Questions to Ask a Reference About a Prospective Date

Your research should provide enough information to determine if the shidduch has some potential. The people date to really find out about each other.

The information uncovered during the research should never be relied on 100%. Everything must be confirmed during the dating process.

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Before committing to marriage – for women

When making the decision to commit to marriage, think with your head and not only with your heart. Before committing to marriage, THINK about these aspects of your relationship. And substantiate with examples and anecdotes.

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Before committing to marriage – for men

When making the decision to commit to marriage, think with your head and not only with your heart. Before committing to marriage, THINK about these aspects of your relationship. And substantiate with examples and anecdotes.

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Conversation on first dates

The first half-hour of the first date(s) is all about loosening up, breaking any tension and just … getting through it. Keep things lighthearted, natural and quite general.  Ask light questions with the intent to find something in common. When you are starting a conversation, not all topics will catch on right away. When something seems to catch both of your attention, hover on that topic and dive deeper.

First dates are not all about chit-chatting about random topics. The goal of the first dates is to get a sense of who the other person is. You both should be sharing bits about yourself in areas that are not that private.

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What to do on a date?

Here are some activities that people have done during dating.  The idea is not only to have a nice time together but to get to know each other from a different angle. Doing such activities together can give you insight that cannot be gleaned from conversations.

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Are you ready for marriage?

If you are not ready to get married, then you are not ready to date.

Do not say that ‘I may as well start dating because it will take me years until I find the right one’. Neither should you say, ‘I should start dating because that will help me figure myself out.’
Once you start dating, you should work with the assumption that this shiduch might very well be the ‘one’. You may just find that the first person you date is the one you want to marry.
So, are you ready to get married? Here are some things to really honestly think about. It might be worthwhile to review these questions with your mashpia or good friend who really knows you and can be forthcoming and honest.

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How being bullied affects dating.

More than the exact differences of your religiosity levels is the ‘what’ and ‘who’. What are the differences; are they major or minor? Who are each of you; how flexible are each of you?

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How being bullied affects dating.

The victim of bullying may find dating more difficult, and the one dating them will also be affected. There are two main effects of bullying: insecurity and unconfidence. Both impact dating.

When someone is insecure and lacking self-confidence, they keep their guard up; they are defensive and afraid to be vulnerable. They are afraid to trust others. This holds them back from sharing about themselves and building a relationship. They often lack the courage to make big steps, like getting into a relationship.

If your fears and anxieties are coming from events in your past, you must do everything possible to not let that harm your present and destroy your future.
If you see that you are struggling, it is important that you get input from someone with an understanding of effective dating. You may benefit from guidance from a dating coach or a wise shadchan.

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“I can’t help who I am attracted to”

Attraction is a very personal thing. Clearly, there needs to be an attraction between two people for a shidduch to work out.

At the same time, attraction needs to be put in perspective of the marriage and lifelong compatibility. In the actual marriage, other factors are most likely going to play a much greater role. Shared values, empathy, generosity, stability all are elements that are crucial for successful marriage.

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Player Syndrome: How dating can be too much about fun.

Some people treat dating only or mostly as a game, and seem resistant to developing a meaningful emotional connection and do not want to take the relationship in a serious direction. Often this is because of an ambivalent relationship orientation. They want the closeness, but they are not ready to be tied down. So they treat dating like a game. You can tell a player by the very dramatic gap between their nice manner and their dismissive attitude towards the relationship.

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