Frustrated Mothers of Girls: Can we hear your ideas

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    We all know NASI is a hot topic, and most of us know throwing money at the problem isnt going to solve the problem, so i would like this to be a forum for real live, mothers of girls, (or fathers) or girls themselves, IN THE PARSHA, or even shadchanim to suggest some real, hands on solutions to fixing this crisis.(not merely close the age gap) Without all the hocking about money, ponzi schemes etc. This is just to get the oilam in a dialogue as to what you think will help your daughter get a yes from a boy. (or multiple yeses should the need arise)


    Some of you will not like what I have to say. For starters, let’s stop segregating our boys and girls and let them develop friendships with each other at an early age. Let them have wholesome, normal activities under supervision, so that they know how to interact with each other from an early age. let them date WITHOUT a shadchan, beause they have met each other in shul, in the park, at Shabbos groups, in COLLEGE at frum organizations. Let them go on Shabbatons where they can meet each other without so called “facilitators.” If they are involved in fun activities they will have fun. Fun is a good thing. It means you are having a good time. When did having a good time becomea thing to avoid at all costs? OK, I know many of you are shaking your heads from side to side, “What IS this woman THINKING?!!!!???” I am thinking that we did not have such a crisis when I was growing up, and I grew up in a frum home.


    The younger the better. If you think its difficult when she’s young, it gets harder and harder, for many reasons. Sometimes girls do excellent Shidduchim when they’re older, but thats not the norm.

    Also imparting to our boys and girls that they wont be young forever. Often young people feel that theres no urgency to get married when something good comes along, because good offers will come along later too. Not always.

    oomis, in the crowds where there is mixed socialization, there are just as many, if not more, older singles.


    It’s a good idea. Sort of like Jonathan Swift’s proposal to end poverty in Ireland was a good idea.

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    The people who do as you recommend also have way too many singles, just check out the Upper West Side. So you’re asking people to violate their standards of tznius for no benefit.


    oomis, in the crowds where there is mixed socialization, there are just as many, if not more, older singles.”

    Show me the stats. I don’t believe that. And where they do not socialize at all, it certainly is MUCH harder to meet, and much harder to be comfortable when they actually DO meet.

    You and Daas are speaking of groups of people who really are not so religiously observant, IMO, not in the way we think of as such. Their lifestyle is more to the Conservative hashkafa or at most, VERY questionably moderdox. They may or may not be girls who daven every day or guys who attend minyan on a daily basis. The Upper West Side is a world unto itself. The singles who live there have developed a comfort zone with their SINGLE lifestyle, and I am not certain that lifestyle really is a truly Orthodox one in the sense of leading its constituents towards a toehles, nor do I think they are in any rush to commit to a married life.

    Your standards of tznius and mine differ only in my belief that the genders can and should be comfortably mixing in a frum environment under frum supervision, from the time they are very young. That is NOTHING like what is going on in the Upper West Side, where some people’s behavior is truly outrageous. I grew up int he environment that I described, and most of my friends, male and female remained Torah-observant Shomrei Mitzvos. And with two exceptions, we all got married, several to boys whom they met and dated in high school (mixed gender yeshivah, totally separate buildings for boys and girls).

    I KNEW there would be people who didn’t like what I said.



    That is not the crisis. The crisis is having more girls than boys for whatever reason it happened.

    Also the only evidence that your solution would change anything actually shows a negative effect, since the communities with more socialization actually have many more older singles, as DY pointed out.

    Now, you say that perhaps it would be different if we would socialize but still keep our other haskafos. Perhaps, perhaps not.

    So, since there is no problem to solve, and the solution is pretty ungrounded, I think I’ll do things the way I always did.


    oomis , did you ever see Fiddler on the roof? Remember when the old shadchan /yenta hears that the maidel went to “Play” with the yingel, she says “from such playing comes more children”.

    Mixing them is dangerous. You’re asking them to put their head in a lions mouth and ask for mercy.


    Hi guys! long time no read!

    The real answers is advertising and networking.

    Not harassing or Dreing people A Kup!

