dating · Jews/Jewish/Judaism/Orthodox Judaism

My Shidduch Resume

I just recently discovered that women, but not men, have to write up resumes for the matchmakers so that they can play the great game of shidduch dating. So, now, you can understand why this woman decided to make this video, no?

The more I learn about the shidduch system, the more I realize that my husband and I would never have been set up together because:
1. we came from different socio-economic classes
2. different races
3. VERY different backgrounds
4. can’t be stressed enough…VERY DIFFERENT BACKGROUNDS
5. oh, and have almost nothing in common.
Besides, how would the matchmaker have sold me…
So, listen, the girl’s gorgeous. Um, she has the most gorgeous “tan” and um, AFRO. No, she’s not black. Yes, she’s Jewish. She converted. She’s Hispanic. No, not Mexican. Dominican, specifically. That’s the Dominican Republic not Dominica. No, she was born in New York. In Washington Heights. No, not that side. She’s…26. No, no, but I swear she doesn’t look a day over 18! And she’s skinny but not too skinny! Yeah, she can cook…mostly, rice and beans and plantains. What? What are plantains? Sigh, I’m not sure. She’s a teacher. Of course, public school. High school. English. Yes, English is one of her first languages but she speaks Spanish, too. Money? Well, her family…her mother’s on welfare and mentally ill but the girl doesn’t talk to her since she ran away from home at 17, kidnapped her sister, fought for custody of her for three years and….

Hello? Hello? Are you still on the phone?

I guess they don’t need to know about the fibromyalgia. I’m not sure what it is anyway.

Common things matchmakers hear their prospective matches and parents of said matches discuss:
1. Money! Somebody better have some.
2. Size: He’s too tall, she’s too short, he’s too short, she’s too tall!
3. Ethnic: I want pure-blooded Ashkenazi, I won’t date Sephardim aka “brown people.”
4. Weight: Nobody wants to date any girl who is zaftig (er, over 95 lbs).
5. Health problems: from halitosis to schizophrenia, you better not have it and your great-great-grandmother better not have had it either!
6. Lineage/Breeding: Your family better be from the right town in the right part of Eastern Europe with the right amount of rabbis in your….
7. Schooling: Don’t tell them you went to Beverly Hills High School. Ever.
8. Geography: Does she want to live in Israel? Do he want to live in Israel? Do their parents want them to live in Israel?
9. Add to #1: Will she work? Does she want him to work? Does she mind if he just learns all day in a school for a couple of years before he thinks about a career, if ever?
10. Age: How old is he? How old is she? Will she date older guys? Will he date older girls? Will anyone date someone over 19?
Don’t worry. Despite all this, the matchmaking business is, mostly, doing just fine. I’m not mocking the venerable institution, I’m mocking how people play the system…and worse, each other. Many, many couples still meet “the one” through matchmakers. And the rest of us, like moi, are lucky enough to stumble across “the one” on our own or with the help of friends and family.

8 thoughts on “My Shidduch Resume

  1. the system has been manipulated into something grotesque. the situation aliza describes is certainly not as the Ribbono Shel Olam ever intended things to be. this is why we need Mashiach, to fix mutations in Yiddishkeit that give us corrupt systems that are humiliating yet somehow impersonal…

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  2. The whole shiddach thing is so overrated it's not even funny. It's become, as N said, something grotesque. If I had lived in NYC when I wanted to get engaged I would probably been almost in the same boat as you…if you don't fit into the cookie-cutter mold you're considered the Jewish equivalent of “the island of misfit toys”

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  3. I once filled out a profile and answered questions for a shadchan years ago. Maybe it is just for people who clearly do not score in the elites in the system. One problem with the shadchan system is that, as with much of Orthodox life, it is dominated by Haredim. That means that we Modern Orthodox are there for the ride while we agree to play by their rules and accept their hierarchy of values.

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  4. as a newbie shadchan on one of the popular matchamker dating sites, i've unfortunately discovered, boys create resumes too. not as often as girls, but they've still got all the ridiculous questions. one single listed each of his brothers-in-law and who their rebbes are. how on earth does that help me find this dude a good match?!

    and fyi, my hubby and i met on sawyouatsinai, would NEVER have clicked had we met naturally, and when i look at our profiles today that we had on the site, I see how perfectly we matched (on paper). had a shadchan not have seen that and thrown us together, i'd likely still be single today.

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  5. It has nothing to do with how well you match, but only with some arbitrary ranking system.

    Oh, you're Sephardic? Well, she's a convert. So you're both damaged goods, both suitably low-ranking. You'll be perfect!

    Hello, we're trying to find spouses here, not tennis partners who occupy the same Hindu caste!

    I mean, what the hell do I care if she's a convert or Sephardi or in a wheelchair or blind? The question is, is she for me or not?

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