Solely In Black and White: What am I Looking for?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

What am I Looking for?

It seems that the one question that all singles are asked way too often is “What are you looking for.” It’s not that the question is inherently wrong, rather that the people who are asking it aren’t always looking for a specific answer. For some reason it has also become a common social conversation piece. However, when it comes to dating, can there be a more ambiguous question to ask someone?

This question further annoys me since I have to tailor an answer specifically for the interrogator based on my perception of their motives. These people include our well meaning friends, overly inquisitive shadchunim , random strangers, and those friendly acquaintances who just want to make conversation. For the fun of it, I used to intentionally annoy these people by playing the buyer-seller game. “What are my choices? I can’t make a decision if you don’t tell me what options you have for me.” Don’t get me wrong the process was fun, but it wasted too much time and the novelty wore off pretty fast. Also the problem arose that some of these people were serious; in which case we had to start all over again and have a real discussion. Why can’t there be a brief answer that will weed out the uninitiated and intrigue the enlightened?

After some thought I think I may have finally found my perfect answer: I am looking for a girl that is genuinely a good person and with whom I will look forward to spending time with. When you boil it all down, it really is that simple. It sounds good, it’s brief, valid, and direct. This might just work. As of now it’s just a theory; now to see how this will play out in real life.


  1. Fortunately I don't get asked that question very much, I still don't have a good answer for it. One time I answered "I don't know" and I was told that I'm obviously not ready to get married. Apparently you have to have excellent summarization skills to get married.

  2. SIBW, that's a good answer. But don't they want to know what you're looking for hashkafically and lookwise, as well?
    I'll usually give them (shadchanim) the 411 on what is required in my spouse.

  3. @Borde Jewish Guy: It really is a harder question than people make it out to be.

    @Sefardi Gal: Depends, some people really want to know while some people don’t. I have had plenty of people redt me girls without even asking those questions. If a shadchan truly wants those questions answered they can feel free to ask me them directly.

  4. I get asked that question surprisingly less than I had expected; I'm not even sure if I've ever experienced it. Instead people just come over to me and say they think they have a girl for me. I guess that's because it's people who know me already, and not some random amateur/"professional" shadchan who just met me and decided they want to marry me off.

  5. This is precisely why I wrote a profile for myself - to avoid having the same conversation umpteen million times. I meditated for a while about how to best present myself and exactly what I was looking for, and spent a few days writing, reading, thinking, and re-writing until I reached the finished product. I still update it every now and then as things can change a bit (not fundamentally) - but I add/subtract/modify things as I learn more about myself in the dating process. I highly recommend it to save yourself some time, breath, and patient.

  6. @FrumJewInYU: Do you find that those random setups are more on target to what you’re actually looking for than any other method of being setup?

    @Shades of Grey: I conceived that line for the people who randomly walkup to me and make conversation. You don’t keep a copy of your profile on you at all times, do you? Actually, come to think of it, I keep a copy of mine on my phone so I guess I do.

    Hmm… now I am curious to see what you wrote on your profile. Do you have a post about it?

  7. Sorry for the delay in reply - usually I'll get the person's email address and send it to them. I don't have a post on it or containing the information there, since it's pretty personal and would give away my identity. I could email it to you, though.

  8. No problem. If you could email it to me, that would be awesome. I highly doubt we know each other IRL.

  9. Shades of Grey, question for you. You don't feel like you're tooting your own horn on your profile?

    As far as the original question goes, it's awful. And rude. Usually the people do not get that questions like that should be asked PRIVATELY.


You can use some basic HTML tags as well as these emoticons. If you wish to comment anonymously, please use the Name/URL option and give yourself a unique title. You can leave the URL field blank if you wish. Thanks for your comment. Enjoy.