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December 20, 2012 - Image 10

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2012-12-20

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Missing Generation from page 8

seemed genuinely interested, so I
decided to keep it going," Bensman
says. "Facebook really is an amaz-
ing place to make connections both
personally and in business. There is
a lot of opportunity there."
Bensman hopes to turn Sunday
Night Singles into a live Internet
radio show where singles would
attend the show and participate in
it. "I think it would be therapeutic
for people as well as a social oppor-
tunity for them to put themselves
out there he says.

Online Dating

According to a poll from the Pew
Research Center, 40 million people
in the United States have tried
online dating. In addition, 20 per-
cent of committed relationships
began online.
Rabbi Hornsten noticed recently
that several weddings she officiated
occurred because one of the two
decided to give it one more date
After being fixed up, David and Margo
before giving up on online dating
Grossman decided to throw a singles
altogether — and that's when they
party at their home to pay it forward.
met "the one:'
"Coming to Shul is a great way to
meet like-minded individuals, and
with less pressure than a singles
event," says Rabbi Arnie Sleutelberg
of Congregation Shir Tikvah in Troy.
"To date, we have matched 2,146
"The most effective way he has found
couples that have resulted in marriage,"
that people meet their beshert (true love) says Rabizadeh, who just got married
is online. "Roughly 60 percent of couples this March.
I marry these days have met online.
He says a photo is very important
"Our generation tends to be uncom-
because it helps people connect by see-
fortable with online dating," Sleutelberg
ing another person's face and eyes. He
says. "The younger generation has
also recommends not communicating
grown up with technology; it's their
online for long because it decreases your
world, and they are very comfortable
chances for success. Exchange a few
dating online. We, however, are immi-
emails, a phone call or two and then set
grants of that world, and anytime you
a date.
are an immigrant, it's uncomfortable:'
Artur Melentin and Luba Tolkachyov,
Still, more than 1,000 dating websites
both of New York, are co-founders of
are out there, and that number changes
Yenta, a free location-based mobile
frequently. A significant number of web- phone application found on iTunes that
sites are dedicated solely to Jewish dat-
allows members to immediately see who
ing and others to dating after age 40.
is Jewish and single near them.
Jewish dating websites to consider are
The app was designed to be playful
JDate.com , JWed.com , Singlejew.com (a
and easygoing with the profile consisting
division of Match.com ), Jewishcafe.com
of three questions: What's your shtick?
and TheJMom.com (where the parents
What will impress your mother? How
get to weigh in).
Jewish are you?
Ben Rabizadeh of New York, CEO of
"We created Yenta to enable Jewish
JWed.com, just announced the merging
singles to connect with each other
of its two dating websites, Frumster.com
instantaneously no matter where they
and JWed.com . "Frumster was our dat-
may be," says Tolkachyov. Users can
ing website for the more religious Jewish "check-in" at any given location and
population and JWed was for everybody
immediately see who else is in the area.
else," he says.
If somebody interests them, they can
Now known solely as JWed.com , the
start a chat and potentially meet for cof-
fee right then and there.
site focuses on singles looking specifi-
cally for marriage. The site includes all
The site doesn't tell other users exactly
sects of Judaism and all ages; however,
where you are, just the general vicinity
the site has filters that allow for a more
for safety purposes.
But what are people looking for in a
customized environment with respect to
religious backgrounds and age.

10 December 20 • 2012

What tends to be most important
on a first date? A good personality (30
percent), smile and looks (23 percent), a
sense of humor (14 percent), and career
and education (10 percent), according to
the Pew Research Center poll.
Local single Denise Goodwin places
"chemistry, good physical and emotional
health, a positive attitude and available
time" on the top of her list of traits she
looks for in men. On the contrary, what
she finds less than appealing on a date
are "presumptive behavior, a lack of
chivalry and no sense of humor:'
Bensman's "must haves" in a relation-
ship are trust, communication and com-
The top traits Schwartz finds impor-
tant when dating include honesty, sense
of humor and staying healthy.

Dating Challenges

In a close-knit community like Detroit's,
there is a tendency to believe we already
know everyone. But with nearly 67,000
Jewish people here, is it possible to
know them all?
"The challenge of dating at this age is
that it is more of a merger than a mar-
riage; blending families, incomes, histo-
ry, with timing issues and space issues,"
Bensman says. "It's a process:'
Goodwin finds competing schedules
to be one of the more challenging sides
of dating.
Schwartz' best advice is to "just be
yourself," noting that many people mis-

represent who they are when they
are getting to know one another,
even though the truth is clear once
they meet.
Statistically, men tend to lie
most about age, height and income
on an online profile, while women
tend to lie more about their
weight, physical build and their
age, according to the Pew poll.
Margo Grossman liked being
married the first time around and
made a conscious choice to find
love again. "It's important to have
a positive attitude and to have fun
because you never know who you
are going to meet," she says.
Goodwin says a good rule of
thumb for men is to "treat your
date the way you would want your
sister or daughter to be treated by
her date:'
Bensman says, "Be open. Be
out there and market yourself. Let
people know you are available:'
Rabbi Hornsten suggests let-
ting your friends know that you
are looking. "Don't assume your
friends are thinking about it if you
haven't asked," she says. "Don't
give up. Keep dating, and be open-
minded. People have set ideas
about who they want to meet, but
you never know who you are going to
meet and how you will feel about them
unless you meet them:'

Are You Ready For Love?

Experts say that divorce or the loss of a
spouse requires a certain amount of care
before rushing into the next relation-
ship. "Take your time," suggests Ron
Rice, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist in
Farmington Hills. "Don't rush into dat-
ing if you don't feel ready. When you are
ready, there will be stress associated with
dating, but it becomes easier and easier:'
Billie Tobin, a board-certified alter-
native psychology practitioner in
Southfield, says, "Before getting involved
in another relationship, we need to get
to know ourselves and be clear on what
we really want in a relationship. We also
need to look at our past relationships
and ourselves to discover our part in the
"Once we are ready to love again, it is
imperative to choose a partner that has
a similar spiritual belief system as ours
so there is room to grow together with
tolerance and with true love:'
Rice agrees. "I recommend dating
a variety of people. It gets us in touch
with what we want, to narrow down our
options and eventually work our way
back into a long-term, committed rela-
"If we are happy," he says, "it is
because we have created it. We are the
choreographers of our lives:'

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