Readers’ Matzav – Is it a Shidduch?


shidduch-infoDear Editor,

I think we are all losing our perspective when it comes to shidduchim. A friend of ours has a son who was driving home from yeshiva a few weeks ago on Sunday and he saw in the curb lane a car with the hazard lights flashing and two “dressed up” girls standing beside it. Since he was raised properly by his parents (sorry, I am editorializing here), he pulled over and asked the girls if they needed help. They had a flat tire and told him that they had called for help, but the towing company said it would be an hour and they were going to be late for a vort. So (because this is a boy whose parents taught him well), the boy (let’s call him Dovid) offered to change the tire for them. The girls were kind of astounded, but they actually took him up on the offer; he changed the tire.

While he was changing the tire, they made small talk and it turns out that one of the girls knows his aunt, and we figure that she used that information to obtain his address later that week, and she (the driver of the car) and the other girl sent him a thank you note with a gift certificate to a local seforim store. They explained they would have probably spent four times that much on the towing company, and they really appreciated his help.

So, one thing leads to another, the boy calls his aunt, one thing leads to another, the boy and girl have a conversation, and they make up to meet for a date.

Nice story so far, right? Gets better.

This is where the craziness starts.

Two nights later, Dovid gets a call from the girl, who tells Dovid that she cannot meet him. Why? Because she was about to be redd to a very choshuve bochur, and the shadchanis told her that if word got around that this girl was going to go on a date with a guy she had met without the inetrvention of a shadchan, (a) the choshuve bochur would not meet her, and (b) the shadchanis would no longer help her because “my clientele does not talk to boys who have not been checked out and cleared.”

Of course, Dovid was upset, because he liked the girl and thought it would be worthwhile to meet with her. The girl was upset, because she was torn between wanting to meet Dovid again, but not sure she wants to risk her relationship with the shadchanis if the Dovid thing doesn’t go anywhere.

So, let me understand: boy helps girl by changing her flat tire; girl thanks boy with small gift; boy thanks girl; they enjoy phone conversation; and now they’re not allowed to meet?

There’s something wrong here. I’m not telling communities to change their modes of dating, etc., but why must artificial boundaries be imposed when, b’derech hatevah, a chance meeting offers a possible promise of something good?

I told my husband that if I were the girl’s mother, I would send them to dinner, not just coffee.



  1. First part of the story sounds like a typical Urban Legend.And why was the girl trying so hard to be ‘red’ to this Chosuver Bocher’ after she agreed to meet Dovid?

  2. Obviously the author is trying to make a greater point. Whether she correct or incorrect (which is more likely), she should be honest and upfront that it is fictional.

  3. Probably the real reason why she didnt want to date him was because he didnt have money and that is what most shidduchim are about. she probably was told that boys with $$$ dont stop to change tires, they would just pay their way to get it done. This boy sounds like a huge mentch and this incident should in No way be used against this boy

  4. I am almost sure that the issue is not that the girl is looking for money, rather if it does not work out with Dovid then she has to rely on the shadchanim to find her other boys and it is not so easy to get shadchanim to pay attention to girls today, so if the shadchan told her she would no longer be retting her shidduchim then if it did not work out with Dovid, she will be left high and dry. Shidduchim is not easy for girls in the Yeshivasha velt.

  5. Sounds strange, most girls are not about to be redd to ANYONE! speak to any girl in shidduchim. If she was redd to this boy and is not interested its probably due to a different reason. Like having to explain (if it works out) how she met him etc.

  6. #3 you are right!! That is sooo funny! You Know that reminds me of a story of a 30 year old guy who went to Amukah to Daven for his Zivug. On the way he see’s a car pulled over on the side of the road. He stops and offers the woman a hand. He changes her tire and then they each go on their own way without exchanging anything more than thank you. He gets to amukah and they see each other there again. Again they don’t exchange a word. Later before he leaves he looks inside his tehillim he is using and it says “If found please return to so and so”. He calls up the number and the lady lives in yerushalayim. He goes to the house the next day and guess who opens up the door? The same girl he helped out. So both seeing that there is some yad hashem over here talked for a bit and then made up to go out. To make a long story short 2 months later they were engaged and 4 months later they where married. Now the story really ends when 6 months later they got divorced. I know alot of you would be upset for spoiling the ending but that is what happened.

