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I’m Sick of Blind Dates

I’m Sick of Blind Dates

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Question:

I am starting to lose faith in ever finding love. After swearing I would never go on another blind date again, I succumbed after a friend said, “You’ve gotta meet this girl.” It was a disaster. I don’t know if I should give up on blind dates, or just give up altogether. Any message of hope for the dated-out?

Answer:

The saintly Rabbi Yisroel of Ruzhin had an unusual custom when it came to matchmaking. He would give a sizable monetary gift to anyone who suggested a match for one of his children, even if the couple didn’t hit it off and the match didn’t work out. It is customary to pay a matchmaker when a successful match is made. But to pay a matchmaker for a mismatch was unheard of. So why did Rabbi Yisroel do just that? He explained:

In heaven it is announced who your soulmate is before you are born. An angel looks at your soul and then calls out the name of your soulmate. But do you think the angel gets it right the first time? Not always. Often the angel suggests a name, and G‑d nixes it. So the angel proposes another possible soulmate, and again G‑d says no. Sometimes a long list of names is called out until the right one is reached and G‑d gives His approval. Each one of those names has potential to be your soulmate. But only one is destined to be yours.

Then your soul comes down here to this world and starts its search for the one. What you don’t realize is that you need to meet all those other potential soulmates before you can meet your ultimate one. That’s why I pay not only a matchmaker who is successful, but even one who suggests a match that doesn’t work out. Because every failed relationship brings you one step closer to your soulmate.

This gives a whole new perspective on dates that go nowhere and relationships that fizzle out. They should not leave us jaded or discouraged. The lessons we learn and the experiences we gain are necessary rungs on our ladder to happiness.

So, should you go on every blind date anyone ever suggests? Should you indiscriminately meet any random person, just to tally up the necessary bad dates and get to the real thing? Rabbi Yisroel answered that one too.

There was once a sly character in his community who was short on cash. He thought he could make a quick buck by suggesting a random match for one of Rabbi Yisroel’s sons. Knowing he would be paid even if it failed, he mentioned the name of the first single girl that came to mind. Rabbi Yisroel heard his suggestion patiently and said, “Some matches seem good to angels in heaven. Others at least seem reasonable to people on earth. Yours is neither.”

Don’t waste your time on hit-and-miss dating suggestions. But if someone comes up with a reasonable idea for a match, even though we don’t know if it was made in heaven, give it a try down here on earth. If it doesn’t work, it is not a failure, it is a step forward. And if you are open to it, you may even learn something about yourself and what you are looking for from the encounter. Thank the matchmaker, and thank the person you met too, for bringing your soulmate one date closer.

Aron Moss is rabbi of the Nefesh Community in Sydney, Australia, and is a frequent contributor to Chabad.org.
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Anonymous June 8, 2015

B"H To Wendy and every single Jew B"H

Wendy,

First of all, what I preach is difficult to practice; that is, patience. But I really think your daughter should just keeping doing what she is doing. She is learning -and learning makes people interesting. Can she expand her circle and her activities? Studying at the level she is can be stressful. What about taking classes just for fun? Botany, crafts, and cooking are some possibilities. This is not for the purpose of meeting an available Jewish man; this is for the purpose of increasing her interesting qualities so that when she finds the right man, she will be ready.

As her mother, you can make sure you do not pressure her too much. Have faith in G-d and have faith in your beautiful daughter and everything else will come. Reply

Barbara Niles Phoenix,Arizona June 7, 2015

To YY Are you sure that divorce doesn't indicate that the angels selected the wrong persons to be soul mates and that God approved the selection even if it was wrong? If the couple were soul mates, they would not divorce but would work together to keep their marriage intact. And please explain your last comments further. I don't understand what you're saying especially in regard to divorce and remarriage. Reply

Barbara Niles Phoenix, Arizona June 7, 2015

To Wendy Lots of us have come from towns with small Jewish communities so we have had to expand our horizons. Can your daughter move to a city with a larger Jewish population? It would increase her Jewish connections as well as her work opportunities. However,if she should marry someone who is not Jewish, you will love her partner and their children beyond measure. Shalom Bias are the operative words. Reply

