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May 17, 2010


Melissa May


I commend you for "coming out" to your classmates. The things you said are dead on and you spoke not only for yourself, but for those of us who feel the same way yet lack the opportunity to make our voices heard by those at the core of the feminist cause.

I wish you many blessings at your time in seminary and on your journey of faith!


Your story is amazing. I am sorry you had to experience all the bad things but i am really proud of you for being able to turn it into something positive. I know I would be so scared to do that.

Also You said something that I really liked, "I feel as though I am not welcome. I feel unappreciated by a society that operates under a façade of acceptance". I have thought this many a time and in fact was planning on doing my next post on it (small world, huh).

I hope you enjoy Seminary. Thanks again for the post. - Sincerly, Koni


This is an excellent story and hopefully you can keep sharing it as it needs to be heard. I remember how the supposedily woman-positive departments at UMASS would quickly turn their backs on women grad students who demonstrated any "traditional" features like, getting married during their program.
I would like to read more about your presentation.


Way to go! Although I am not Jewish, I come from a religion that also has traditional moral code, though not dogmatic. I was fortunate enough to attend a college for students of my religion, and therefore was relieved of the burden of being a minority on a big partying campus. However, since graduating and entering the "real world," I 've found that I can be an quiet agent for changing through leading by example. Through my actions and the way I lead my life, and occasional patient and open-minded conversations, I can demonstrate to people the benefits of the lifestyle that I choose, as well as be a support to anyone who is considering making a change but hasn't the courage to do it alone. I think many of us probably realize the benefits of the mainstream things that we choose not to do, but don't forget the impact it has just be being silently noticed by someone else. Perhaps your friends observe that you have a lot less guy-drama than they do, and they may eventually make the connection between that your choice not to have sex before marriage. Or perhaps you will be out with friends and you'll choose not to drink and it will inspire someone else who has been drinking just because they felt like they had to. I also always like to focus more on talking about what I gain from not doing those things. Most of the conversations out there center around what you miss out on, so many people have never considered how changing their lifestyle could help them improve their lives. And you can make a big impression just by proving through your daily actions that someone who doesn't drink or hook-up every weekend can still be a fun, exciting, and interesting person.

Sarah M

I am glad to hear your story ended well. Such a great post, thanks for sharing that intimate part of your life with us, it's very encouraging.
Sarah M


Thank you so much for sharing your story. It is so inspiring to hear someone actually speak up for their beliefs, especially in the least hospitable environments!
Please continue to do so, just like you helped those other women in your class, you do not know how many other women you can inspire to think a second time about what the dominant culture feeds them.
Enjoy seminary!!- for me personally those were some of the most transformative and enjoyable years in my life!


Thanks so much for sharing this. I'm a Catholic women's studies minor who's very active in the pro-life movement. I don't believe there is any conflict between my passion for my faith and ethics and my studies, but sometimes I hesitate to mention them lest my feminist friends think that I'm a part of "that repressive patriarchy that forces pregnancy on women" or my Catholic friends think I'm one of "those crazy radical feminists with no respect for G-d's Word". Your story inspires me and gives me courage to stand strong in my convictions and challenge those who reject me for them. Thank you.

Amy O'Neill

I hope that your instructor acknowledged that your presentation was a very constructive and positive act of feminism. And if s/he didn't, shame on them. Sticking up for yourself is a feminist act.

Hannah Herman

Nurit, you are my hero for the week.
Actually, your story reminds me of Ruth- who was not afraid to assert her values and go her own way.


Thanks for sharing that beautiful story with us, Nurit!

Seriously, when people like you speak up in such a public way, you offer something so beautiful and different to people that may not have been exposed to the beauty of modesty and morality.

I think you must have touched many hearts in that classroom that day :)

kathryn kanenr

I too was a women's studies major and I too became close with a wonderful frum family in college and I too went to Israel and then seminary! A husband and three kids later, I can assure you many of these women are completely fooling themselves and just don't have your courage to look inside and be truly "open minded".

I remember asking the Rebbetzin I was close with in college to come speak at my "gender and judaism" class. The students actually loved hearing her perspective, but the professors were furious! I still think they gave me a "B" because I was on the path to becoming frum and disagreed with thier understanding of the texts.

I commend you and relate (almost exactly;) to your story!

Cady Driver

Awesome post, Nurit! It takes such a huge amount of courage to do what you did and I totally commend you for it. The other day when I was in the grocery store, I was shaking in my boots when I asked the manager to take down a life size cardboard cutout of a woman in a bikini lounging on the beer pile....

I can't imagine doing what you did, but give us all more courage.



Huda Khattab

I just came across this post via a facebook friend's link, and all I can say is Bravo!! I salute your courage. It is truly heart-warming to see women of faith and modesty stand up for their values.

Erica Z

What an incredible, powerful story, Nurit. You showed such strength and courage. Never underestimate the power you have to impact people in a truly deep way. Keep it up!!!

Ben Woolridge


Finally an oasis of courage and hope in a desert of moral famine and despair. Thanks.

Miss Lissy

I wish that I could say that your experience was unique, that that doesn't happen all over the place, but unfortuntely, I know it does, that I've experienced it in my every day life. Even though I am not Jewish, I am Christian and our religions have some similar values. I also study political science and this is where a lot of my values tend to get criticized.

I have long identified myself as a feminist, but I fell out of doing that after feeling like I was not accepted by that community for my beliefs. Recently though, I decided to write what it means for me to be a feminist. And this is the definition I wrote - I hope that someone else finds value in this, but if no one else does, it is okay too. I'm used to that.

"I think to be a feminist means to fight for women to be valued the way they deserve to be valued. It means not allowing abortion to hurt women, not allowing them to be victimized by human trafficking and the like on the "negative" side of things to stop. It also means to fight for women to be able to vote, to be able to be paid the same as men on the "positive" side of things to accomplish."

Nurit Weizman

Miss Lissy--I find much, much value in your view of feminism and hope that you never stop fighting for it. In editing my post, there were times when I felt as if I was making it all up in my head--maybe I'm not as isolated as I think. But the more I speak up about it, the more and more I realize that I am not alone and that there are others hurting and feeling silenced as well. So thank you so much for you comment. I hope we both continue to share and stand up for a new kind of feminism.


Set your life easier take the loans and all you want.

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