Being rigid

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    Is it possible to be rigid your whole life, find a wife, raise children, and be happy?

    I mean it must be. There are plenty if rigid-thinking frum people. I’m guessing that their world works for them.

    I know someone in shidduchim who is having a hard time finding his zivug/beshert.*

    Allegedly his dates don’t see their role in life as being here to 100% serve Hashem and that’s it.

    Most either use the internet or tv, and then there is the part of him needing to be physically attracted to the ones who don’t.

    Someone close to him tells him that he is too rigid and needs to live in the grey. However this person is formerly frum and left the frum world because of the rigidity. That said, this person’s advice about his perspective has merit, of which I can somewhat agree with in this case.

    But maybe the conflict is because he’s living and working in the two worlds.

    He wants a tight-knit Torah Hashem Mitzvot everything community without being bombarded with any secular anything. That way he can focus on Hashem.

    Wondering though… what kind of feedback can I offer?

    On one hand I want to say, and did say, that living in the grey is where life happens. Rabbonim deal with grey.

    At the same time, I also said that maybe he would be happy and deserves to give himself a chance to live in a community that he is craving.

    I also offered a different perspective on Internet use. Maybe it’s a way for her to connect and get information on Torah. By the time they are married with kids, she may be using the Internet to look up strollers and ask other moms questions.

    —-He said that he doesn’t want to give in… He is afraid to let things drop just to get married. If he is accepting internet now then where does that lead? Then some of the girls wear pants. What else will he have to compromise on and reduce his service to Hashem?

    He is very high spiritually and really serves Hashem with joy.

    I suggested finding a shadchan. After everything I feel like he could benefit from a professional’s guidance here.

    Thank you 🙂

    *May he marry his highest soulmate speedily (making this question obsolete) have great shalom bayis and nachos always.

    Lilmod Ulelamaid

    LB- I see my life as being 100% to serve Hashem and so do many people I know. There are plenty of girls like that in the world, so that shouldn’t stop him from getting married. It sounds like he is just going out with the wrong type of girls.

    I’m not sure if “living one’s life 100% to serve Hashem” necessarily equals “no internet use”, although they probably go together most of the time.

    I definitely don’t think that “living one’s life 100% to serve Hashem” has to mean not recognizing that there are grey areas in life.

    One grey area might be that while a particular person may be living his/her life 100% to serve Hashem, he/she feels that he/she needs to use Internet.

    In any event, for this guy, living his life 100% to serve Hashem means not using Internet, and I don’t think he should compromise on that.

    Sometimes a person may have to recognize that their spouse could be different than them is some ways and that is okay. But internet use is something that affects the whole household, so if that is important to him, I don’t think he should compromise on it.

    I’m assuming that you are talking about girls who want to have internet in the house. But if you are referring to a girl who has the same basic goals in life as him, but does use internet now as a single girl but is willing to give it up when she gets married, then that is different. Likewise, if she uses it at work to some extent but is careful and again, is willing not to have it in the home.

    In general, the extent to which someone should compromise on religious matters depends on so many factors – his age, how long he has been dating, whether it is reasonable to expect that he will find what he has been looking for, etc. It is a very individual decision involving many factors so I don’t know if anyone could really advise you regarding what someone else should do.

    I am wondering why he is having a hard time finding girls who don’t use internet? Is he in the wrong circles? Are the shadchanim not getting what he is looking for? Is he possuling any girl who ever uses internet (as opposed to girls who insist on having it in the home)?

    jewish source

    Too Rigid is usually hiding something Someone that is truly living a true Torah life is a pleasure to be around

    Lilmod Ulelamaid

    Jewish source – that is true, but it doesn’t sound like this guy is too rigid or is unhappy. Not using internet is not being rigid if not using internet makes you happier. I think that LB thinks that it is rigid because for her it would be, but that doesn’t mean it is for him.

    Personally, I am much happier and feel much free’er and connected to Hashem when I am in a house or room where there is no internet.

    When someone is closed off from any secular things, they are actually much free’er and more open and less rigid, because they are more open to Torah and Avodas Hashem.

    But that is only the case if it is real.


