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Summer ’12: Questions

For the foreword to this issue, click here.

There is a widespread perception that many newly married couples, across the Orthodox spectrum, are experiencing marital difficulties to the degree that there has been a sharp rise in early divorces (as well as in broken shidduchim.) Klal Perspectives seeks to explore what can be done to reverse this trend.  The current discussion is not intended to explore the overall state of Orthodox marriage or the shidduch crisis, but rather will focus specifically on the matter of marital preparation. The following questions are to guide the contributors but not limit their responses.

1.      Are there changes that must be made in the attitudes and expectations (religious, personal, social, financial or otherwise) of those getting married, and if so, who should be undertaking to make these changes? How can this accomplished? Is the source of the problem developmental, and if so, how can insufficient maturity be remedied?

2.      Is there a need for the additional preparation of newlyweds in the area of marital intimacy, particularly in light of the increased exposure to books, media and the Internet, which may have created dangerous expectations and compromised their ability to relate to each other as real people?

3.      Is there a need for post-wedding guidance and mentoring? Is there a need to introduce additional processes to ensure that the newly married have access to the guidance and resources needed to address any challenges they may confront?   Who should provide such guidance, and how can it be ensured that those providing such guidance are adequately trained and informed?

We ask contributors to direct their analysis of the present problems and their causes to the search for concrete ways to lessen the negative phenomena they identify.

For the Responses to these questions, click here.