web analytics
May 22, 2015 / 4 Sivan, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


The Shidduch Battlefield (Part I)

      (Dear Readers: I wasn’t going to continue on this topic but it seems that shidduchim – or the difficulty in getting one – is an issue that is on everybody’s mind. It almost seems that as soon as the baby is born, there is worry about a shidduch.)

 

       When I was a camper way back in the previous century, there was a game we would play called “Capture the Flag”.  Campers were divided into two teams with the goal of finding and attaining the other side’s flag. You could be sneaky, conniving, aggressive, etc. As the saying goes, “All’s fair in love and war.”

 

         In today’s shidduch scene, it seems to me that every unmarried frum male or female is playing a personal version of this game; except that the goal is to “capture” a spouse. On this “battlefield,” there are no teams (unless you include family and good friends who are looking out for you). Each player is on his/her own. Your peers are not on your side, for they are your competitors. And it’s brutal out there.

 

         There was a time, not too long ago, when there was a child considered of age to enter the shidduch parsha (usually in the early 20’s for the girls – a couple of years later for the boys, an age viewed nowadays to be approaching old maid/bachelorhood) and there was a sense of excitement and anticipation in the family. After the initial phone call, mothers would mentally envision the gown she would make and the fathers would stock up on the schnapps.

 

         If the date didn’t work out, the attitude was, “so what, there were ‘plenty of fish in the sea,’ and opportunities to meet them.” Many marriages were the outcome of teenage pairings that began years earlier at camp. College age students met in class or on campus in a designated area frequented by the frum students. Many friendships that began by sharing notes or studying together also resulted in shidduchim. Introductions by friends and family ensured a steady stream of potential spouses, and shadchanim were glad to take on new clients for those who preferred going that route.

 

           The mood in 2006 is diametrically opposite. In many households (even those that are considered “having it made,” shidduch-wise: i.e., above average financially, yichus, great-looking kids), when a child – especially a daughter – enters the parsha, apprehension and a gnawing anxiety fills the household. It is a situation that can almost be likened to the just-below-the-surface angst an Israeli family experiences when their son is drafted. An ever-present unspoken question hovers over the family. “Will there be a good outcome? Will we get through this intact?”

 

         Why this foreboding and unease? It’s because, sooner or later, nice heimish boys and girls ended up under the chuppah. This is no longer a given.

 

         In recent discussions with childhood friends and acquaintances, many strongly feel that if “they were out there” now, as opposed to 30 years ago, they doubt that they would have gotten married. Some had been “pleasantly plump,” or had frizzy hair or “Jewish” noses, or were fashion mules as opposed to clothes horses. They are convinced that in today’s shidduch climate, they wouldn’t have even gotten on “the list” – let alone get dates. Look at our daughters, they say. They are slimmer, better dressed, with manicured hands and waxed eyebrows – and the phone barely rings for them. The shadchanim won’t even take down their information – let alone set them up.

 

         “We dated on a pretty regular basis and all got married. As for those of our friends who didn’t, it wasn’t from a lack of opportunities. “What happened?” they ask in wonder.


         Why has the journey on the road to matrimony become an uphill battle on what feels like the path to hell?

 

         Before I address that question, I want to point out that the despair many parents are experiencing regarding whether their daughters will successfully “capture the flag” is not one-sided. Many mothers of sons have told me that their boys have become what they call serial daters – dating one girl after another. And not by choice. They endure numerous rejections and have to start all over again, sometimes after dating a girl several times. Months, and even years, of dating is depleting their finances, their physical and mental energy and even worse, their egos.

 

         Time after time, on both sides of the fence, apprehensive, anxious parents watch as their children shrug off their wounds and attempt another foray onto the shidduch battlefield. All they can do, it seems, is grab their Tehillim and pray.

 

(To be continued)


 


About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The Shidduch Battlefield (Part I)”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Tzipi Hotovely, new Deputy Foreign Minister.
Foreign Minister Hotovely: Tell the World ‘God Gave Israel to the Jews’
Latest Sections Stories
Respler-052215

This therapist kept focusing on how “I could do better,” never on how we could make the marriage work.

South-Florida-logo

Mistrust that has lingered after the fiasco in Ferguson, Missouri, has edged the issue forward.

South-Florida-logo

“The observance of a kosher diet is a key tenet of Judaism, and one which no state has the right to deny,” said Nathan Diament, executive director for public policy of the Orthodox Union.

Two weeks of intense learning in the classroom about Israel culminated with Yom Ha’Atzmaut. Students attended sessions with their teachers and learned about history, culture, military power, advocacy, slang, cooking, and more.

The nations of the world left the vessel to sit rotting in the water during one of the coldest winters in decades and with its starving and freezing passengers abandoned.

Rabbi Yisroel Edelman, the synagogue’s spiritual leader, declared, “The Young Israel of Deerfield Beach is looking forward to our partnership with the OU. The impact the OU has brought to Jewish communities throughout the country through its outreach and educational resources is enormous and we anticipate the same for our community in Deerfield Beach as well.”

Our goal here is to offer you recipes that you can make on Yom Tov with ingredients you might just have in the house. Enjoy and chag sameach!

Gardening can be a healthy, wholesome activity for the whole family.

Unfortunately, the probability is that he will not see a reason to change as he has been acting this way for a long time and clearly has some issues with respecting women.

All of these small changes work their way into the framework of the elephant and the rider because they are helping the elephant move forward.

It’s hard not to be intrigued by recipes with names like Thanksgiving Stuffing Soup, Braised Chicken with Rhubarb Gravy and Vidalia Onion Fritters with Sambal Yogurt Dip.

More Articles from Cheryl Kupfer
Kupfer-On-Our-Own-NEW

The message being conveyed is that without “flour,” without the means to support oneself and one’s family, one’s focus on Torah will be impeded by worry.

Kupfer-112114

Divorce from a vindictive, cruel spouse can be a lifelong nightmare when there are offspring.

Not knowing any better, I assumed that Molly and her mother must be voracious readers.

Unpleasant happenings are quickly discarded if they do not affect us directly.

I have always insisted that everything that happens to anyone or anything is min Shamayim.

It is so hurtful to heighten people’s sense of inadequacy and guilt in a matzav that is already horrendous and difficult to bear.

Make no mistake: in the wrong hands cars are weapons of mass destruction.

Where once divorce in heimische communities was relatively uncommon, nowadays every family has a son, daughter, sibling cousin who is divorced – sometimes twice or even three times!

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/magazine/the-shidduch-battlefield-part-i/2006/06/21/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: