Annoying Shidduchim Questions

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  • #1436426

    Curious1000
    Participant

    I just got a shidduchim call, as a bochur, and the questioner wanted to know if the bocher looked good. Hello? Why on earth would I know what you mean by that, or even notice such a thing? I’m a bochur! (And even if I would, why would you ask such a thing? Would your daughter not go out, even once, with my friend because someone in his yeshiva didn’t give a resounding enough yes? If she actually cares about something like that, well, she’ll notice on the first date, won’t she? It’s not like bochrim get their hair done or dress up or anything like that for dates.)

    On a similar note, why doesn’t anyone say who they are? (My mommy doesn’t let me talk to strangers, and my Rebbe doesn’t let me talk to girls, but I spoke to her anyway.) Can’t you at least tell me what yeshiva your sons go to, or where you live, or something so that I can judge what to explain and expound upon, if I can speak yeshivish or have to translate into english/heimish/Artscrollese/ebonics, and if telling you that he’s the top bochur in my yeshiva, a masmid utsum who learns at least 13 hours a day, should mean that you don’t have to ask if he wants a TV in his house (yes, that actually happened to me, in 2017! Maybe, just maybe, you could ask about a smartphone. But a TV? Nowadays?!?).

    And if you ask me to describe him to you instead of just asking your whole list of questions, and force me to do so even when I demur, please pay attention and don’t ask me about all of these things again when we get up to that point on your list! (I’ve always wanted to just say “see above”, just like I’ve always wanted to tell them that my mommy doesn’t let me talk to strangers, but I never worked up the courage.)

    And finally, when you talk to his friends, please ask us the questions that only we can answer – about his relationship with the Ribbono shel Olam, how he daven, learns, deals with stressful situations, where his bitachon is holding, if he has long-term friendships or has social issues, etc. – I’m always disappointed to be asked a list of questions that can be equally asked about a goy.

    Thanks, CR, for letting me rant, and I just want to let you all know that I haven’t given up hope yet (although I wonder how MY mother asks things…) – hey, my friend married the girl with the TV question!

    #1436438

    Joseph
    Participant

    I always make the caller give me an idea who they and their child are before answering shidduch questions.

    #1436444

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    You can’t tell when another person looks good?

    #1436472

    Curious1000
    Participant

    RY – We really don’t think of each other like that. I mean, yes, some people have obvious scars and things like that, but really, that’s all that any of us would notice.

    #1436608

    apushatayid
    Participant

    My policy. If you are going to ask personal questions to me about someone, I must know who you are before I answer. I have no problem answering generic questions such as how tall to someone who wont identify themselves, but thats about it.

    #1436619

    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    My friend used to respond to such questions that her son” looked like Dovid Hamelech but a bit taller..”

    #1436624

    Curious1000
    Participant

    I would try to insist on things like this, but whenever I would try, the person on the other end would get all offended and I would wonder if I was messing up a shidduch just because of the mother’s interrogationing habits, and people seem to take snarky responses as a refusal to answer and as the worst possible response…

    #1436629

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    You might not think of each other like that, but you can still answer the question.

    #1436631

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Asking, “with whom am I speaking” is not snarky.

    #1437184

    ilovetohock
    Participant

    Some lady asked me if he is good looking then is he tall or short, fat or skinny. Does he wear glasses or not. What color is his hair. All by the same lady and almost nothing on his ruchnios . How sad.

    #1437191

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    Maybe because you can tell at a glance whether someone is short or tall and whether they wear glasses, but you can’t tell another person’s ruchnios the same way?

    #1439132

    Effie
    Participant

    I don’t understand when women became the mediators of shidduchim, they don know hilkhos loshon horah and therefore they potentially break or make matches that are against halakha. In the Sefaradi world Men namely the fathers in consultation with the rabbanim would make the decisions. Is it any wonder that we have a huge shidduch crisis.

    #1439218

    WinnieThePooh
    Participant

    Effie:
    “I don’t understand when women became the mediators of shidduchim, they don know hilkhos loshon horah ”
    I take it you haven’t followed Lilmod Ulelameid’s threads here on the CR, or you would never have made that statement. And not just her- girl’s schools teach hilchot lashon hara and girls/women take part in mishmaros not to speak L”H etc. You can’t blame the shidduch crisis on women not knowing hilchos L”H.
    By the way, there are plenty of ashkenazi families where the father does the checking, and consults with his rav/rebbe about the shidduch. In general, however, it is easier for a father to check out a boy and a mother to check out a girl.

