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(Original Air Date: 03/02/12) Pearl, a mother and wife-turned-model, says for six years she was trapped in an abusive, arranged marriage within an ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, and now -- five years removed from the community and battling for custody of her four children -- she's speaking out. Pearl says past attempts to leave her husband were looked down upon, and fear of retaliation and losing her children kept her quiet for years. Are her worst fears about to come true? Now under fire from her former community for her new lifestyle, which includes wearing pants and acting in a manner the community considers inappropriate, will she lose her children? While she says she hasn't abandoned her Orthodox beliefs, Pearl says she won't conform to what she describes as its "cult-like" behaviors. Her boyfriend, Shauly, who also left that community, says he was forced to leave a child behind. Hear Dr. Phil's message to Pearl and to the father of her children. Plus, Orthodox rabbi, best-selling author and spirituality expert Shmuley Boteach and parents within the Orthodox community weigh in.

Find out what happened on the show.
Comments
Replied By: oliviadaley on Jan 29, 2013, 6:25PM
And think this probably all could have been avoided if people stopped believing in fantasies and realized that if a God exists so does a leprechaun or a unicorn. I'm sure you have realized I am an -agnostic anthesist. It basically means that religion is a fallacy and it designed to give people a reason to believe that bad people per se will get their just desserts and that their is a point to their existence and they will live in some fairly land of gold or something. Please read The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins. Oh and by the way, most Atheists today are like what homosexuals were back in the 1950's discriminated against and in the closet. Do you ever wonder why really intelligent people with a ton of education are not religious?? Hmmmmm they are rational and live in the real world.
 
Replied By: sarah3333 on Jan 2, 2013, 8:24AM
I keep on writing my comment and it keeps on disapeering. Here is the final draft:
         UGH. I just wrote my message and it looked like the system has deleted it. So I will try again because this show really pissed me off.
          This young woman has been abused in her marriage and her babies have been taken away. Why didn't Dr. Phil ask her how many times she has been hit, are there hospital records, can these hospital records assist in the divorce, have the children been hit, have the children been neglected, have their education been neglected? Were there any laws broken by the husband with regard to the children not passing state education exams based on math?   The boyfriend mentioned that he was never taught math until community college. What about Pearl's children? The children must meet state requirements at every grade as per the law. If those requirements aren't met then the Jewish School should be held accountable and their father is guilty of neglect. Why was every guest so vehemently hostile towards this young woman?
           All she did was wear pants. Has the whole earth gone mad? She is not a crack whore. She is a professional woman who wears pants. The basic human rights of her and her children were ignored because of her poor choice of fashion.
            This is America. Not a 3de world country where religions rule the state. I can relate to everything Pearl said. I have seen religions (Jewish and Christian in my case) control courts, lawyers, judges, teachers, homeless shelters, food dispersement centers ect & ect. I have seen woman brutalized by their husbands and then sent back to those same husbands. I was almost taken out of highschool because my parents felt that public school was too worldly and they didn't have money for a private school. I had to cover all parts of my body and even my hair. So I can totally relate with her clothing ordeal. Try going to public school with a low skirt, head scarf and long sleeved shirt in hot weather and then try to NOT get beaten up or bullied.
         The children are being raised with a very narrow viewpoint and will not be prepared for the real world. . They are going to be shocked (as I was) when they grow up and find that not everyone in the world thinks like them or acts like them. I wonder if it is this eccentric type of religious fervor which justifies bad behaviors such as taking children away from a mother simply because people feel entitled and superior to her because they were born male.
           Everything the young mama Pearl said was true. I don't know where the idealistic Rabbi is coming from because Nothing he spoke about is written in the Torah. Its almost like he never read the Torah. Although Judaism is very beautiful in its worship of God, it can also be equally as brutal towards those viewed as inferior. Inferior individuals are non-Jews and women.
         The Rabbi was also way off base. His theories are not based in the Torah. I wonder if he even read it. He seems like a sincere man but he wasn't speaking the truth about what Judaism believes. Judaism has very strict rules about marriage, divorce and yes, there is such a thing as arranged marriage. Been there, done that, got the Tshirt for it. The Torah talks about all kinds of arranged marriages.
            You don't think that Sarah married her half brother Abraham for fun do you? Or that Hagar the slave had any choices?   The Rabbi also said that "What Pearl had said was some of the most Anti-Semitic things he has ever heard. Had he known what Dr. Phil's show was about he might not have..." then he sho
ok his head and didn't complete his sentence if I remembered correctly. A young woman wearing pants, and saying that she thinks Hasidic Judaism is a cult because her entire community stood behind her husband's choice to keep the kids away from her -  is not Anti-Semitism. Her comments on this show are her frusterations about the type of hold Judasim has in her particular city and the custody court case.
        True Anti-Semitism is when Hitler said All Jews are dogs and therefore must be exterminated. Hilter was not a young bereaved woman who wore pants and voiced her opinoin about the freedom to wear pants.   America is suppose to be about freedom. Freedom of speech, freedom to the press, The freedom to wear pants, the freedom to believe in different religions, the freedom to marry, the freedom to divorce, the freedom to work irreguardless of your class, gender or race. Courts that take custody away from a fit mother because she doesn't wish to be a Hasidic Jew are breaking many laws. Its not about Anti-Semitism. Its about a mom and her basic human right to have custody of her kids and choose whom she wishes to marry.
 
