Dates With A "boy"?
Posted 09 July 2012 - 03:37 PM
i would prefer to date chassidishely, but i am far from that and would not go out with one. I dont know i just feel really nervous all of the sudden when it comes to dating now. When i was younger it sounded so exciting to get married and stuff and now it just makes my tummy hurt. and also i am starting to think about what kind of boy i want to marry. i think when it comes to this i am going to need a lot of help from chinuch figures in my life to help.
Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:59 PM
What do you think is going to happen, exactly? Contrary to the impression that the unfortunate society we live in (and its media) gives off, guys are not intrinsically monsters. Especially not frum menschen. (I'm not saying there are no exceptions, but if you live your life like a coiled spring, you will eventually snap...) My question to you is why shouldn't you trust him? And why should you trust him after you're engaged, for that matter? Because you went out with him on anywhere between 5 to 20 dates, for anywhere between 1 and 10 hours, and he put on a good show? You should know that it's actually a whole lot harder for many guys after they're engaged, because there's a whole new level of connection that's created, but all the boundaries still need to be maintained. Just because someone set you up with him? Well... assuming that the person who set you up is someone you trust, then yes. And assuming that you did the proper research before you met him. I'm not talking about being fanatical and ridiculous - I'm talking about being responsible. It could be that you might be able to make some arrangement that the two of you could meet at a pre-arranged place (although that isn't generally accepted practice in America...), but you might want to have an honest conversation with yourself and think about the above points. (And if you’re nervous because of certain life experiences you’ve had, whatever they may be, then you should probably have a serious talk with someone about the whole general prospect of getting married and having a good, solid, marriage relationship with a guy.)
"...having his phone number? That is weird; why would I have to call him if we are not on a date?"
Well, if you've ruled the Chassidishe dating idea out, then chances are, unless you're getting engaged after the first date or two or three, you're going to drop the go between at some point. And then you two are going to need a way to communicate - to set up dates... even if you've set at time and place in advance, let's say there's a change in plans?... etc. If you mean before you even meet, you are right - you should not have his phone number before you even go out!
"When I was younger, it sounded so exciting to get married and stuff and now it just makes my tummy hurt."
In general, life seems a whole lot easier and simpler before we get there than when we actually do. How many little kids think adults lead complicated lives? Aren't they all wishing they could just grow up already? We sometimes forget that life doesn't - and isn't supposed to - get easier and less complicated. And as the decisions become bigger and more significant, the less "fun" and the more “important” things become. "Getting married" is no longer just picking out a wedding dress and having the time of your life one night. It means - as you mentioned - thinking long and hard about who you are, where you are heading, what type of person you want to spend the rest of your life with and build a home together with. When we "grow up," we're supposed to gain the clarity to make the right decisions in the right way; the decisions don't become clear on their own.
"...I am starting to think about what kind of boy I want to marry. I think when it comes to this I am going to need a lot of help from chinuch figures in my life."
First of all - hurray for you on two key points! You're thinking about it, and you're willing to get guidance from people older and wiser than you.
Here are some things for you to think about:
What middos are important to you? What type of person do you respect? Think of men in your life (your father, your brother/s or brother/s-in-law, teachers, rabbanim, family friends, etc.) whom you respect and would one day be pleased to have your husband emulate - what qualities of theirs appeal to you?
The man whom you marry is going to be your husband for the rest of your life, b'ezras Hashem - you will want with your whole being to please him; what types of things do you want him to be pleased with? He will be making ruchniyus decisions in your home, leading your Shabbos table, and be the father of your kids, to name a few - how do you imagine that person to be? (I'm not saying you should build air-castles in utopia; but it might give you a clearer idea of what you're picturing to yourself without even realizing it.)
