Dear Matzav Shmooze,
I have spent the past week crying on and off and I don’t know if I will ever get over the embarrassment of what happened to me.
I am a 19-year-old girl and I just started shidduchim a few months ago, ready to look for a ben Torah to build a bayis ne’eman b’yisrael with. I may be a little naive, but I was very surprised when a shadchan asked for a photo of me to show boys’ mothers. I was told everyone does this and it’s considered the norm in this day and age.
Despite all the cajoling I turned down the request because I felt that it was a breach in tznius.
A few months later (a few weeks ago) I was redt a boy who looked very promising. He went to top Yeshivos and all his references raved about his middos. After giving a yes we waited for a response with bated breath. When we received a negative response we were only told that the family said we were “not for them.”
I was disappointed but I moved on.
Unfortunately, it got back to me that what happened was that the boy had gotten hold of a picture of me and decided I didn’t look “his type.”
Now I am completely devastated. Besides for the incredible busha of knowing a family looked at a picture of me and turned me down, I now know that there is a photo of me that is being passed around to prospective mother-in-laws for them ogle at and judge.
How could bnos Yisroel be treated in this manner? After an entire upbringing of being taught that kol kvoda bas melech pnima and that it is our essence and middos that are of importance, me and my fellow Bais Yaakov graduates are made to suffer this indignity that is more dehumanizing than anything I ever experienced. Why are mothers requesting pictures and why are boys comfortable with looking at pictures as well?
Why is no one standing up for our embarrassment?
A devastated Bas Yisrael