  7. Girl should have asked any Rosh Yeshiva (which is a problem unto itself- girls don’t have the Torah guidance that boys have access to when they’re dating. (Not that all boys listen or even ask their Rosh Yeshivos- I’m just saying)) any they would have told her to date the boy after a few “making sure” phone calls.
    The Shadchan’s main concern is HERSELF. Of course she would advise the girl from dating this boy, just as a used car salseman will tell you a lease is not worth it.

  8. “but why must artificial boundaries be imposed”

    World affairs have shown that boundaries are honored if the two bordering countries agree–who is agree to artifical boundaries? Could it be only ourselves to blame.

  9. #9, the divorce really has nothing to do with the marriage. For whatever reason, they were supposed to get married and then divorced. Yad Hashem is still very obvious.

  10. Silly Billies. Let them go out. Ignore the shadchanis. She is self-centered, wrong, and only looking for the $$$$$$$$$. It might just be the right one. Maybe Hashem sent the boy this way to meet this girl. Let them go out, have a good time. Hey, you never know. Nice story to tell the kids one day, how Tatty met Mommy. Nothing wrong.

  11. While he was changing the tire, they made small talk and it turns out that one of the girls knows his aunt, and we figure that she used that information to obtain his address later that week, and she (the driver of the car) and the other girl sent him a thank you note with a gift certificate to a local seforim store.

    What if they were not both into shiduchim and one thing led to another like this…

  12. I do not think the story is fictional as it was introduced on another forum and updates to the story have been posted since.

    The Wolf

  13. Why did she tell anyone how this shidduch came about? If it were my daughter, I would just make believe it was a typical redd date. until they were engaged, at least.

  14. “What if they were not both into shiduchim and one thing led to another like this…”

    So, are you suggesting he should have just left them stranded by the side of the road? Or should he have been rude and changed the tire with not a word spoken?

    The Wolf

  15. “Why did she tell anyone how this shidduch came about? If it were my daughter, I would just make believe it was a typical redd date. until they were engaged, at least.”

    Because honesty is a virtue… not to mention a mitzvah.

    I have no problems telling people that I met my wife on my own with only HKBH acting as our shadchan. If they want to look down on me for that… that’s their business. I have nothing to hide as I don’t believe I did anything wrong – and neither did the girl in the scenario.

    The Wolf

  16. Why did the girl have to tell the shadchanit that she’s going to meet this boy, and how it all came about? Does this girl owe din vecheshbon to anyone? I don’t get it. She doesn’t sound too clever…

  17. Why can’t they just get someone to redd the shidduch and then there’s nothing to worry about at all. If it doesn’t end up working out, she can still use the ‘selfish’ shadchan, and if it does work out then…. Mazal Tov!!

  18. I think she should go out with Dovid, and just not tell the shadchenta. It’s none of her business, anyway. If it works out they can say the aunt thought of the shidduch. (They’ll also save a bundle in shadchonus.)

  19. The mistake was thankig him. Hakaras hatov can not apply to people at the shidduch stage bcause it can lead to untnius responses. Better she said the word thank you, briefly without looking at him and drove away. If it was bashert the shadchan who is more interested in them than money would have figured it out. Besides thank you presents are a goyish concept that can lead to dates without approval. A self respecting girl has a chiyuv to her sisters and brothers.

    Hakaros hatov only appolies between people who would not consider a shidduch. better to thank a goy than a guy who is jewish and changes a tire.

  20. If there were truth to the story they’d just put up the aunt as a shadchan.
    Which by the way is the normal thing to do.
    I had a friend who met a girl and admired her he asked his rosh yeshiva (very right wing yeshivish) who suggested to “ask a friend to redd it, or I could redd it…” turns out the girl said “not a chance” but there is nothing wrong with that from the most right wing stand point.
    The “go between” helps keep things on the straight and narrow and should be there, but there’s no reason not to elect your own shadchan.
    How’s about “do you know such and such… I’m interested, can you redd it?” this is done all the time. Hence… this is bogus or at the least a bogus excuse.

  21. Or should he have been rude and changed the tire with not a word spoken?

    Presumbly she would of understood that he is heeding the warning of Chazel:Al Tarbeh sicha etc., had he kept the conversation down to a minmum

  22. Her parents should have checked him out before they agreed to a date. (Even though he seems nice, you would still want to find out more about him before they meet.) If he checks out OK, then why shouldn’t they meet?

  23. the story most likely is true, and i’ve heard numerous similar stories. granted, the shadchan is a lowlife, but why is the girl stupid enough to listen to her, or for that matter, to even tell her about the guy? she should realize that there are other shadchanim out there, and hashem has his ways of making shidduchim come about, even without the help of a self-proclaimed famous shadchan. a little faith, anyone?

