Musings from an Orthodox Jewish work at home mom of twins with Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Archive for the ‘Jewish Community’ Category

Anti-Torah Mindset

A teenage boy, whose father harasses my husband constantly, came up to my husband today and apropos to nothing, said the following:

“My Rebbe said that if you have retarded children, it’s because of aveiros you did in your past.”

His father was right there— smiling. His father even said “hey, he listens to his Rebbe!”

We have such wonderful people in our community, but the handful of total assholes spouting their anti-Torah mindset— calling our children retards, telling us about our past aveiros….. they are who are forcing my husband to demand we move. Keeping us living here is becoming a JOB.

Stay Away From Us!

Haven’t had an evening this terrible in a whole week. I am physically and emotionally SPENT. Wilma’s therapist had to tell me to “breathe, just breathe, just focus on breathing” for a good 20 minutes while I hyperventilated. Anyone know how to cry but control the over the top hyperventilating? I’d like to have a cry when I need to (my shoulder got injured in the chaos and it hurts, but not enough for the ER) but not have it affect my blood pressure and physical being for hours afterwards.

Anyhoo…..hubby went for a walk to get away from it all and ran into someone who doesn’t know our situation all that well and didn’t know that we haven’t taken a vacation since 2006 and certainly doesn’t know that hubby had just been punched and bitten. She said “you look a little stressed…. perhaps you need a vacation”. WRONG THING TO SAY TO ONE OF US unless you’re handing us a qualified babysitter who could handle a potential dangerous situation….. who Wilma would allow to do her medical treatments (she won’t even let hubby do it— I’m the freaking only one allowed near her). Go ahead, y’all. FIND the perfect babysitter for an autistic 14 year old who is likely to beat you up and harm you physically……. who can also do medical treatments on a 14 year old who WILL. NOT. ALLOW. YOU. TO. DO. SO. Soooooo we don’t vacation. Ever.

She should have STAYED AWAY FROM HUBBY.

A certain head of an Orthodox Jewish day school saw my husband at shul with his sleeve rolled up (the men roll up sleeves to put on their tefillin) and told him he shouldn’t roll up his sleeve in shul because he’s scaring the boys from his school at davening with his bruised up arms. Gee, sorry our getting chomped by our aggressive kiddo is terrorizing the same twerps who run around calling my husband the “retard manager”. (I’ve probably mentioned it before— a large group of boys from that school call my husband horrific names because he used to work there as a 1:1 para (with a “retard” (note the quotes– I hate that word— but those boys love it and are never called out on it) and he himself has kids with disabilities, who, according to this stellar group of young men, are “retards” as well.

He should have STAYED AWAY FROM HUBBY.

In short….. if you’re approaching us to tell us to take a vacation, tell us God doesn’t give us what we can’t handle, tell us that God gives special kids to special parents, or to tell us that we’re scaring children with the bruises we incur by being punched and bitten……. just STAY AWAY FROM US.

What Is Worse

Let’s play what is worse…. (or most emotionally exhausting)

  1.  Parenting two children on the spectrum
  2. Being told that autism is a mere myth and that symptomatic behaviors are the result of incompetent parenting
  3. Hearing the theory that they are too smart to have autism
  4. Being told that we should not talk about the issue and just suffer silently.

Today we had issues with #1 and #4.  #1 was ANOTHER horrific meltdown from good old Fred.

Hubby was approached at Walmart today by an important member of our Orthodox community (important in our community means rich or a Rabbi or a head of school…..  someone whose name is synonymous with the community— side note— hubby has now decided we will move to a community where no names are revered more than others.  Anyone know a Jewish community with no adored rich or important people?  mm hmm)—–  she said she’s been meaning to talk to him about something…….  she said we need to stop being public about our childrens’ autism and stop seeking support.  We need to be quiet about it (suffer silently) because it’s a blemish on our community.

I feel really terrible that our current crisis (yes, one twin is most definitely in crisis now—  many of my autism related facebook posts in past years were positive/ funny/ informative) makes her feel a bit uncomfortable.  See the tiny violin I’m playing?  Nope, can’t lean it against my body— I have a bruise there— yeah another one there—- hmmm that finger is permanently injured so I can’t hold the bow right— eh, screw the violin.  Yet again hubby is yelling at me about moving.

By the way, while we’re keeping Fred home and away from synagogue for months on end, some of the men are complaining that he’s a Bar Mitzvah and they never see him in  shul.  So some people think we shouldn’t seek support when we have issues and some think we should ignore the issues and just act like nothing is wrong (same guys would complain when  the guys are comparing bite marks during a mega meltdown).  Again, hubby is talking about not only moving, but moving away from the Jewish community completely.   Hashem— if you want us to remain Orthodox Jews, give us a sign– please.

