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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Presenting Another "Throw Money At It" Solution

Just in case your 20-23 year old 'girl' isn't getting her due attention from a shadchan, yet another "throw money at it" solution is being offered. The new proposal is that askanim pay shadchanim a fee of $50 for the shadchan to provide special attention and come up with 5-6 names of boys who Quite frankly meet her qualifications and who might consider taking her out on a date. If the girl actually approves of any of the shadchan's selections, she can cough up another $25 for the shidduch to be 'redd.' I'm not sure if that is $25 per shidduch redd, or $25 for a series of shidduchim to be redd.
Quite frankly, the shidduch system, which does have positives, is starting to look like a complete 3 ring circus. The girl's parents and the girl herself are being asked told they must provide support for the future groom. . . and now they are being convinced that they need to pay to even get someone to convince shadchan to get some boy to possibly consider going on a date with them. Have "we" lost our minds? Where is the dignity in a dating system like this?

Perhaps it is time to take the ball out of the girls' court and place it firmly in the court of the boys. I think there might be a great deal of sanity that can be reclaimed if we went back to the biblical imperative and let the boy seek out a wife.

Related Post: Desperation is Unbecoming

SHADCHANIM: AN EXTRA INCENTIVE
Dear Editor,
We would like to express our hakoras hatov to the Yated for all you have done for the klal regarding the parsha of shidduchim and for continuously allowing the Readers Write to serve as the main forum of options and ideas being considered to help alleviate the shidduch crisis.
We would like to inform anyone who might be interested of a new service we are offering for girls in shidduchim between the ages of 20-23 years old. For a fee of $50, we will pay a prominent Lakewood shadchan to work on one girl’s profile within two weeks and come up with 5-6 names this shadchan feels are most suitable for that girl (and most likely will lead to a date). We will also provide background information on each boy. If after researching these boys, the girl’s side is interested, we will guarantee that these names will be redd by that shadchan for an additional fee of $25.
The point of our service is to obligate and motivate the shadchan to put aside individual time to work for that girl. From past months’ experience with this service, the shadchan actually has spent around a half hour from his very busy schedule sifting through around 500 boys’ names and picking out the names he feels are the most “lechatchila” from the girl’s perspective (as well as most likely to receive a “yes” from the boys’ side).
This service is being initiated by askanim, not shadchanim. The shadchan has not requested any money. On the contrary, askanim are nudging him to take money in order to make him feel obligated to spend time and effort working on a particular girl. We know that some people might feel humiliated by paying a shadchan to work for them, but the reality is that the prominent shadchanim in Lakewood receive hundreds of phone calls each day and it’s not physically possible for them to accommodate everyone without an extra obligation. This service is simply a practical suggestion to help out some girls who are interested.
Our service has the endorsement of prominent rabbonim and roshei yeshiva. All parties interested should please contact us at shidduchim@yeshivanet.com..
N. L.

Lakewood, NJ

25 comments:

rosie said...

It is ridiculous to trust shidduchim to an overworked few. This leads to people trying to rip off the desperate. Frustrated parents will pay any amount of money for someone who will end their frustration. Here again, there is no leadership in these communities where chaos reigns in shidduchim.

Anonymous said...

It makes my stomach turn.

SuperRaizy said...

These poor young girls are being treated as a burden to be gotten rid of instead of as a treasure to be earned.

Ezzie said...

That's retarded (sorry if anyone finds the term offensive).

Anonymous819 said...

My question would be what the purpose of the shadchan is without this "extra attention." If they are setting up people with non-appropriate matches (instead of the appropriate matches you'll get if you pay the extra money), that serves no purpose at all.

Plus, I am bothered by the language "most likely will lead to a date." I thought the purpose was marriage, not just a date.

Hate to say it, but I think the positive affect of the supposed "crisis" will be that after a generation of this portion of the frum world sees lower marriage and birth rate, they'll reevaluate some of the non-Torah-oriented nonsense that has become the norm (like worrying about unimportant attributes in the prospective spouse.)

