By Rabbi Yitschak Rudomin MA
It is obviously Bashert (“meant to be”) that we now use Shidduch Resumes in the English-speaking Yeshiva Velt (world) in North America.
A few people have asked me if I am “against Shidduch Resumes” and my answer is that I am not “against” anything that will help Shidduchim happen to help young Jewish people today get married, stay married, and build a Bayis Ne’eman BeYisroel (a true home among the Jewish People) and have their rightful share of happiness and Nitzchiyos (eternity) in life!
My main concern that I am bringing to the attention of the public is that they must not put their faith in a mere “resume” and to avoid falling into the trap of spinning their wheels and getting nowhere quickly.
What I am stressing more than anything, based on the experience that we had as a family and in guiding others, is that the most important aspect in Shidduchim(dating) is to never give up on all forms of Hishtadlus (efforts) and that the use of resumes is just one tool and method in an over-all strategy to get to the real goal, which is not to write the “perfect resume” or send it only to the most exclusive Shadchanim (matchmakers), but rather to put the use of resumes into context, and as I have stated and it’s worth repeating that just like in a job search likewise in the Parsha of Shidduchim, it is networking with as many people as possible that is most important while having and using the resume is secondary to that because it is only a necessary tool that is often required by others to summarize who and what you are and what you are looking for.
Perhaps one of the greatest reasons that Shidduch Resumes are in widespread use all over North America by English-speaking Litvish Yeshiva people and not in Israel nor among the various Chasidic groups is that people in Israel and in Chasidisha Kehillos are more centralized and concentrated geographically, while English-speaking Yeshiva people are much more spread out and live in diffuse cities and communities all over North America.
For example, when families and Shadchanim on the USA West Coast want to be in touch about Shidduchim with families and Shadchanim on the East Coast, that are thousands of miles apart, then Email and Shidduch Resumes are the perfect ways to bridge the huge distances and save time in order to put minds and hearts together and to easily send each other Shidduch Resumes. That is very logical and practical as well as critical and a great Brocha (blessing)!
It is particularly people from the so-called out-of-town communities who rely heavily on Shidduch Resumes and for that reason alone it is worth it.
Of course, communicating by phone or even in person would be the ideal, but even that can be a huge hurdle given the time zone differences between the East Coast and West Coast! Not everyone is on the same schedule, not everyone works full-time at this. Parents, Shadchanim and the young people who need dates are busy in real life with many other things.
As I think of our own family experiences and the way resumes were sent to us in Brooklyn from places even not too far away, such as New Jersey, Monsey, Queens and the Five Towns, as well as from the South, Mid-West and the West Coast, it is strange to think that with all the fuss and hoopla and formalities associated with Shidduch Resumes, all of our children married spouses within walking distance of where we live!
Our Mechutonim, at the end of it all, basically turned out to be our “neighbors” and while we did not know them personally since in Brooklyn there are B”Hhundreds of thousands of Frum Jews, yet it is so odd to think that the spouses our children married could have been “Redd” (set up) by our nearby neighbors and closest friends and in many ways they were, while the much ballyhooed and vaunted Shidduch Resumes turned out to be very secondary and minor in terms of the entire process!
That is why I stress that while it is important to have a Shidduch Resume if that is what required of you or your child by formal and informal Shadchanim since by now everyone is “expected” to have one, yet do not be surprised if it is not by any Resume that you or your child find their Bashert (soul mate) because HKB”H’s Hashgocha Pratis (God’s Divine Providence of every person) is much stronger than anything people can ever devise!
To be continued…
Rabbi Yitschak Rudomin lives in Flatbush and is the Director of the Jewish Professionals Institute www.jpi.org and his wife Zahava, although they are not Shadchanim, have counseled many in the area of Shidduchim and dating. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 718 382 5610 and 718 382 8058.
Prior articles in this series on Matzav.com:
1) The “Shidduch Crisis” Was Created by Humans
2) Shidduch Resumes & Shidduch Crisis
3) Shidduch Resumes and Bottlenecks
4) Shidduch Resumes and Reality