Please enable JavaScript in your browser to experience all the custom features of our site.

RabbiHorowitz.com

Mr. Harry Skydell, Chairman
Mr. Mark Karasick, Vice Chairman
Rabbi Yakov Horowitz, Director
Rabbi Avrohom M. Gluck, Director of Operations
The first 1000 members will have a chance to win a
16 GB
iPod
touch
with Rabbi Horowitz audio

Membership Benefits:

  • Save articles to your favorites folder.
  • Save and print selected articles in a PDF journal.
  • Receive emails containing the latest comments on your favorite articles.
  • Mark articles as "READ".
  • More member features coming soon...

Raffle Rules:

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. To enter, complete the signup form and join as a member. Incomplete entries will be disqualified. All entries shall become the property of CJFL. CJFL is not responsible for lost, misdirected or delayed entries.

The contest is open to the general public. Members need to be at least 18 years old. Identification must be produced on request. Employees of CJFL, its raffle sponsor, advertising and promotional agencies and their respective affiliates and associates and such employees' immediate family members and persons with whom such employees are domiciled are excluded from this raffle. ALL PREVIOUSLY REGISTERED MEMBERS WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY ENTERED INTO THIS RAFFLE. The prize is not redeemable in cash and must be accepted as awarded. Decisions of the raffle judges are final - no substitutions will be available. By claiming the prize, the winner authorizes the use, without additional compensation of his or her name and/or likeness (first initial and last name) and municipality of residence for promotion and/or advertising purposes in any manner and in any medium (including without limitation, radio broadcasts, newspapers and other publications and in television or film releases, slides, videotape, distribution over the internet and picture date storage) which CJFL may deem appropriate. In accepting the prize, the winner, acknowledges that CJFL may not be held liable for any loss, damages or injury associated with accepting or using this prize. CJFL retains the rights, in its absolute and sole discretion, to make substitutions of equivalent kind or approximate value in the event of the unavailability of any prize or component of the prize for any reason whatsoever. This contest is subject to all federal, provincial and municipal laws. CJFL reserves the right to withdraw or terminate this raffle at any time without prior notice. One entry per person.


Making Aliya
by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

  Rated by 10 users   |   Viewed 6579 times since 3/15/07   |   10 Comments
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size    [ Change Font Size ] Email This Article to a Friend
   

3/15/07
Recommended reading for this column – “When American Families Move to Eretz Yisroel” by Rabbi Yair Spolter of Kiryat Sefer.

My wife and I have always had a deep love for Eretz Yisroel since we both studied there in our post high school years. Over the years, we have been discussing the idea of making aliya (moving there) with our family, but somehow we never got to actually doing it.

Now, we feel that we are ready, but we are concerned about relocating our children. We have four children; the eldest is thirteen, and we would appreciate your guidance with this potential move.

I'm not sure how important this information is, but my wife is not as gung-ho about this as I am.

Dovid

Rabbi Horowitz Responds

Imagine that you decided to go on a one-day camping trip and then prepared a backpack with your provisions. Please bear with me Dovid while I carry this one out, but in the analogy, you are the sandwich, your wife is the bottle of orange juice and your kids are the dozen eggs.

I say that because generally speaking the men/fathers find relocation to be less stressful than do the wives/mothers. Why? Because the mothers are the ones who need to take care of the 'stuff' – the details that will make or break the success of your aliya.

Dovid don't make the all-to-common mistake of underestimating the importance of getting the 'stuff' right. Please don’t trivialize or dismiss your wife’s concerns with the pragmatics of the move. Don’t think, “Here we are thinking of the incredible mitzvah of spending the rest of our lives in Eretz Yisroel and my wife is worried about jobs and schools for the kids.” If you need an example of what things look like when one is inspired by a big idea and neglects the details, just analyze the horrific train wreck that the war in Iraq has become. That also began with two big ideas – free the Iraqi people and spread democracy. But President Bush was so inspired by his vision that he forgot to ask or inquire if the troops will have bulletproof vests or who will make sure that the Iraqi people have electricity.

All things considered, I am most concerned about your thirteen year old. If you are the sandwich (easy to move), and your wife is the bottle of orange juice (much more likely not to handle the adjustment well), your children are the dozen eggs (far more likely to crack during the transition). And moving your adolescent child is like taking the eggs out of the container and stuffing all of them into your pants pockets.

