Sunday, August 21, 2011

Chassidic Women and the Stocking Feeling

Toldot Aharon women and their stockings


It all depends on the upbringing and one's own discipline. I don't have the upbringing and I do have a lack of discipline. At least in some ways of my life.

The summer season in Israel is extremely hot. Netanya,Haifa, Ashdod, Tel Aviv or Bnei Brak additionally suffer from a high percentage of humidity coming from the sea. The result is that, even without moving too much, we are dripping. Sweat is running down you face and even your arms. And then we see women wearing stockings. It doesn't matter what colour the stockings have. Plain black or simply regular stockings for the chassidic woman.

We look at those women and feel sorry for them. Their society is determining the rules and this includes the stockings as well. On the other hand, I see many of those chassidic woman walking with a certain kind of pride. They stare at other women not being that modest and the others stare because there is a woman walking around in stockings.

Seculars may think that those stocking women are nuts or being told by their husbands what to wear. Many chassidic women, however, wouldn't even get the idea of not wearing those stockings. The stockings make them accepted in their society. Showing that they identify with the group. For those women there is no alternative and they don't even look for one. If you want a good Shidduch, be proud of yourself, have a life, then you wear the stockings. You do what society expects you to do and don't even think about it. I have met many of such women but when you do start some controversial topics, they become curious and start discussing among each other.

Chassidic Ba'alei Teshuva women just jump into those stockings, as this may give them the feeling that they are part of the group. An inner satisfaction to show one's discipline and desire to do everything right.

I admire both groups but would love to know how those Ba'alei Teshuva women feel in their new lives ? Is it really that easy to throw away your sandals or sneakers and jump into stockings and shoes ?


  1. I don't think it's difficult to wear stockings. I've worn them all my life.

    In some communities where black stockings are worn some many women will also only wear stockings of a certain denier (thickness). For instance black stockings that are 70 denier are not appropriate. Whilst ones which are 140 and more are.

    Available from Feldheim is this sefer: Modesty an Adornment for Life. This book was written by a Rov from the Gateshead community in the UK.

    Many women within the Charedi community such as myself adhere to this level of tznius.

  2. B"H

    As I said, when you grow up this way it is easier because you don't have a comparison and see the reason. A reason like: My mother does it, so does my grandmother and this is simply the custom in our family or Chatzer.

    When you are new in society, it may be very difficult. Nevertheless, I have met two women who became frum and immediately changed their clothing style into something similar like Toldot Aharon. In fact, the two women joined the other two TA split offs and for them, modesty is an extremely important issue. You don't hear any complaining or questioning but they just do it.

    Thanks for mentioning the book. Hopefully it is available on Google Books.:-)