it won't happen to him). That attitude frightens me, especially from yonger children.

Parents, please allow your children to learn from other people's unfortunate experiences, such as by reading letters in the yated, so that they won't, chas veshalom, suffer themselves.

R. Flatbush, Brooklyn

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Protecting Our Children

Here's an interesting letter from someone who wishes to protect her kids. What do you all think?

taken from the Yated:

As an avid reader of the Yated, I feel compelled to write after reading a letter in last week's Readers Write.

Like countless others, I am a parent who carefully screens my children's reading material (both for content and for age appropriateness). I have always felt comfortable bringing the Yated into my home each week and having it enjoyed by all my children. That's why last week's letter was so upsetting to me. I am referring to the letter about abuse written by "Happy Girl."

I strongly believe that there is a major need for public awareness of this problem, and in your editorial several weeks ago, you did just that. You brought up this serious matter in an appropriate and delicate manner. However, it was disturbing to see such a letter printed in the middle of your highly popular Readers Write column, which is read and disected by kids of all ages, as I can attest to. It is the responsibility of all parents to do the utmost to ensure the physical and emotional wellbeing of their children, and to educate them in all matters of safety as tehy grow up. But it should be left to the parents' discretion as to how and when to do so, particualarly when dealing with a topic as sensitive as abuse. I don't believe that education should come from a Readers Write column which is read by kids all over the world.

Please save these issues for parts of your paper that are clearly geared to adults, such as your weekly editorial which I enjoy so much.

Thank you for your wonderful newspaper which my family enjoys week after week. Keep up the great work.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Another Happy Girl (letter from the yated)

this letter was published this week in the yated. it is NOT one of the letters written by someone i know personally, unless it got sent in without my knowledge. it is however, extremely powerful.

This i saddressed to "Happy Girl,"

Your shame...I feel too.
The loneliness...I am acquainted with only too well.
Anger...I really know.
Hurt...there is no end.
The shock and frustration...I understand.
I felt the depth of every word in your letter. Each and every one cut a knife into my heart, and when i withdrew it, I found myself, strangely, a bit more healed. I guess I am not so alone.
I am also a very regular girl (albeit a younger one) with a secret. Your pain is my pain too.
Dear readers, I hope "abuse" has not become merely a word. Let me tell you what it really is. In truth, it is to experience utter dehumanization so much that it is probably as close to a death experience as one can get. Only victims of abuse can know the feeling of such intense guilt, shame, and self hatred and still be cognizant of the fact that they are illogical emotions, since victims are not the perpetrators.
As a frum, smart normal girl, I take the liberty of writing this letter as a representative of other Bais Yaakov girls who are suffering very quietly. I don't knwo who they are, because like me, their secret is well guarded behind a facade of perfect normalcy, but they deserve medals for their heroism.
We have been hurt terribly and can be so dreadfully alone (yes, despite the many admiring friends, teachers or neighbors we have) and so we have formed a very strong bond with Hashem. THe amount of pain and humiliation we have suffered in our lives can be the perfect recipe for disaster and for drifting far away from Torah. But we choose a different route. We choose to become closer to Hakadosh Baruch Hu and to bask in His loving embrace. "At risk" teenagers we are not. When the suffering intensifies, we are not on the street, but are crying into our sifrei Tehillim and struggling valiantly to retain our sense of identity and dignity. We are heroes in every sense of the word.
Our healing process has not really begun. We cannot give chizuk to others, go for therapy, or look back in retrospect and write letters to the Yated to raise awareness. We live with our pain in the moment; we are still stuck in the sporadic cycle of abuse. THe place we call home is a danger zone, where physical violence and verbal abuse is unpredictable and knows no boundaries, and sadly, the abuser(s) is no other than our very own parent(s)/family member(s).
Whom do we turn to? Are we meant to suffer and wait for all our school years to pass until we can finally get help? Where is our support system? Who will give us the motherly warmth we so desperately crave? Is it fair for us to ask someone to take responsiblity? To make sure we receive mega-doses of love? Can someone provide a listening ear, empathy, an open heart or proper guidance? Sometimes all we need is a smile or a hug. Is it too much to ask for?
Another Happy Girl

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

ZF's Letter-There Is Hope!