    Instead of being ashamed and walking out your house with your head down hoping not to get that look you feel you’re getting, like “Oy Nebach that Yentle has two older girls nebach”

    Just kindly mention to people you meet, after exchanging small talk of course, that you have a wonderful child that’s single and available, if they would by any chance know of a nice suitable match?

    For Instance.. you’re shopping at Pomegranate (they better pay me for this plug) and you pick up a certain cut of meat and this nice woman comes over to you

    Stranger; “Excuse me” sorry to bother you but I was wondering, what is that cut of meat called? is it good?

    You; Oh it’s called ***** It’s absolutely delicious!!

    Stranger; really?

    You; Yup, I make it all the time, I have this wonderful recipe I got from my SIL, its very easy, really,….

    potential friend (previous stranger)can I have it?

    You; sure!!

    where you from etc.. yada-yada babble-babble etc..

    you; btw have a wonderful child that’s single and available,

    by any chance do you know of a nice suitable match?

    Potential shadchan/previously stranger; “it’s so funny you asked cuz I have this wonderful neighbor who has this wonderful, kind,

    boy who’s looking for a girl like your daughter.

    Weddings, grocery, airplane, train, bus, wherever, at shul, (before or after davening.

    You never really know, but it’s the best way.

    Just please don’t harass, or force it, just be cool.

    You can thank me later, or don’t. Just try it.


    P.S. If I actually though Pomegranate would send me some,

    I’d list the cut of meat along with the recipe. 🙂


    I live in the UWS, along with many people who began dating only on shiduchim and after years of frustration and waiting for shadchanim or strangers to control their destiny moved on to smarter and more effective dating. I know many, many couples who are in very happy marriages and who would have never had a shot of meeting each other if they only relied on matchmakers. The singles on the UWS do more chessed than you could begin to imagine and most people I know here are very concerned with spiritual growth. Also, the fallacy that people move here, stay here, die here is just that, a fallacy. Most singles up here do get married, often to people they meet here, but new and younger people move in all the time, so the numbers stay high. The ones that don’t get lucky enough to find their bashert find other ways to contribute to the world and the community and they do it with all of their heart and soul. The concept of keeping boys and girls apart in every situation and then crying about a shiduch crisis is completely ridiculous. Are they children or adults? Adults get married, children should not. If you think they are old enough to get married and you’ve done your job as a parent and raised them right, trust them that they are capable of talking to each other and using their own instincts to decide if they met their other half. It makes no sense that at a wedding, when they all look great and are happy and it’s completely supervised they aren’t allowed to mingle. Also, to the woman who knocked the whole UWS, if you want to see shameful behavior, you need to see how people from a very strict upbringing behave after they get divorced. They blame everybody for the marriage but themselves, they claim they were young and naive or forced into it and they party like a public school teenager because they never got to be one.


    OOMIS!!! They actually did that, some time ago. 2,000 years ago to be exact. There’s a gemarah somewhere that says in the time of R. Yochanan, Kedusha was so great, boy and girls would play together and not sin. So I guess if you consider us just as holy, it would be no problem. We’re holier than Rishonim, Achronim, Rambam, Gra, Chasam Sofer etc.

    However I have a gut feeling that we ought to follow the plan and bidding of the Master Planner, ?? ????? ????? ???? – ????? ?????. I think one of the early poskim explicitly write ???? ???? ???? ??????. HaShem know the psyche of BOTH versions of humans, He knows best how to keep them healthy (and holy). Apart.


    This is Midwesterner’s wife (maybe one day I’ll figure out how to create my own file here 🙂 )

    When my oldest daughter was dating, a friend gave me great advice. Do the work yourself. Get names of boys from various sources and track them down, get people to red your child to them. Find connections to those boys. It used to be that girls waited for the boys to find them. I have found that nowadays, there are plenty of girls’ mothers who are doing their research about the boys and once they find the boy, it’s easier to convince a shadchan to red it, since you did half the homework for them.

    A rebbetzin once told my friend who had an older daughter, that she should make some concrete hishtadlus every week. She should make a phone call to a shadchan, to a friend in a city with a yeshiva, a relative who is a rebbe in another yeshiva… There are always connections to be made, you just have to be creative.

