Sunday, December 8, 2013

New York, Israel and Teenagers

For those of you who haven't figured it out (and if you have, what gave it away?!), I live in New York.

It's a great place for a single person working and in school to live; their is always Kosher food available somewhere. It is so incredibly convenient, I can't imagine living in a place while single that isn't New York.

At the same time, I can't see myself living in New York with kids. Specifically Brooklyn I suppose.

The same is true for Israel. While I would love to make Aliyah, the impossible challenge of raising kids becomes unimaginable to the point where I consider it completely preposterous. For me anyway. I know people who have done it, and I see them as miracle-workers.

True, at some point, anyone who has successfully raised their children to be healthy, religious, etc. is a miracle-worker, but I feel it's especially true when living in Israel or Brooklyn.

I'm not sure what it is about these places, but I feel, based on what I've seen and heard, that there is a disproportionate amount of teenagers who get messed up. I mean, unhealthy, irreligious, etc.

I was shmoozing with one of these kids who at one point attended a regular yeshiva in New York, and he was telling me that guys who were once friends of his are now in gangs on the streets killing each other- literally.

It's insanity. Is it the yeshivos and girls high schools? The black and white of it? The intransigence of the yeshiva system to adapt to how the metzius of living in America has changed?

I don't know, but the idea of raising kids in Brooklyn scares the bejeezus out of me. (Then again, the idea of raising kids at all scares the bejeezus out of me too :-) I was told that that's a good thing though!)

Why I'm thinking about this as a single guy at 3:25 am is beyond me, but it's what was on mind.

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