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Vows

Rabbi Ari ShvatNisan 8, 5772
Question
Dear Rabbi, please could you give me some advice with a difficult situation i have been in over the last 15 years. I suffer with depression and O.C.D and always had a fear of death. When i was young i always tried to make deals with God if i felt guilty. I started fasting as a way of punishment and dealing with my guilt but this got out of control and i ended up quite unwell and loosing a lot of Wight. To try and gain control back i started to make vows i wouldn’t punish myself and if i did i wouldn’t drink Alcohol any more because it was the only pleasure i had at the time was a drink with friends. But when i made this vow the illness was stronger then the vow and i ended up punishing myself. I regret making the vow and i didn’t take into account the problems it would give me also i don’t think i was in the right mind at at the time. I miss having a drink with friends but it also went on to anything with Alcohol in creams food etc. Do you think i am bineded by this vow? And if so could i be annuled from it because it was my illness that put me in this situation. I would be really great full for your time and advice. Thank you Terry.
Answer
Shalom, Yes, there is definitely room to annul the vow, but it must be done personally, i.e. first-hand, by visiting your local orthodox rabbi, tell him all of the details and he will direct you how to proceed with the annulment. Happy Passover! With Love of Israel! Rabbi Ari Shvat
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