“For the first ten years of my dating life, I exclusively dated non-Jews. In fact, I was anti-Jew. I wanted nothing to do with the Brit Milah’ed, Bar Mitzvah’ed bunch. Until my best friend got married and had a baby and then something ‘clicked.’ Suddenly I found myself interested in Jews. It was all I wanted, all I could see and all I was attracted to. Once I realized how important it was to me to marry someone Jewish – to start a family and raise a family with someone Jewish – I was hooked. I wasn’t just doing it for the future of the Jewish people and I wasn’t just doing it because I thought it would be ‘easier,’ but also because – and most importantly because – it was what felt right.” —Excerpt from “How to Woo a Jew: The Modern Jewish Guide to Dating and Mating”)
Finding Your Partner
Chances are, since you’re reading this article on JDate, that you grew up in a Jewish household and naturally assumed you would marry another Jew because you were Jewish. 1+1=2, right? But then you went out into this big world and began dating and realized not only do you have more options, but finding that Jewish partner wasn’t going to be so easy after all. And that Jewish home you grew up in likely included parents and grandparents who are now hounding you about marrying someone Jewish. Unfortunately, this can sometimes produce the reverse effect and turn you off from single Jews even more. But you were presented with circumstances and situations in life that made you realize that a Jewish partner does seem to make more sense in your search for a soulmate.
Values And Traditions
But sharing a religion is not just important because it makes life easier; it also means you share so many other important commonalities.
The holidays, the cycle of life, traditions, values … all of those experiences are ingrained in us as Jews and you, like me, may have your own “A ha!” moment where you realize that marrying a Jew is important to you. Everyone will have their own reasons. Some will never have doubted the importance to begin with while others will only discover it later on. Most will agree that life is difficult enough, so why add elements that can make it even more complicated?
Marrying Jewish may have more importance to you if you have kids or want to have them. When it comes to raising a Jewish family, it helps to have a Jewish partner who is not only board with but also familiar and comfortable with the ways in which you want to create a Jewish household. Again, it’s not just the religion; in this case, it’s also the traditions you were raised with and want to pass down to your kids – how you honor a birth, how you mourn a death, how you celebrate a holiday and so on.
There’s a bond we feel with other members of the tribe. Maybe it’s because we are a minority and we need to stick together (even if we don’t agree politically). Regardless, there’s an immediate connection when you meet someone and find out they are a Jew, especially if you’re in a place you didn’t expect to do so. There’s an instant feeling of belonging and having a deep-rooted commonality. It’s why you’re on JDate looking for a partner, because of all those intangible things that make you proud to be Jewish. So keep an eye out for that connection as you meet up with potential prospects; it could lead to something that lasts.