I am always reluctant to give detailed advice to people whom I do not know well, but I can tell you with near certainty that you should not make the move at this point in your life. Let’s face it. Your children – especially the older ones – are Americans and making the adjustment to the Israeli culture is quite complicated. And although the benefit of making aliya is great, the risks are simply too high in your case. I suggest that you keep this dream of yours on hold until, with the help of Hashem, your children are married, or at least settled in the last year or two of High School. I would be far more likely to encourage you to make the move if you had written that you had either: 1) spent a great deal of time planning the move, 2) spent a summer in Eretz Yisroel with your children, 3) taught your children Hebrew and they took to the language well, and 4) your wife and children all 'on board' with your aliya plans. But from your question, it does not seem that this is the case. Should you decide to go ahead with your plans, please spend lots of time and effort properly planning for the move. The people I know who have made successful aliya -- including and especially those who had teen children -- all spent many months or years preparing for the transition.

For readers who are contemplating aliya, here are my suggestions:

  • Do as much homework as possible. Speak to as many American olim as you can to pick up tips and suggestions to make the transition easier.
  • Please read an outstanding article by my dear chaver, Rabbi Yair Spolter of Kiryat Sefer. While we respectfully agree-to-disagree on other topics (Click here and here), I concur with his column completely. (In fact, I first got to know Yair when I cold-called him to compliment him for his clarity of thought – and courage – when this article was first published in The Jewish Observer.)
  • An excellent resource is Nefesh B’nefesh. (www.nbn.org.il) They have successfully facilitated the aliya of hundreds of families due to their methodical approach to guiding families – and their understanding of the importance of getting the ‘stuff’ right for the families who are making the move.
  • If you are making the move, do so while your children are younger. The earlier in their lives the better.
  • Look into the schools in prospective communities – even if your children are toddlers. Most Israeli schools are very different than American ones, and it is critically important that your family is in sync with the mosdos that your children will attend. Generally speaking, there is far more ‘gray’ in America than in charedi society in Eretz Yisroel. Make sure that your views on kollel, sports-playing-for-children, tzniyus for girls (and mothers) are at least close to that of the community in which you live.

I know many people who have successfully made aliya and I commend you for having the commitment to consider the move. My response is not ‘no’ – it is just, “Not yet” or “Not now.”

© 2007 Rabbi Yakov Horowitz, all rights reserved



To sign up for Rabbi Horowitz’s weekly emails, please click here.


Reader's Comments:      Rating & Comments Policy      Rate & Write a Comment!
 Average Rating:              Rated by 10 users    (10 comments)
Subscribe to this Article
(by subscribing you will receive email notification
when new comments are posted)

Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


1. Making Aliyah Work For You     3/15/07 - 4:27 PM
Marty Ginsberg - Monsey, NY - marty@taxprof.net

My daughter, Laura Ben David made aliyah on the initial flight of Nefesh B'Nefesh in 2002. There were 4 children at the time ranging in age from 12, 11, 8, and 5. Her experiences were from one end of the spectrum to the other and she goes through all of them in a book that she recently published, "Moving Up- An Aliyah Journal" and it is available at many bookstores as well as on her website, www.aliyahbook.com. Some of the concerns enumerated in the article are items that she went through and if you would like to ask any questions, you can email her at laura@aliyahbook.com.


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


2.     3/15/07 - 10:17 PM
Dovid

FYI: I asked 3 gedolim the same question a couple of years back when my kids were of similar ages. The answer I got was identical. No, No, No; 10 years too late, 10 years too early.


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


3. Moving to EY with children     3/18/07 - 1:07 PM
CB

I would like to give a different view. I ( was ) moved to EY at the age of 10. As you can imagine I was"nt realy given a choice.

The mentality differences were overwhelming, it took me years to make freinds and somehow get used to certain aspects.

During my years in High School I met tens of disgruntled teenagers whose parents had brought them along thus fulfilling their dream of living in EY.

So many of them could not handle it. Some just dropped out of school, others became not frum ( I'm aware of other reasons for that too ) and alot ended up going back to their country of origin after fighting with their parents about it for a few years.