Anonymous said...

You cannot be forced to be part of a system. It is absolutely a choice.

My family is black hat and my parents are as middle class as they come yet none of the 4 members of my family who are currently married went out with more then 10 people before they got engaged and married.

Anonymous said...

It's such a shame that the frum community is overrun by undesirable girls such that the only tenable solution is to pay money and beg shadchanim to please do something for these unfortunates. Maybe if these girls lost a ton of weight, got some plastic surgery, learned to cook and clean better, and had skills to earn real money it would help. Also, perhaps a pre-dating fertility test could be done so a boy knows what he's getting. It also wouldn't hurt if the girl's family tried a little harder to earn some serious money.

How did we get to the point where all of our boys are so handsome, so smart, so wonderful, so full of beautiful midot and are forced to pick from a pool of such lousy girls. It's just unbelievable that we end up with so many desirable boys and so few desirable girls.

Tefilah and tehilim sessions should be run to pray to Hashem that he make our girls more beautiful so a boy doesn't have to feel like he's settling.

Avi said...

Anonymous 10:42 -

You've nailed it! But I don't think the Yated proposal goes nearly far enough. Instead of creating $50 bonus packages to compensate the shadchan for dealing with these hopeless cases, why not actually address the problem? I propose a $5,000 Extreme Makeover Shadchan Service. Oh, sure, this is Orthonomics, and $5,000 seems like a lot. But actually, it's only due to economies of scale that we'll be able to offer so much plastic surgery, blonde hair dye, and personality transplant therapy for so little. I feel that with EMSS, our precious boys who are so diligently sitting and learning all day and scrupulously avoiding college or any interaction with the world will have the larger pool of desirable women they so deserve.

Ateres said...

SL,

Check out this article on VIN about new wedding takkanos in Belz and the Yeshivish world:

http://www.vosizneias.com/29165/2009/03/20/jerusalem-belzer-chassidim-and-litvish-rabbonim-launch-wedding-plans/

The Belzer one strikes me as excellent, provding interest-free loans and bulk purchasing.

But the Yeshivish one? Why should the parents be expected to "limit themselves" to 45k for an apartment plus the cost of the wedding. These days most charedi families simply cannot afford that.

Anonymous said...

Let me preface this with saying: I am not orthodox.

That being said, I find it hard to believe that one of the big criticisms of finding your match in a non-shidduch situation is that it is based on false things like "attraction" and "false emotional connections".

But when you are putting money into the mix, and treating women like cattle, passing them in front of men for the picking, I am not sure I find the shidduch system to be based on anything much deeper.

rosie said...

Anonymous 1:08, it may have been that years ago the shidduch system was based on trying to match people based on higher values since many generations ago men were advised by rabbonim to judge their choice on religiosity rather than looks. Today, it has failed probably 40% of the people. The majority still get married due to the shidduch system but a slim majority. There are loads of great girls who come from seminary over-qualified and want boys whose ideals are their equal and find that the boys offered are big dissappointments. Shadchanim want to make gelt also and if someone is unlikely to pay shadchanus, it is not much of an incentive to help except to perform chessed.

Ateres said...

Rosie,

I think you are being a bit cynical. The shidduch system has its faults, but it does still seem to work for the majority. Also, certainly not everyone is primarily concerned with superficiality. Many (most) people do look at religiosity, life goals, and middos first, and only then look at other things. It is just that sometimes there are many girls who meet the above criteria, and the boys need a method to distinguish between them.

Also, boys sometimes have difficulty as well. I know a number of older single men who have been looking for years. I married my husband on my first shidduch and he had been looking for three years.

rosie said...

