Model Mom Calls Her Religion a Cult

August 22, 2012
Pearl, a mother and wife-turned-model, says for six years she was trapped in an abusive, arranged marriage within an ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, and now — five years removed from the community and battling for custody of her four children — she's speaking out about what she says are their "cult-like" behaviors. Under fire from her former community for her new lifestyle, which includes wearing pants and acting in a manner the community considers inappropriate, will she lose her children?






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"I Am Sitting in the Gates of Hell"
Pearl says she was forced into an arranged marriage, and when she decided to leave, her husband and community turned against her and threatened to take away her children. And, Orthodox rabbi, best-selling author and spirituality expert Shmuley Boteach sheds light on the traditions of Judaism.


"Not to be able to leave something, and not to be able to have your personal happiness — that is a cult."



Custody Battle
Pearl is currently entangled in a custody battle for her four children and says she was forced to sign a binding arbitration in rabbinical court, taking away her power and preventing her from getting divorced. Find out why Pearl's boyfriend, Shauly, says Pearl's case may have a major impact on the ultra-Orthodox community, and hear why a divorce attorney thinks Pearl is fighting an uphill battle.

“If these abuses are happening, then they have to be outed.”



Fellow Jews Weigh In
Johnny is an Orthodox Jewish father who disagrees with with Pearl's behavior. And, an Orthodox Jewish divorced mother shares her advice with Pearl. Plus, Dr. Phil's important message for Pearl and the father of her children.



“I’ve seen the other side of life, and it’s tremendous pain."

Update: Pearl and her husband have settled the issue of custody, and Pearl will be the parent of primary residence.