Best Comment On The Crazy Shidduch Article

Since this crazy Jewish Press Yitta Halberstam article is all over the place now, I felt I was morally responsible to weigh in with my own take on the issue. Obviously, after much research, I found my opinion to be the most intelligent, sharpest one out there. Unfortunately, before I could post it, I found a better comment on Finkorswim and had to do something unthinkable, let another person talk:

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Daniopp:

I think its time we all agree that looks matter. if there is no attraction, there will not be a real chance at a successful marriage.  That said, if we dont allow people to meet eachother then there is no point in having this discussion to begin with.

Furthermore, if we never allow boy and girls (and i say boys and girls because i am talking about when they are young) to be together in the same room, and see eachother, and the only image that boys have of girls, are the pictures they sneak a glance at in magazines or TV or movies, then what will they be attracted to? the girls who make it into movies, TV, and magazines.  And lets face it, not many girls, and not many jewish girls, will look like that.  So now we have created boys with an unrealistic expectation.

On the flip side, if girls dont hang out with or see boys, they are left to imagine based on what they are told is desirable (a guy who sets aside time to learn, but not only daf yomi, but like hours at a time; who never misses minyan; who is always there to help around the house with the kids; who is able to support a family (with a job or rich parents); who is home at night for dinner; etc… This guy does not exist. unrealistic expectations are created and fostered by both sides.

its time to scrap this model and return to the old successful model that our parents used:
1. meet lots of different people
2. date lots of different people
3. get rejected and reject others in person (not through an intermediary, this will serve to instill interpersonal skills and knock people off their pedestals)
4. date longer than they do on The Bachelor
5. Have a more normal and meaningful interaction with people based on who they are, not what a resume or third party says about them..

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*Clap! clap! clap! clap!* Awesome.

 

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Sarah

    Yes. This.

  • U avi

    Right on.

  • Ripley

    Nailed it.

  • http://AztecQueen2000.blogspot.com AztecQueen2000

    What a novel theory! I mean, it only works for the rest of the world!

    • The Dude

      Yes, it works fr the rest of the world and only results in over a 50% divorce rate.

      • Anonymous

        please tell us what the correlation is between the way you date and the rising divorce rate!

      • Anonymous

        That may only be because people in the more Chassidish/Chareidi world are too scared of being socially ostracized to initiate divorce. They’d rather live married an unhappy than single/divorced and happy because of the social pressure they are in, as outlined in the original article.

        • Anonymous

          agreed

      • G*3

        > Yes, it works fr the rest of the world and only results in over a 50% divorce rate.

        No, that’s a myth. The actual divorce rate is about 1/3.

        The 50% rate is gotten by comparing the number of marriages to the number of divorces in a single year. About twice as many people get married than get divorced each year in the US. But the divorces are from marriages from all the previous years. Using this model, it’s theoretically possible to have a divorce rate of over 100%, which is obviously ridiculous.

        According to 2004 US Census Data:
        162.88 million men and women ever marry
        49.68 million men and women ever divorce
        30.5% = men and women, combined, who ever married end up getting divorced

        • Alter Cocker

          The actual divorce rate approximates 40%. There was a course in college that looked at the numbers.

        • person

          Well isn’t that comforting… oh wait.

        • Anonymous

          Also, people who divorce once may divorce again, so that also inflates the divorce level.

  • Lionof Zion

    Bravo.

  • Ora

    “It’s time to scrap this model and return to the old successful model that our parents used…” and also used even in the shtiebels all over during the Bad Old Days in the Good Old (and sentimentally over-idealized) Heimatland. In the constant competition to be “frummer than thou” many have adopted minhagim (which have morphed into dogma and even “laws”) of such severity that our ancestors would have looked askance and been baffled by them. There is this rush against common sense and human nature. Too much now is plastered with the labelled “yetzer hara” (see the Gur/Gerrers on the subject). Unfortunately, along with Man’s yetzer hara is also his inclination to be ***extreme*** in running the *opposite* direction and missing the *spirit*, if not always the *letter* of the laws and what they actually *mean*. Extremism is *anything* is usually a bad idea. Maybe attractive in the “ideal”, but much less so in actual practice.

  • emunah

    After I’ve finally read this now famous article I feel so blessed. I feel blessed that I am mother of two sons and I don’t have a daughter. :) I feel blessed that I’m a convert so there is no chance that my sons will get overly conceited and snotty in the shidduch process and will have to put some effort in it. Last but not least – I feel blessed that I’m not a young girl who is trying to “sell herself” on the market, because all this stupid pressure is very unhealthy.