    Certainly daven and find zechusim. Another friend organized a machsom lifi for single girls with hope it would be a zechus for her daughter as well. When you do mitzvohs, say it should be a zechus for your daughter.

    Yet another friend had a daughter who married older. When her children would get into an argument, she would ask them to be mevater and say that keeping quiet creates an eis ratzon and that they should use it to ask Hashem for their sister to find her zivug.

    In other words, short of investing in the Nasi program(especially if you can’t afford it) do your own homework both spiritually and physically.

    and physically doesn’t only mean paying a fancy shadchan. Although I found my way very taxing, I felt at least I was involved in the process.

    The more homework you do about boys, the more you get a feel of who is out there.

    You can also have your daughter and her friends look out for each other. How many shidduchim have been made when a girl didn’t think a boy on a date was her type, but she red the boy afterward to her friend and they got engaged?

    It has been said that most shadchanim come from friends and family. In my family, my parents made shidduchim for their nieces and our aunts and uncles made ours. A lady I know has her second daughter engaged quite young k’ah. She told me her first son in law made the shidduch for her second daughter!

    Loyal Jew

    Part of the answer is to get rid of modern influences and negiyos. First, boys and girls should not be allowed to turn down shidduchim “just because.” If the parents, the boy’s rav, and the shadchen agree that it’s a good match, that should be that. Second, questions of finances should be handed to a beis din that can do hefker beis din. It will decide how much support the kalah’s parents will give on the basis of the boy’s learning. Do these two things and the crisis will disappear.


    It is not a shidduch crisis per-se. It is a yiddishkeit crisis. Perhaps if we would revise our values, lots of issues would be resolved. Here are some examples: 1)The obligation to support a family is the boy’s not the girl’s. 2)Sheitels that look like human hair are not tznius(this is a serious issue of das yehudis) 3)The feminist agenda has influenced many girls. They want a career, and to soothe their conscience they say they want to support a husband who is learning. 4)Boys should learn practical Halacha and sincere Avodas Hashem. 5)Do boys and girls really have to go to Eretz Yisrael before they get married? 6)Parents should look for what’s best for their child, not for something to boast of among family and friends (and enemies). Yichus, money, and status will not make your children happier. These and other issues should be addressed and corrected. Hashem is sending us a message. Let us improve ourselves, not try to come up with ideas on how to get around our own problems.


    As I see it there are 2 problems.

    1. Nobody wants to give up on anything of there ‘perfect’ list..

    2. boys, girls, and parents have there priorities mixed up!

    I am a shadchan and I hear this all the time..

    He went to the wrong Brisk..

    I need a girl from a chassidishe school..(there are chassidish girls in BY too)..

    He wears the wrong hat.. the family this.. the family that..

    we got to look past the clothes and see if the person is right!

    and the mentality of course..those are priorities! midos goes without say!


    OK, so nobody likes her suggestion. Any others?

    I have no kids in, or imminenetly approaching this stage in life, so have no first hand experience. Empirical evidence however, coming from redting shidduchim, shows that just getting someone to agree to see someone is rather difficult. Many assumptions and leaps of faith about other peoples families, attitudes and behaviors are made based often on heresay and (usually biased) judgement of other people.

    Nanacy Reagen said, just say no, in shidduchim we have taken it to an extreme.


    Look to out-of-towners, and network widely. This may not come easily to some people.. but there are many hidden gems among boys – and girls – whose parents are not necessarily plugged in.

    Try to find contacts in yeshivas or schools.

    moi aussi

    In Chassidic circles there’s no shidduch crisis, boys are married off at age 18/19, they don’t go on prolonged dates, they trust their parents, and the system works.


    The Rabbonim can be Mattir the Cherem Derabbenu Gershom. Some wealthy men can afford several wives. Many singles have money of their own. Sometimes where a woman has fertility issues, having several wives should be welcome by all.

    Especially in the US and Israel. The Cherem wasn’t meant for those places. America wasn’t even discovered in his time.

