We’re All Intermarried

At our conference a few weeks ago, Rabbi Sam Gordon, of Congregation Sukkat Shalom in Wilmette, Ill., led a fascinating session on what he called “sociograms.” He had everyone at the session–who were mostly Jewish–break up into different groups based on how they’re different from their husband, wife or significant other. His point was to show that all marriages are intermarriages in some way, whether it be across religious, cultural, educational, political, class or personality lines.

In a column for The (New York) Jewish Week, “The Other Kind of Mixed Marriage,” Abby Wisee Schachter eloquently demonstrates this point. She says:

I thought that when I fell in love and got married to a Jewish man, I was home free. After all, there’s been a ton of hand wringing across the Jewish community about intermarriage between Jews and non-Jews. But I wasn’t going to have any of that kind of trouble. My husband and I are both Jewish, so we weren’t facing the complications of combining two very different traditions into our new home, right?

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