Shidduch Info- “check ’em out!”

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    Recently somebody complained to me about the trials and tribulations of being in the parsha. Here you are, a human being, wanting sincerely to find your zivug so that you can continue the link in the chain.

    Now, how many people here can say they NEVER did anything wrong, or just stupid?!?!?!? Not too many. Well we all make mistakes… at least most of us.

    When it comes to shidduchim, all of a sudden, this person’s entire lifestory get set out on the mizbeach ready to burn! It’s a Pele that anyone gets married!

    Well, the truth is, I am a big advocate of major checking out because there are alot of things that need to be sorted to make a shidduch and marriage work. Ok, so you get a list of people to call and check out Girl A. Now, let’s say you hear that Girls A used to go to Camp ABC when she was a young teenager. You have a niece who has a friend that went to that same camp. So you decide you’ll find out about Girl A from your niece’s friend. Mind you either your nieces friend didnt really know Girls A, or she didnt like her, or Girl A in those days was really a mess or wasn’t “with it” but has yet become a totally different person. CAN YOU RELY ON THE INFORMATION?!? IS THAT FAIR?!

    I know that I have been called about people that I either knew of, or used to know, but have not been up to date on- it has gotten very awkward b/c i Pashut didn’t have the answers to put a person in a good light. I also had unfortunately the opposite. Someone asked me about a girl I knew back in 7th grade. She was really a great girl and I went on describing her as I had remembered. Little did I know that she had gone far from her tzniusdik ways of old and I ended up with a very upset candidate. I did inform them to check more and not rely on my word b/c I could only talk from way back when. Unfortunately they did not check more.

    My point is tho… when the info comes through- can we really rely on it. We need to say that we aren’t qualified to give it and when finding out we need to not take everything as fact! If you here that a girl doesn’t dress nice or put together or to what you think your families “class” standards maybe don’t be so quick to accept it b/c you may have spoken to someone that…. or the girl may have changed….. etc

    Any opinions?!?


    The truth is, most of what you will find out about a girl or guy, is what is discussed on the dates. If you’re nervous about a certain dress code, see for your self how she/he dresses on the date. If you’re curious about her past, then start up a conversation about schools and camps the both of you attended. A lot can be determined by the first or second date, depending on how aggressive or outgoing you both are. The shidduch scene is a tough one, and I feel for those who have to endure it, especially when it takes a long while to find your besherit, and having to turn someone down, or be rejected yourself, but don’t despair, there is someone out there for you. I can’t sympathize completely with you, or others who have to deal with all this (Hubby was my first date), but I have people who I am very close to going through it. Some have been out with over 100 men (not exaggerating), but they DID find their besherit, they have children together and are very happy.

    You also have to realize that many lies get spread around about people because of what someone supposedly “heard.” Also, there may be things you don’t find out till you are engaged or married. There is no 100% fool proof way of knowing someone completely before you marry, or knowing if the marriage is going to last. You just have to have faith in Hashem, and that He is guiding you in the right direction.

    just me

    OMG! From 7th grade! What relevence has a 12 year old to an 18 year old? Those are the years of change. Very few people are the same as a child and a young adult. Some people dig waaaay to much! Someone told me they feel dirty when they finish checking into a shiduch. I didn’t have the nerve to ask what are they asking that they feel that way?


    Just me – the info they are doing does not have to be negative but some people just feel uncomfortable or dirty to use another word when delving into another person’s life. Please remember this is being done to ensure that they obtain correct and detailed information – a shidduch is for life


    My main point… maybe was not brought out so clear b/c it got buried in the details.

    How much CAN we and SHOULD we be mekabel (we meaning parents checking out or ppl checking for themselves) when it comes to information?!? Especially when we ask ppl we assume knows the candidate well but may very well not!

    Attention mothers— Are you really hearing what your son needs when you check out?!

    Are you making sure that the info you heard can be backed up? OR is it one person’s opinion?!


    I dont think things from elementry school are important but in some shidduchim there are red flags even then. I unfortuantly know of someone that if he/she found out what he/she knows now a lot of tzaros could have been prevented. I dont think people should specifically ask about girls or boys when they were younger but if they can get the information why not? Again I’m not saying to take it so seriously because yes most people do change but if you hear something alarming, dont ignore it just because it was ‘a few years ago’.


    I understand it is important to check the shidduch out, but sometimes it gets to be too much, and people who dig too deep discourage me from trying to make shidduchim for their children. no wonder their kids are getting older and still not getting married.


    How about working backwards, from where the boy or girl is now? By the time one gets to some so-called red flags in the earlier years, one can then ask appropriate people if this is behavior that was outgrown or if it should still be of concern. I put it this way because by the time one digs that deep, and finds red flags, hopefully there are enough positive things to outweigh it, and lead to overlooking.


