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.


  1. This letter is so well written and deserves to be printed in the yated.
    The feelings that come out of it are so strong and real, i hope the message gets through

  2. thanks. i hope it gets in. the world out there needs an education. sad, but true.


please be kind to all the survivors whose letters will be posted, we need gentle love, not bashing!