Beauty – Day 30

Dare to Tell – Day 30

Leah’s Story


My son is engaged to be married to a particularly ugly girl.

He has chosen a very different life from ours.  The Haredi (Ultra-Orthodox Jewish) culture is so different from ours; there are all these rules and customs.

My husband is so upset, not only is he very religious but she’s so ugly.

Everyone says that she’s a lovely person; she has clear skin, nice hair but her face, oh her face.

Everyone loves her.  She works with kids; they say she’s a beautiful person.

It’s like beauty and the beast.

He’s a normal boy and she’s ugly.

Maybe if she had plastic surgery, she’d probably be beautiful. The Rabbi said she shouldn’t have plastic surgery. What does the Rabbi know?  It bothers me less than my husband, I could get reconciled to it but my husband and his father are both angry.

Physical beauty does matter. People are normal looking in our family.

She called me, she has a nice voice.

They told me that when she was born her skull was closed; they had to open her up so her face became distorted. If I had a thousand dollars to give her to have an operation, it’d be okay.

My husband would stop it if he could. We can’t understand their thinking that physical beauty doesn’t matter.  And to make matters worse, the Rabbi that made the match wants $1000, for what? We’re not happy.

They rushed us into an engagement. It’s like we’ve been forced into this. It would be a big embarrassment to the girl if we stopped everything and a huge disappointment to my son. He loves her, he thinks she’s beautiful. He feels like he’s not worthy of her. He feels like it’s a miracle.

My husband doesn’t want to visit them, doesn’t want to see them. He wants to buy them a cheap apartment far away, so he doesn’t have to visit often.  Beauty has always been important to him. He won’t invite his friends from work to the wedding because not only is the bride ugly but his son is haredi.  His friends are not religious. I’m trying to bridge between them.

My other son married a beautiful girl. We’re just asking for normal, not distortion. I agree with my husband.

We feel that the match was made because my son has hearing problems and a stutter, so other normal girls rejected him.  He’s now almost 30 so, in that culture, he has to get married.

Looking at her, it accentuates what’s wrong with him.  It shows his disability.  He’s not good at talking to people.  He has some difficulties.

It’s like they could only give him second best, so they found him a girl that’s ugly. I wonder does she have anything more serious.

Perhaps we’ve failed with him. He decided this path, he signed up. He’s been successful;  he was good in his studies. It’s all been very good for him.

But it’s a different choice, so in that we’ve failed. We feel like we’re going to lose him, her family is taking over. But he’s found a way of life that’s best for him.  He feels he lucked out.

I think I understand it, but my husband doesn’t. We’ve been keeping it secret from our friends. We’re trying not to invite too many people to the wedding.

I’m ashamed of my son and his choices.

I’m ashamed of the ugly girl.

I’m ashamed of myself for not being able to see her beauty.


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