I was an innocent little girl.
I did not understand that my brothers' deeds were serious.
I did not know I was being abused.

I was only seven
I am now entering adulthood
I am now confused, shocked, scared.

I was welcomed there with open arms
I was saddened that so many other Frum females had been abused

I found a wonderful place.
I thrived on it.
I thrived for I was understood.

I gained new insights and perspectives.
I was encouraged to be strong
I was encouraged to tell-

So I told

I told my mother what happened
I showed her the wonderful people who I met there.

I was hugged and comforted
I was accepted and loved
I was, once again, a child in my mother's arms

I am free to go on with my life
By the support I got on AUS.
By the support of my mother
I am free move on...

Monday, July 20, 2009

A Daughter's Letter to Mommy and Tatty

Published in the Yated

Dear Mommy and Tatty,
You've probably been unable to escape the grim reality that's been darkening the pages of the various frum publications recently. You probably read the editorials, interviews and letters about the heart wrenching issue of abuse in our communities with a mixture of shock and horror. Then you turn the page and say "Baruch Hashem this isn't MY problem."

Dear Mommy and Tatty,
What would you say if I would tell you that these things are more your problem than you can imagine. What would you say if I would tell you that these things happen in your very own family? What would you say if I would tell you that my cousin, your nephew, had abused me....your daughter?

Dear Mommy and Tatty,
It probably hurts you to hear that your daughter is suffering, that your daughter is going through this nisayon, and she doesn't feel safe enough to tell you. Believe me Mommy and Tatty, it hurts me so much more. You think the two of us are close mommy? Believe me, the distance between us is far greater than you could ever imagine.

Dear Mommy and Tatty,
I am the model daughter, the catch in shidduchim. I'm sure it doesn't occur to you where I go each week, does it? Mommy, Tatty, I go to therapy. Yes, me, your perfect daughter. I have ten years of abuse, ten years of suffering and pain to work through.

Dear Mommy and Tatty,
Isn't it a tragedy that I can't come to you, my parents, for help, care, love and understanding? Isn't it tragic that I endured inhumane abuse rather than face my parents and deal with their possibly negative reaction? Mommy, Tatty, the abuse went on for 10 years! Imagine if I would have felt comfortable enough to approach you years ago...perhaps it would have stopped sooner.

Dear Mommy and Tatty,
Imagine if we could recreate society's attitude towards abuse victims. Imagine if we would be made to understand, from an early age, that nobody will ever think we are at fault, and we would be assured acceptance regardless of our circumstances.
Imagine if instead of suffering in painful silence, I could, at long last fall into your outstretched arms....

Your Daughter

letter from a friend of a survivor

This letter has not been printed yet. However, there is still hope that someone will publish it in the near future! Please keep the letters coming!

I have followed with interest the conversation about sexual abuse taking places in the pages of Jewish publications these past months. My interest would not have been as great had I not recently reconnected with a long-time friend.

After high school, my friend and I slowly parted ways. I couldn’t understand why she made so many self-sabotaging decisions, and she never explained. There was a lack of understanding between us that obstructed communication, and we slowly drifted apart.

It was only recently, through the faceless communication of the internet, that she revealed to me that she had been sexually abused when younger. The trauma she still suffered made ordinary life painful and difficult. For her, something as simple as standing on a crowded train filled her with the same sense of dread I feel when a stranger has been following me through a bad neighborhood late at night.

Now that I understood what drove her counterintuitive behavior, we picked up where we left off. In candid conversation she would tell me about her abuser and the abuse suffered by the friends in her support network. I was filled with revulsion. I used to read such stories in the secular media with a horrified fascination, secure in the knowledge that this could never happen in my community.

Well it happens. It happens in my neighborhood and yours; to my friend and yours. It is important for people to know how widespread this problem is so that they can protect themselves and their children, and so that the religious community can take steps to prevent such horrors from occurring in the future.

Recently, politician Dov Hikind spoke about collecting an abuse task force to deal with this problem in our community. After the initial mention, we have never heard of it again. Possibly he had difficulty finding people in the community willing to deal with this shameful aspect of our lives.

