A Letter to Chelsea For Her Second Pregnancy

Chelsea Clinton & Marc Mezvinsky
Chelsea and Marc after her mother’s announcement that she will seek nomination for the presidency in 2016. Credit: Andy Katz

Dear Chelsea & Marc,

First I want to say B’sha’ah tovah and mazel tov on your pregnancy. Your pregnancy announcement was adorable and I hope Charlotte adjusts to your pregnancy and the new baby once it arrives. I glanced below the article I read including your announcement and saw several comments from people who, for whatever reason, think they know what’s best for your family. If you haven’t read them yet, don’t. If you have read them, or if you’ve heard them elsewhere—I’m sorry people are treating you as the role model for interfaith families. I’m especially sorry your daughter will grow up hearing these comments and constantly having to explain her family to others.

But the truth is, you are a role model, and your daughter will be one too. No, not because you’re the daughter of a President (or maybe two?). And no, not because you are a public figure. But because you are married to a Jewish man. And you’re not alone in this. All interfaith couples and families become role models and representatives. You see, we Jews have a lot of opinions on how the Jewish people should behave. But the thing is, we all behave differently. We have no one standard of how a “Jewish” family should behave or how an “interfaith” child should act.

I hope that you and your family are able to look past all the judgment and shame that other people might place on you, and enjoy this time. There are many of us rooting for you and following your journey hoping to learn from your experience. Teach your daughter love and kindness and go from there. Being a mom to a toddler and pregnant is already enough to deal with. I hope that the love in your life and family only continues to grow, and that you can continue living the life you want for your daughter and your new addition.

Being a role model for interfaith families can be tough, but creates a groundwork for future families to follow. Let the love you have guide you and you will be supported. In the meantime—know that there are other families navigating this crazy road alongside you and that there are many of us in the Jewish community who welcome you with open arms. InterfaithFamily has loads of baby resources just for you. May your family go from strength to strength in this holiday season.

Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas and mazel tov,

Rabbi Keara Stein

2 thoughts on “A Letter to Chelsea For Her Second Pregnancy”

  • Check out Pnai Or of Portland. Many interfaith couples, as well as converts. A very wonderful and community driven congegation. Meets in SW Portland. I think you”ll enjoy them.
    Bob Loew is the President of Pnai Or. His email address is president.pnaior@gmail.com
    Pnai Or also has a website.

  • I am sorry I did not know of you when in LA I had lived in cities with pretty big Jewish Populations , New York, Los Angeles, Boston. Cleveland, We had to move to Portland for family and jobs. I am Jewish . He is Methodist. I am trying to connect with the Jewish community here, but it is much smaller than other places I have lived. . If there are any interfaith family organizations or
    Rabbis that you know of in Portland, please e-mail me sgpdance@yahoo.com

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