Now that Father’s Day is over I wanted to send love and peace to all of us who either haven’t got a father, who have lost their dad, whose father was never around and to those of us who will never receive a phone call from their dad.
My father expects his kids to do the calling and always said “they know where to find me”. I can’t understand that mentality.
It’s been years since we last spoke or saw each other and unfortunately it’s been a rocky ride from day one. I’d love to say he’s been the best dad – the way so many of you are able to – but with so many kids, so little time and money, he wasn’t emotionally available to me. And he never protected us. That hurts.
Father’s Day comes and goes, year in and year out and nothing changes. And I doubt it ever will.… unless I make the initial contact and keep doing that. But don’t we all just want our parents to contact us from time to time? Maybe it’s just me.
Happy Father’s Day to all those dads who are there for your kids and who you love unconditionally. For me it was very much conditional. Once I left their way of life I was an outcast and stopped being part of the family.
Weddings happen. Bar mitzvah’s come and go. Babies are born. Relatives get engaged. A child is very unwell.
And I know nothing about any of this unless its told to me by someone who happens to mention it and expects me to know. It’s always awkward.
My dad is having a big 70th birthday event in a few days and I knew nothing about it. I only found out when someone asked me for a phone number of a relative to invite them to the party. No consideration for how that would make me feel.
I don’t know why I expect anything else. It’s been like this for years. It’s just tough sometimes… the only photo I have of the two of us and my mother is this one which was taken when I was just 19 and getting married… “You’re welcome to her” he quipped as the wedding ended.
So. Yup. It’s been a hell of a ride for decades and I’m off the train. My number has never changed. ”He knows where to find me”. But he never will. And I’ve accepted it.
Warren Jeffs is a pedophile. Warren Jeffs is an evil monster. The things he subjected not just the women and young girls to but also to the men is horrific to say the least.
One of the main women on the FLDS documentary said this at the end of part 4. I had to stop, rewind, listen again. And again. And then I felt a pull to write it down and share here.
“Those of us that are coming from the fallout of the FLDS at some point we have to move forward. The next generation depends upon it. But it’s very complicated.
So many of us are still functioning under the shadow of the past. I thought I was further along than I was. And then you have these moments as an adult when you think I know nothing. I know nothing”.
What a powerful and relatable idea. We don’t always recognise that when those of us who leave cults, extreme religions or closed communities, it takes time to heal.
We never know what the trigger is and how it will manifest itself. This documentary needs to be shown to everyone. It describes how people can be brainwashed to believe anything at all when done b the worst manipulator and abuser.
It also makes us realise the concept of coercion and underage brides being r*ped by older men sometimes in front of other women as if it’s some godly act.
Yet even after he’s been in jail for over 10 years he has strong supporters who seem to be living with the notion that he’s a martyr and they will do anything for their “prophet”.
To be clear, this is not about religion. It’s about fundamentalists, radical, and extreme cults.
Trigger Warning ⚠️ child abuse, underage marriage, control, etc.
This week, a new true crime has dropped on Netflix called Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey. It tells the harrowing true story of a polygamous cult, and viewers of the show are calling it the most traumatising thing they have ever watched.
This Netflix series explores the secretive and chilling polygamous cult of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey focuses on a US polygamous cult led by Warren Jeffs, who to followers was the leader or “prophet” of the group.
The group saw hundreds of women and children abused on a daily basis. In 2011, Warren Jeffs was convicted in Texas of two counts of sexual assault of a child. He was sentenced to life in prison for sexually assaulting a a 12-year-old girl, and 20 years for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old girl.
Warren Jeffs was previously convicted in Utah on two counts of being an accomplice to rape in 2007, but that conviction was overturned by the Utah Supreme Court in 2010.
According to a former US Attorney Special Prosecutor who participated in the Netflix documentary, evidence during the sentence phase of the trial reflected that Jeffs was “involved in conducting the marriages of 67 underage girls to FLDS men”, and that he “had himself 78 wives – 24 of those wives were underage.”
Jeffs is a monster who’s presently serving life in prison for the sexual assault of two young girls, ages 12 and 15, who at the time of his crimes were both his wives.
Dretzin’s four-part affair is a history lesson about the modern FLDS movement, which was spearheaded by Jeffs’ father, Rulon, the original prophet, who even in his eighties was continuing to marry as many young women as he could get his wrinkled hands on, including Rebecca Wall, who speaks in detail about the nightmare of having to share a house—and bed—with this elderly creep.
From there, it was only a short leap into systemic pedophilia. Let that sink in.
Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey is a snapshot of the fear, intimidation, broken families, and sinister misconduct begat by this situation.
Thankfully, director Dretzin crafts her portrait with virtually no dramatic recreations, instead relying on a haunting collection of archival photos, home videos, courtroom footage, and recorded evidence to convey the unnerving strangeness of FLDS life, in which women dressed (as one speaker pointedly puts it) like Laura Ingalls, and men preached in holier-than-thou tones that belied their baser designs.
That material culminates with clandestine photographs and audio tapes made by Jeffs of his sexual encounters with his victims, which are so predictably disgusting that it’s no surprise they landed him behind bars, where he continues to create “revelations” that are disseminated to his followers.
This 4 part documentary is chilling, possibly triggering, shocking, disturbing, and a real eye opener to those who know little or nothing about the FLDS cult, an offshoot of Mormonism. Watch with care 🖤
To be clear, this isn’t about religion. It’s about cults, brainwashing, controlling people, underage brides, sexual abuse and r*pe of minors, forced marriage, etc.
It’s so sad and disappointing that I’m still having to deal with ignorant and disgusting comments on the Walder SA/r*pe situation.
Sadly it doesn’t shock me. I’ve been receiving so many on here and on my WordPress blog page too. Fortunately I have the option of allowing them to be posted or not. And I’ve left them in my inbox and won’t be posting them.
The sad thing is that it’s people who cannot grasp the truth – that the person they admired and looked up to – was capable of such heinous crimes against so many girls and women.
Just saw this video link sent by a follower (thank you!) and it gave me hope that there may be a shift in how the frum community deal with SA. Might be a tiny shift. But a shift nonetheless.
I’ve reread the post I wrote after I heard of the young woman who couldn’t bear the pain and took her own life. She was one of CW’s victims.
While there’s always going to be those who say innocent until proven guilty and crap like that, let’s remember that he decided to kill himself rather than face up to what he did.
He had the chance to validate the pain he made these countless victims endured. He could have just been honest in his suicide note rather than make himself seem like a victim.
I might regret some of the language I used. But the feelings, the emotions, the anger, the sadness, the feelings of injustice are still there.
But something has changed.
I have suddenly noticed a large number of orthodox Jewish people and rabbis who have come forward and spoken out against what he did and in support of the victims.
And it reminds me of the Weberman predator, serving 103 years for horrific sexual crimes against a minor. And I remember the number of people who came out to support HIM. The queues went round the courthouse there were so many people from the orthodox Jewish community there.
Not to support this girl. They came to support the rapist.
And then there was the rabbi who filmed countless women at the mikva baths. And the rabbi who groped a minor and got away with a short sentence for pleading guilty.
And no one believed the women and girls. I was one of the few voices shouting into the abyss. I felt like I was drowning and no one could hear me.
And now when I type CW’s name into any search engine, the things that come up are completely different. There’s been a change. It’s taken decades and lives have been lost in the process.
But finally we can see people in total despair not knowing how to talk to their kids about CW and why his books aren’t around anymore. They have to tak about things that break your heart and kids shouldn’t have to know about.
But perhaps it’s time to have these conversations with your kids. Maybe it’s time to be honest with them and tell them the basics – according to their age of course – about what is okay and what is not. And if anything happens they should tell you even if they’re threatened or bribed otherwise.
I remember when the world learned that there was a serious problem within the Catholic Church. That there were priests, heads of catholic boarding schools, who had abused so many children, mainly boys.
No one could believe it. But when one person comes forward you can think oh it’s just him. Then another one does the same. And then more and more people come out and tell the same story. And we can no longer say these men are all liars. Some predators ended up in jail. Others didn’t.
And a couple of decades later we are seeing the same thing happen in the orthodox Jewish community. It wasn’t enough for there to be a “Wall of Shame” on a website. It wasn’t enough to hear of people doing the worst things to little boys and girls.
But now I can see people coming to the painful realisation that the rabbi, the therapist, the camp leader, the author, the older mentors, even family members, are all a risk to our children. And we can no longer bury our head in the sand and pretend it doesn’t affect this community. It does.
And it hurts to realise that the people you so admitted and looked up to did the worse things imaginable to the most vulnerable people.
CW didn’t just groom the victims. He groomed their families to trust him. He groomed all of us who read his books. He groomed an entire community. He even groomed his poor wife and kids who believed him to be someone he wasn’t.
But now it’s time we saw change. Serious changes. It’s time to start believing victims and stop protecting predators and rapists.
It’s no longer the boogie man down the alleyway. It’s the monster who has permeated all of our lives in some way or another. Whether we read his books or know of someone who was affected by his actions.