It is shameful, but it is far more shameful to avoid facing it because of our shame. In the past, learning disabilities, mental illness, and cognitive handicaps were all considered stigmas, but our community has progressed and now actively supports people with these difficulties. Let’s do it again, for the victims of sexual abuse. The shame should not be theirs, but their abusers.

We can do it, but only a flood of information can wash the stigma away through the simple power of familiarity.

I urge you to pursue coverage on the subject of sexual abuse – if only on the lack of action being taken to combat it. By spreading awareness, we can prevent the suffering, lost time, and ruined lives suffered by my friend and hers.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

happygirl's letter

taken from here:

What it feels like to survive abuse

To the Editor:

I sat next to you in class, I live on your block. I went to your camp, I studied with you for tests. I am a regular girl.

A regular girl with a huge secret.

When I was six years old, my father’s friend took me down to my basement to play. He used the privacy of the basement to do inappropriate and untzniusdik (immodest) things to me. It took me years of suffering in shameful silence to come out and admit the horrific truth: I had been abused. The full extent of the evil deeds this man had committed didn’t hit me until years and years later. Now, as a young adult, standing on the threshold of my adulthood, I am forced to deal with the daily reality of what this means to me, so many years later.

As I sit and think about what this man has caused, about the ramifications this has had, and will have, on my life, I am engulfed by masses of feelings.

I feel…

Ashamed. Ashamed? Ashamed of how my body was used, how my body was abused. Ashamed of how I am different. Ashamed of the things that I’ve gone through.

Lonely. Lonely? Can you imagine the feeling of being surrounded by friends, yet unable to get help from any of them? Can you imagine the feeling of being the post popular girl in the class, yet staring at all of the admiring girls from behind a huge glass partition? Can you imagine the feeling of being surrounded by masses of girls, dancing in a happy circle around the radiant Kallah, yet feeling like I am the only one who isn’t part of the joy?

Angry. Angry? Sure I am angry with my abuser, but it’s more than that. I feel angry at the world. Angry with the people who have created a society where I have to be ashamed, to keep HIS secret.

Hurt. Hurt? Yes, physically hurt. This man hurt me, but it was more than that. I am also hurt at those few people who know my secret, who are privy to my pain. Hurt at their lack of support. Hurt at their lack of understanding.

Shocked. Shocked? Shocked that this could happen to a “regular” girl like me. Shocked at the way one man can change the entire course of my life. Shocked that people aren’t doing more to stop it.

Frustrated. Frustrated? Frustrated that people think I did something wrong. I was six years old at the time. Frustrated that people pity me. I am still a regular girl. Frustrated that people think it doesn’t happen in “our” world. Frustrated that we can’t talk about such things. Frustrated that people are sweeping a problem that is such a big part of my life under the rug.

Hopeful. Hopeful? Hopeful that some day in the near future I won’t be forced under a blanket of shame. Hopeful that Hashem will continue to give me the strength to grow from my challenges and use my experiences to help others in similar situations. Hopeful that frum publications will continue to help raise awareness by printing my letter.


Editor’s note: Name withheld by request due to the sensitive, highly personal nature of the letter.

below, please find the comments from here

Anonymous said...

Dear Writer i'm sure you know that it was nothing that the fact that this happened had nothing to do with you other than it happened to be you that it happened to. let me explain if your walking and a bird flying overhead decides to relieve himself on your head. are you going to feel like a dirty person "i must be dirty because if not the bird would never have done that to me" or course not! the bird just did it because thats what birds do and he'll do it again to the next random person walking down the block.this person who did this to you is a sicko thats what sicko do it had nothing to do with you
this is step 1) the next step is you must go to the police and report it. there have been a number of cases lately where the victim went to the rabanim to do something about their plight, when the rabanim tried to help the perpetrators side criminalizes the rabanim and the victim. i spoke to one of the rabanim involved and asked how is this problem going to be addressed he answered he's telling anyone who has a complaint now to go straight to the police. i know its scary but going to the police will protect future victims and it will help you heal,also there's a new law that you can do this and not have face the perp in court you can stay anonymous. i wish you all the best be strong you'll help yourself and many others

July 27, 2009 11:51 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shame on you lakewood scoop. This is purer loshon hora on our ihr hatora. We had enough bad news this week now youy want to make us all look lioke sickk people. This girl is obviosly off the derech and looking for someone to blame. I don't know anyone in this town that would do anything to a little girl. Boy maybe. Not girl. Clean up your act. Did you ask ashaila before you published this nivul peh?

