I am an survivor of emotional, physical and sexual abuse. I never knew unconditional love. I was never provided with caring and affirmation. I grew up in a home filled with violence. I feel horrible feeling jealous of someone who grew up in Europe during the time of the holocaust.
Why aren't rabbis or rebbitzens writing articles that I can relate to and understand? It's very painful for me to feel so different. I hate feeling jealous of those who grew up in loving families.
"An apocryphal anecdote is told of a five-year-old child, part of a refugee family, (it could have easily been me) who was approached by an observer and with great pity in their voice, remarked, "You poor darling, wandering from place to place with no space to call home." The child looked up and with great pride countered, "You are mistaken. I do have a home and I have always had a home. I just don't have a house to put it in.
In the formative years of my childhood, fraught with challenges as they were --wanderings, new countries, new languages, poverty, losses -- we always had a home. A home is not defined by mortar and bricks, draperies or furniture. A home is an environment of love, caring and affirmation. My parents, always, even under the most difficult of circumstances, provided us with a home. And my mother was the stalwart spirit that kept everything together."