Replied By: sarah3333 on Jan 2, 2013, 8:14AM
UGH. I just wrote my message and it looked like the system has deleted it. So I will try again because this show really pissed me off.
 
 
 
This young woman has been abused in her marriage and her babies have been taken away. Why didn't Dr. Phil ask her how many times she has been hit, are there hospital records, can these hospital records assist in the divorce, have the children been hit, have the children been neglected, have their education been neglected? Were there any laws broken by the husband with regard to the children not passing state education exams based on math?  The boyfriend mentioned that he was never taught math until community college. The children must meet state requirements at every grade as per the law. If those requirements aren't met then the Jewish School should be held accountable and their father is guilty of neglect.

Why was every guest so vehemently hostile towards this young woman? All she did was wear pants. Has the whole earth gone mad? She is not a crack whore. She is a professional woman who wears pants. The basic human rights of her and her children were ignored because of her poor choice of fashion. This is America. Not a 3de world country where religions rule the state.

I can relate to everything Pearl said. I have seen religions (Jewish and Christian in my case) control courts, lawyers, judges, teachers, homeless shelters, food dispersement centers ect & ect. I have seen woman brutalized by their husbands and then sent back to those same husbands. I was almost taken out of highschool because my parents felt that public school was too worldly and they didn't have money for a private school. I had to cover all parts of my body and even my hair. So I can totally relate with her clothing ordeal. Try going to public school with a low skirt, head scarf and long sleeved shirt in hot weather and then try to NOT get beaten up or bullied.

The children are being raised with a very narrow viewpoint. They are going to be shocked (as I was) when they grow up and find that not everyone in the world thinks like them or acts like them. I wonder if it is this eccentric type of religious fervor which justifies bad behaviors such as taking children away from a mother simply because people feel entitled and superior to her because they were born male.
 
Everything the young mama Pearl said was true. I don't know where the idealistic Rabbi is coming from because Nothing he spoke about is written in the Torah. Its almost like he never read the Torah. Although Judaism is very beautiful in its worship of God, it can also be equally as brutal towards those viewed as inferior. Inferior individuals are non-Jews and women.



The Rabbi was also way off base. His theories are not based in the Torah. I wonder if he even read it. He seems like a sincere man but he wasn't speaking the truth about what Judaism believes. Judaism has very strict rules about marriage, divorce and yes, there is such a thing as arranged marriage. Been there, done that, got the Tshirt for it. The Torah talks about all kinds of arranged marriages.

You don't think that Sarah married her half brother Abraham for fun do you? Or that Hagar the slave had any choices?

