"In the tribunal there is also no problem in claiming that you are a bad partner, that you are insane," writes A, a week after paying a heavy price in exchange for a divorce.
Really not a simple divorce // Photo: Dodi and Akinin
And when it was all over, I stood in the courtroom and blessed: Blessed be the Lord permitting forbidden. The Dane directly looked at me and said, "I don't know if I can welcome it." This is my blessing, I said, and went outside for freedom.
According to the numbers published by women's organizations, there are thousands of women who are denied divorce in Israel today, and belong to all sectors and all socio-economic classes. For a year or so I was one of them: a woman who wants to end her failed marriage and is unsuccessful. At the end of it, after agreeing to give up, I ended up paying an inconceivable price.
A few days after the dust subsided, I decided to put in writing insights from a personal place of someone who has been through one of the most difficult and violent (yes) experiences a woman can experience.
Although no one sees the invisible handcuffs on your hands, you're in jail. Someone decided you were going out of the normal life that everyone is living around you. The whole world keeps moving normally and you stand and look around and can't move. You have lost control of your life. You don't know when it will end and every day that passes is a small death.
To all the talkbackists who would write "It's in your head", so he doesn't give a divorce, so what? Go on with your life, etc., etc. Let me tell you something: this "Bermuda Triangle" in which Gt is denied is not theoretical, even if you are not religious. You are trapped in the tangle of legal proceedings that you want to end, you want to close a circle and a clean table, but you can't.
This hard road demands you to go it alone. If you want to start a different relationship, the tribunal will be against you, the lawyer warns you, and this may affect the level of price you will be required to pay in exchange for the divorce. You can't have children not only because they are bastards and blacklist, but you really can't: Israel law prevents you from undergoing fertility treatments, to bring a child from a sperm donation or with another person, without "husband's consent" - even though such a child is not Considered a bastard according to Halacha! Your body also has someone else in control, there are external mechanisms that help, and when you are in your 40s and you have one child asking for a brother - you are heartbroken because who knows how long it will take.
You have no right not to live with someone who makes you suffer. You have to prove that you deserve a divorce, that you have a "justifiable reason" to end the marriage. But what are the grounds for divorce that a woman can prove? Well, that's a mystery. "Mayes on you" is not enough. This is nice to have, but you have to show more reasons - just that no one knows exactly. Anyone who occasionally reads the "Judaism" sections of the network knows that even women who suffered physical violence, including women who were betrayed, even women whose husbands left the house - could not prove that there were sufficient reasons to charge a divorce. So what will the mosses say? I mean, just women like me who suffered in a different way and wanted a new life. I couldn't figure out what I had to show and prove to the three men in front of me on the podium, and what else would one man demand from me, wanting to stand still for a long time.
"You have to prove that you deserve a divorce, that you have a 'justifiable reason' for ending the marriage." The Rabbinical Court // Photo: Dudi Waknin
How about "Hello Home"? Not what you thought. True, somewhere in your studio you learned about the importance of peace between a man and his wife, but forgot to tell you that in the real world, this concept has another meaning: a cynical tool to continue to bind you against your will. I was surprised to find that in the tribunal, there is also no problem in claiming that you are a bad partner, that you are insane, that you are a rebel, and a lot of other compliments - and also refuse to say goodbye and demand that you return to a relationship called "Hello home." In a logical world, it was enough to understand that marriage should end. Not in Israel of the 2000s.
Forcing him to say "I want"? Not so fast. Give up more, they told me. If you do not give up, you will spend another 4-5 years here, and you want a different relationship and more children and already 40 and a bit. Your situation is difficult, we want to help you. And so I learned that empathy and understanding of the difficult situations can also be killed.
Written. Every wedding I've been to, the Temple Rabbi miraculously praises how much Judaism protects the woman, and reading from the scripture is your insurance policy, beautiful and romantic promises under the canopy. But on a day of command, this document is absolutely worthless: even if you prove to the signers and exemplars that your commitments to you have not been fulfilled, it really doesn't matter. Haven't you read the fine print? This is not a reason to charge a baguette. The scripture, which you pledged to take care of you, is really irrelevant and almost no woman gets it during the divorce.
The community won't help you either. Did you think they wouldn't let him act like this and refuse to give you a divorce? Did you think the friends would give him a cold shoulder? You were wrong. It's a matter of him and her, you will be told. He does nothing illegal, it is legitimate, has to wait for what the tribunal will say, it is impossible to judge. Maximum will be purple individuals who will talk to him, quietly, no more. His life will hardly change and no one will vote for him. You are completely alone in this business.
"Post what's going on there, good friend told me, it's just crazy, how can that be?" // Photo: Oren Ben Hakon
So what is it? Of money. a lot of money. He just needs to stand up and say he wants a home peace. You have to invest and convince yourself that you are not allowed to live with people you no longer want, to file requests, to petition for hearings, to go to court and to ask about the most intimate details (and no one is wondering if it is modest that three litigants and your husband's attorney will report The sex you have or don't have). You do not know when it will end and how much more you will have to pay. And when there is no choice, you suddenly have to ask for your retirement parents, who look with bridal eyes how their savings are wasted, without any logic, to save their daughter from an abnormal life.
Post what's going on there, a good friend told me, it's just crazy, how can it be? Distribute all his friends, write in groups, hang a sign in the synagogue. I can't do that, I explained to her. The Tribunal did not set a charge or sanction, and if I did so and it granted a divorce, it would be considered a "forged divorce". That way, under a veil of secrecy, it's easier to pressure you. So I gave up and gave up and reached the bottom, and even then, only with extra external pressure, my nightmare came to an end.
If there are any young girls or women who have read and come to a halt, you should know: To be denied divorce is a sword flung over the head of every woman who marries as Moses and Israel. This can happen to anyone. Do not stop believing in love, but if you choose to get married properly, there are ways to prevent or at least greatly reduce the chance of it. And if there are parents who read and think their daughter won't do it, know that my parents thought so too. It is your duty as parents to be aware of the options available today to vaccinate well in advance and protect your daughters from such a disaster. Yes, even if your groom looks very nice and a good family, someone like you knows that things can change.
Don't close your eyes. Contact the Women's Justice Center, where you will find details of all options available today to avoid getting reluctant to divorce or forbid moorings.
And if you are already there, in this evil, do not be alone. Surround yourself with good people to help you through this era, there are a few more in the world, and take a deep breath.
The writer is a perfectly normal and sane woman with a college education, from a classic national religious home, from a good family and a reasonable socio-economic status plus, who got into a crazy state and managed to get out of it.