YY June 7, 2015

Re: soul mates and divorce a divorce doesn't mean "wrong one," G-d forbid. It means "I thought I was up to it. I realize now it's more difficult than I thought it would be. I want out." It's a huge kindness that G-d did for us to allow us to "step out." In fact, you can see this by the fact that it's a special mitzvah to remarry someone you divorced (so long as you didn't marry anyone else yet). That goes to show that it wasn't the "wrong one." Reply

Wendy Beker Chattanooga via jewishchatt.com June 7, 2015

i have a daughter who 's getting a masters in education who would love to meet a nice jewish young man .we live in a small jewish community any suggestions? Reply

Anonymous June 7, 2015

B I think the problem with Western thought these days is that it is all about hurrying and strategy. Do you want a soulmate? Quick! Make a list! Fill out your forms!! Create a strategy, and adhere to it!

Everyone has a soulmate, yes, but of course we all get lost. We have to find each other. Maybe it's better to allow one's soul to flourish a bit. Have fun with no goal in mind other than having fun. You might discover aspects of yourself that will direct you to your soulmate.

Me, personally, I hate it when my individuality is overlooked. I know this is not typical advice, but sometimes giving up is the best way to reach your goal. Patience is the single most important aspect of any marriage, especially if you are going to have children!

So why not practice this virtue by increasing the joy in your life with no goal other than learning? When you finally find your soulmate, you will be a better person for what you have learned from the waiting. At least I think so. Reply

Yaakov Mark Los Angeles June 5, 2015

I am also in the same boat. I had to reevaluate what I was looking for. Many have great advice and things I should demand Hahkafically. But when I realized that finding my bashert might be more important than certain minhagim. Of course I consult a Rav to be sure. But getting married and having Jewish Children is also a huge mitzvah on top of the fact that I desire it greatly. So I loosened up, decided not to be so controlling.

Also, I would never date someone on someone else's whim. I want to know a few facts. If you don't know what your looking for then go ahead and date anyone, because you will certainly learn. But once you begin to get an idea of who you attract and what your needs are, you can begin to discriminate. For me I need someone who looks up to me and does not mind being nurturing. When I let them know I that my wife will get 100% support to do whatever she chooses, they like that too. I have not found mine yet, but I have found some close matches. Hatzlacha Reply

Barbara Niles Phoenix, Arizona June 4, 2015

Soul Mates and Divorce If the angels pick out our soul mates before we are born and God approves these "matches made in heaven," how do you explain divorce? Reply

Chaim Berkwoitz North Miami Beach June 4, 2015

I looked and searched for a match for 9 years. No matter how long it takes never give up! Its all a test to see how much you want him/her. The shortest date was "I'm modern, I'm not. OK good by. Reply

Anonymous NYC June 4, 2015

Common Sense In other words - common sense. Not to take the nice spiritual story out of the picture, it's obvious that one must 'try try again, until one succeeds'. In plain English - 'you have to kiss a lot of frogs (or frog-ettes) before you find the one who'll turn into a prince (or princess) - (that's my fairy-tale explanation.) And, of course, if someone is a completely impossible choice - don't waste your time. Just common sense.

My problem - my 'kids' are always wasting their time. Everyone is a 'friend'. My daughter has lots of 'friends' - but no one whom she would consider "special". So, she wastes her time with her so-called 'friends' rather than seeking out the "one"
My son is very very choosy. And, unwilling to take a chance on a "fix-up" - even for a short date. (Thank goodness I have one son married. I am truly desperate to get the other two on their way aka married. Selfish, am I? I do want to see them all with lovely families of their own. All are into their 30's. Reply

Suboda HK June 4, 2015

Blind Dates I am in the same boat. wish if I could talk with you because we have something in common to talk.I truly appreciate Rabbi's answer.it really encourages!