The Rabbi also said that "What Pearl had said was some of the most Anti-Semitic things he has ever heard. Had he known what Dr. Phil's show was about he might not have..." then he shook his head and didn't complete his sentence if I remembered correctly. A young woman wearing pants, and saying that she thinks Hasidic Judaism is a cult because her entire community stood behind her husband's choice to keep the kids away from her -  is not Anti-Semitism. Her comments on this show are her frusterations about the type of hold Judasim has in her particular city and court case. True Anti-Semitism is when Hitler said All Jews are dogs and therefore must be exterminated. Hilter was not a young bereaved woman who wore pants and voiced her opinoin about the freedom to wear pants.

America is suppose to be about freedom. Freedom of speech, freedom to the press, The freedom to wear pants, the freedom to believe in different religions, the freedom to marry, the freedom to divorce, the freedom to work irreguardless of your class, gender or race. Courts that take custody away from a fit mother because she doesn't wish to be a Hasidic Jew are breaking many laws. Its not about Anti-Semitism. Its about a mom and her basic human right to have custody of her kids and choose whom she wishes to marry.
 
Replied By: nadia2000red on Sep 18, 2012, 1:19PM - In reply to annmarie26
I have to agree with your post that the rabbi was way out of line. I was shocked to hear him accuse Pearl of slander after she respectfully and eloquently recounted her ordeal. I kept waiting for Dr.Phil to put him in his place, but.... As a professional counselor, I was appalled to see a supposed man of faith react to Pearl with such venom. Rabbi Schmuley lost all credibility for me.
I was very impressed with Pearl's poise and grace under pressure. Good for you, Pearl! I pray blessings for you and your children!
 
Replied By: annmarie26 on Aug 29, 2012, 1:12PM
Dr. Phil,

How do you consider the Rabbi on your show to be an expert?  He is definitely out of touch or just refusing to admit the reality of the Hasidic community.  I live in Monroe, NY which neighbors Kiryas Joel- a very large, and growing, Hasidic community.  What your guest discussed is definitely true.  There is widespread pedophilia among other things.  The Hasidic community has the block vote so you can't even imagine the laws that are broken and ignored.  The hypocrisy is widespread and everyone is aware.  I was insulted by the Rabbi's comments saying that your guests were inaccurate or just trying to slander an entire community.  I really expected more from you, Dr. Phil.

Can you give an update to this story?  I would very much like to see if your guest ever received any form of justice.

Thank you.
 
Replied By: costepmom on Aug 27, 2012, 10:12AM
I feel for this mom and what she is saying is trure. My husband has been divorced now for over 14 years and has three children from this marriage (then ages 2 1/2, 4 and 6). He fought for many years to be a part of his children's lives. His ex-wife became more religious after their divorce and started practincing Othodox Judaism within a year or 2 after the divorce. She and her community tried everything to keep my husband away from his children as all he wanted was to be involved in their lives. We do not believe in the Orthodox life style for many reasons but supported many of the aspects as we didn't want the children to be in the middle of a battle but nothing we ever did made a difference and the community helped support her in any way to keep the children away from their father. Even today as the children are much older they have a strained relationship with their father because of the brainwashing and him not living an Orthordox life style. If you are not Orthodox you are not really considered a Jew. We were always chastised for our way of life because it was different but we are good people with strong morals. My step-daughter today is gong to start the match making process which they call it this so it is not called arraranged married but that is what it is - the community finds a suitable match for her and they only have a coule of supervised visits with each other to decide if the other is suitabel for each other. It is not looked upon very good if you say this person is not suitable for me. It is important to have both parents part of their children's lives as long as each partent is respects the other choices and those chices are not harful to the childre. I hate to see other famillies going through what we went throught for so many yeaers and still face today. It is heartbreaking.
 
