Sunday, May 16, 2010

Just One Date

"'Just one date', they'd tell me. 'A couple of hours, why not? Isn't it worth a try?'

"And they were right in a way. I couldn’t rule out guys before I'd met them. Because I'm a mix, and I needed a mix. I couldn't know ahead what was the exact combination of Israeli and Chutznik, of Yeshivish and open, that I needed. Because it depended on the guy really, it's not an exact science. So I kept trying.

"But one date was never one date. There's the 'before', the whole getting ready business. But what's worse is the 'after', the deliberations, the 'should I try again?'. The hoping he'll say no, because you don't have the courage to be the one to end it. Second dates are almost autmoatic, because how can you know him properly after only one date? Eventually it ends, two or three dates later, one or two weeks later, after endless phone calls and debates. And it always ends for the reason that you saw on the first date."

I nod, I agree. It's often the same for me too. (Those times when I'm not the one being dumped)

"Finally I decided I'm going to start listening to myself. I'm going to trust my instincts. I'll go out for 'just one date', and it really will be for one date only. If I don't see it going anywhere I'll end it, cut it right away, not let it drag on."

"And it worked", I say.

She smiles. She's now happily married to a guy who is totally unlike her 'on paper', who she agreed to the 'just one date' with (because she knew it really only had to be one date, and not more), and who she liked, a lot, and clicked with. And actually wanted spend a second date, and a third, and eventually a lifetime with.

"It saved me so much heartache" she tells me. "I went out with all types of guys that year, I tried everything, but as soon as I didn't think it was going to work, I ended it, and moved on."

"It's scary" I say. "What if I'm meant to marry someone who I don't like straight away? How can I know who my Besherte is, and how much of a chance I need to give the relationship?"

Her dating strategy does sound appealing though. Listening to myself, and to my feelings, which never really change, however much I keep trying. No more forcing relationships that aren't going anywhere. No more praying to be dumped. Should I try it?


  1. Nope. You should not try it. You wouldn't rule out people because of an arbitrary characteristic like, say, wearing green shirts, right? Well, by adopting this strategy, you're arbitrarily ruling out the category of people who take some time to warm up to someone new. After all, who says you're bashert to marry someone who's a great conversationalist right off the bat? Maybe your bashert is just a bit shy, and needs to get to know you a bit first before opening up?

  2. Well, it depends. Generally speaking, yes. Trust your instincts, and know that your impression probably won't significantly change from the first date. But also generally speaking, the answer to people who ask such a question, should be 'no'.

    The 'yes' can only be given out in hushed tones, to the select friends we know we can trust with this powerful tool.

    The problem lies with the ones who think they can trust their sixth senses. They can't. And to such people, advice to them to follow their instincts is only detremental and cutting their opportunities short.

    But because we can't point out to people who can and can't take licence in their quick-drawn conclusions, it's safest to give out an all-genearal answer to people of...


  3. Dating all and sundry in this way is the quickest way to burn-out. Date selectively and leave the rest up to Hashem.