July 27, 2009 11:55 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

i wish you would write the guys name. poeple like this need to learn, not learn by sitting in jail but learning in other ways. there are people that want to help just ask. Just ask the right person.

July 27, 2009 11:55 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

1- No where does it say that this letter is from a resident of Lakewood.
2- This can happen anywhere including Lakewood. In addition due to the closed mind of many individuals it can happen quicker in Lakewood.
3- The only way to deal with this is to go to the Police.

July 27, 2009 12:15 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


July 27, 2009 12:25 PM

Anonymous 000646 said...

Anon.11:55 said

"I don't know anyone in this town that would do anything to a little girl. Boy maybe. Not girl."

Anon 11:55 You sick sick Embarresment to judaisim do you think doing somthing to a little boy is better or o.k.? what is the matter with lakewood people?!- gosh

July 27, 2009 12:34 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

#2 your a sick menuval

July 27, 2009 12:38 PM

Comment deleted

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

July 27, 2009 12:39 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

'little boy maybe'!!!!! you should be arrested and kept far away from little boys , you crazy monster.

July 27, 2009 12:40 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

shes not off the derech she says more tehilim than you i know her personaly

July 27, 2009 12:43 PM

Anonymous KATE PERRY said...



July 27, 2009 12:51 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

whoever thinks that things like this dont or cant happen is a piece of sh*** the person needs some serious f** help. it does and has happened to people the world over its just not public because everyone is too embarrased to talk about this type of thing. god should bless this girl and help her out

July 27, 2009 12:55 PM

Comment deleted

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

July 27, 2009 12:56 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

#2- I do know someone in this town that has done things to little girls. Yes, even in our town these things happen. Your attitude is part of the problem.

I do not know if this girl is from lakewood. That is irrelevant. The problem exits in Lakewood as it does everywhere else.

July 27, 2009 12:56 PM

Anonymous victim said...

#2 wrote something just to get attention. lets all ignore him and his stupid naive remarks. HE MAKES NO SENSE!!! he wants us to get angry. don't give him that pleasure.

July 27, 2009 12:57 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are sick people in all faiths. It is a sickness. He should be arrested and put into prison, Child abusers don't last long behind bars. Wasn't there an arrest 2 weeks ago with a Day Camp teacher in Lakewood. Very Sad.

July 27, 2009 12:58 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear editor

you should ask for the name so i can save my own kids from such sick people and i don't know if all u know 1 in 6 boys and 1 in 5 girls are molested in the world to Anon. 11:55 you sound like one of those people that should be put away u are sick and if i new who u are i would put your name all over town.

July 27, 2009 1:04 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear editor u should remove Anon 11:55 post it violates normality

July 27, 2009 1:05 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

With all due respect, i seriously don't think this is such a good place for this discussion. I probably have reached this conclusion by reading the erudite comments published. Dear writer, you need to speak to a qualified individual who will guide you to the correct actions to take. If you are not getting the support you need from your family, than go to a Rav or a trustworthy adult friend. May all your tefilloths be answered and may you find comfort soon.

July 27, 2009 1:10 PM

Comment deleted

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

July 27, 2009 1:11 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Below are some links on different stuff in the jewish community in Lakewood there is a new organzation for people who where child molested called Ashrecha.

This link has story's from frum people.

July 27, 2009 1:16 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps her therapist suggested that hanging this dirty laundry out to dry in the Nine Days would be therepeudic.

July 27, 2009 1:21 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason that the latest Lakewood (2 weeks ago) went to the authorities, because it was someone from the ......that it happened to their child. Learn from them, go to the authorities as Rav Eliyashev, Shlita said.

July 27, 2009 1:27 PM

Anonymous Caringyid said...

