July 27, 2009 | 5:26 am
Posted by Ilana Angel
“I want you to marry a nice Jewish girl.” These are words that I tell my thirteen year old son on a regular basis. He knows that if he decides to marry a girl that is not Jewish, I will of course love her but he will be required to pay me back every penny I paid for his private Jewish Day School education as well as for his Bar Mitzvah.
At thirteen, my son has asked “Mom isn’t it more important that I find a girl to love, who loves me back, regardless of what her religion is?” I am so impressed with him for wanting to find love and being open to other religions. It makes me proud that I have raised a man of integrity. That said, when he asks me these important questions I send him to his room and remind him that he owes me a lot of money. It begs the question: What is wrong with marrying a nice Jewish girl?
I’m Jewish. More spiritual than religious but I go to Temple more often than just for the high holidays. I can sing the songs, participate in the prayers and know when to stand up and sit down. These are things that I feel are important. Sharing a faith, particularly Judaism is crucial as there are not that many of us! I can actually understand the allure of being with a girl that’s not Jewish. It’s somehow forbidden and goes against what is expected. By expected, I mean what Jewish mothers pray for every day for their children. What happened to the good old days when Jews married Jews?
I get a lot of gentle pressure from my friends to date outside my faith. I was married to a Jew and it did not work out so they figure I need to broaden my horizons. When I tell them I only date Jewish men they roll their eyes and tell me I’m crazy. Here’s the thing, I like being with a Jew and think it’s important to show the value of a shared religion to my son as he starts dating. It’s a deal breaker for me and God willing will be a deal breaker for my son. By deal breaker for my son, I mean I will be crushed if he puts my Grandmother’s ring on a finger that is attached to a girl who is not Jewish.
Here’s a list of things that men have said they like about women who are not Jewish: They like to slow dance in the kitchen while making dinner. They think kissing is an art. They are great communicators, loyal friends and wonderful mothers. They don’t care what kind of car he drives or what he does for a living, as long as he has a job that he cares about and a way to get there. They can be ready to go anywhere in 10 minutes. They care about people and don’t judge. They think sex is important and don’t use it a power chip or view it as a chore. Well surprise, this is a list of things that I wrote about myself on my jDate profile. These things describe not only me, but a lot of modern Jewish women. Has the truth about what a Jewish woman is been blurred?
At the end of the day, we are a great people and no one gets us like we do. Men need to think outside the stereotypes and look inside the box. Fabulous Jewish women exist. We are here and waiting for you to figure it out. Look within our faith for love because at the end of the day, it’s all about keeping the faith.
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