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Jewish Journal

Dating 101: Raising a Mensch

by Ilana Angel

December 21, 2013 | 9:03 am

Someone I care about hurt my feelings yesterday. It was not malicious, or purposeful, but that didn't make it hurt any less. As I cried about it I wondered what it is about a person that allows them to act with no sense of decency. I was kind to this person and in the end was not treated kindly. That hurts my feelings.

I feel sad when my son sees me cry and so I try to limit my tears to ones of joy, but he saw me cry because a man hurt my feelings. It is a blessing because he learns what is decent in terms of his treatment of women. I am aware that this boy will be a man and so I teach him to be a decent human being and respect the heart.

I find it tragic that a man who is raising a daughter treats a woman with a lack of decency. One would think, or rather hope, someone who wants his daughter to be treated well by men would be kinder. How will he feel when a man makes his girl cry? How does a father not strive to be decent? Being kind is not hard, or mandatory, but it is decent. To this man, know that not calling is lame, text messages are for children, and dismissing something that mattered without being thoughtful is shameful. You did not play fair. I played fair. I was exactly who I said I was and in the end you lied and broke my heart.

I'm a tough girl and I will be fine. I will be sad about this for a quick minute. I truly thought this man was worth an investment of my heart and in the end he wasn't. There were only a few months invested but that does not make it matter less. The truth is he was who he was from the start and I chose to invest anyway. He said he was something he wasn't and I believed him.  I suppose I needed something, or someone, so I can't completely blame him, or myself for that matter. Life goes on, I will eventually try again, and God willing love will be found. I know there are decent men out there because I have raised one.

If I was able to do it surely some other fabulous woman did. I am off work for two weeks and my son will be with his dad for a week of it. I'm going into my vacation with a desire to rest, reflect, and regroup. How lovely, and profoundly beautiful, for my son to wipe a tear from my face. It has left me grateful and happy, not sad. I have been so consumed with my son going off to college that this small attack on my heart seemed sad, but in the end was a blessing. In my disappointment I was able to see the man I have raised. My son is remarkable and the hearts he touches will be safe. I am a proud mother who will forever keep the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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