Dear Rabbi Lazer,
You might laugh at this question, but here goes anyway: I became religious three years ago, and thank G-d, my wife is cooperating (shabbos, kashrus, mikva, etc., although she still doesn't cover her hair). A year ago, I began learning Breslev books and I love them. I also own most of your CDs and live by them - they've helped me tremendously. Two months ago, I came to hear your lecture in Dallas; maybe you remember me - I'm the person that told you that your beard and payis are outrageously cool. After your talk, I was driving home with my wife and without thinking I told her that I would love to look like Rabbi Lazer Brody - a guy who's not ashamed to walk anywhere as a proud Jew, even here in Texas. She went beserk, and told me that if I change my appearance, she's out the door. We then had a war, and I'm still picking up the pieces. What do I do?
With respect and admiration, Mike from the Dallas area
Slow down, partner. Your wife is right - no change in your appearance at this point! As it is, shaving with an electric razor (in other words, not shaving with a blade razor) is a tremendous mitzva. Religious law doesn't require a Jew to look like me. When you're spiritually ready for a change, your wife will encourage it. Meanwhile, cherish her and respect her, because if you upset her, her mitzva observance might faulter, Heaven forbid. Look at her great points - she's observing Shabbat, keeping a kosher house, and going to mikva. Thousands of other men that aspire to have observant homes would be jealous of you.
In her eyes, you - as a baal tshuva - represent observant Judaism. If you're a kind, considerate, and loving husband, she'll want to please you and she'll cover her hair. If not, don't be surprised if she takes a slide, and it will be your fault. So have patience, my man, and polish up your Torah learning, your praying, and your knowledge of religious law, and your treatment of her. Make anger and criticism worse in your eyes than pork, and treat your wife with love and constant respect, no matter what. If you sincerely want to be a beard and payis chossid, don't worry; you'll get there - together with your wife when she decides to cover her hair.
Now, for first aid, take her out to the Glatt Indian restaurant, buy her flowers, and apologize for arguing. Then, you can invite me to your next bris or kiddush. Hope to see you again this coming November - we're planning to be back in Texas, G-d willing.
With blessings always, Lazer Brody