April 8, 2024
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April 8, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

I know I have written and spoken about this many times in the past, but I still cannot figure out why there are so many lovely young men and women out there who are not meeting each other.

Everyone says they want to get married, so I wish someone would explain to me why they are having so much difficulty. We could say they could meet in shul, which seems pretty normal, but, oh I forgot, they are not allowed to speak with each other outside on the street as everyone is mingling because they have not yet seen each other’s resume. Or, they cannot talk to each other even though they grew up in the same town, wherever it is, and used to spend time playing with each other as children, but now as young women and gentlemen they can no longer exchange greetings because it “passt nicht.” Or, their rebbe told them what skills are necessary to have before dating a particular person and it definitely cannot happen unless they have checked out whether or not the girl’s grandfather wore a yarmulke (we received such calls) when he grew up in Des Moines, or does the girl’s father wear a black hat or does the mother put on makeup on Shabbat?

Now, let’s face it, these are very important facts one must know in order to be sure of a perfect match. Lord help me for not understanding any of this nonsense. Does anyone know of a counselor at Camp HASC who is not a tzaddik or tzadakus, yet there are those who refuse to work at the camp because it is coed. Phew, Chai Lifeline has separate sessions!

Anyone above 45 would probably agree with my sentiments, and those under that age would also agree but most would be ashamed to publicly agree. Is this world becoming more and more nuts?

Even crazier is that with all of the checking and detective work the numbers are rising higher and higher among young couples getting divorced. What happened to all of that checking? Oh, how I remember my husband telling me the woes of a Chassidish couple whose daughter was about to be married the following week and suddenly found out the chosson was dealing inappropriately with young boys in his dormitory. When they called the boy’s rebbe again and asked why they received accolades about how great this boy was, and asked him why he had not told them that this boy had been acting inappropriately in the dormitory on more than one occasion, he responded by saying that the boy had done teshuva! The big question in this case was whether or not they went on with the wedding, and unfortunately, I do not know. I hope not.

Boys who are “ready” to be married need to call their mothers to find out every little detail of what to do before and after the date. After a date one dares not tell the other they would like to see them again. First the shadchan is contacted by the parent to relay their concerns or further questions unless it is an absolute no. By the time I was 27 I had three children and was running a household—and we made it work without a shadchan.

Best of friends getting together for Shabbat meals on the Upper West Side, but not good enough friends to consider each other as possible partners for life. That’s how life is today.

Go outside and smell the roses. Look at who is living next door, who is sitting next to you on the bus, who is your cousin’s best friend, who strikes you as a really good-looking guy with a sweet smile. Are you charmed by the intellect of a woman (if you are allowed to speak with her)? If, chas v’shalom, you think she is cute, pick up the phone and call. Go next door and talk, Go for a coffee, or even more shocking, stop and say hello to someone you haven’t seen since you were 11 years old.

Maybe one of the more important aspects of this dating situation is to allow oneself to consider partners from out of the Northeast corridor. Has anyone ever considered the fine middot that out-of-towners have? Some of them, believe it or not, have not been raised where there are choices of restaurants, and they are still really nice people. Is it not worthwhile to make the effort to go out of town if you are speaking of finding a partner for life? How many times have I heard, “Out of town, no way.”

I’m so tired of hearing it all, watching it all transpire where I am told, “Don’t even bother to suggest someone to him because he already has piles of resumes.” If that is the case why are there so many singles around? Perhaps they have too many choices and are always thinking the next one might be better, prettier, learn in a different yeshiva or, I am ashamed to say, wear nicer clothing.

Enough is enough. I am sure that I will write about this again at some time because this system seems to be a never-ending nightmare. Rebbeim, rabbanim, teachers, parents, I beseech you to let go of this crazy system. When I hear a 26-year-old man say, “Speak to my mother” when someone approaches him about a shidduch I realize we are continuing the infancy stage of our adult children by holding on to them this way. Everyone thinks it is awful but it doesn’t seem to change.

Perhaps Purim can be used as an excuse to let oneself go and take the plunge. If you see someone, just do it. Go over to them and strike up a conversation and if anyone questions your actions blame it on Purim; use the excuse of ad lo yada in typical Purim fashion.


Nina Glick can be reached at [email protected]

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