Two Frum Community Problems Solved with One Approach

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    Chaim Shulem

    Want to know how to solve the shidduch crisis AND the middle-class Frum family financial crisis?

    Guys should marry older single girls.

    This provides obvious relief for the shidduch crisis, but it ALSO provides relief for the financial crisis:
    a) Most older single girls already have jobs and have real world experience in handling finances.
    b) They generally don’t care as much for the superficial, expensive trimmings that come with fancy weddings and other frivolities that young 20-somethings just NEED to have.
    c) Because they’re older, they won’t end up having tons of kids.

    There are numerous additional benefits in guys marrying older girls, which I will not get into at the moment.

    Disclaimer: I am not an older single girl.


    Given your screen name and brilliance of your post I really don’t think the disclaimer was necessary.


    This is about as dumb a suggestion as I’ve ever heard. Having more children is a POSITIVE, not a negative. That’s what we all daven for. Furthermore, this ignores SAHM (stay-at-home-moms) who observe the traditional Jewish lifestyle outlined in the kesuba of where the husband works and supports the wife whereas the mother mothers their children rather than letting the kinderlach be brought up by the Polish or Spanish cleaning lady. Are you assuming that being a housewife is out of style after five thousand years?

    Rather marry a woman from an upper middle class or wealthy family that will support you than follow something as delirious as the OP. The influence of the modern goyishe ideal of 2.3 kids and a dog needs to be kept as far away from us as all other foreign ideas.


    I hear the sentiment, but think this would cause a divorce crisis. Most “bochrim” are so immature as to be barely tolerable for the first few years of marriage, even with girls younger than them. The difference between goals and ideals taught to boys and girls is staggering. [Insert rant about education system].


    GREAT IDEA! Here’s why it won’t work. From “The River, The Kettle and The Bird”, p. 18-19.

    Why, in Fact, do Men Marry?
    Despite the “manufacturers instructions” for marriage, what qualities do men seek in a marriage partner? Too often, they are as follows:
    Quality No. 1: Physical Attractiveness….
    Quality No. 2: The impression she makes…What will others think of her?
    Quality No .3: Assets..What is there in it for me in terms of family and money?
    In short, marriage is conceived of as a vehicle for appetite fulfillment and ego enhancement. In the terms of the Mishna, marriage is used by man as a means for satisfying the drives for kin’ah, taavah and Kovod… the three ways by which the yetzer hora expresses itself into man’s life. The Sages consider these the smoothest paths to disaster: Jealousy, lust and glory take man out of the world.


    Guys should marry older single girls.
    Chaim Shulum: Assuming your OP is “serious” and not a bad attempt at a troll, solving the shiduch crisis might start with the radical notion of a guy considering marriage with an “older” single WOMAN. When you are in your late 20s and early 30s, presumably the geriatric age bracket you are referencing, the subject peer group are not “girls”. Otherwise, this nareshkeit about a fabricated “crisis” seems to endure. Our younger population already had enough stress these days without starting another round of “crisis threads”.


    At 18 they are men and women. They are no longer boys and girls.


    Older girls are picky. I know the shidduch world likes to blame all the problems on the men. There are a lot of guys in their 30s looking to get married as well.


    “Are you assuming that being a housewife is out of style after five thousand years?”

    Actually it is only about 75 years old. Women always had to work because most of the world was in poverty, including Jews. Often (mostly?) the work was unpaid, but women had essential economic roles in farms and in family businesses. The only exceptions were in the fabulously wealthy. The housewife idea itself is a goyish custom made possible by the unprecedented post World War II prosperity.

    catch yourself

    This is about as intelligent a suggestion as, “Pants, meet Skirt.”


    I don’t think it is so far fetched of an idea.

    A 21-22 yo man can be redt to a 24-5 yo woman. No big deal there. They can still have as many children as hashem blesses them with, she likely has had a job for a few years and can handle responsibility and hopefully at that age he isn’t too immature. And they can grow together.

    If the situation allows for the wife to by a SAHM then Kol Hakovod. That is the ideal. Realty though is without help that is high unlikely.

    yaakov doe

    You could ever do more to solve the problem by getting the rabbonim to permit the younger men to take two wives from the older women. An added bonus is the additional income two working wives would bring in.


