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at six, over popcorn, Rose learns about the Holocaust
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We've been trying to ease Rose into Judaism, lots about Hannukah and Passover. Not so much on persecution and mass graves. We'll get there, I promise. But I know my kid. She is prone to "bad thoughts" (as she calls them) about monsters, bad guys, and fires on the stairs. These keep her from sleeping. I need to keep those monsters at bay as long as possible.

Then after a full afternoon sledding we were hanging out with our playdate J. who I had no idea knew from Jewish. She mentioned she was going to a family Hannukah party. Turns out there's some Jewish on her mother's side. Then she told us that her great grandmother had been killed in the camps by the Nazis.

Rose: How killed? Was she shot or burned?
J: She was probably starved.

So, right there, on the spot, I had to explain anti-Semitism and the Holocaust. I went with "a long time ago in a galaxy far far away." A long time ago Germany was at war with the rest of the world and as part of the war, they killed a lot of Jews. It didn't happen here, and it didn't happen to anyone in our family. We were all in America when this happened. As in, please no nightmares tonight.

J: Who saved the Jews?
Debby: Many Jews saved themselves. The Allies helped save them too—the Americans, the British, the French. . .

I had to bite my tongue about the Americans refusing to get involved until their national interests were at stake and refusing to bomb the train lines to the camps. Of course, I had to bite my tongue about most of it. This is another time I am grateful my child goes to Sunday School and trained professionals will help me tackle this incredibly complex and disturbing topic.



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