  24. Would all you farfrumte people stop being so frum. Whether or not this story is made up doesn’t matter. It is still a nice story, and shows that this boy has a good heart. Nothing wrong with azov ta’azov. That’s the way it should be. Tell you a story? I lived near one of the gedolei hador of yesteryear. When my mother had heavy packages and this godol was passing,and saw, he shlepped them into the house because my father was in Yeshiva. He said, he wants the mitzvah. Now, that is a godol. So to all you nice people: always help a person stuck, always help a girl or girls especially. Who should help them? A shaygitz fun gass? That’s better. Wake up, everyone. This boy was well brought up. I brought my children up like that too. Nothing wrong to chap a shmuess. It’s only natural.

  25. My advice: first go out with the choshuva bochur. If that doesn’t work out, have the parents check out Dovid and if all seems okay, let them get the aunt to redt it. Now doesn’t that make perfect sense?

  26. Bubby: Posting a story as true, if it is untrue, is sheker; that’s why it matters whether or not it is “made up”.

    The obvious solution, as another poster pointed out, is to have the aunt (who knows both of them) red the shidduch. Is there a reason the girl chose to say no rather than doing that?

  27. I never laughed so hard. Yankel Miller the Badchan and Hilly Hill never said such good jokes as the story and the comments above.

    This should be used as a comedy play. And then you wonder why there is a shidduchim crisis. Loh Aleinu sick people. I can’t believe the narishkeiten.

  28. I was loving your comment, sounded perfect…until the last two sentences. “Chapping a shmuess” is not politeness or mentchlich thanks, it is familiarity between the genders that Torah behavior does not permit, no matter what “wing” you identify with. Polite, brief conversation, sincere thanks, that is appropriate.

    “It’s only natural” is correct, like many other things that are “natural” human instincts that Torah teaches to rise above and conquer.

    Regarding your beautiful story of the godol- No, I do not believe for a moment that the godol “chapped a shmooze” with your mother. I’m sure there was greeting, polite talk, well wishes, and thanks. That is not “chapping a shmooze”.

  29. SOME shadchanim are ready to mess up your life just for a couple of bucks if the couple divorces noone comes running back to the shadchin asking for the cash. Hey maybe there should be such a takana, then shadchabim might think twice before saying stupid things like “the chashuva bachur won’t wanna date you if hears that la la la” the girls an idiot too for listening to the shadchan. And by the way friendly conversation is appropriate HOWEVER sending a gift is very very wrong if you can’t understand that speak to you local orthodox rabbi


  31. #42 — I agree with you completely. #36 was completely out of line advising men to “chap a shmuess with girls, it’s only natural” and to “always help girls especially”. This is pure goyish thinking.

  32. Is there only one shadchin in all of New Jersey, New York or wherever???if this shadchin can only think of herself,and things don’t work out with this boy, GO TO SOMEONE ELSE!!!

  33. Too much talk brings to no good!
    Perhaps the Chosive Bochur is the one who changed the tire.It shows he is a mentch and a combination of Torah Im Derech Eretz.
    Shadchanim are not know it alls.
    A very erliche Ben Torah who was also a shadchan once told me,”a shadchan can be a liar so only believe the name he/she is giving you and the rest is for you to find out!
    A friend of mine had a daughter who went through a nasty divorce.When she went back to one so called Ben shel kdoishim and asked why he lied to her, he answered that if he told the truth ,half of the bochurim in that kehillah would not have a chance to marry. So, listen to your parents and ask your local Rav. The shadcan is not the word of Hashem.

  34. First of all, once the girl had agreed to go out with the boy Dovid, it is certainly not right of her to back out of her promise for the date, and it is also not right of her to even think about and accept any other any other proposals.

    For the Shaddchanis to threaten and blackmail her to do this, is outright fiendish cruelity!!

    Please, let me explain. There is no question about it at all. For a man and a woman to meet out on the street — and it was a “legitamite” meeting, like here, that the man fixed the woman’s flat tire — and then at this causual meeting on the street, the man and woman were to say to each other: “Hey, let’s go out for a date!” of course, that would be totally wrong! It would be totally wrong not only because it is breaking the ways of proper Tz’nius decency, but because it is outright foolish and dangerous!

