Religion for Children of Divorced Parents

I am struggling to cope with my ex-spouse who is openly hostile to Judaism as it pertains to the children we share custody of. I yearn for a deeper connection to Judaism, but my kids are getting so many mixed messages from their divorced families. Can you give me some guidelines?

The Aish Rabbi Replies:

Your struggle is a noble one and in the end you will not regret any of the efforts you invest in this.

My advice is that foremost, it is crucial that you not place Judaism at the center of any conflict with your ex-husband. Judaism has less of a chance of taking root if the children associate it with family strife.

In order to keep things positive, strive to make Judaism fun for your children. Give them treats on Shabbat, teach them songs that they enjoy during the festivals.

Also, find your children good friends who are proud of their Judaism. Friends often have the biggest influence of all.

And finally, make sure that you study and attend classes to strengthen your own commitment and understanding of Judaism. Your role-modeling will have a big impact.

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Due to limited resources, the Ask the Rabbi service is intended for Jews of little background with nowhere else to turn. People with questions in Jewish law should consult their local rabbi. Note that this is not a homework service!

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