    Solution is very simple as presented and I believe in a way it is implemented once the dust of “the hottest” shidduchim years has settled. I don’t know who makes you to believe that you have to marry that young or else. What happens to people that get rejected for the variety of reason? They get eventually married later, open up to broader spectrum of potential mates, date more and get experience. The only thing that needs to change are self-esteem issues of people who didn’t get chosen in the first round. Looking at the current divorce rate in the Jewish community there are many rounds ahead of them :D

  • Sergeant J

    The divorce rate has to do with unrelated unrealistic intentions. People who want TV and movie love And don’t interact. Same lack of interaction, different reason. The idea above still shows merit, and both secular and religious need to stop the crap and start using it.

  • The Law (Daniopp)

    Hesh,

    Thanks for liking/posting my comment. I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who feels thus way. It makes me feel somewhat better about the future of our people and my own children’ future.

    I have plenty more opinions/rants. Youre welcome to follow me on twitter for more @Daniopp. Please follow and say “hello”!

  • Nate

    The so-called shidduch crisis is a sham. I’ve married 3 times. That proves anyone can find someone.

  • Dan

    I also get to repost my comment to this:

    No need to theorize, there is empirical evidence.

    We have communities who do exactly that. Notably, the Jewish Press readership does that.

    I haven’t heard any claims that their marriages are better, that they have a higher marriage rate, that they have more successful dating, or less dating problems.

    (OTDWB: I don’t accept your response, I think if there was a difference we would know something of it.)

    • http://yeshivaforum.wordpress.com OfftheDwannaB

      No, there is a need to theorize because as always there’s zero research or data to work with. “I haven’t heard any claims” is basically at the level of scientific fact in the frum community.

      All we can do is watch everything get more and more f’d up and then make everything all better by saying, “Well, they have problems too.” Every system in the world has problems. But some are better than others. I think if someone could pay a team to do some actual surveys, or anything actually worth a damn, we could make real headway. Right now, as well-intentioned as people may be, they’re just shooting into the fog.

      (Reposting to see what everyone else thinks about this)

  • gary

    Girls should also wear more reviling clothing,
    In case she has some sort of ugly looking mole,
    There won’t be any problems in the future.

  • Anonymous

    see kooloytoyra

  • Ace

    A few quick questions and points?

    Why is it tha the mothers are meeting the girls and not the sons? (but see below)

    things will change when young women figure out it is better to have a man who works for a husband and who does some learning and not try to hold out for a (semi?)parasitic “learning boy.”

    Dating and informal fix ups are better that the sultified and corrupt shidduhk system because it is free and there is no power structure and resulting corruption.

  • Anonymous

    Best way to go is just address the original comment point by point…

    “I think its time we all agree that looks matter. if there is no attraction, there will not be a real chance at a successful marriage. That said, if we dont allow people to meet eachother then there is no point in having this discussion to begin with.”

    I feel like a lot of guys miss the difference between “no attraction” and “I-WANT-TO-JUMP-YOU-NOW attraction”. Attraction CAN grow, not a complete 180 maybe, but if a guy rules someone out on the first date because they think she is 10 pounds unexceptionable(let’s not forget the fact that tznius clothing isn’t exactly the best helper in that department all the time either) that is because he is just a jerk who wants a super model to show off, not because he couldn’t be potentially have a healthy intimate relationship with the person if he got his head out off his… :)

    “Furthermore, if we never allow boy and girls (and i say boys and girls because i am talking about when they are young) to be together in the same room, and see eachother, and the only image that boys have of girls, are the pictures they sneak a glance at in magazines or TV or movies, then what will they be attracted to? the girls who make it into movies, TV, and magazines. And lets face it, not many girls, and not many jewish girls, will look like that. So now we have created boys with an unrealistic expectation.”

    This isn’t a frum guy phenomenon. The reason so many girls have eating disorders and are getting plastic surgery is because all guys are seeing this stuff and it doesn’t matter how many real girls they actually see. Unrealistic expectations are there easily even if you actually meet girls and this is undeniable.

    “On the flip side, if girls dont hang out with or see boys, they are left to imagine based on what they are told is desirable (a guy who sets aside time to learn, but not only daf yomi, but like hours at a time; who never misses minyan; who is always there to help around the house with the kids; who is able to support a family (with a job or rich parents); who is home at night for dinner; etc… This guy does not exist. unrealistic expectations are created and fostered by both sides.”

    They are told is desirable? I’m pretty sure even if you didn’t tell them, someone who actually wants her husband to help out with the kids and have a job is desirable. The above aren’t necessarily expectations when it comes to most girls, simply because they can’t afford to be that picky. This may sound unfair, but I can’t think girls are the biggest problem. Considering after you are hitting your 30s and single, women actually start thinking along the lines of their biological clocks “What if by the time I get married, if I get married, I can’t even have healthy children?” At this point, women aren’t thinking “BUT HE DOESN’T WANT TO LEARN 24/7!!!?!?!?!” They are thinking “I just want someone half normal.”

