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Do Orthodox Jews Have Arranged Marriages?
In the middle of a blizzard on the Upper East Side, Chaviva Gordon-Bennett dipped her feet into a ritual bath located in the basement of a building adjacent to her synagogue. A female attendant watched as she descended into the heated water, her terry cloth robe still tied around her waist. Three rabbis stood off to the side of the room, their backs to Gordon-Bennett as she dunked her head under water. The rabbis took this as their cue to leave.
Gordon-Bennett disrobed, handed the soaked garment to the attendant, and dunked twice more.
The breakup had been painful, but Rivka was looking to get back on the dating circuit. But a matchmaker, of sorts, beckoned. And its merging of old-school and new-school technologies occupies a potent middle ground in a fast-changing Orthodox dating environment. On the new-school side of the equation stands Alan Avitan, a year-old businessman with a close-cropped beard and a ready smile who lives on the Upper West Side.
On the more traditional side stands Tova Weinberg. The year-old, Pittsburgh-based shadchan has been a matchmaker for Jews of all stripes for most of her adult life and was involved in the founding of SawYouAtSinai. Because of the impersonality of dating apps, she says, her business is booming. David Yarus, who founded JSwipe in , does not see the app as supplanting matchmaker-based options, but rather as expanding opportunities for successful matches. At a time when navigating the dating scene seems more fraught than ever, those committed to the matchmaking system believe a middleman or woman can be essential.
Avitan, however, takes a swipe, so to speak, at the shadchan-based model of SawYouAtSinai, where matchmakers peruse profiles and suggest potential matches. As the gig economy creates increasing expectation for intensely customizable and immediately accessible services — from ride sharing to grocery delivery — questions about the usefulness of a standardized matchmaking system that involve less input on the part of the user continue to emerge.
And while SawYouAtSinai and its affiliates are traditional in their commitment to the importance of the matchmaker, their payment model — based on couples paying matchmakers directly upon a successful engagement — hews neatly to a model similar to Uber and other on-demand direct service companies. In contrast, Avitan charges his clients for consultation not based on success but by the hour.
Orthodox Millennial Couple Creates App ‘For Serious Daters Only’
Sexual intimacy prohibited until married. Moving from parents home to married life. Expectation of fertility. Jewish divorce refusal in the Orthodox Jewish community can lead to abuse of power. Keshet Starr, J. Her husband, as per laws of family purity, could not touch her, when she needed his physical comfort.
The ‘get’ process requires the husband to physically hand over the Jewish bill of divorce. For Orthodox Jewish women, there’s an additional obstacle. Her family court date to resolve child custody had been canceled, with.
For many Orthodox converts going through the conversion process, the mikveh is the light at the end of a long tunnel. What this means in practice is that men and, more often, women the majority of converts are female wait months and sometimes years to enter the dating world as halachic Jews. When the process is finally complete, many converts describe feeling more anxious than excited about the prospect of dating. Everyone has heard and many have experienced their fair share of dating horror stories.
But there is more to it — and seemingly more at stake — for converts. The Jewish community has long struggled with accepting and successfully absorbing newcomers, but one segment of the community appears to be failing more acutely, and more consequentially: the matchmakers. Over the years, I have spoken with dozens of converts, and almost all described the distinct feeling of being a second-class citizen in the dating world.
Many attributed their difficulties to complicating factors that would make dating difficult for anyone, Orthodox or not.
The Unorthodox Matchmaker
Elana Bergovoy was trying in to help her daughter find a husband. An Orthodox Jew who grew up Reform, she had never experienced shidduch, the Orthodox matchmaking process, herself. This experience would lead to her becoming president of the Shidduch Group Network, an organization that helps observant Jews find marriage partners. Get Jewish Exponent’s Newsletter by email and never miss our top stories We do not share data with third party vendors.
forJe is a dating app for Jews serious about marriage – not just they need to learn a process she calls “the anatomy of building a relationship.
Brooke, 30, an Orthodox woman divorced for six years, wants a meaningful relationship that will lead to marriage, but that is proving to be a challenge. Some even create fake profiles. In , being Orthodox no longer offers the security of ongoing community support, and for single millennials, finding a partner is a solitary pursuit. While Jewish communities still value marriage and family above all, the burden of coupling falls on the singles.