Replied By: missdeirdre on Aug 25, 2012, 10:48AM
these people have a set of mores that are primative....the men...illiterate as they are (no one has a secular education).... run the lives of women and chlldren in  a total, macho, posturing manner....women, for instance, cannot be touched during their normal menstrual cycle...they are unclean and this follows through the whole mindset of these  idiots...they are not even allowed to read a book.

their function is to have a baby a year, do all the houswork and meals., and in many instances, get a job too....whlie their husbands are free to "study". 



r
i urge you to read "unothodox" by deborah feldman....telling her life story and escape from their confines,.  




the rabbi is one of them, i assure you,i know of a couple who went to him for marriage counseling...and his advice follows orthodox tenents...also, he charged, at that time (about 10 years ago) 400.00 for an hour....ask him if he has any ability to think that he is not 100% right all the time...has he ever exerienced a moment of self-doubt...no, he is as self-rightious as all his macho posturing brethren
 
Replied By: teacher2007 on Aug 25, 2012, 8:42AM
The religion is a cult.  I left the Jewish religion because I could not take saying that I was always wrong.  I could tell that the Rabbi was caught in not knowing what to say to her.  When my mother passed away nine years ago, the Rabbi admitted at the service that he did not even know her.  But getting money from my father was just fine.  When my father passed away I said a few words myself.  I did not want the same Rabbi there, as I knw he just wanted money.  You have to pay to pray!!  I married out of the religion, and I was a very happy person.  At least I could think for myself.  I congradulate her for standing up for what she believes.
 
Replied By: esarah on Aug 24, 2012, 2:05PM - In reply to daisyhilton
My husband and I are Orthodox, but not Chareidi, Chassidic, or "Modern"--just mainstream Orthodox. I chose to become "ba'alat tshuva," a returnee to tradition, in my forties, am in my 60s now. We met through mutual friends who knew us both, and we made our own choices. I have known couples who met this way, others who met via shadchanim (formal matchmakers); have known some who took bad advice because they felt pressure to be married, and others whose homes are models of mutual respect and love.

I wonder whether Rabbi Shmuly simply misspoke when he said no arranged marriage exists in Judaism; your clarification of the definition helps. The rabbi may also have gone on the defensive because the guests spoke in the public forum, which did not help his argument. I heard the pain expressed by Pearl and Shauly, did not hear it as an indictment of all of Judaism, and wonder whether or not she would have even entertained the idea of a public career had she not lost her job when she tried to divorce.

I would not be religious today had my brother and his family not welcomed my son and me for visits to their home back when we were not observant. I will not condemn younger relatives who are struggling or have moved away from tradition because if you keep the door open and they feel welcome, they just might come back as I did. And whether they do or not, if they're Jewish, they're still Jewish and still family. Shutting them out is just plain wrong!
 
Replied By: cvblack on Aug 24, 2012, 9:24AM
Thank you, Pearl, for your bravery in coming forward. This show really touched me and my son. His father, who is Jewish, and I have been divorced many years. This past year, his father tried to force him to have a bar mitzvah. He recounts the events below.

i am the son of the lady who owns this account. Less then a year ago my father, who belongs to a conservative congregation not an orthodox community, tried to force me to have a bar mitzvah. When i did not want to have a bar mitzah i asked the rabbi of the congregation if it could be postponed or if i could have a little more explanation of the bar mitzah. When i asked the rabbi if i could change the date so i could understand the principle better or if i could cancel it indefinatly the rabbi told me, and this is a quote, "You have no say in the matter of your bar mitzah." so i then told him "you can make me get up on the stage but you can't move my lips." After this the head of the hebrew school tried to force me to have a bar mitzah also and the cantor. I was constantly and am still being harrassed by the rabbi, the cantor, the head of the hebrew school, and all of my school teachers.

All the years i was in hebrew school they taught us that judiasm was the superior religion and anyone who questioned or criticized these teachings was basically called an anti semite by the teachers and even some of the students.

i have stopped the bar mitzah but i am still being forced to come to synagogue and be part of a religion that i decided to leave for christianity and i am still being shunned. i am still being harresed by the synagogue. i do everything i can to aviod that place on saturdays.

the only word that i think could describe this practice of judaism in my mind is the word: CULT
 
Showing 1-10 of total 426 Comments