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June 12, 2013

Dating 101: Making a List of Requirements

http://www.jewishjournal.com/blog/item/dating_101_making_a_list_of_requirements/

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I have started dating and it is interesting.  By dating of course I mean I like to make dates, then chicken out and cancel them.  It is hard, but I am trying. I want to meet someone wonderful to share my life with, and apparently in order for that to happen, I have to date. I have made a list of requirements, based on past experiences and childhood fairytale fantasies, and I am diving into the rather unappealing pool of LA men with my list in hand.

Every time a man initiates contact with me I look at my list to remind myself of what is important to me.  In the interest of full disclosure, and so you understand the journey I am on, this is the list that I refer to while dating. Requirements to date Ilana Angel, in no particular order of importance: 1) He must be Jewish.  That is it.  I’m not kidding.  At this stage of my life the one thing that matters is that he be Jewish.

I have dated men that are tall, short, fat, thin, brown eyes, blue eyes, green eyes, hairy, and bald.  You name a type of man, and I have dated him. The one thing all the men I date have had in common is Judaism. They may all have different levels of observance, but at the core, they are all Jewish. I have come to understand that dating Jewish men does not guarantee that I am going to hit the jackpot any quicker.

My heart has been broken by Jewish men, because being Jewish does not make you a mensch.  Being a mensch makes you a mensch, and being an ass makes you an ass.  I have met mensches who are not Jewish, and assholes, who are.  At the end of the day there are no guarantees in love and in order for a relationship to even begin, there must a starting point with a connection, and for me, it is for both of us to be Jewish.

I am Jewish.  It is how I define myself. It also defines my worldview, my life as a mother, daughter, sister, friend, writer, and woman.  In times of sorrow or fear I take comfort in the teachings of my faith, and when I am happy and joyous, I give thanks to my faith.  It is not about being religious.  It is about believing in God, allowing that belief to exist in my heart and soul.  Important to note that the men I date don't need to worship the same way I do.

With each date I am reminded of what I have always known, I want to be with a Jewish man because it makes me feel safe.  For those of you have read my column with regularity, you know it has been a difficult road for me. I am an inherently kind and trusting person and while I don’t ever want that to change, it sets me up to be hurt by those who are not as kind.  I am a romantic girl who loves deeply, from a place of trust.

It is truly a contradiction because when it comes to speaking my mind or fighting for what I believe in, I am a pit bull.  Nobody ever needs to worry about what I think or feel because I will be the first to tell them.  When it comes to love however, I am a little shy, somewhat wounded, and I tend to trust everyone but myself.  It takes a lot to get me on a date and when I am there it takes about a minute for me to know if it is a waste of time.

I like to date Jewish men because at the end of the day I think being Jewish rocks.  My list of only one requirement for a date matters, and when my friends tell me I need to open my horizens and consider dating outside my faith, I know that is not an option for me.  Love will come.  I may not know when, where, or who,  but it will come, and he will be Jewish. George Clooney could convert so I just need to enjoy the ride, and keep the faith.

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