Bar Mitzvah Stuff

We ended up doing… NOTHING.  No Kiddush, no party, no invites.  It was the best thing for our son and it was the best thing for our current situation.  Our son didn’t have a massive meltdown upon realizing he was the center of attention and there was a crowd, and none of the riff raff who make it their job to harass my husband knew when and where our son would be called to the Torah and there was no free food for them to come crash our Simcha.  So our Simcha was QUIET.  Just the people who daven at our shul anyway.  Fred was called to the Torah for his Aliyah, the men  sang to him for about 2 minutes, and we moved on with our lives.  I’m incredibly depressed that we couldn’t throw a shindig and yet so incredibly grateful.  I mean the truth is that we could have thrown an invite only party NOT at a shul that wasn’t announced in newsletters just like Wilma’s, but you can see why I was gun shy to do that based on what happened at HER party.  If a double meltdown ran down HER party, kol v’chomer it would most certainly run down HIS.  He certainly didn’t care about a party.

We did GO  to a Bar Mitzvah recently.  The baalas Simcha promised us that a certain person wouldn’t be there.  Not only was he there, he was given an honor.  The baalas Simcha promised us that her son’s classmates wouldn’t be there (they live in the “other neighborhood”).  My husband literally spent Shabbos morning counting bochurim and noticing how many came from the other neighborhood— he got to be called a retard manager, and when he yelled at a few boys for on purpose knocking right into our son, he was yelled at by the certain person mentioned above (who, by the way, finally invited us to leave our city— I was wondering when he’d “kick us out” of here).  Wilma stayed home.  She NEVER goes to shul on Shabbos morning anymore and she NEVER even gets out of her pajamas on Shabbos.  She takes at LEAST two naps each Shabbos.  (we tested her thyroid and vitamin levels—-  I’m guessing it’s just the 8 thousand meds she’s now on).  Fred did come with us.  Hubby went on time, and I took Fred around 9:45— Fred is able to walk quietly into the men’s section, find my husband, and do great during davening.  And then  there was a Kiddush.  Oh how I hate Kiddushim.  Let the record show we tried.  Kiddushim bring out the very worst in people.  So about ten minutes into the Kiddush my son is crying, having a massive nosebleed and yelling curse words in the bathroom.  A Rebbe (who KNOWS Fred has autism) admonished my husband for not disciplining Fred.  If discipline worked with Fred’s cursing or aggression or meltdowns or ANYTHING, don’t you think we would have tried it?  So yeah, we won’t bring Fred back to a Kiddush for a long long time.  None of us ate at the Kiddush or enjoyed it but I think we get brownie points from the Baalei Simcha for being there.

Here’s hoping we don’t get invited to another Bar Mitzvah in our city anytime soon and if we are, we’re smart enough to leave our kid(s) at home and my husband is smart enough to wear blinders and earplugs so he doesn’t have to hear or see anything.  And yes, of course, we had the moving discussion again.  And again.  And again.

Organized Bullying

I’m beginning to think that the only thing organized in some (not all!) Orthodox Jewish communities is the bullying, both of children and of adults.

It’s a small group of teens and adults who continue to bully my husband, but boy are they loud. And constant.  And causing us to argue about moving.  ALL.  THE.  TIME.  Our son is supposed to celebrate becoming a Bar Mitzvah in two months.  We’ve done nothing.  We absolutely cannot agree.  Should he be called to the Torah at all?  What will happen?  Should we have a kiddush?  Who might show up?  Sadly, we may just buy him some special treats and congratulate him and let the community simcha part just……  blah.

Tonight, some bochurim called a treif restaurant FROM the synagogue, ordered treif pizza to be sent to our address (lovely, they’ve got our address) and gave the name as “the retard manager who attended Yeshivas I once ate pork”.  (they call my husband retard manager because he used to be a para in a couple of the Jewish schools working one on one with students with special needs.  The organization that hired him and the schools could never agree on what his job actually entailed, and the students looked at him as a babysitter.  The schools didn’t care about the middos of their students, so years later these kids and their younger siblings are still calling my husband these horrible names.)  The Yeshiva—– well, we’re Baalei Teshuvah.  We catch flack for that too.  Apparently Yeshivas I Once Ate Pork is quite popular because I have a lot of BT friends, but I digress.

Where are these boys’ fathers?  Not at mincha or maariv with them supervising them, that’s for damn sure.  Where are the Rabbaim?  Well if the boys are from important families, families of Rabbanim or Rebbeim, or rich families……  my husband is always told to just “be mevater”.

