Jump to content


Teshuva To Parents

  • Please log in to reply
2 replies to this topic

#1 Bais Yaakov Girl

Bais Yaakov Girl


  • Members
  • 5 posts

Posted 13 May 2013 - 08:39 PM

My mother has a lot of medical conditions. I could list them for you but the odds of your recognizing them is slim. She's had cancer a few times and had her thyroid removed, which caused a tremendous weight gain which led to diabetes which now has permanently damaged her vision. She's also had four heart attacks since I turned twelve, and I'm nearly fifteen.


On top of that, last year my mother was driving some of my friends home motzaei Shabbos when a car crashed into her. It's serious hashgachah pratis that I was waiting for a call from a person I babysit for at home, because the car smashed directly into the seat I would have been seated in. Since the people who crashed into us were family friends we agreed not to press charges, but a few weeks later it became evident that something was really wrong. My mother was brought to the hospital where they discovered that the car crash caused degenerative disk disease, a condition that could leave her chas v'shalom paralyzed or in a wheelchair.


Obviously, it's been very hard for me not to question why this would happen to me, but it's also difficult because of the enormous stress that has been placed on me. I am the oldest of four children and my mother is very active in the community: she teaches, helps at several different shuls for their programs, cooks for anyone in need of a meal, and helps plan fundraisers and well as going to college part-time and working at home.


My mother has been to physical therapy, and for a while it seemed that she was getting better, but then reality set in. I daven for her each day, but it doesn't always feel like enough.


Anyways, since my mother got sick I've been doing a lot of babysitting for my siblings and a lot of chores like laundry and the dishes. These might seem like simple chores but when combined with school and my social life it's very hard to balance. Unfortunately, sometimes I snap at my mother when she asks me to do things and then I feel instantly horrible because it's not her fault she's in pain obviously.


Often I'll say something out of anger - not at her but her condition, really - and then instantly regret it, but no matter how many times I say "sorry," it's still there between us. Is there any actual way to do real teshuva for saying something to a parent? It's a lot harder than with anybody else. Also, if you could give me any suggestions for ways to channel my anger at her condition into something productive, I'd be much obliged. Thank you for reading.

#2 Rabbi Shapiro

Rabbi Shapiro


  • Administrators
  • 1,423 posts

Posted 26 May 2013 - 07:52 PM

I'm sorry about your צער. Hashem should have רחמנות and the ישועה should come quickly.


As far as the Teshuva, yes, there is a way. You need to really regret what you did (and it seems you've already done that), resolve not to do it again to the best of your ability, and then to sit down with your mother, ask her forgiveness, and explain to her all that you're going through. You should explain to your mother the stress that you're under and the enormous workload that you've taken on due to the situation.


Now you may think "of course my mother knows all this," but I am not so sure. Yes, she knows that you've taken on chores, but I am not sure that she knows how difficult it is for you inside. Your mother seems to be someone who takes upon herself an enormous amount to help others. Everyone has their own threshold of stress. You mother has hers and you have yours. Hashem does not expect you to be your mother; Hashem expects you to be you (plus, you're only 14!) Your mother may think that you are capable of handling more than you really are. If you are not communicating to her the stress you are under, she may not realize that it is too much for you.


Your mother spends a lot of time, it seems, helping others. Perhaps if she was aware of what you are going through, she may be able to lighten your burden somewhat by perhaps doing less work for the Klall. I do not have any input from your mother here, so it would not be fair of me to say that she should do that, but if you express how broken you feel because of everything, she may.


It may be best for you to first speak to someone in your school, a teacher or principal, and ask them to speak to your mother about spending more time with domestic needs. Your mother may feel less confronted than if you do it on your own. 


But that's just regarding suggesting to your mother that she adjust her time commitments. But you definitely should, on your own, sit down with your mother and explain to her that you are breaking under the pressure. And that you are very very sorry for the way you've spoken to her. You should say that you understand the pressure is not an excuse, but it just is a big Nisayon for you to say things that you later regret, and regret them you do.

#3 Bais Yaakov Girl

Bais Yaakov Girl


  • Members
  • 5 posts

Posted 27 May 2013 - 08:57 PM

Thank you so much for your advice. What I mean to say is that she was very involved in the community, less so nowadays. But anyways I appreciate it. I will definitely do what you said. Thank you so much!