Confiscating Inappropriate Items from Teenage Child


We have an adolescent daughter who is academically very successful, which we are very pleased about, but religiously she is in with the wrong crowd and in danger of going off the derech. She acts very independent, which we mostly want to encourage, but she has been turning on proper observance in small steps. She has purchased with her own money that she has made from various jobs some untznius clothes that she is actively wearing. We want to stop her, but simply telling her how to dress only emboldens her to rebel more. If we were to take the untznius clothes away from her and dispose of them, is that our right as parents according to Halacha? Or does it constitute theft of another’s belongings?



  1. I am so sorry to hear that you are going through such a difficult time with your daughter right now and I hope and pray that it will pass very quickly.

    In my humble opinion, it is forbidden to take your daughter’s clothing. The clothing belongs to her and although halachicly it might be possible to define confiscating the clothing as not “putting a stumbling block in front of the blind,” I am not sure that that it applicable in your situation. Aside from the halachic dimension, I would hazard a guess that even if you were to confiscate your daughter’s inappropriate clothing, it would simply cause her to rebel even more, and even faster than she is right now.

    However, having said that, I do feel that your question needs the input of a Rabbi who knows you and understands the religious background your are coming from. Subsequently, I would strongly suggest that you speak with a local Rabbi who is wise and sensitive and who might be able to help you navigate your way through this delicate period.

    Best wishes from the Team