The Three Weeks
It’s summertime, and many of you have communicated that it’s difficult to read the emails for whatever reasons. Therefore, I’m going to keep the next few emails a bit shorter than usual.
I have an odd question for you. How can I impress upon my children the seriousness of the three weeks? I have 4 wonderful children ranging in ages from 9 to 16 and the three weeks and nine days are a huge annoyance to them. An example would be, that they listen to all this aCapella singing, which in my opinion is real music. When I stop them, they get all upset at me. How can I help them understand how serious these days really are? Do you have any suggestions? Shifra - Brooklyn
Wow. I must admit that this question was unique. It seems that you have 4 amazing children and you are worried that they are not taking the three weeks seriously enough. In many families, the extent that kids relate to the three weeks, is by getting a haircut immediately before they start.
There are a few points I would like to make.
In the Zechus of your wonderful parenting, may we be Zoche to experience the coming of Moshiach.
7/28/2016 05:54:20 pm
The reason that I and many friends had an issue, was because we have limited internet access. It's also difficult to read these emails in the bungalow colonies. Thank you for the great ideas!
7/28/2016 05:59:23 pm
I totally understand this mother. I have the same thoughts sometimes...our kids don't even notice the 3 weeks. Your ideas are excellent. Another idea is, just mentioning it once in a while. When you're going out to eat, say "Although we don't usually go out to eat during the 3 weeks, tonight's a special night because..."
7/28/2016 06:22:16 pm
Is there a Minhag not to go out to eat in the 3 weeks? I never heard of that.
7/28/2016 07:15:40 pm
I never heard of this either, but asking your Rav is the sure way to find out.
7/28/2016 06:12:07 pm
A bit shorter than I like, but I an understand why it's difficult for some mothers. Maybe, we should not let our kids charge their phone past 50% in the 3 weeks. That would make them sadder.
7/28/2016 06:31:21 pm
Although I don't agree at all with this mother, I do share her sentiments about the "Music". If it's so real sounding, it should not be OK.
7/28/2016 07:14:37 pm
I also question this music at times. Especially since many of the sounds are people but are played back off of a machine. It really defeats the purpose. However, there are Rabbanim that permit it.
7/28/2016 06:55:37 pm
Wonderful response. It's quite true that adults are not on this level. However, this mother definitely aims high, and for that she deserves credit. Nevertheless, your answer is spot on. Focus on important things and your kids will grow up to give you Nachas.
7/28/2016 07:09:41 pm
Rabbi Ross. I love the point regarding the teaching kids to communicate with a Rav. Far to often, parents don't show their kids the importance of discussing things with a Rav. Have a gutten Shabbos.
7/28/2016 08:47:46 pm
Thank you for these great articles. I do remember the 3 weeks as a kid. My parents were so strict, that I resented these days for the wrong reasons.
7/28/2016 08:49:39 pm
You bring up a great point Rabbi. It's not the 3 weeks that's important it's the relationship. Subscribed.
7/28/2016 08:56:00 pm
My wife and I really enjoy these emails. Is there a fee for the year?
7/28/2016 08:58:25 pm
There is no fee, nor will there ever be one IY"H. All I ask, is that you forward to all your friends so they can hopefully benefit as well. Have a great Shabbos!
7/29/2016 12:50:30 am
Well done as usual. A great idea as well, is to tell your kids, "By treating each other nicely a for these 3 weeks, you can bring Moshiach!"
7/29/2016 12:52:30 am
I've been signed up since the 3rd week or so. I read the comments all the time, but this week I had to join in. My parents used to be so strict about the 3 weeks and 9 days, it had the opposite effect. I hated the concept. Your ideas would have had a much more positive impact. Wow.
7/29/2016 07:17:30 am
It's a common parenting mistake, trying to force your kids to become super focused on specific parts of Yiddishkeit. It's also random. Some parents choose other focal points. In either case, I agree with this article. Focus on being a loving parent.
Alice Ben Simchon
7/29/2016 07:20:01 am
Very good email! I enjoyed reading!
7/29/2016 07:29:02 am
I must disagree with you. I think it's a good thing that parents try and help their kids be in tune with our history. You should be encouraging parents like this.
7/29/2016 07:53:17 am
How are you disagreeing? Rabbi Ross gave some tips to keep parents in tune with our history AND our kids simultaneously. Are you suggesting that parents force their kids to be super strict dab out the 3 weeks?
7/29/2016 09:49:42 am
Encouraging parents to push their kids away? Seriously? This article was IMHO well said, and I'm confused why RR allowed your comment.
7/29/2016 04:34:38 pm
Evan. You are more than welcome to disagree with me. However, I think we agree that kids should understand our history. I don't believe forcing the issue will generate results. You are certainly welcome to your opinion. Have a good Shabbos.
7/31/2016 12:29:06 am
We read this over Shabbos and thought it was hysterical. A neighbor of ours just had the same issue, but he went ballistic on his kids. No videos or iPads, and limited playtime. So his kids are sneaking to our house. I would definitely agree with your ideas.
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Rabbi Yitzie Ross is a Rebbe and has been working with parents and kids for many years. You can read more about him in the "about" section.