    Thanks LU for your advice and perspective 🙂

    Actually I understand about the internet and tv. Personally I don’t want a tv in my house. It’s not something that I want to nor b’esrat Hashem will compromise on for marriage. I want to be with someone who is on the same page here.

    As for internet, being against it isn’t rigid. I offered another perspective, since maybe the internet would be used as a tool to help her work or get information when she’s raising their children, with G-d’s help. Yet, if that’s not okay with him, then I get that too.

    I agree about the part where he is not meeting the right girls. I think a change of crowd and maybe location may make him feel normal and feel like he can grow in the direction that his community is leaning.


    What do you mean by *possuling*, please?


    Sorry this sounds like I am prejudice and labeling frum Jews who are very makpid on their chumrot as being “rigid.”

    The feedback that he’s heard has been that he’s rigid. It’s more than the details here though. At the same time, the rigidity is what it looks like when he’s more frum than his peers.

    If he was in an environment that was as committed as he was to Yiddishkeit, he would likely feel like he belongs and may need to step up his life. At least that’s how it seems. Instead of having conversations on what he needs to relax on, maybe he can spend his time growing in Torah and attaining higher levels.


    It sounds like he’s either fooling himself or living in the wrong community.


    Randomex: That was very insightful.

    Thank you

    Lilmod Ulelamaid

    LB- thanks for clarifying. I’m sorry for thinking you were being close-minded.

    After I thought about it, I could hear what you are saying. The truth is that the one time I can remember specifically being told about a guy that he is makpid on no-internet (and no-sheitels as well), I did get nervous.

    Even though those are both issues that I either agree with or am fine with, I was concerned that the fact that the person redting the shidduch made a point of mentioning these things meant that she was concerned that it showed something about his general personality/mentality. It was also the way she said it, and she later confirmed that was her point. Meanwhile, during the checking process I found out that he really is overly-rigid.

    The point is that while there is nothing wrong (and even a lot right) with not wanting internet in the home, I can see where in SOME cases the fact that they are making an issue of this CAN be a sign of over-rigidity. (but of course each case has to be looked into).

    A lot has to do with the person’s age and community though. As an older single, I don’t even bring up the issue of internet when I speak to shadchanim. I feel like it’s hard enough to find a normal older guy who doesn’t watch tv/movies.

    Shadchanim will even try getting me to compromise on tv/movies. That I won’t compromise on, b”n, but even though I really don’t want internet in my future home, I feel like it’s something to discuss with the guy as opposed to being a deal-breaker for a first date. I don’t know if I’m right, but that is my approach.

    In this case, based on your last post, it sounds like the guy may be suffering from baal teshuva syndrome, and like he would be better off in a Frumer community, where he can just be himself and won’t have to feel like he is always fighting the tide. He may need therapy too (like most people in the world.)

    Is it possible for him to move to another community? Is that an option for him? Maybe Eretz Yisrael would be good for him? Or Lakewood (l’havdil)?


    Thanks for the feedback.

    Leaving it up to Hashem with blessings for the best.

    Lilmod Ulelamaid

    “Leaving it up to Hashem with blessings for the best.”

    That sounds like the best idea! 🙂


    Thanks ~ Agreed 🙂


    I think there’s a story about Rav Shach advising someone against

    a shidduch with a boy who had made certain such conditions known,

    saying that if he felt the need to make such statements before

    marriage, he wasn’t very wise – these things could be arranged

    after marriage, and his wife would respect his wishes. I don’t

    know if this applies to all frum societies and in every generation…

    Lilmod Ulelamaid

    Randomex – that clearly can’t apply to everything. There are things that a person has to make clear beforehand, and things they don’t.

    I think Rav Yaakov Kaminetzky zatsal told a boy that the fact that a girl read the New York Times shouldn’t be a reason not to date her, but on the other hand, he felt that t.v. should be a deal breaker.

    These things depend on the issue, the person, and as you pointed out, the generation and society.

    Of course, it’s possible that today, Rav Yaakov would say that the New York Times should be a deal breaker. Reading the NY times in 2017 is very different than reading the NY Times in the 1950’s, 60’s, or 70’s (or whenever the story took place).

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