    It’s a broken system. They were talking about the shidduch crisis for many years now. It’s not going to change. It’s only getting worse. We have gen z bochurom who think the world is coming to them and who’s parents enable them. Many are entitled kids who need everything immediately. They aren’t taught the value of hard work and believe they deserve to be supported and stay in kollel. Then you have parents who act like children. The things people look for can be so fleeting and childish. The bottom line is leadership of which it seems we don’t have much of anymore. It’s a broken system.


    Boys and girls should have to go on 5 first dates with different people before they go on a second date. Big, little, older, younger, richer, poorer. Maybe they will open their eyes to a little more than who their parents have been waiting to set up as the perfect shidduch. They should also have to go out with a girl they like, for more than a minute. It would be nice if a guy had to go through rigorous midos training until he gets the go ahead from someone certified. People could learn from covid to make weddings with 100 people in a pretty back yard. It’s too complex for anyone to get a grasp on. It is what it is and it will continue that way until Moshiach comes.



    “Boys and girls should have to go on 5 first dates with different people before they go on a second date”???

    Are you an ehrliche yid? This is a good idea? Young frum people should be going on dates that they know in advance isn’t going anywhere?


    @Pekak I wouldn’t ever classify myself as “ehrlich”, not my type of thing to do. But yes, I think that if it was accepted that a bochur would have to go out with 5 girls (video is fine) then there is more of a chance that they will see past their wallet and the yichus that they may be counting on. I had never spoken to a girl in my life casually when I started in shidduchim. I just went with the first one i was set up with. She had money and yichus. I knew her for 2 weeks. I had a lousy marriage and I’m now divorced. I wish I had some better basis for knowledge when I was dating.


    Chaim Shulem: Which part of Pru Urvu do you fail to understand? It is up to Hashem to decide how many children you have. You shouldn’t be acting to interfere with Hashem’s nature during the natural occurrence of events.

    Furthermore, the idea of mother’s being stay-at-home is directly and unambiguously codified into Halacha. The Gemorah, Rambam, Shulchan Aruch and innumerable Torah texts make very clear they should be home to the maximum extent possible.

    My suggestion of marrying rich was satirical. I clearly said that would be less worse than deliberately acting to limit the number of children and the other looney toon ideas proffered.


    Could the speakers clarify the levels here, as it is hard to follow

    what is considered “money”? Parents
    1. can get extra $10K for several years?
    2. pay for downpayment for $500K apartment? (i.e. $100K)?
    3. Being able to support growing family at $100K/year ad 120?

    what is considered “yichus”?
    direct descendant of Melech David? R’ Kotler? minor yeshiva?
    Could you afford a risk if father’s students do not wear masks? Could you get a life insurance on him?


    @ujm Relying on rich parents for money shows a chisaron in emunah. If an individual requires a life where he doesn’t have to work and neither does his wife, then he should have the emunah that Hashem will give it to him. How do you think so many kollel families in Eretz Yisroel manage? What if the father-in-law makes a bad business decision and loses his money, leaving the man stuck with no prospect for a job and a wife he needs the finer things? Money disappears, Torah is l’Netzach Nitzachim.


    I recall R Shimshon Hirsh married someone older and explained that he has too much to do and needs help right now, not when the wife grows up.

    Sam Klein

    Once we’re talking about shidduchim. Let me ask you

    Why is it the way of today’s dating that the boy is responsible for all dating bills from the car rental to the restaurant or entertainment center etc…. ? Maybe it should be split just like wedding is split? All dates total add up to a alot if you’ll say each date is not so much. What is your opinion and reason for this? Do you think this is the correct way it should be and why?


    Sam, it seems to me that the idea of the guy paying for the dates is a carry-over from the secular world.


    it seems to me that the idea of the guy paying for the dates is a carry-over from the secular world.

    And so is dating.

    And so is toilet paper.

    Nu nu.


    Meno, in my opinion we should be more concerned at working at minimizing or eliminating importing non-Jewish customs into the Jewish world.


    “How do you think so many kollel families in Eretz Yisroel manage?”

