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Dvar for Vayetzei (Genesis 28:10-32:1)

The Torah tells us that after Yaakov worked to marry first Leah and then Rachel, G-d saw that Leah was hated and provided her with children (29:31). Knowing what we know about Yaakov, how is it possible that he hated his wife?

Rabbi Henoch Leibowitz proposes that, of course, Yaakov didn’t hate Leah—he just loved Rachel a tiny bit more. From Leah’s perspective, it felt like hate, and it would have behooved Yaakov to be sensitive to that alienation. What may seem insignificant (a smile or or kind word) to us may mean much more to others.