Anon at 11:55
Wow how sick a person can get!! Stop your "Ihr Hatorah" crap!! Our town is fortunate to be BETTER than other places because we have so many people sitting and learning but to think and SAY that this can't happen here is beyond me! There are even sickos OFFICIALLY in BMG right in the heart of your "Ihr Hatorah". I personally have met up with some of these individuals and lets just say they weren't doing the best of things to say the least. I was shocked when an individual told me that one of them is OFFICIALLY in Yeshiva. What nerve do you have to make accusations on this innocent girl?!! What in this world possesed you when you decided to label her as "off the derech"??!! How in G-D's name can you say such a thing? What in this letter made you think that?!! Oh I know,it not anything in the letter, it's just that you need to find something to discredit this girl's letter since this "does not happen in Lakewood" so that was your best route. Some nerve you got!! Oh,and btw if you're able to say that this doesn't happen in Lakewood then you obviously haven't been following the news for the past year or so. Why don't you ask Dr. Shanik if this happens in Lakewood? Are you afraid to come out of that hole of yours? This woman is begging for some sympathy and unfortonately we have sickos in town like you that think that our "Ihr Hatorah" is immune to this. Unfortonately our "Ihr Hatorah" is not what it used to be anymore and to always hide behind that term is naieve at the best and disgusting in reality. I know of a few psycho-therapists that MAY be able to help you.

To the young writer of this letter: I don't know what to say to you. Words don't suffice to ease your pain. My heart goes out to you. May Hashem give you the strength to continue to grow and rise above the test he has given you. Yes,you are different that your friends because G-D has given you a test and you have the power to rise above the challenge and move to a higher plane. I think you should go to the Police but you probably should ask a shaila first by a REPUTABLE Rov. May Hashem always be with you.

July 27, 2009 1:41 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

to a ll those attacking my comments at 11:55. i have emunas chachomim.i was tld that we do not have such problems,and if someone says we do they have a problem.i did not say it is ok to molest little boys.just that seems to be the usual case lately.who would allow an adult to be alone in a basement with their girl who is a issur of yichud.boys need to be more careful since molesters pray upon them in private.maybe we should establish hilchos yichud to include men with boys too.but we need our gedolim to tell us this and since they havent yet i cant believe there is a problem so why post this?

July 27, 2009 1:42 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To anon 1:21
I would love to know your name. I think it would be better to hang you out to dry for a long time!

July 27, 2009 1:46 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the author of this letter:

Please please go to the police you still can. It seems so hard but it is worth it, get the person that did these things locked up, for the sake of the people he will almost for sure hurt if he is out on the street.

July 27, 2009 2:03 PM

Anonymous 000646 said...

Anon 1:42 said

"i was tld that we do not have such problems,and if someone says we do they have a problem."

Really by which gadol and when

July 27, 2009 2:04 PM

Anonymous Happygirl said...

Hi, everyone.

I am the writer of this letter and I do live here in Lakewood, so yes, bad things do happen here. :-( Thank you all for your supportive and encouraging words.

The second poster (Anonymous 11:55 am) is obviously uneducated about abuse and it's his choice to bury his head in the sand.

For all others out there, I beg of you!
EDUCATE YOUR CHILDREN about good touching and bad touching, about what's acceptable and what isn't.
EDUCATE YOURSELVES about symptoms to look out for and classic abuser behaviour so you can hopefully preempt it.

Keep spreading awareness so we, the abused victims, don't need to feel this shame.


PS I sent this letter myself to thelakewoodscoop and it was printed in the Yated readers write last week but I want to get all the support I can get and that is why I sent it hear as well.

July 27, 2009 2:07 PM

Anonymous 123 said...

Happy girl,

Please go to the police! I dont blame you if you dont, but please for the sake of us who have kids get this guy off the street!

July 27, 2009 2:17 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

B"H I have never been abused and I sure hope none of my children ever were, but, I do know that such perverts do lurk out there and prey on innocents. When I was still single (I am a grandmother now)I was alone in my friend's bungalow in the country and I was waiting for someone to come and pick up portaraits from her bungalow.She had arranged a photographer to take family portraits in the bungalow colony and parents were coming to pick them up from her. She had to be away and asked me to take care of giving out the portraits for her.A father came, and he kept coming too close to me and bumping into me. I kept moving away and he kept on doing it while I was taking care of getting his pictures for him and the payment. I was extremely uncomfortable and I am sure he did not bump into me by accident. I did not report this to anyone. I don't remember his name, but, I still remember it clearly to this day. B"H he did nothing else to me, but, it was bad enough, and I wonder who else he preyed on.