    The answer is that by modern standards they don’t manage.
    They have no car, their children never have new clothes or new shoes. The don’t eat meat or chicken during the week. They do not know what the inside of a restaurant looks like, nor take-out, nor pizza. Their weddings cost $7 a plate and they invite only family. The friends eat kugel and borekas. They have never had a vacation and certainly have never been on a plane to go anywhere.
    You have never heard about them because they don’t have internet, their wives don’t have jobs in hi-tech, they don’t speak English, and they don’t have a generous stipend from Tattie in Monsey for their Year-in-the-Mir. They don’t parade up and down Rechov Paran or Malchei Yisrael in $3,000 sheitels and Silver Cross carriages. They live on what they have and in a good case, they have emunah that HKBH will not let them starve. In a “not good” case, their marriages and families fall apart. And there are thousands of these families. A far cry from the situation in America.

    The chareidi parties in the medinah were elected for one reason only. That is to force the medinah to provide these families with more money for sustenance, not luxuries. Thanks to the chareidi parties, all children up to age 18 have free dental care and optometric care, meaning free glasses once a year. Medical care has always been free or almost free for those with low incomes. The medinah also provides each family with a modest sum, more for those with many children. It’s something, but it is not a lot.

    They don’t really manage.


    rational, not only do they in fact manage, they are happier than you’ll ever be, even with them “lacking” cars, restaurants, fancy weddings and vacations. The fact that you consider those essentials and deem those lacking that $3,000 wigs and Silver Cross carriages to, therefore, be “not managing” speaks more about your standards and lifestyle then about them.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    Ujm I think you misread him


    Then I apologize. I understood him, perhaps incorrectly, to criticize Eretz Yisroel Kollel life as unsustainable and/or unmanageable.

    Allow me to add that “in a not good” case”, as referenced above, their marriages and families generally (on average) do better than wealthy/upper middle class families do in a not good case.


    ujm, methinks you see my name and your blood starts to boil. Take a pill and read what I wrote. Some of these poor people are poor financially, not spiritually and not emotionally. Some are quite happy, happier than most people with far greater financial means, but thousands are not. I’m sorry you read into my words that I applaud and value the financial trappings of the modern world, far from it. On second thought, take two pills, one isn’t enough for you.

    As Syag (thank you) hinted, my point was simple, and I know this first-hand. For the most part, and many more than many think, they are not managing financially. And yes, they suffer. With emunah shleima, but they suffer.


    rational, you’re mistaken on both counts. That said, if I may ask, what would you think accounts for your assumption that some readers recoil at you name?

    Again, you are missing the point. By and large those (financially) poor people you are referring to are much happier on average than the wealthy and middle class, fein shmeckers or otherwise. They’d far rather be in Kollel while financially poor than be in high-tech and raking in cash while living it up. And the distress experienced by those Kollel families is, on average, less distress experienced by their well-heeled coreligionists.

    To reiterate, the point is you’re stressing the affliction on the wrong side of the coin.

    In my humble opinion, of course.


    It is up to Hashem to decide how many children you have. You shouldn’t be acting to interfere with Hashem’s nature during the natural occurrence of events.
    … deliberately acting to limit the number of children and the other looney toon ideas proffered.

    Original post:
    c) Because they’re older, they won’t end up having tons of kids.

    On the woman’s side, at least, no intervention is being made.

    I don’t know the proper hashkafa on family planning (my local public library has a copy of Rabbi Mendel Dubov’s Shall We Have Another? A Jewish Approach to Family Planning, which I’ve been planning to read), though I will note that I can’t remember the last time I saw a tzedaka letter saying the person had a relatively small number of children and was deeply in debt from chasuna expenses.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    Stop with the fake drama, nobody said that. You listed less children as a plus and as a way to have less expenses. That is wrong hashkafically, and ignorant to boot.

    Children are not created based on financial considerations and knowing that Hashem provides your finances is abc’s of yiddeshkeit. Someone who is scraping by with 4 kids, can be scraping by with 10 kids because they are mutually exclusive. Not having children for financial reasons is not often if ever a valid heter. And thinking you can have more money than Hashem allots you is just silly. If you think your parenting skills are limited, find out if marrying late is a good eitza. But to think you can proclaim less children to be a good move, contrary to most torah authority, and then flip the argument to whether or not kids are expensive is missing the point, and a weak understanding of Hashem’s role in our lives.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    Randomex – seriously? This is where you’re holding now?

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    exactly. If you have a big pot of soup and you believe it will feed only 8 and not 12 you are using common sense. When you are discussing having Financial stability to support a specific number of children over the course of their lifetime Common Sense plays no role. Basic foundations.

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