    This is totally well understood even in the outside world (with all its wicked liberal ideas of no moral values). There are countless tragic horrific news stories of a man and a woman who met. It was not even “out on the street,” but it was nevertheless still in improper ways of, for example, at a singles bar, or at a public library, or at a cafe computer station, or through a singles newspaper ad, etc. — ways that even in the outside world are well understood to be VERY CHEAP. So they “met,” and each thought that the other seemed to be a nice person, so they start a relationship. The problem though is that one of the pair happens to be a fiendish criminal; the other one only discovers this when he or she is thus lying dead in a pool of blood with a couple of bullits pumped in!!

    So people cannot make a Shidduch by meeting in the street, and everyone agrees with this — including David and the girl.


    AFTER, I repeat, AFTER the changing of the tire, and AFTER the sending of the gift, “the boy calls his aunt” — who is the “go between” — in other words, WHO IS THE SHADDCHAN — and then, “one thing leads to another, the boy and girl have a conversation, and they make up to meet for a date.”

    So again, when Dovid and the girls first met on the street with the tire problem and making a little bit of “small talk,” they did not, I repeat, they DID NOT say: “Hey, let’s go out for a date!” Instead, what they did do was, with the boy’s aunt as the “go between” – as the, yes, the “Shaddchan,” Dovid and the girl agreed to have a date.

    So they DID use a Shaddchan!! I repeat, they DID use a Shaddchan!!

    So what was wrong?? That they HAD previously met on the street?? (Wait a minute, we must relate the story correctly. They did not simply see each other on the street
    and in a non-tz’nius way decide then to “meet.” Rather, they WERE FORCED to meet on the street: the girls had a flat tire and were thus stranded on the side of the road with their tow company not able to come for a long time. Dovid, passes by, and by the laws of our Torah — by what is understood throughout human civilization as the requirements of basic human decency — he IS FORCED to stop and fully help the girls.)

    So again, what was wrong?? That they had previously been forced to meet on the street??

    Is there a (new) “halacha” here that if a single man somehow, in any way whatsoever, does any kind of business with a single woman, then, Ad Neitzach Netzachim – for all eternity of eternity, it is Assur Gomer – it is completely forbidden for him to ever marry that woman????

    (Of course, according to this “Din,” when a bachur goes to see a Shaddchan, he will have to be careful to remember to tell the Shaddchan all of the stores that he shops at, all of the banks that he banks at, all of the doctors’ offices that he uses, and all of the companies that he does business with, so that the Shaddchan will know to NOT suggest a girl who works at any of these places and thus may have previously met and said something to this boy!!)

    What was wrong?? That they used the boy’s aunt, a family member, as the Shaddchan, and did not use an “official” Shaddchan??

    Is there now a “Shaddchan Licensing Board” and thus a boy and a girl are only allowed to meet through the referral of a Shaddchan who is “Board Certified”????

    Again, that this Shaddchanis — with mean threats and outright blackmail — broke up and destroyed what may have very well have been a perfectly good and wonderful Shidduch and what may have very well have been a perfectly good and wonderful Baiyis Ne’eman B’Yisroel, is a totally sick wickedness that is beyond comprehension!!

  35. Comment #28. from aaron roiterman: Are you are saying your remark sarcasticly or are you actually saying that it was wrong for the girl to send the boy a Thank You present?

  36. first of all, the story is most probably FICTIONAL.

    secondly, Dovid should not have been making small talk with girls.

    Let your parents and shadchanim take care of your bashert.

  37. Just saw this, and albeit a bit late,couldn’t resist putting in my “2¢”.To witt,I think this is a blatant prime example of denying HKB”H’s Hashgocha,without getting into detail,let me just say that I speak from experience.Life is really,as the velt says,way “too short”-one has to “open one’s eyes”

  38. -continued-
    and when HKB”H b’Rachamav ub’Chasdav haMerubim,sends one a gift as in the article,(and as I referenced in my previous post,I B”H experienced the same),it’s an Absolutely clear indication that HKB”H is sending the person a gift.Therefore,to disregard it is to C”V disregard Hashgocha Protis.In summation,accept the gift,be grateful that you merited it,Thank HKB”H,and do whatever you can in your ability to make it work!
    I sincerely hope the two parties mentioned in the article get their Hashkofa “in gear”.

  39. thats retarded. first of all why would he want to marry her if this is all she cares about and second of all, i know someone who mad eher own sons shidduch. just get this aunt to redd the shidduch and then theyll live happily after after. besides this story sounds too good to be true (at least the begining of it.)

  40. 1. David should’ve changed the tire without making small talk.
    2. Girl has no business sending strange bochur a gift
    3. Story is most likely a fiction