I had an amazing childhood

I had an amazing childhood and teen age years with my parents. The only real pain I had was being dumped by my girlfriend, Wendy, for another friend. Sex was  unheard of in those days, though in high school one girl was thought to be in that regard. But  she was the only one. And she was limited to her own boyfriend. For that reason I wonder why I felt the need to rebel against my parents except for the fact that that was the social thing to do in those days. I suppose it still is. I was vaguely aware of American culture going downhill in that way. Still I am shocked by some of the stories of people I read about.

I can see why people thought being part of the religious world would provide insulation against the secular trends. The truth though is the opposite. [People should learn Torah, but not assume that those that claim to teach it are holy. The opposite is  the case. There seems to be an overflow in the religious world of vicious, cruel, and stupid people that you would generally not except to find there.
The religious world provides an illusion of being  immune. In fact, I believe it is more corrupt--though more hidden.

[I also had a great deal of pain and frustration that I was not very good in math, though later I developed  a taste for it. I did not get smarter, I just developed  a taste for it.] Now that I think of it  my frustration at my lack of abilities was probably more painful than being dumped by Wendy. But both things were the most painful things I had ever gone through.

Don't think that I wrote some decent books on the Talmud,  that makes me smart. I had amazing teachers and a really great learning partner that showed me the way.