    True, if the Chilonim are deriding us for our busses they will have a field day with this Hetter – but who cares what they say. We have a problem and we must find creative out-of-the-box solutions.


    I think it is important that at all levels – high school, seminary and beyond – we begin to inculcate girls with strong doses of the hashkafa that it is fine to marry a good, strong working boy, So many girls are very idealistic but really don’t have what it takes to really sacrafice for kollel life. There are very good working boys out there and it’s not a “boosha” to marry them!


    In Chassidic circles there’s no shidduch crisis, boys are married off at age 18/19, they don’t go on prolonged dates, they trust their parents, and the system works.

    It starts with a Chassidic culture, which includes trusting the Rebbe implicitly. There is a reason why the Litvish have not attempted this.

    The solution (IMHO) is to marry boys right out of high school, after a year in EY, just like the girls.



    I completely agree with you.


    In Chassidic circles there’s no shidduch crisis, boys are married off at age 18/19, they don’t go on prolonged dates, they trust their parents, and the system works.

    I don’t think your utopian view is precisely accurate.


    As my wife and I are both shadchanim, we have some experience in the “Parsha” its not a shidduch crisis, but rather a mental crisis.

    @mom12 – you are saying good/correct thoughts, but in that world its MUCH easier said than done. For 18 years the boys/girls grow up in a world where unfortunately certain superficial items ARE the essence of life. Its not fair to ask of the kids dating to now think otherwise!

    @scissors, I LOVE the Fiddler reference, but an even better Fiddler reference is the “Do you Love me” song. THAT should be required reading/listening for EVERY marriage in ANY circle!! Far to enough in any circle, people look for “sparks/love/romance”, etc which obviously is important but don’t really exist, nor can be defined. But you end up with people searching for something which is artificial.

    And then you have the “frum” girl who is looking for a guy who doesn’t exist. Meaning she wants a guy who will learn, but work, but only work b/c he has to, but love learning, won’t watch TV, but will let her watch movies, that will make aliyah and be a Rebbe while she bakes challas all day.

    Then you have those couples that date for 2-3 months and ONLY THEN realize that one of them doesn’t like the other’s personality! What were they doing for all this time?

    I don’t claim to have any solutions other than to let people just be themselves (if possible) and teach them whats important and what isn’t. Parents do need some of the blame if their childrens’ Hashkafos and values are warped and fantasy like.

    Hatzlacha to all those out there!


    IMO having been involved in shadchanus for years, the problem is parents with lists and if one thing is not on the list, the shidduch is off. In my time if the boy and girl were fine menchen the shidduch was redt. Nowadays if the the girls grandfather didn’t go to the right kindergarten the shidduch is off. very stupid. Another issue I have is that we have Touro College which is full of potential shidduchs and keeps the girls and boys in seperate buildings. I’m not saying it is for everyone, but surely a Rav can come up with a way for some boys and girls to meet informally and see if they are interested in each other.


    jakyweb – Bad Idea.


    There are plenty older chassidish singles, where by now, their parents “brainwashed”them as to what they want or “need”..

    What is wrong with marrying someone that was engaged before (yes one may do investigating).. or a boy more than 5yrs older than girl? Is it so bad? Chassidish parents need to open up a bit and not worry what the neighbors or relatives say and worry about there own family.

    there is one thing that really gets me. When a parent calls a friend or relative to ask information about someone they may know, the person being asked won’t give informational facts they will only say ‘oh this family or this boy is not for you..dont ask me why.. just stay away..’ Does this person really know what you need or what you are looking for or perhaps you will look away at certain details for whatever reason?? Give the faacts! let the girl, boy, or parent decide if it’s suitable or not..


    Now that all the frustrated mothers heard different ideas..will they change the attitude?

    Let us know!


    OOMIS, you’ve got my vote as well. And here’s why:

    Ask around among your peers, or pretty much any couples who are in their 40’s and upwards. How did they meet? Many couples met through a friend, at a function, in college, in shul and so forth. And they have good heimishe homes and families, despite the fact that there was no official shaddchun, their families did not have to submit to investigations by the CIA, FBI and IRS, and the moms didn’t spend weeks “referencing”. Are there fewer divorces among the younger generation then there were then? Especially for the more modern folks, they really should have more options.