    When people in their 30s want to know how someone spent their summers as a teenager, it tells me they are not interested in getting married or looking for excuses. Who cares where someone went to camp, seminary or high school when they are now 34 years old! People change over the course of a year, let alone 15!

    If people would stop asking stupid quesitons prior to going out we wouldnt have a “crisis”.


    Has anyone noticed that potential shidduchim are getting checked deeper and deeper, and yet this has done nothing to alleviate the growing number of older singles and divorced couples?

    Yes, things need to be checked, questions asked. But to what point? I know of a wonderful boy who shoplifted ONE pack of gum ONCE when he was FOURTEEN. At 23, he is still having trouble, because of this ONE indiscretion as young teenager. It’s one thing if there was a shoplifting problem spanning several years, but doing something stupid once as a teenager consigns him to everlasting bachelorhood? I know of a wonderful tzniusdik girl who made ONE poor choice ONE night of the summer at FIFTEEN, by getting drunk and acting up. Now, at 22- problems finding a shidduch. Again- a drinking problem, I understand; but ONE bad decision at a phase of life when most people do stupid things, and she loses er right to ever be an Eim B’Yisrael?

    Not only do people change, but if we try to make sure every detail is perfect before the shidduch even happens, then we send our children the message that it is possible to marry a perfect person and thereby have a perfect marriage. The day they figure out that their spouse has FLAWS, and that marriage is NOT perfect, it is a most terrible shock. And we wonder why so many young couples divorce, R”L!


    To sum up. Kol Hamosif, Gorea. Stop asking so many questions, and go out on a date.


    its always important to check out BEFORE, and not after.


    I know this is a bit late, but I saw this post and have a question pertaining to it. When questioning about a potential, certain issues get surfaced, such as family members. What relevance do siblings have on a potential shidduch? If he/she has one “interesting” relative does that mean that this potential is forever doomed to be single? Or that they have to marry someone who is “interesting”, even though they are perfectly kosher? This could be refering to someone who has a sibling that is off the derech, mentally or physically handicapped, ill, went to a seminary/yeshivah that is not “right” for that shidduch (a more modern seminary, for example, when the potential shidduch is very BY), or just not the norm.


    “What relevance do siblings have on a potential shidduch?”

    Chazal clearly state that a man should look at a potential brides brothers, as her children will resemble their character traits. So yes there certainly is relevance. (And yes there are exceptions.)


    havesomeseichel: siblings are actually one of the only things chazal say should be checked into. obviously some degree of rational thought processes have to be used. if one sibling went off the derech,and the others are fine upstanding ehrlich jews, then there may not be so much of a problem. if a majority are, i would say more looking into needs to be done.


    Thanks for answering me so quickly. I know of a certain potential who was read from a wide variety of ill-suited prospects due to this “sibling issue”. There was one child in the family that was different from the rest of the family but the potential had a hard time trying to find someone.

    From the potential’s perspective though, what can be done? Is there any way to combat the labeling that was done, besides showing through thier actions that they are different? The problem in this family is that there are not so many children in it, so each one, so looking at the majority would be an issue.


    To me there are only a few real red flags. How does the father treat the mother and vice versa? How do they treat their children? Do people in their community have MANY positive things to say about them or are they keep-to-themselves types? How does the young man or woman in question act towards wait staff in a restaurant, or to tradespeople, store clerks,etc? How do they act around little children? These are important questions to seek out the answers – not which summer camp they went to, or whether or not a seminary was too “modern.”


    you know these days, I don’t know how much looking into siblings really helps. So many chashuv families have a kid or 2 that went off. when you have a family with 12 kids…. um which kids do you look at cuz they are all bound to be some what different. yes there is some clues about the person by looking at their family but dont ever jump to conclusions by one sibling that went off. that sibling could have had some matzav that they had difficulty with that had no shaiches whatsoever to the potential candidate!


    If the Avos approached shidduchim the way we do, how is it that Yitzchak married Rivka? Her brother was “off the derech”, her father chazal say had no qualms about murdering someone. How did rivka marry Yitzchak? Her brother eisav was surely not from the best bachurim in the yeshiva. Yackov didnt marry any great yichus. moshe married the daughter of an ex galach.

    I guess one will counter that since both sides (to borrow a term used here) “interesting” they settled on their respective spouses.


    “Her brother eisav”

    I know you meant to say Lavan. Esav was Rivka’s son and Yaakov’s twin brother.

    Your post was otherwise totally on the mark. Nowadays, we would turn Moshe Rabeinu away, because he dresses like a hippie, is a sheep herder, and speaks with a lisp. Moreover, he was brought up by non-Jews and beat someone to death.

    I think we have all gone off the deep end, and THAT is why our kids are not getting married.