    #1439231

    Shopping613 🌠
    Participant

    Actually in seminary we had classes about loshon hora in connection to shidduchim and were given phamlets about it to give to our parents. My mom has gone to some speeches on the same topic.

    Back to the topic at hand, I think it’s stupid to ask if someone is good looking or not. Ask for a description. No one is going to say “Yeah he’s really bad looking” and I think the majority of the world fall into a grey area, not terribly drop dead gorgeous but not horribly ugly either.

    #1483177

    batHH
    Participant

    People who ask those questions do need to look at themselves in the mirror and do some soul-searching.
    I have had a woman in shul point to a new guy at our shul saying we should get a shidduch without either of us knowing that guy – JUST BECAUSE WE’RE BOTH NON-WHITE JEWS. I almost stopped breathing!

    #1483198

    Joseph
    Participant

    batHH: Who are “white Jews”? Sephardim? Ashkenazim?

    #1483203

    batHH
    Participant

    I don’t know why you had to spill ink on this which is not the main point at all, but Wikipedia is available at your fingertips.
    “White people is a racial classification specifier, used for people of Caucasian ancestry, with the exact implications dependent on context. The usage of “white people” or a “white race” for a large group of (mainly European) populations, defined besides other characteristics by their light skin and contrasting with “black people”, Native Americans, “colored” or “persons of color” originated in the 17th century. ”

    #1483215

    Midwest2
    Participant

    batHH – I can’t believe that I’m defending Joseph, but that’s a real question if you’ve ever lived in Israel. Jews from Europe used to refer to Jews from Arabic countries as “black,” and assumed they were all culturally and socially backward. When I was in Israel just after the SIx-Day War the ethnic divisions were really strong and divisive. I think things have normalized a bit, but it really bothered me then.

    I fully understand you’re being appalled by your friend’s statement. In a way it illustrates how we can become assimilated without even recognizing it. We’ve picked up some unfortunate attitudes from the non-Jews around us. Gently point out to your friend that people aren’t color-coded for personality, intelligence or ruchniyus, and that you find her assumptions hurtful (not to mention illogical).

    #1489013

    batHH
    Participant

    Thanks Midwest2, that’s a great input.

    #1493961

    Frank from NY
    Participant

    To the original poster… I think questions about looks are fine. According to the Jewish Press, when we become niftar, Hashem treats us leniently when we meet our maker if we treated other leniently in this world. We shouldn’t get offended at such general questions that are probably asked of everyone the questioner talks to.

    #1494794

    catch yourself
    Participant

    My personal favorite was when a potential mother in law asked me [about a good friend and former chavrusa and roommate], “How does he learn? Is he like Reb Boruch Ber, or more Reb Shimon’dik?”

    #1494833

    flowers
    Participant

    Josef: I always make the caller give me an idea who they and their child are before answering shidduch questions.

    Why do you need to know who they are or who their child is before answering shidduch questions?

    You should answer according to what you know about the person they are asking about. Not according to who is asking.

    #1494809

    yudel
    Participant

    And those that want a picture of the boy or the girl.
    Well let me tell you the great gorgeous girl is going to look like her mother looks now-so get used to it.

    #1494812

    yudel
    Participant

    Rev Yaakov Kamentzky, Z”L wanted assurances from me that I nor my children will marry shiduchim with money. We followed him to the tee. My great grandchildren and mechutonim love it that way.

    #1494864

    yudel
    Participant

    So ask for the picture of the mother.

    #1494898

    ratty
    Participant

    “Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder” . Thats all you need to tell the mother. also while on first glance a girl may not be “drop dead gorgeous” after going on one or two dates she may “grow on him”.

    #1494936

    TheMir
    Participant

    As a father of a girl in Shidduchim, when a shidduch was looking positive by both sides, I always made an excuse that I happened to be in Israel next week, would fly in for a day and would sit down for a chat with the boy.
    Yes its expensive and Im not rich and yes we dont want to preempt the boy into an impression based on the father, but in the crazy world we are in asking shidduch info is hardly any use, you get the same answers about boys that are miles apart. Unless you have someone who has your cause at heart it is really hard.
    Also the girls are shy to really prod about the boys standards and levels.

    #1494933

    gavriel613
    Participant

    Curious1000 – if your sister wanted to go out with your roommate and asked you if he was good-looking, would you not be able to say anything?

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