    My suggestion, step out of Chelm solutions and work with practical ones, they work.


    My remarks about many singles in the UWS, comes from personal knowledge. I have friends whose children live there, and my kids are acquainted with many of the young people there who actually do NOT fit the description I gave, but are ehrliche, frum, spiritual kids, who DO want to get married. They have all expressed their regret at moving to the UWS thinking that it would be a place to make conenctions, but they see what I described, that too many people have fallen into a complacent rut of lving the UWS life, and don’t feel so inclined to date for tachlis. If that offends you, I do apologize, it is an observation, and not my intent to insult someone who lives there.


    @Dont Worry – I did the single thing for a while also, and then woke up one day and made a practical checklist of what I NEEDED in a girl vs what I WANTED.

    It’s not about judging anyone, its about hard cold facts of people being so confused as to what they want, which is clearly reflected in their answers and approach to dating.

    I know, i know, every single person feels like they “are different and unique” from every prior match made on the planet, and that they are the first one to ever go on a date in the history of mankind.

    Again – we can debate this left and right untill next Chanuka, this is a classic Shabbos Table discussion/topic that really has no right/wrong answer or end.

    But to blame the system/game is one thing, the singles themselves also deserve part of the blame.

    Think about how many times you turned down a shidduch and for what reasons, and let me know how many of those reasons were concrete/important. If they were real concerns/issues with your dates which are recurring, then you are being fed dates from the wrong sourcee. If not, they sell nice mirrors in Chelm or elsewhere.

    K, back to Chelm for me

    oot for life

    General rule: if you are emotionally invested in something you won’t act or think logically, so with all due respect to the OP this topic does not need to be addressed by mothers or daughters or shaddchanim, but rabbonim who have a all encompassing view (ie maintaining halacha and yiddish values)

    and to the one mention of polygamy… a mormon could be your next president


    Hi GeshmakeMan.

    Awesome posts!

    I read them with great interest and learned a lot.

    Thank you.


    Here are some positives from the UWS

    3) Older singles tend to become more educated and have better jobs. When they get married they have less of a financial burden which makes for less stressful marriages and less stress on the organizations that assist our community.

    5) The UWS has its share of commitment phobes and crazies, but most of the singles here are very aware that they are single and would be better off married. For the most part they work very hard on becoming better people so that Hashem will send them the right person and so they can be the right person as well. Just like any struggle, you can weaken or grow stronger in emunah and in midos, being single is a great way to learn emunah and strengthen your relationship with Hashem. I would go so far as to say being single long enough to feel pain and motivation to grow is a bracha.


    Every person IS different and unique and every match is different, but of course we all have things in common or nobody would be compatible. Our uniqueness is what creates balance in the world, if we all had the same talents and interests the world would be a very boring and unbalanced place.

    Of course singles are very capable of getting in their own way too, everybody makes bad decisions sometimes that have a negative impact and that includes singles. But if the community truly wants to be helpful then they have a responsibility to look for solutions that are helpful and sensible, not ones that make the problem worse or are hurtful. This is not singles vs. the community, singles are a part of the community, we should all be working in harmony not in a combative way. If the singles are saying certain things harm rather than help, believe them, they live it and are asking you to listen with an open heart and not with judgement.


    Good points. My own marriage reflects that. My wonderful husband, is in no way a shidduch I would have sought when looking for one. He is a BT, of poshuteh parents, made a so-so living, and could not sing on key, much less well (this was something very important to me when I was much, mcuh younger). So what I got was BT who is totally dedicated to his observance of Torah, whose parents were a second set of parents to me, and truly loved me (and I them), we learned to manage on his salary plus what I earned part-time while mostly being home to raise my children, and as to the singing, Of my five children three have magnificent voices (one son is a chazzan, like my father O”H), and the other two still sound pretty good when they sing together with us, anyway.

    How did we meet? I worked for a Jewish book publisher and he walked in the door one day to pick up some seforim for the man who was helping him to learn. Go know this was my basherte.