    “its time to scrap this model and return to the old successful model that our parents used:
    1. meet lots of different people
    2. date lots of different people
    3. get rejected and reject others in person (not through an intermediary, this will serve to instill interpersonal skills and knock people off their pedestals)
    4. date longer than they do on The Bachelor
    5. Have a more normal and meaningful interaction with people based on who they are, not what a resume or third party says about them..”

    Yes well the “old successful model” for the most part is lacking in this day and age. I did not grow up religious, in college all my friends were Jewish for the most part, unaffiliated/secular/reform but still Jewish. It was very rare that I had a friend whose parents were still together and if there parents were together, they probably should have been divorced for the most part. I actually knew two people whose parents split once they got to college because they no longer had the children in the house to distract from their less then stellar marriage.

    I think people need to remember, that just because you make minyan, check your lettuce and don’t use your cell phone 1/7 of the week doesn’t mean your personality doesn’t need some serious work. People need to stop be surface level tzaddikim, once that happens I have faith we won’t need to talk about the “woahs of shidduchim”.

  • Anonymous

    when you red a shidduch to an Upper West side guy he says “oh that one! yeah, I know her, nice girl.” But his mind is really on the Jewcan Sam girl (or any other girl video) so how does mingling and socializing help anything? The whole Jewcan video is all about “I want, I want, I want”.

    • Anonymous

      yep.

  • http://www.walkingthegreyline.blogspot.com Shades of Grey

    I concur. This is a great summation of what’s going wrong with us these days. I wrote my take here:http://walkingthegreyline.blogspot.com/2012/03/so-plastic-surgery-does-shidduchim.html But I think this comment is far more succinct and captures the essence of what I believe as well.

  • Michael

    Agree with much of the posted comment, but:

    “get rejected and reject others in person (not through an intermediary, this will serve to instill interpersonal skills and knock people off their pedestals)”

    is poor advice. It’s more civilized to at least for the first few dates have an intermediary call off further dates (providing one was involved in setting the two up to begin with). Many people are notoriously lousy at rejecting, or taking rejection. Many people are either too harsh, or simply fail to return phone calls, never call when they say they will etc. The rejected party frequently feels like a complete douchebag in the process. This creates lots of baggage for people, already immersed in a stressful enterprise, and introduces a greater degree of cynicism and jaded behavior into the mix than necessary. Face to face rejection can occur a few dates in, after the couple has developed a greater affinity for each other. The suggestion that somehow rejecting dates to their face early on will magically transform us into socially savvy individuals is hopelessly naieve.

    The system is in need of improvement, but the above commenter gives the false impression that Jews of old dated like most people currently do in the modern Western world, and that there were no governing Torah principles involved.

    While intermediaries aren’t the only way to meet a person, they are for many an excellent way to meet a person, provided the intermediary knows what they are doing, cares about the parties involved, and are trustworthy. “Meeting lots of people” on your own may be easy for the extroverted, or particularly good-looking , but is more difficult for many others. The single events have their pros and cons as well–you can potentially meet lots of people, but if you get a bunch of guys and girls together in the same room, you’ll eventually see the same phenomenon that happens in your typical college bar: the hottest 20% of the girls in the room will command like 80% of the male attention. How exactly is that supposed to correct for the alleged superficiality of the current Jewish dating system?!

    Lastly, orthodox marriages are on average, happy, and compare favorably to marriages in surrounding society. Many Jews love to bitch about their community, but the stats are encouraging: http://images.ouradio.org/uploads/Power_Point_for_Marriage_Results-updated_(2).pdf

  • OTD chick

    Or could just go off the derech since it’s easier to find a secular guy than it is with Orthodox. In fact, I would say supposedly Orthodox guys are MORE likely to discuss se******cks on the phone before even meeting than a completely secular Jewish guy.

  • Evan the terrible

    I have a very nasty take on much of this, many will not like it. I will state that I am married (thank g-d!) but I was very modern, and as a Kohen I knew at age 30 I was getting pretty screwed. The trouble with “modern” girls is they are bright educated and seek the same, well, I studied Art and just got out of school for the second time -and was behind in the career dept. I was persona non gratta -being nearly broke and too modern, and yes kind of eccentric. As for “references” I was pretty screwed on that as well, I dropped out of my yeshivah high school and finishe up at public school. I don’t feel any pity for these Bais yaakov girls who only want “learners” or “earners” I BROKE the rules and dates and married a 26 year old Bias Yaakov girl -who had the guts to believe in me. The funny thing is it was met with ALLOT of disapproval, from her family to the point that alot of dirt was invented . After 11 years we have two great boys who I hope will not have to endure this.

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