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April 21, 2014 / 21 Nisan, 5774
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Finding The Right One

She is my first child to reach this stage and, frankly, I’m worried.
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

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Dear Rebbetzin Jungreis,

I know this may be a tired subject as there have been countless discussions and articles about it, but still there is no clarification. My daughter is studying in a seminary in Yerushalayim. She is slated to come home this month and then of course we’ll be involved with shidduchim. She is my first child to reach this stage and, frankly, I’m worried.

Baruch Hashem, we have six children and this daughter is first in line. My second one is only two years younger and I do not want to see them dating at the same time. Nor do I wish to hold back the younger one if my older one is still single.

There are other concerns. Both my husband and I were raised in secular homes. We found Torah in our college years and embraced it. Our children were all born when we were already committed to Torah. We sent them to the finest yeshivas, and while they knew their grandparents were not observant, they never associated that with their own lives.

But suddenly their grandparents’ lack of observance has become an issue. I’ve discovered that in the shidduchim world it’s not just parents who are researched but the entire family – grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings, etc.

My daughter is a lovely girl. She’s always smiling. She’s always helpful and considerate. In high school she volunteered for bikur cholim, visiting the sick in hospitals and homes, and she helped out mothers of children with special needs. While she was in Israel she continued to do chesed projects, helping needy families and mothers who were overwhelmed with the challenge of managing everyday chores.

So who would not want to marry such a girl? Well, when I spoke with shadchanim I had a rude awakening. I was told that because of her parents’ secular background, many families would dismiss my daughter as a serious shidduch candidate. How do I overcome this? How do my husband and I convince people that despite our secular upbringing our daughter is meticulous in her observance of Torah?

I have other fears. Many of my friends who married off their children are living with terrible pain. Those children are now divorced despite all the pre-marriage research. My friends are hurting, not only for their children but also for their grandchildren.

I know that nowadays people tend to be blasé about divorce. They shrug their shoulders and say, “What’s the big deal; many people get divorced.” But to me it’s a very big deal. Children need one home, not two. Children need one mother and one father. Nor should children be exposed to the resentment that divorced parents may feel for one another. Children need to feel loved and to see their parents bond. No amount of rationalization can convince me otherwise.

Please do not think I am condemning those who are divorced or are considering divorce. I understand their suffering and empathize with them. But these are my fears and if, G-d forbid, this would happen to my daughter or grandchildren I don’t know how I’d bear it.

And there is another problem. We are not people of means. My husband works very hard. He has a small business that has its own challenges. To be sure, we are not poor; thank G-d we can meet our debts and other obligations.

But our daughter has told us her priority is marrying a ben Torah who will learn for several years before concentrating on supporting his family.

We told her that as idealistic as that may sound, she’s choosing a very difficult path. Unfortunately, we simply we don’t have the money to help. She choked up and said she’s not expecting anything from us. She will go to work and it will all be OK.

She was unequivocal about this and when I questioned her further she just said, “Hashem will help.” While we are proud of her determination and willingness to sacrifice, we have seen too many starry-eyed girls take the same route only to realize just how hard it is to manage on a daily basis. As they struggle with their household bills their shalom bayis is jeopardized.

I need your guidance, Rebbetzin. Tell me how to avoid the pitfalls. Tell me how to do my research and find the very best young man. What exactly should I ask when I do my inquiries? What is it that I want to know that will give me a greater insight into his character?

I am in a real quandary and my husband is equally lost. Any guidance you can offer us would be truly appreciated.

I realize you have many people writing to you with their problems – but I believe many people share my concerns.

May Hashem bless you with good and healthy years.

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5 Responses to “Finding The Right One”

  1. Ruth Marie Bejar says:

    I wish I could read Rebbetzin Jungreis answer to that lady.It is a very comun situation now, this days, we need answers.

  2. Ruth Marie Bejar says:

    I wish I could read Rebbetzin Jungreis answer to that lady.It is a very comun situation now, this days, we need answers.

  3. I am curious so know how Rebbezin Junreis replied to this letter. There are variations to this problem, but most important: how can a young person meet a match?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Dating in the Yeshiva World – YouTube.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChLNFX3m_dA

    Sep 20, 2011… Rabbi Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg teaches young men and women in the yeshiva world about the dating world.