Do you want a boy who's going to be learning in kollel? For how long? (not an exact time frame - meaning, starting off the marriage that way, but planning on going out to work... or starting off that way and will take it as it comes, learning for as long as you can make it work... or one of those rare people who want and are able to be learning really long term...) If so, why? Because everyone else is doing it? For another reason? Are you going to be behind your husband if he is learning? Or just "tolerate" the fact? It makes a really big difference to a husband what his wife's attitude is. Are you up to living a kollel lifestyle? Can your parents support? If not, his might not be able to either. Many kollel couples make it work anyway. But that means not having everything you want, especially not necessarily right when you want it. It means having to be careful with your money, taking the financial burden upon your own shoulders (for however long it will be), and being happy, content, and settled with that. When your husband goes out to work, eventually, are you particular about what he does? Klei kodesh only? And keep in mind that just because a bachur is planning on being in kollel doesn't automatically mean that he is happy learning, finds his Yiddishkeit sweet, sees Torah as central, and is a yarei Shamayim. People will do a lot of things for the sake of shidduchim - don't forget to look beyond "kollel" and at who the person really is. And if you’re looking for a guy who’s going to be working, the same question can be asked, how are you going to know where his hashkafos lie? What questions are you going to ask? To others, to him, to yourself – what do you want your home to look like, and which direction do you want your lives to go in? It is in no way, shape, or form “impossible” to create and build a Torah home when the husband is working (even if the impact is much stronger and very different when he is in kollel, but that’s an entirely different discussion) – but it depends on where his “center of gravity” is.
What are you not willing to compromise on? (Not a list – maybe three things, maximum four or five.) This could be in terms of personality (i.e. a temper, a non-judgemental attitude, etc.), in terms of ruchniyus (i.e. is seriously koveah itim, has a kesher with a rebbi, etc.), or in terms of the many other aspects that make up a person (i.e. their height). It’s not being picky, it’s knowing yourself, and what will make you happy or unhappy, and whom you can respect. Don’t forget, it can’t be a shopping list, so be a stickler with care…
Hatzlacha rabba! May it go smoothly for you!
Posted 10 July 2012 - 03:49 PM
wow that was very long and informative.... (okay so i will try to take this one piece at a time)
who sets people up exactly? i know thats a really dumb question but ill tell u y im asking. b/c some people i know were introduced (i wouldnt do that) other people my teachers made shidduchim (but like they knew the family and were all frum and yeshivishe, so its different.)
so the reason i asked the car question was because i saw someone who was on a date and they were sitting in the car together and me and my friend thought it was weird and not tznius... like how can you trust him? he could do ANYTHING! and yeah the shadchan could reassure you that he is all frum and everything.. i guess i just have to find someone i trust to set me up. also your right it isnt any better once your engaged.
"It could be that you might be able to make some arrangement that the two of you could meet at a pre-arranged place (although that isn't generally accepted practice in America...),"
why is that not accepted? people meet in hotel lobbies for dates i thought..
this may seem very terrible,( however there are things on this site that are much more terrible.) but I dont really have good/healthy positive men in my life that I would call "role models" or at least in my immediate vicinity. if that makes no sense i will elaborate. so because there are so few (or lack thereof) of good male people, im not sure what i want.
i mean i dont mean to be rude, but of course everybody wants a guy with good middos... who is caring and loving and supportive and compliments his wife and doesnt have a temper and is flexible and good with change.. but if everyone is looking for the same "good" things.. what happens to the guys with tempers? people with those "bad" things still get married! there are only so many people out there with good middos.
so like what if i dont fit the "wife" resume of what people are looking for? someone who can do well under stress, is caring, blah blah.. so what if im not very good at these things? where does that leave me?
and i do have expectations, but i consider them "normal" and ive seen that not very many guys fit my "normal" criteria..
so the kollel thing totally boggles me so im not even going to respond to that one.
well.. i mean there are certain things i cant compromise on! okay he has to have good midos, isnt that enough? and also frum, but near to where i am which brings us to the me being too frum thing..
Posted 11 July 2012 - 12:32 PM
Ok - I just realized from a different post of yours how old you are. And of course family members have started making comments - expect it; you're out of high school now. And not just from them - especially when you get back from seminary, even if you don't start dating right away (I didn't), people assume... You're not too young to be thinking about it, and it's good that you are, but do realize that a lot can change in one year, especially a pivotal year away from home, in a different environment, and especially surrounded by many opportunities to form relationships with your teachers.