    I meant to add oen more thing. I happen to be very fond of my machetonim, who are very fine, ehrlich and chessed-filled people. BUT…. when I first spoke about our kids (who met on their own and were dating) to my future machtenista, a woman who had first met me 15 years prior, and with whom I had a very pleasant budding friendship, which had petered out for no special reason, she smiled to me and informed me that she was so happy the kids were dating. THEN she casually mentioned, that as soon as she realized her son was dating my daughter, she had us “checked out and B”H all was well.” WHAAAAT????? She knew me for years as our sons attended the same schoo and we had worked together on projects and spent a great deal of time together. She knew what type of family I had, she had met all of us at school events, and we always got along very well. Exactly what was she checking out?

    I know that some among you will have an answer for that, but the fact is that I can honestly say that I did not check HER out, as I trusted my own instincts that she is a good person. And she is. I did not require validation from some stranger who is a friend of hers, for that which my own eyes, heart, and brain could discern. And what are friends of a family GOING to say – something BAD??????

    Sometimes we go too far, in my opinion in trying to dig up dirt. My frined’s son is a doll and happily married now. But when someone called one of the “references” about him and asked about his middos, etc. and was told truthfully that he is outstanding in every way, that was not good enough for the person making the inquiry. She asked the reference, ” Yes, but if you had to find SOMETHING negative to say about him, what would it be?” Please!!!!!!! That is not a shidduch inquiry, that is someone looking to hear loshon hara.


    This is a very important thing to remember. Especially with so much talk in the Coffee Room about the topic of shidduchim.

    To me there are only a few real red flags. How does the father treat the mother and vice versa? How do they treat their children? Do people in their community have MANY positive things to say about them or are they keep-to-themselves types? How does the young man or woman in question act towards wait staff in a restaurant, or to tradespeople, store clerks,etc? How do they act around little children? These are important questions to seek out the answers – not which summer camp they went to, or whether or not a seminary was too “modern.”



    Any sane mother should demand all report cards and medical records for the girl going back to pre 1-a, as well as all medical records, driving records, and tablecloth records for her mother, grandmother and all aunts.


    You are so right, artchill. The olive rarely falls far from the martini. Spend lots of time with the family, and check out the interactions.


    Riiiiiing! Riiiiiiiing!

    “Hello? Hello? Hi! How can I help you?”

    “You need a shidduch for your son? Well, you’ve come to the right place, um… what was your name?”

    “Yossi. Right. Well, you’ve come to the right place. I’m sure we can find your son’s bashert. Now, of course, I’ll need a little information about him. For starters, how old is he?”

    “Forty? Did you say forty?! Well, truth be told, that’s kind of old for a shidduch. Has he ever been married? No, well, OK, let’s see what we can do. Next question: what does he do for a living?”

    “Excuse me, did you say livestock? Ooooooookay. I just wanted to make sure that I heard that correctly. How about his education. What yeshiva did he go to?”

    “None! He hasn’t gone to yeshiva at all? He knows nothing? How is it that a child in a Jewish home didn’t go to yeshiva. Didn’t his grandparents offer to chip in for tuition if you couldn’t afford it?”

    “Oh, I see. Your parents aren’t Jewish. You’re a ger. So, any girl he marries will have a ger for a father-in-law and non-Jewish grandparents-in-law. To speak frankly, Yossi, the prospects for your son are rather dim. I don’t know of any girl that would marry him. Well, let’s try one more approach. Do you have any money?”

    “No. Poor. Hmm. Well, I’m sorry Yossi. I don’t think I’m going to be able to find a girl for your son. I just don’t think it’s possible. To be honest, between your son’s lack of yichus, learning and money, there’s simply no hope for… what was his name again?”

    “Akiva. Right. I’m sorry, but there’s just no hope of getting a shidduch for him.”

    The Wolf


    Oomis, how did she check you out? Private Ayin? or other methods?


    Bear: Pre-1A? Isn’t that like 4 years old? What about her apgar score? When did she start walking? Talking? If you just check from pre-1A on, you miss a lot of very important information.


    A600KiloBear – and a yichus brief that they are related the Admor M’Creedmor!!


    Well making a joke about a persons future is no joke. A person , girl or guy has to really think seriously about their future, and of course how much could you check, well meet the person and be smart always think . Why am I marrying this person>? Is it because all the girls in my class are already married or I really believe he is the right choice. Do not pressure somebody to marry just because they are the last ones in the class. Marriage is not a joke and a person has to look into it very carefully. Whatever that means. In Spanish there is a saying for every rupture theres a broken one. So a person is always going to find the right person for that particular person.


    Before my sister got married I think we checked out the guy with less than 10 people – that’s including the Rosh. And despite all our efforts to find out to the contrary, he’s still a good guy, as far as we can tell.

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