If you still decide to come please read the following pieces of advice:

1. Check out communities including potential schools and Yeshivas very well.

2. Talk to your children about the move, explain to them what it entails, give them Hebrew language tutoring before coming so that they have a basic command of the language, bring them on a trip before coming to live so that they can see for themselves and even give important insights that you as a parent may have overlooked ( I know it might be expensive but think about what may end up being extremely expensive - in emotions in the long run ).

3. Speak to lots of Anglo families that made Aliya - theres nothing like getting tips from the experienced.

GOOD LUCK!


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


4.     3/18/07 - 6:48 PM
Yakov Horowitz

CB:

Thanks for sharing your thoughts with our readers.

Over the past ten years, I have seen wonderful aliya success stories -- but I have also met far too many like yourself and those you describe.

Best wishes for hatzlacha!

YH


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


5. Excellent     3/19/07 - 3:33 PM
IndependentFrumThinker.blogspot.com - ift321@gmail.com

Great article! Important read for anyone contemplating Aliyah. I was actually thinking of writing on this issue myself sometime in the future. Now I have more information to utilize and refer to.


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


6.     3/20/07 - 3:17 PM
Anonymous

-----Original Message----- From: YEHDAN@aol.com [mailto:YEHDAN@aol.com] Sent: Monday, March 19, 2007 5:47 PM To: rabbihorowitz@rabbihorowitz.com Subject: Re: Rabbi Yakov Horowitz -- Chicago Kollel Parenting Q & A Column #33 -- "Mak...

Dear Rabbi Horowitz,

My brother in law forwarded me the article "Making Aliya" which from after reading it, the title maybe should be changed to: "Make Aliyah only when you know things will go smoothly", or in short, "don't make aliyah"

With all due respect Rabbi Horowitz, in your response, which is supposed to be guidance (as per the writer "we would appreciate your guidance with this potential move" it seems you gave them everything but what they asked for. GUIDANCE.

It seems that they are serious/ready to make the "move" to Israel and ask for guidance with their children. What one should do is:

advise/guide

advise them to be in contact with people who have moved to Israel with older children and if they don't know anyone ask around and try to find people who did

advise them to speak to social services/organizations that help facilitate (i.e. Nefesh B'nefesh) moving to Eretz Yisrael, which you did suggest for "readers with younger children"

When I was in high school, I had an Israel guidance counselor and a college guidance counselor. There job respectively was to guide me as to which Yeshiva to learn in while in Israel for the year and which college/university to attend. Do you think any Guidance Counselor would say "no, learning in Israel is not the time for you now" or "don't go to college" no guidance counselor in their right mind would suggest NOT doing something. Their job is to help me/guide me to a better solution, help me better understand where the best place is for me. How dare you suggest to someone that they-----keep this dream of yours on hold.

Do you realize the impact you just made on Klall Yisroel? Isreal needs everyone, and everyone needs Israel. It's not to say everyone should be forced to move, but if a family is considering to move why stop them? Do you realize how many other readers might not make aliyah because of this article? Did you realize the Israeli economy just lost a couple of hundred thousand dollars because YOU think the time is not right for this family?

Did you move to israel with teenagers and personally experience the difficulties? It seems like you did

-------Let’s face it. Your children – especially the older ones – are Americans and making the adjustment to the Israeli culture is quite complicated. And although the benefit of making aliya is great, the risks are simply too high in your case.

Looks to me like you're talking out of personal experience.

Did you even speak to anyone who has been through that experience? If you want, please contact my good friend, he made Aliyah this past summer, with his pregnant wife and 8 kids ( his oldest is appx 15, and they just had their 9th child about a 1 1/2 months ago) maybe now isn't the right time for them? should they move back?

What is even more ironic is that you suggest moving in 4-5 yrs

-----settled in the last year or two of High School

, when they 13 year old is 17-18, do you honestly believe moving with a 17 year old would be easier than a 13 year old.

I must say what you suggest for---- readers with young children who are contemplating aliya

is what you should have told Dovid and his family. And i think that was all they were looking for, GUDIANCE.

