Monday, November 17, 2008

Time to start

Once you have established that your child is ready to start looking, you need to open a dialogue with your S/D to discuss shiduchim, priorities, needs etc. Which parent will have this conversation with the young man or woman depends on your family dynamics. Sometimes, one parent has a better relationship with a S/D than the other. Let that parent broach the subject.
It could be that the parent that “takes care” of shiduchim is not the appropriate parent to have a heart-to-heart with the kalah meidel or chosen bocher. Let the other parent have the conversation and pass on the results. In the event a child has issues with both parents, a mashpia or other person close to the child should be asked to step in and have this conversation with him or her.
Just because there are strained relations between the child and the parents does not mean the parents should abdicate responsibility for this very important issue. If they cannot deal with it directly, they are responsible to ensure that others help their child navigate the churning sea of shidduchim.
Even if you live on shlichus in a far or isolated place, you have to make the effort to help your son or daughter. Make the first call to the Shadchan or to friends and family in a more populated area. Do not make your child do this on his/her own. They need your guidance no matter how independent they seem!
Keep in touch with all those involved by phone, email or snail mail, whatever you prefer. Show your child that you are concerned about their welfare and that you are following the matter closely.
The responsibility of success does not lie only on their young inexperienced shoulders.
The Rebbe writes in Igros Kodesh, Vol. X, p.314, that it is the parents responsibility and, in particular, it is incumbent on the father to arrange the marriage of his daughter. In Vol. XI, p. 226, the Rebbe mentions that it is the father’s obligation to marry off a son.Do not postpone looking for a shiduch for your child. The Rebbe repeatedly told young people not to wait to get married. The time may never be perfectly right, and then, too many years may have passed, and it becomes much more difficult.•