Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Lets ask some more

  • What are her hobbies?
The reason we ask this question is that hobbies give us another insight into the personality: if a person’s hobby is reading, and the other person's hobby is white water rafting, we can see immediately how different those personalities are.
We can gain insight in character by the hobbies a person has as well. For example: a person whose hobby is genealogy research has a sense of family, history and an inquisitive mind. A person who likes to travel, is able to assimilate new things and is comfortable in strange places. Someone who does photography has an eye for detail and so on.
Sometimes a hobby is something we wish we could do full time if we did not have to eat.

  • Does she say ChiTas? Does she daven every day, etc?
Find questions that will tell you the level the girl is at. Asking if she is Chassidish these days means so many different things to so many people that one really has to be specific. This applies to boys and girls.
If Davening every day is important to you, then ask. If going to shul every Shabbos is the level you are aiming for, then ask about it. To ask how frum a person is a very subjective question, but asking a specific thing that is important to you gives you an insight.
  • Does she have a lot of friends? Is she dedicated to her friends?
Neither a no nor a yes answer is negative. This just amplifies your previous question of how sociable she is. Most people have a lot of acquaintances but a limited amount of close friends. Asking this question might reveal that this girl always tries to help out her friends, or she is the one everyone goes to for advice, or she is the one to go shopping with. This will give you further insight in her character.
  • Does she have a sense of humor?
Humor in life is a necessity not a luxury. If one can laugh at oneself and take oneself less seriously, it defuses a lot of little incidents that could become big. One can minimize problems by seeing the humor in them. We are not talking of a letz, a joker that finds everything a reason for mockery. That is not a good trait. We are discussing someone who has a positive reaction to a negative situation.
A person with a good sense of humor is easier to live with than someone who is serious and intense.
  • Does she have common sense?
It is hard to have this question answered truthfully. Most people will say yes without giving it a thought. According to the dictionary common sense is good practical understanding, sound practical judgment that is independent of specialized knowledge, training, or the like; normal native intelligence. Also from the dictionary: “Common sense is not so common.”
Maybe a better question would be: is she a practical person. Does she simplify tasks, does she easily visualize solutions. Of course these questions show a lot more than common sense.

It is worth repeating that one should have specific questions that target qualities that are important to our son or daughter. We want to know weather our child can live with this person so we ask those questions which will bring to light possible conflicts or confirm positive points. We will never figure out the entire person just from research, it is useless to try.

  • Is she a morning or a night person?
It is easier if both partners are the same. This way one is not drooping when the other is getting into gear, but this is definitely not a deal breaker.
Is she a half glass full or empty kind of person?
Optimism, like humor is a great quality to have, and again it is only important to the extent that it will effect her partner.

  • What do you consider her best quality? (subjective question) What is the one thing that comes to mind when one mentions her name?
Try to have the person limit the answer to one quality only. Do not accept a wishy-washy answer. "She is a great girl", is too general.

  • What do you consider her worst defect? (subjective question)
You are not expecting a major chissaron to be revealed here. Someone may say, she is often late, or she is absentminded, or she talks too much on the phone, etc. Those are all acceptable, but if someone cannot come up with even one minor drawback, then I would ask some more questions and call some more people. Everyone has some failing and if they cannot think of a minor one to tell you maybe there is a major one they cannot get out of their mind. On the other hand, they really do not know the person that well and cannot think of one.

Please do a thorough research but not an obsessive one.


Yehudis said...

I'm not convinced that it is mutar to ask someone what they think someone's worst chisaron is.