Who sets people up? It depends. (and I'm assuming to begin with that we're talking about the accepted Litvishe dating system here) There are professional shadchanim, who have "profiles" of many, many people - both the girls and the guys - and who try to set people up. People will go and meet with them, and hope that they come up with someone, or that they'll keep "x" in mind if they can't think of any good suggestions right now. Other shidduchim are made through, as you said, family members, friends, and teachers. I have friends who are looking to get married. I might eat a Shabbos meal with a guy who I'm very impressed with (and then proceed to find out more information about him...), or my husband might have a friend, or my cousin or my friend's brother might start dating, etc., and then I try to think - ok, is he good for any of my friends? Of course I have to find out more information - what are they like, what are they doing, what are they looking for, etc - and contact the appropriate people (who handles his shidduchim, etc.), but I've set people up to go out that way. Someone who sets two people up might be a mutual friend of both of theirs, a friend of one or the other, or someone who met each one over a Shabbos meal and thought it might work as a shidduch. And then, once it gets to you, you do your own research, your own questioning, and your own making sure that this sounds right before you go out. Does that help at all?
So... is your issue the fact that you're afraid because he could "do something," or because you feel it isn't tznius? First of all, learn the halachos of yichud before you start dating. 1 - it will serve you well in terms of dating (when I was dating my husband, we went on a hike somewhere, and then realized afterwards - when we wanted to go to the same place, actually - that it might have been a yichud problem; so we asked!). 2 - the purpose of the halachos of yichud is to prevent a degree of comfort and feeling of safety that "no one will see me/us, so I can do whatever I want." If that couple that you saw on a date was sitting in a car where you and your friend were able to see them, that's fine - you could see them, right? And in terms of tznius, again, if you're going to ditch the Chassidishe approach, then in our Litvishe communities, it is considered perfectly acceptable for a guy and a girl to be out on a date together. Maybe I'm missing something (why do you think it wasn't tznius?), but from the information you gave me, that's what I can say.
Oh - and I think you missed my point. My intention was not to get you to agree that after the engagement isn't any better. Because then I could take it a step further and ask you again, then what makes it better after you're married, if you can't trust him while you're dating, and still don't after you're engaged? I was trying to tell you that there has to be a certain level of trust to begin with, which should only increase as the relationship progresses. If you don't trust your date, and especially your chosson, then something is wrong. And how in the world do you expect to switch like a lightbulb overnight to trusting your husband (who, until the chuppah, was just the person you were engaged to!)??
I don't know where you live. If it's accepted practice that a guy and a girl meet in a hotel lobby where you come from, then that's great for you! Where I live, the guy usually comes to pick the girl up (usually from her house; and he usually comes inside at least on the first date to meet her parents - although I suppose that custom could vary as well, or that her parents could accompany her on the first date to the hotel lobby...) and takes her out somewhere. I also know of many situations where the guy was coming from out of town, didn't know his way around, or any good places to go, so the girl drove. I always thought of the "meeting somewhere" system to be more Israeli; but maybe I'm just ignorant!
It doesn't seem terribly terrible (although you didn't elaborate - and that wasn't meant as a hint to, either - so I don't know the full story), if a little sad... And to be perfectly honest, I assumed as much as soon as I read your original post - which is why I added that little thing at the end of the first paragraph. B'ezras Hashem, you will gain some men teachers (and see some heads of households when you go out for Shabbos) in seminary who you will be able to look up to. But aside from that, if men, as a species, make you nervous because you don't feel comfortable with any in your life, then again, I'd highly suggest sitting down with a mentor whom you really trust and having a good, long talk about what your fears are, why they are, and how you can resolve them before you start dating.
Well then, it sounds like in terms of personality, you know what you’re looking for. Sounds like you need an easy-going, laid-back, gentle kind of guy. No, not everybody needs a guy who never gets tense/upset/angry. (I’m not talking about a real temper issue; that has to be resolved before someone gets married; but not every person never, ever gets upset, and not every person needs someone who doesn’t.) And a lot of people are ok with a guy who’s not necessarily the most flexible person on the planet.