  5. RABBI DR, BERNHARD ROSENBERG.

    KINGS AND QUEENS, PAWNS AND KNIGHTS: THE ‘GLATT GAME’.

    “THE SHIDDUCH CRISES”.

    The Jewish populace seems too busy confronting themselves to realize that there is a shidduch, the tragedy before them. All of us are engaged in the “I am Frumer (more religious) Than Thou Game.”.

    Yes, the chess game of the Jewish people does exist and it consists of numerous players including Kings, Queens, Pawns and Knights. Let us analyze these players. The Kings and Queens are found everywhere. They are better known as the “Better Than Thou” contingency representing, with nose held high, the so-called “ultra ultra”, whose main function in life is to supervise and interpret the motives of others.

    The J.A.P., a term which applies equally to both sexes, reigns supreme. A true J.A.P. is one whose true emotions and feelings of dedication and idealism are hidden under the heavy burden of appeasing self-righteous motives. Is it any wonder that some young Jewish singles seek elsewhere?

    AND YES, let us not forget the elite, the “Yechis (status) Seekers”. “Remember my son, you belong to a righteous family; avoid the Baal Tshuvah (a non-observant Jew who became religious), after all they may change their ways. Remember who you are and where you came from.”.

    And if these were not sufficient, the Kings and Queens engage themselves in the “I AM GLATTER THAN THOU PAGENTRY.’ This requires the ability to openly criticize others regarding their mode of dress, their eating patterns, recognized certified Kosher products are not acceptable, the fictitious Glatt pickle is preferred, and, of course, an open attach against religious leaders, their ammunition being the infamous non-existent 14th century Chumrah (strict legal view) entitles one to acquire membership in this select group. The only problem is that no one wants to be a follower and thus the leaders continue quoting profound statements found in the tractate “Buba Meisah (fairy tales).”.

    Now, the heroic Knight enters the arena. This individual, male or female, traditionally minded and filled with the love of Torah, wages an heroic campaign. The Knights are represented by clergy and lay leadership who open their hearts to Jewish young people communicating the love and harmony of the Torah. Numerous Rabbis are fighting on the front lines to create a vibrant Jewish community. Young people are engaged in Shabbatonim, retreats and seminars in an active attempt to spread Yiddishkeit; yet, too often, Jewish organizations seem more interested in the establishment of plush swimming pools than in financing such religious projects a community mikvah (ritual bath).

    THESE KNIGHTS, however are confronted by numerous foes. Rabbis are challenged by the Glatt contingent whose battle cry seems to be “The Mechitzah (separation between men and women in the synagogue sanctuary) is not high enough.” Some musmochim (rabbinical school graduates) forget that they are not the leaders of the congregation and consider Shabbat and Yom Tov a day to play “Challenge the Spiritual Leader.” Others are more compassionate; instead of aiding the Rabbi, they just lean back awaiting the opportunity to privately render their illustrious Psak Din (Legal decree). This is the prelude to the “Let’s create another Shtibbel (synagogue) game”, starring these above mentioned unassuming geniuses of Jewish Law.

    Forgetting the great “Tuna Fish and Bubble Gum Controversy” of yesteryear, let us turn to other significant and crucial issues. The agunah, divorce and conversion procedures, together with the existing problems of Mamzeres require our immediate attention. Yet, they too cannot escape the “I am glatter than thou game.” We are informed that a sanhedrin (universal Rabbinical Court) is needed in order to solve many of our numerous halachic difficulties. The only problem, of course, is that we cannot agree on membership to the Sanhedrin.

    Why is there a Shidduch crises? Perhaps it is because in the chess game of life, it is the PAWN who suffers the most.

    THE TORAH holds the answers to all our questions; however, human beings, with G-d’s help, are needed to overcome so called obstacles.

    If only we, the pursuers of Torah knowledge, would realize that the battle is immense and the time is short. Instead of playing the Glatt Game called “Frumer than Thou,” let us communicate love and knowledge , let us act in the image of G-d; only then will we be worthy to be called Frum Yidden who walk in the “Glatt path”. In the words of Rav Kook, “Just at the Second Temple was destroyed by acts of brotherly hatred, the third Temple will be built by acts of brotherly Love.”.

    >

    Subject: : "Dating in the Yeshiva World" OR ANY OTHER WORLD BY DR. ROSENBERG

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