Open Letter to Parents and Mechanchim of Boys

By Dr. Shloimie Zimmerman, Psy.D.

As a psychologist, countless frum boys have shared their stories with me, relaying how they struggled mightily during their adolescence and subsequent years. The vast majority received their only “education” from indecent sources, experienced puberty, were exposed to inappropriate stimuli, and grappled with their urges and the accompanying complex feelings without proper education, guidance, or support. It is deeply painful to me to see that precisely when our boys most need our chinuch, they receive it the least. 

I have a deep-seated conviction which is supported by research that by giving parents and mechanchim the proper guidance to educate their children and students regarding inyanei kedushah, before they learn about these matters from other sources or begin struggling without any preparation or direction, we could prevent tremendous unnecessary suffering. Additionally, by being better equipped, the adults could also provide support and intervene far more effectively when challenges inevitably arise. To that effect, I set out to develop a comprehensive approach to educating and supporting our sons and students regarding health and safety, puberty, marital intimacy, and today’s challenges to kedushah.

B”H, I received intensive ongoing guidance from Gedolim and help from the Guard Your Eyes (GYE) organization, whose mission is to save thousands of Jews who are struggling with explicit material on the internet. Those efforts have now culminated in the book I authored titled “From Boys to Men: Guiding our sons and students in the ways of kedushah.” The book has been published with a foreword by HaRav Aharon Feldman Shlita. While it is not available in stores yet, GYE is offering the book to those who contribute $250 (or 10 installments of $25) to their Yomim Noraim campaign. 

I hope you will obtain and use this book and share it with anyone else who can benefit from it. 

In his haskama to the book, written only a few weeks before he passed away, Rabbi Dr. Abraham J. Twerski, zt”l wrote that by “educating our children and being there as ongoing supports, we can save our young men and their families.” It is my heartfelt plea and tefillah that as parents and mechanchim we act courageously and proactively to do our part to be mechanech our children in their time of greatest need.” 

In the z’chus of doing our utmost to help our children, may Hakadosh Baruch Hu bless all of His children to be healthy and happy Ovdei Hashem b’kedusha uv’tahara!

Thank you very much and have a G’mar Chasimah Tova!

Sincerely,

Shloimie Zimmerman, Psy.D.

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