There are many, many personality traits out there. And every person has strengths and weaknesses. People feel differently about the traits of – just to name a few – neatness, conversationalist (good or poor), intellect, patience, social skills, temper, confidence, quiet/boisterous, etc, etc, etc. About some, “x” person will feel strongly about one way or another – yes, I need my husband to have that trait in order to respect him; no, I will be miserable if I have to live with someone who is like that. About others, they won’t have feelings any which way at all. And still about others, they may feel that they would love to marry someone with this or that trait, or someone who is not like this or that, but that if a name came up that sounded wonderful in so many ways except this particular one (or two…), then “I can live – b’simcha – with that.”
It is not good enough to tell a shadchan (whether that be someone doing it professionally, or a friend who is trying to make your shidduch), “I want a mensch with good middos and who is a yarei Shamayim.” Baruch Hashem, there exist many, many people that fit that description out there. You need to be a bit more specific (again, it’s not called being picky if you’re just being realistic; it’s not either called being realistic if you’re listing off tons of things that all equal perfection…) so it can be narrowed down.
And the same can be said about (you). I have a friend who does horribly under stress, and she’s happily married. I also know another girl who wouldn’t necessarily be labeled as having a particularly caring type of personality, but she’s happily married, too! And yet another one who can’t seem to find her way around the kitchen, or keep her house neat as a pin, and… she’s also happily married! There are many character traits, and some are more important to specific people than others. I’m terrible about being timely, for example, but it doesn’t bother my husband. I have many other wonderful qualities that are important to him. And you also have many wonderful qualities – go sit down and make a list of the positive attributes about yourself (it should have at the very bare-bones least, ten, if not many more, and if it doesn’t, then you need to get to know yourself a little better), and you’ll see, you’re not as bad or as undesirable as you think!
You still have another year (at the very least – you do not have to start dating the minute you step off the plane if you are not ready! In fact, I know a few chashuve people who davka say that people coming home from a year in seminary in Eretz Yisroel should wait a little bit to let themselves settle and see where they’re holding.) to think things through, haggle various points out with people, and come to certain important decisions. It’s normal to be a little confused – just don’t give up on looking for the answers.
Check these two links out:
http://www.jewswithq.../550-questions/ (Questions to ask about a guy by Rabbi Shapiro)
http://www.jewswithq...ch__1#entry2282 (On dating)
Posted 11 July 2012 - 06:41 PM
Shpiffer1- I totally know what its like to not have any male figure you can really call a role model from personal experience. Maybe there is a good side to that too(nothing is ALL bad) because girls that are totally in awe of some older male figure are constantly comparing the boys they date to this figure. This is not necessarily good because they might forget that a 30,40, 50 year old man had to work on himself a lot in order to become who is today are while they are dating men that are still in the making...
Posted 28 August 2013 - 06:19 PM
From my own personal experience of dating, I've been with guys that were very attracted to me, but were still able to restrain them self. For example, when one guy wanted to hold my hand in the car but he held himself back. I think it helps to know how strict or lenient they are with shomer negiah. The stricter they are with it, the more restraint they have, I've seen in my experience. You can also kind of tell their personality and middos by the way they talk and act. Are they genuinely respectful, or inappropriate, and so on. I hope this info. helps. Hatzlacha
Posted 21 August 2014 - 05:24 PM
So yeah I wrote the above post a while back... before I started seminary, college and real-life. I just wanted to let everyone know that I have out grown this stage.. or phase rather? I don't know what but I legit laughed so hard when I re-read what I wrote before and am considering dating iYH soon when the time is right. just thought I would let everyone know.
Posted 10 September 2014 - 09:41 PM
As someone your age, I have to say that I have had the realization that
1) the shidduch system is very heavy on social proof
2) most mental illnesses (although sociopathy- the thing that is sometimes responsible for a person murdering a stranger in his car "on the way to a date" - isn't technically a mental illness) start showing before age 24-25, the age most of your dates will be around.
So you should be fine. Good luck with dating.
If you're ever in Brooklyn and near to flee from a date, most staff in restaurants are very helpful and understanding, and there is always a Dunkin nearby...and there are usually cops in Dunkin Donuts.