 

Being Pelted By Wet Paper Towels

Being Pelted By Wet Paper Towels.  It’s what I’m feeling every time something happens to my husband, he vents to me about it, I vent about it on facebook, and some facebook “friend” reports it to someone in the community who then yells at my husband for what I’ve posted.  I need to use this blog more and facebook less, clearly.

In the “this actually happened” category…… my husband went to pick up take out. Two boys who know him followed him into the bathroom where they proceeded to pummel him with wet paper towels.

I KNOW DARN WELL that both of my kids have a tendency to act immaturely so I am always certain that they are well supervised. If my kids did this, I’d be horrified and apologizing profusely to the victim. My husband was asked to cut them slack.

I’m sick of seeing children above a certain age acting like fools with zero consequences from their parents.

I bitched about it on facebook and  someone recommending calling the cops.  MOST incidents that happen aren’t cop worthy— the cops aren’t coming for an adult being pelted with wet paper towels by a couple of 13 year olds. But when you add up a bunch of those types of incidents over time….. yeah the cops still don’t care.  And my husband gets angrier and angrier.  And takes it out on me, screaming at me almost weekly that it’s time to move.  For various reasons I REALLY can’t move right now— that’s a whole other blog post.   We’ve used the D word (divorce) so many times, my head is spinning.  We don’t want a divorce— but…. we’ll see.

So now he’s crazy angry at me for posting about anything on facebook (deleting it now, geez), and this blog will become a private bitch fest (hardly anyone knows about it— hello to those of you who do) and my facebook will be a lot less personal.  I’ve had it.

I am BEYOND disillusioned, both by the behavior of “frum” kids in our community who treat adults with complete and utter disrespect, the behavior of “frum” “friends” in the community who have to talk about my facebook bitch fests directly to people so that they’ll confront my husband (no of COURSE I didn’t use any names), and the behavior of husbands who don’t get that wives need an outlet— my blood pressure with two special needs kids is high enough that my blood pressure meds really aren’t working well.  And when I have a screaming husband on top of it…..   man, being bitten by my 12 year old is easier than considering divorcing from a 20 year marriage.

 

Bridezilla

“with all the gadolim and tzaddikim that will be at this wedding, it’s not the place for you anyway.” — -this was actually said to my husband.  By the bride.   We’re invited to this chassunah but when my husband said we’re likely unable to come (locals almost never have their weddings HERE because…. LAKEWOOD!) the bride said…. THAT.

Her father approached our Rabbi to complain about the pants my husband wears because some of them have more than 2 pockets.  More and more people in our community are upset when my husband wears a colored shirt.  Or a sweater (not a button down shirt)…. and now?  Pockets.

If you care more about what we wear than who we are, then nope, we’re not very interested in attending your wedding anyway.

 

 

Nebach Over There Dressed Like a Polak

Can I just have ONE Shabbos or Yom Tov when I’m not embarrassed to be a frum Jew?  Moshiach MUST be coming soon.

This morning at shul they were doing misheberach for acheirim and this guy who blows in from out of town twice a year and treats my husband like garbage was asked who he’d like to bless.  So he said…. (and pointed to my husband)….

 

That Nebach Over There Dressed Like a Polak.

 

Not Sure I Ever Mentioned This

Did I ever blog about my husband being beat up at shul by a fellow Jew on Shabbos?  Pretty sure I didn’t— but since it’s months after the fact I’ll mention it in passing…..  the guy was taken into custody and apparently put on house arrest for a while, but my husband saw him again recently…..  this incident was the first in a series of incidents that are making us increasingly uncomfortable in our own community.  After this happened, the Rabbi Who Has It In For My Husband Who Shall Not Be Named called him yet again—— apparently when my husband fell to the ground he scared a pre-teen boy.  Yeah, sorry he got attacked— -it will never happen again.

On the table at this point is moving to another community or moving outside the community to a non Jewish place in our own city where somehow we’ll still keep halacha but not be near a shul because even in our own shul (which we love), there are still people who come in there, seemingly, ONLY to insult and harass my husband.

Trying to keep it all off the table because I’m just too darn tired to pack up and move, frankly.

Next Time He Should Wear a Rainbow Colored Shirt

This morning a Rabbi in the community who clearly has it in for my husband was seriously offended that my husband wore a blue shirt….. to minyan!  *gasp*.  He had family in from out of town and he told my husband he was attempting to “showcase people in the community”.

If this Rabbi could spend this much time working on his middos and the middos of his children and his students……

 

 

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