Divorce is never an easy thing to go through, especially among the religious. In the close Jewish community, divorce represents the breakup of a cornerstone of Jewish life. Yet, divorce continues to be a growing issue in Jewish communities. As one of the founders of Frum Divorce, a community-support organization dedicated to supporting members of the religious community, I am involved in many facets of community life. The main goal of Frum Divorce is supporting members of the religious community who are going through the divorce process, with a specific focus on parenting and guidance on how to deal with the emotional fallout of separation and divorce.
A recent community study in New York reveals just how much the rate of divorce has increased. Namely, according to this study, the divorce rate has increased by 22 percent since 2002, and it has become an increasing problem for the religious. In Brooklyn, home of the biggest Orthodox Jewish community, divorce rose by over 20 percent.
Unfortunately, when it comes to divorce, the result is often loneliness and isolation, stigma and shame. Other than the passing of a loved one, few experiences in life are as painful and traumatizing as divorce. One of the things that make divorce a life-changing experience is the fact that divorce can affect everyone. It is a loss for parents and children alike. In order to help divorcees and their children heal the pain of divorce, Frum Divorce provides support, education and community services, trying to ensure no Jewish parent or child is alone at this most difficult time. Apart from being a traumatic experience, divorce can also be quite complex. Raising many troubling questions, I help parents find the answers to these questions, offering them guidance, support and the community at a time of profound pain. As the organization’s founder, my mission is as simple as it is vital: to provide families with much-needed support to overcome the panic, trauma and loss of divorce.
In the Jewish community, there are very few organizations that deal with the aftermath of divorce and how each member of the family is impacted. While dealing with the topic of divorce, I was surprised to find a serious lack of education in the community about the ramifications on a family once divorce occurs. So, even though divorce has become more common in the past few years, the social stigma related to divorce is still deeply felt by those who have gone through the process.
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