I really hope the shift and the change will last. It’s about time it did. It’s time to stop blaming 8 year old girls for their abuse. It’s time to listen when a man tells you what happened to him in camp or in cheder. It’s time we changed things.
I should have been able to trust the male relative who thought it was acceptable to walk in on me in the bath and assault me. I should have been able to tell someone what was happening to me. But I couldn’t. I didn’t have the language and I knew that when he said “if you tell anyone about this they will never believe you”.
He was right. No one did. So I kept quiet.
CW’s death has – in a bizarre twist – made everyone realise that no one is trustworthy. And that’s the sad painful truth…..
Sorry for rambling…. But I had to get this off my heart as it feels heavy and hurts…
I know this is going to sound as bad and harsh as I’ve ever been but I so wish I’d found his body and been able to kick it to the side or pushed it into a hole in the ground without the hype and possibility of huge numbers attending the funeral of a monster.
Of course I wouldn’t. It’s just how I feel. I know it’s not legal and I’d a criminal. But I’m just saying how I feel. What makes the hundreds who attended his funeral go to it? And why was there just a handful of people at the funeral of one of his victims?
I won’t be posting the audio of the threats he made as it’s really awful and full of threats and a sense of I’m able to get away with things based purely on who I am and the sense of entitlement of a rabbi over “a bunch of girls who no one will believe”.
I was so relieved that the main Bet Din Rabbi supported the victims and yet when it came to his burial why did so many turn up? And aren’t people who commit suicide not allowed to be buried like others in the cemetery? Or does that not refer to him?
The pain that the countless girls and women (and potentially boys too – I don’t know) have endured is heartbreaking…. Please please if you’re struggling please reach out to your local Samaritans, go to the ER, call someone to be with you, do something. We can’t lose more Shifras…..
I hope you’re finally at peace…. And I’m so sorry you have been let down so badly. You never deserved any of this. No one does.
Fuck. When will victims of child sexual abuse start being treated properly and not focus on the perpetrators? I heard some idiot say that this monster “was so traumatised by being told that this is all coming out that he had no option but to take his life”.
Sorry, what? Where’s your compassion for his victims and all victims of abusers worldwide? He had been abusing our kids for decades and got away with it. He’s just a coward who was too much of a wuss to own up to his crimes and do the time.
Don’t RIP. If there’s anything in the afterlife I hope he suffers the way he made his victims suffer. Please do NOT post any comments discrediting or questioning the victims’ authenticity and legitimacy.
And FFS please do NOT post any photos of the abuser.
This is Mendy Levy, a survivor of the Lev Tahor cult. He is so incredibly brave and inspirational to come out and speak openly about his experiences in the cult. This is about the CULT and absolutely not about the rest of the Jewish communities around the world.
The 18-year-old who fled an extremist Jewish cult called Lev Tahor has recounted his horrific upbringing in the group, revealing that his father died after the leaders refused to let him see a doctor.
Levy, who was born in Canada in 2003, recalled being forced to swim in freezing cold, snake-filled water and eat hot pepper if he told a lie. When he was 15 years old, he was told he had to marry his 12 year old cousin, and that was the last straw for him.
It’s a very difficult video to watch and potentially very triggering on so many levels so watch with care.
“When she reached the age of 13 and began menstruating, Walder began to engage in full sexual intercourse with her, she said.”
Semantics are so important. We need to use the correct terminology and not sugarcoat it. Let me help you.
“When she reached the age of 13 and began menstruating, Walder began to rape her, she said.”
Tragic that the victims will never get the justice they deserved. He was too much of a coward to face up to the horrific rapes and abuse he perpetrated on a number of girls and women over a 25 year period.
There should have been measure in place to ensure he was unable to take his own life, especially as he threatened to do this on many occasions.
I feel so sad for the victims. I feel sad for his family. Who knows what he may have done to them… I’m angry at myself that I read all his books and loved them not knowing what the author was doing.
This link is one of many articles written about this case. It gives you more information and details as to what went down.
I can’t be the only person who feels lost at this time of year. While Christmas is not about religion anymore, it feels so stressful watching everyone around me get so excited while I’m full of anxiety…
I don’t know how to be the person who likes a day that I had no connection to growing up. I feel like I don’t belong. I don’t belong in the world I grew up in and I don’t belong in this new world either.
I feel so down. I feel confused. I feel lost. I can’t be the only one….
How are YOU feeling about the chaos around you and what do you do – if anything – for the Christmas period? Help!!! Im so full of anxiety 😟