Yossi, 32, and Shira Teichman, 31, a married Orthodox couple from Los Angeles have drawn on their life experiences to create a technological solution to this dilemma. Together with life coach Shiffy,Lichtenstein, they are the co-creators of forJe a dating app for Jewish singles, like Brooke, who are seeking long-term relationships.
In Orthodox Dating Scene, Matchmakers Go Digital
Elizabeth Sloan had one wish as she contemplated the future while in her mids: an emotionally and financially stable partner who shared her commitment to Conservative Judaism. Sloan, a marriage therapist from Glendale, Md. She joined dating sites and also considered a matchmaker, but was reluctant to shell out the several thousand dollars most charge. Then, in July , Match. Stein and his late wife, also named Elizabeth, had been married for nearly 30 years and had three kids together.
Let’s assume “arranged marriage” doesn’t just mean a blind date. describe the technical process of binding two people in an official betrothal.
The present study investigates the relationship between attachment style and prolonged singlehood in the ultra-Orthodox community in Israel. As in many religious and collectivistic communities, great value is attached to the institution of marriage while singlehood is perceived as an unwanted phenomenon and inflicts suffering on ultra-Orthodox singles and on their families. The end of the singlehood period by marriage was defined functionally as the engagement of the participant.
Data was subjected to a Cox proportional hazards survival analysis. Results generally showed that avoidant and anxious attachment styles were negatively correlated with the odds of getting married. Results are discussed in the context of attachment theory and the capability of compromising during the process of match-making. This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access. Rent this article via DeepDyve. Adamczyk, K. Adult attachment and single vs. Psihologijske teme, 22 3 , — Google Scholar.
Ainsworth, M. Attachment and other affectional bonds across the life cycle.
Attachment style and prolonged singlehood in the ultra-Orthodox community in Israel
Inspired by millennia of tradition and guided by the eternal teachings of the Torah , Jewish communities have developed a unique pattern of courtship and dating. The process is goal-oriented, beautiful and respectful. Read more.
Despite some differences, all ultra-Orthodox Jews share common personal feelings and choices during the dating process (Milevsky et al.
Illustrations: Yosef Itzkowitz. Yosef Itzkowitz is an artist, author and poet. His published work can be found on Amazon, under the name Yosef Paper. He is currently studying illustration at the School of Visual Arts in New York City and can be reached at yosefitzkowitz gmail. Molly is Ashkenazi; Joey is Sephardic. Three years ago, she was living in St.
Louis and he was in Los Angeles. Though Molly and Joey are Orthodox and in their thirties, they had not even one mutual Facebook friend. This despite the fact that Molly has 2, Facebook friends! In recent years, the Internet and smartphones have changed how people do virtually everything in recent years, from Torah learning to grocery shopping. Not surprisingly, technology has affected how people meet and date—and the frum world is not immune to this drastic shift.
Of all the mysterious statements in the Talmud, one of the best known says that finding a true partner in life is as difficult as parting the Red Sea. In the world of Orthodox Judaism, where family is second to God alone, people are always working to part the seas so men and women can get married, fulfill the commandment to multiply and ensure the faith for another generation. As the father of a recent bride put it: “Matchmaking is the favorite indoor sport of Jews.
Whether they are professionals using computers, a yeshiva rabbi intimate with all the qualities and quirks of his students, or Aunt Malkie who just happens to know a nice boy from a good family, somebody is always trying to fix people up. Certain Hasidic families in the United States still choose mates for their sons and daughters as they did in 18th-century Poland.
The process whereby a man and woman meet, become acquainted with each other and decide whether they are suitable for each other, is not only common sense — it’s actually mandated by Jewish law. The Talmud stipulates that it is forbidden for a man to marry a woman until he meets her and she finds favor in his eyes, and a woman is not to be married until she is mature enough to make an intelligent decision with regards to her proposed husband.
The prospective bride and groom must meet beforehand and both must be fully comfortable with each other and must give their full consent to the match. That said, according to Jewish tradition, dating plays a very specific role. Dating is viewed as a serious matter and is not intended for entertainment purposes. Dating is reserved for mature men and women who have reached marriageable age and are actively seeking their life mate.
The restrictions on dating do not stem from old-fashioned prudishness.