Hope all that rambling made some sense

Sincerely

Daniel Esses

formerly of Brooklyn, NY now living with wife and 4 children in Bet Shemesh, Israel

PS Please accept my apology if i offended the Rabbi in any way.


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


7.     3/20/07 - 7:09 PM
Yakov Horowitz - Monsey, NY

Daniel:

Your comments are respectful and very much in order.

In fact, I reviewed your comment and some of the emails that I got from readers on the column and I think that you have a valid point. I edited my column to reflect more global advice to all families rather than this particular individual.

I still stand by my eitzah to that particular parent, but I think there are many families who move with older children who plan well and move to appropriate communities -- with much success.

Thanks for taking the time to write.

Yakov


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


8. i'm with rabbi h. on this one     3/22/07 - 5:44 PM
tb

Mr. Esses, I think Rabbi Horowitz did a service with his first article. We all know individual stories either way. Let's get beyond that. He said something that needed to be said. So did you. Now let people decide for themselves. Israel needs us and so do our children. Our children are more important and we need to know how these decisions affect the Rov, not the individuals. For the rov, majority, moving with older children is not wise.


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


9. Every situation is different -- family attitude is key.     3/27/07 - 1:00 PM
Laura Ben-David - Neve Daniel, Israel - laura@aliyahbook.com

Kol hakavod on a well written article. i would like to add one point if i may. As one who has made aliyah with similar-aged kids who are B"H doing great, plus I know MANY other families who have made Aliyah with teenagers- some doing well, and some doing horribly, and everything in between.It seems that the two ingredients that make all the difference are: 1. The kids are 100% in favor of the move (i would not stipulate this for kids 10 and under) 2. The parents are prepared to give 110% to those same kids. They're going to need the support! As for the rest, i do agree that taking the kids on a summer pilot trip, exposing them to as much Hebrew as possible, and really prepare them for this enormous - yet wonderful - change.

For insight from some actual KIDS who made the move, you can go to http://www.aliyahbook.com/kids.htm.


Report this Post

Thank you.
Your report has been submitted.
You may not see immediate results on your browser, but rest assured, the offensive or inappropriate comment will be dealt with automatically.
You can only report a comment once.


10. Where there is WILL there is a WAY     4/8/07 - 1:53 PM
EMY - Brooklyn, NY

With all due respect to R' Horowitz, success or failure is not dependent on the age of children or whether you are too 'American'.

The success of any move in life is based on your true desire to make it a success. HKB"H will help those who truly wish to do something - how much more so when it comes to the great mitzvah of Yishuv Haaretz - that is, accepting the great gift that He Himself gave to us.

It is incomprehensible that the good Rabbi would suggest that instead of doing everything possible to ensure success, that the family give up their attempt 'for now'. Accept the gift later is the suggestion. Is it not clear that there is no 'later'? How many people do we know that suggested they only need to earn $X additional dollars or just need to wait until their mother is comfortable with the idea....There will never be a perfect time - that is the nisoyon of Life!

My advise - do what is correct with all your strength and HaShem will be with you.

Hatzlocha Raba! Eliyahu Y.

  Rate & Write a Comment!
Dear Readers:

Please visit our Parenting Resource listing to learn about agencies and services that you can make use of. If you know of an agency that can be of assistance to others, kindly drop an email to our site administrator at admin@RabbiHorowitz.com and pass along the information to him.

I ask that you please consider supporting the work we are doing to improve the lives of our children. Click on these links to learn more about our teen and parent mentoring program that serves hundreds of teens and their families, or our KESHER program, now in 20 schools in 4 states. Your financial support can allow us to expand these services and help more children.

If you believe in the governing principles of this website – to help effect positive change through the candid discussions of the real issues we collectively face, please consider becoming a daily, weekly or monthly sponsor of this website and help defray the costs of it’s maintenance.



Working with Families and Educators on Behalf of our Children

This site is managed by The Center for Jewish Family Life, Inc., 56 Briarcliff Drive, Monsey, NY 10952
Project Y.E.S. was founded by Agudath Israel of America
The Center for Jewish Family Life/Project YES - 56 Briarcliff Drive, Monsey, NY 10952 (845) 352-7100 ext. 114 Fax: (845) 352-9593
email: email@kosherjewishparenting.com


Advertisements