    @BTguy – thank, hope I helped! 🙂

    @Dont worry – sorry if I was harsh and made this personal, wasn’t mean to be a direct attack on you!

    But BH you sound like you are an honest dater which is most important. Its also important that you are honest with yourself and have a good feel of where you are as a person/religously.

    I know this sounds simple but you’ld be surprised at how many people have different standards for themselves and their date/potential spouse.

    That and the awareness/realization of what marriage/love is all about. I don’t mean to oversimplify, but aside from physical attraction, it comes down to two people respecting each other, mutual core goals and values, and wanting to come home to each other/family iyH every night after work.

    Where the boy/girl went to yeshiva/seminary 5-10 years ago is a great fact for Jewish Geography but completely irrelevant to the pair going out. That and their “zionistic/american/harry sounding” first name is also trivial, and yet people place these as the most important things in what to look for!

    That and people looking for people who are “frum but with it”, a phrase that can be interpreted only 1,000,000 different ways but yet no one knows what this means. Somewhere along the road, being “Frum” became mutually exclusive to being “fun” and “normal”. Just another example of how people live their lives by words/phrase that can’t define, but they just “know” what it “means”.




    ok so i hear some good answers. but to those bashing us for not networking i am going to tell you first hand, you can be a serious networker, completely plugged in, meyuchasdik thru the roof, and with money to offer and you still cant get a yes. so there is a crisis out there. and i m not just laying the blame on other people. the crisis exists.


    what if a couple dates for a while, really likes eachother but feels the relationship isnt “growing”/ the “spark” isnt there… should they give up? or give it more time because they like eachother?


    @RC – There is no Chiyuv to network and there isn’t any perfect system in any circle, religion, etc.

    If I may ask you a question now, you mentioned networking, plugged in (not sure into where, but we’ll assume somewhere), yechus, and money.

    How come you didn’t mention anything about the boy/girl you are trying to setup? Who are you trying to setup? Your money/yechus, or the girl/boy? How come you haven’t mentioned ANYTHING about the person?

    @pooky1 – can you please define “growing/spark”? If they like each other and have core/important qualities/values in common, respect each other, have attraction, – explain to me what else is missing? Think about it, let us know please!


    mayb we are all just expecting this unrealistic “spark” or bell to go off when we “find the one”. like what if the relationship hits a stale point… yes you are still looking foward to seeing the person but it isnt growing with each date…


    mayb we are all just expecting this unrealistic “spark” or bell to go off when we “find the one”. like what if the relationship hits a stale point… yes you are still looking foward to seeing the person but it isnt growing with each date…


    But you SHOULD be looking forward to seeing that person each time. That IS the spark.


    rc: if no girls are getting yesses, can i ask a simple question…]

    Who are the boys dating???????

    Do we agree that every guy who goes on a date goes with a girl.

    Or do you not agree on that point?


    again, here is my take on the numbers game. The target boy in litvishe circles has always been 23. That desirable 23 yr old is sought after by 19 20 21 22 23 yr old girls. that s the problem in my eyes. so yes they all go out with ONE girl. but they HOLD thirty girls on their list waiting for yes es. and the pool of girls is too big because of the various ages. SO either the yeshivas give up their guys at 21 22 whcih we know isnt gonna happen, or the girls go in the freezer until they are 22 which also is never gonna happen, so after all is said and done, davening for a yeshua is the only seicheldik answer here. MORE MONEY FOR SHADCHANUM is NOT>>>


    refer to my comment above. the truth hurts


    Dont worry..U really got it straight and with this attitude you should find your basherte soon,

    My daughter needed someone ‘ot of the box’ so when people mentioned different shidduchim to me I said it wouldnt work so they said I was being picky..I was not, I knew what was good for my children-not for me- I was not looking for trouble !or for a friend for myself and on that note a chevrusa for my husband, which a lot of people do.



    rc: se my response on the other thead. Silly to post on multiple theads. But as i (anc DY) wrote, your analysis of the cause is incorrect, your analsis of the solution is partially correct, your analasis of imlementation (the only “seicheldik answer”) is a cop out.

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