Sorry to take so long to answer (my flight was delayed today). While the majority do find shidduchim through the shidduch system, a large minority do not or they search for many years before they do. Orthodox Jews of my the generation before mine met at social events or in the Catskills and were allowed to mix and meet on their own. That does not mean that all parents loved their child's choice or that everyone was successful finding a mate on their own. It appears that relegating shidduchim to one approach is causing much pain when some singles are repeatedly rejected for things beyond their control. Maybe the child of divorced parents (for example) would be accepted if someone met the person before knowing the circumstances. Maybe a girl who is a bit too tall or built a bit bigger would find a boy who likes her after seeing her in person but would not even agree if her size was just a quality listed on paper. Maybe a boy would find that there is nothing wrong with a girl who is a year or 2 older if he met her before knowing her exact age. Maybe the girl who wants a boy who has everything would accept an ordinary boy if she met him, liked him, and then found out how ordinary he was.

aml said...

great points rosie.

Ariella said...

It's mall very disheartening sounding. But really, my siblings with more boys than girls feel that they can just sit back and relax for the boys shidduchim and will only have to really "deal with" the situation for the girls. And that is absolutely no reflection on the relative merits, virtues, or physical attributes of the children.

Ariella said...

Just put up a link, SL.

Tamar said...

The frum world seems to be losing all perspective...thank G-d for SL and those who regularly comment on her blog for restoring a little faith that some of us still exercise common sense and won't stand by as our communities go to hell in a handbasket

meshuganavelt said...

It's sad how we intended our learning boys to be proud, now too many have become swell-headed, as a result of the Shidduch crisis! Whatever they want .. they get ... on a silver platter... and they're getting fought over!

Something is wrong somewhere, and as time passes it's getting worse.

meshuganavelt said...

What bothers me even more than the Shidduch crisis, is the fact that those who have the power to make changes, are too busy doing other things. An issue causing so many people sorrow should have their TOTAL involvemet until the issue is resolved. Not just a token idea here and there.....

rosie said...

Meshuganavelt,
We cannot wait for others to make changes; we have to be the ones to make those changes. If a group of people want to get together and sponsor a single's event, they have the ability to do that. If they want a rabbi to give haskama on it, they can find one. If they want to invite eligible singles to meet at their Shabbos table, no one (at least in my neighborhood) will do anything to stop them. I personally belong to a networking group that helps people from different communities connect the singles from those communities. If there is a tachlis group in your area, take the time to attend. Chances are, someone you know is single. While rabbonim can encourage their congregations to include singles, they have the same level of responsibility that the rest of us have in solving the problem. Maybe we who pay tuitions to boy's yeshivas, should demand that boys be taught something about marriage and shidduchim. The girls seminaries have been doing this for years. The result is that the girls come out finding that the boys are immature. Are we as parents doing all we can? Do we make at least one call a day or one email a day for our single children? Do we try to see ourselves and our children as others see them? I know someone with an off the derech child that rejects shidduch offers from families with off the derech children. It is the pot calling the kettle black. The problem is not the rabbonim who everyone blames for not being social directors. We have to approach our rabbonim with lists of congregants who have single children and enlist their aid.

meshuganavelt said...

I'd rather not give myself away, but I am veryyyyyy involved in Shidduchim. It's upsetting though that few others are into it. Everyone has excuses ranging from I have no time, I'm not good at it, I have other things to deal with, I'm involved in other acts of Chesed......

Meantime we have more girls than we're willing to admit who are getting increasingly turned off w. Frumkeit because of their feeling hopeless, despite the fact that they have a lot to offer. Few out there are involved w. anyone else other than their own kids' Shidduchim.

rosie said...

Someone that I know started a blog called shidduchim101.blogspot.com. It has everything that someone would want to know about shidduchim by a mother of several married and engaged children. (She has 3 married daughters and a son who is a chosson). She invites comments but rarely receives any. This may be because people usually debate the shidduch issues on more public forums such as VIN, Crownheights.info, etc. Hopefully people are at least reading the blogs because it could help someone. There is a lot that could be done to help more singles and those interested in doing so should try to involve as many people as possible.

Anonymous said...

I once paid for a date. But how was I supposed to know that she was an undercover cop?

Dry Eyes said...

Wow, this makes me really sad. Good thing I don't think I need to actually spend money to get a date. I would probably be single forever and ever....

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