About twice a week I get an email from someone asking me to remove a comment from an old post, a picture I may have posted, a video or anything else they have deemed to hurt their shidduch resume. I find this a bit troubling, in fact I find the whole “I need to hide this part of my life from the shadchan” a bit disturbing. In the last year I’ve personally known three couples who’ve goitten divorces because one side hid their psychological disorder from their spouse.
The first time I heard of such a thing was when I lived in Monsey, I met a guy who was married for a year before he found out that his wife had was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder and depression. I can recall reading different posts on shidduch blogs about what sort of information to divulge to the shadchan and pretty often it disturbs me as to what tends to be hidden.
I took this yeshiva guy as a passenger in my car once on a fairly long drive and I overheard him talking to his kallah about her serious allergy to peanuts that he had no idea about. It seemed like one ought to know what can kill their future wife, but he just shrugged and said “we never discussed it”, now I know that family, goals, life plans, money and all that jazz is what makes shidduchim conversations flow…but shouldn’t people be discussing serious topics as well? One would think that two folks embarking on a lifelong journey together would have discussed medical issues and anything else that could be a total shock and surprise if learned the hard way (which is usually when they decide to forego taking their medicine).
I’ve noticed that more and more folks are asking me to remove things, which probably means that shadchanim are regularly searching the internet to find out about the folks they are setting up. It took long enough for them to figure out that Facebook isn’t just for those modern orthodox kids anymore, but what does this mean for those who google themselves and find something that they deem “unsuitable” for the shadchan to see? It’s likely that companies like “reputation.com” will be formed with the sole goal of shidduch investigation clean ups. I’m looking forward to the day when someone is going to pay me to remove incriminating material. (for the record I have been paid to remove things, but not for sidduch purposes. If you ask nicely I usually remove things)
I can tell you that whenever someone asks me to remove something I cringe, I always feel like the shidduch system perpetuates lying within the frum community and doesn’t allow an openness that we seem to need. If things were more open, marriages wouldn’t dissolve due to blatant lies of the withholding.
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