Rumspringa, the decision of their life ?


            Rumspringa is a period that lasts between 18 months and 2 years. During this time, teens Amish are allowed to go and see the outside world. At the end of this period, they have to take a decision that will impact the rest of their life : be baptized and stay Amish, or leave to the outside world. So, we can ask ourself what happens to the young Amish after the Rumspringa.

    The first possibility, after this discovery period of the outside world, is to be baptized in the Amish church in which case they will live within the rules and the Amish community. They will not be allowed to go in the outside world. 95% of young Amish choose to stay in the community. For example, Barbie, an Amish women, decided to stay although she finds the community strict.

    However, a part of Amish teenagers prefers to leave the community and their family to build a new life in the outside world. That is what Eirene Eicher did. She told : “it was the toughest decision I would never make”. Indeed, she loved the community, but it tears her heart out to not share her world with her siblings who live in the outside world”. By leaving the community, she knew, and they all know that come back is impossible.

    Finally, after the Rumspringa some Amish who wanted to stay got ostracised. It can be explained by the fact they couldn’t resist to the outside world temptations which goes against Amish values. This is Bates’ case, a young Amish of 21 years old. He said : “they pissed me of by not letting me live my life the way I want to live my life”.  Now he lives excluded of the community, in the outside world. It shows how much is important for them to preserve traditions etc…

         To conclude, even though the Amish community seems to be strict, the young ones have the possibility to decide how they want to live their future life thanks to Rumspringa. But they have to assume their decision for the rest of their life as well.


 

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