July 27, 2009 2:40 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To #2 on your 2nd post, there is no issur of yichud when the adults are upstairs and the child is downstairs with this piece of #$%^&. It may be true that the parents are guilty of a lack of judgment, however, that in no way excuses the molestor of his devilish actions.

Happygirl is a victim. She may have pathetic parents who did nothing about the problem. They may blame the rabbonim and everyone else and not themselves. Whether that is the case, we have a problem. Unfortunately, I think we are only scratching the surface.

July 27, 2009 2:43 PM

Anonymous the real me said...

Anon 2:43, please do not call her parents pathetic. Maybe they do not know about it. Don't think it's so easy for a victim to tell their parents about such a thing....

July 27, 2009 3:06 PM

Anonymous 000646 said...

A victim does not necesseraly have pathetic parents. It is very hard to see the signs unless you are educated in these things (and even when you are it is very hard).

People are usally mollested by either relatives or people who the family have been close with for years and years and a child will usally feel like they did somthing wrong or that their parents will hate them if they found out.

Your best friend or brother could be mollesting your child would you blame yourself for not suspecting them even if your child wasnt acting completley ordinary?

Unless they have an education in these matters and even if they do you simply cannot blame somone for not picking up the signs in most cases,

especially in a community were untill recently it was the public opinion of many of its leaders that such a problem does not exsist.

the first letter

my original letter:

I want to commend you for having the courage to come out in the open and discuss a topic as controversial and uncomfortable as abuse and molestation in the frum communities. Please realize that as difficult as it is for you to write about it, imagine how much more difficult it is for someone like me, for whom it is a daily reality.
Nobody is quite sure when my abuse started. We assume that it went on for about five years, before I somehow mustered up the courage to tell my parents that a close relative of mine was continuously abusing me. On a steady basis, my privacy and humanity were being violated in the most horrific ways. It's been ten years since then. Ten years of therapy, of depression, of medication, of guilt. Ten years in which the mere mention of my abuser's name sets off panic attacks. Ten years of nightmares. Ten years of torture.
And the worst part, as Rabbi Lipshitz mentioned, is the shame and the silence. My very own family members know that I have some 'issues' but they think it is just me. What they don't know is that it is not me, but rather a very sick and perverted relative of theirs. What they don't know is that I suffer silently. I suffer from such a complete lack of understanding from everyone around me. I am constantly fielding shidduch calls, but people don't realize that I can't even dream about going on a date with a man. I have memories that none of my peers can understand. I have urges to do things that nobody around me can begin to imagine. I have thoughts, feelings and ideas that would make some of my friends run from me.
I believe that proper support is the first step towards healing, and therefore, I am working {together with rabbanim and therapists} to develop a network of girls from frum homes who have been abused, and are looking to heal together with me. Please email me:
Thank you for your courage, and for your support, and for giving us this voice,

Little Sheep

what the yated published:

I want to commend you for having the courage to come out in the open and discuss a topic as controversial and uncomfortable as abuse in the frum community. Please realize that as difficult as it is for you to write about it, imagine how much more difficult it is for someone like me, for whom it is a daily reality. On a steady basis, my humanity was being violated in the most horrific ways. It's been ten years since then. ten years of therapy, depression, medication, and guilt. Ten years during which the mere mention of my abusers name set off panic attacks. Ten years of nightmares. Ten years of torture.

And the worst part, as rabbi lipshutz mentioned, is the shame and silence. My very own family members know that I have some "issues", but they think it's just me.

What they don't know is that I suffer silently. I suffer from such a complete lack of understanding from everyone around me. I believe that proper support is the first step towards healing, and therefore, I am working, together with rabbanim and therapists, to develop a network of individuals from frum homes who have been abused and can look to heal together with me.

Thank you for your courage, for your support, and for giving us this voice.

(and despite the fact that i signed it as little sheep, they chose to sign me off as "name withheld")