Subo Reply

Cathy Dyer Ramat Gan, Israel June 3, 2015

Hang in there I also felt I would never meet the man for me. I shifted my prayers from "help me find him" to "help me get used to the idea of living alone permanently." Then I took a trip to Israel by myself and met my soul mate within an hour of landing, after stopping him on the sidewalk to ask for directions. Now I live in Israel and have a completely different life - the one I was intended to have. I look back now and can see how the whole situation was so carefully engineered and precisely timed. But I couldn't see that until I arrived at this place in time. It can be discouraging when you are told that everything is working out for the good and you can't see how your anguish is useful, but keep your faith that things are truly working out for the good. Reply

s.w June 3, 2015

"al tistakel bakankan ela beman shyash bo" Don't judge a book by its cover.
I have friends who are good looking but are not photogenic. Yet some who are plain and look beautiful in photos.
Also, some people are uncomfortable to have a dating phone conversations with strangers. Good luck to all the shallow, superficial people and to those who marry them. Reply

Anonymous NYC June 3, 2015

Appearances can be deceiving Photos don't matter. They can be doctored; they can be decades old! When you see the person "in person," you can be sorely disappointed if the picture looked better than real life! Also, some "undesirable" appearances can be changed. Overweight can be overcome; a bad haircut can be improved; even a smile can be improved with the right dentist.
A phone conversation is good--if both of you are good on the phone. Of course, it's natural to be a little guarded about your thoughts about sensitive subjects (eg, politics) with a stranger, no matter how important those subjects are to you.
I think you just rule out the "deal breakers" (eg, 10 previous marriages, a history of kicking the dog, a 20-year age difference) and meet in a public place. To be on the safe side, travel separately, so you don't get stuck with an incredibly boring conversation or an axe murderer on the way to or from your first date. Reply

Bert Poughkeepsie June 3, 2015

Looking vs. being Singles are looking for the "right' person. But are they themselves the "right' person?
People ask what the 'other' person has to offer. But what do they have to offer?
On Jewish dating sites some people omit a photo. Others post terrible photos instead of posing at the photographer. They list what they want in a match but not much about what they offer in a relationship. These are only a few of the problems involved. It is a shame that the Jewish community offers so little help in meeting other Jews and so little advice in social skills. Reply

rd June 2, 2015

See PIctures First, T/hen talk by phone Jewish matchmakers have a lot to learn about sensitivity and human feelings. my experiences with them found them to be callous assembly line mentalities with zero sense of care for the individuals involved.
Having said that---the idea of meeting someone "blindly" with no photos, no phone conversation is a recipe for disaster and hurt feelings. The answer is so simple!!!
Before going on a date each person should be able to see several photos and have a phone conversation or two before deciding to meet in person.
This will not only protect feelings of those involved (which is essential) but it also will give more hope to those looking for mates. Reply

Anonymous New York, NY June 2, 2015

Do you have any suggestions for older (more than 50 years) single Jewish women or Jews of color or converts? We seem to be considered the dregs of Jewish society when it comes to shidduch suggestions. "Suggestions" are often barely alive (literally!) or psychiatrically deranged. It's not that such individuals don't deserve happiness, too, but the requirements of their care almost always exceed the resources of the person to whom they are recommended. Reply

Fred Fox Tiburon,Ca. 94920 June 2, 2015

I thought one's soul was created with their soulmate and it/they were sent down together and then split into their human bodies. If so why would the angels offer others? Reply

Ariella Sydney June 2, 2015

Life is too short to sit through uncomfortable "date" situations. Speed dating is popular because most people know in the first 5 seconds whether they could bear to see the person again and they don't have to sit through dinner or whatever with the ones they wouldn't. For me, if the person wasn't ultra-orthodox, smart, funny and kind with a mystical bent I wouldn't even consider them. And after the essential criteria boxes have been ticked there needs to be attraction. If Hashem wants you to be with someone it will happen. Dating random people you know aren't suited to you would be wretched. Reply

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