*Multiple choice question:
Who said the following:
"Wow, she is so amazing! She manages to smile at the vorts of all of her friends, even though she isn't engaged yet. It must be really hard for her... all her friends are engaged or married by now-and she isn't…"
A) The Nosy Shadchan whom we all avoid
B) The self-righteous 15 year old high school girls
D) All of the above
The answer, as horrible as it is to think about, much less to admit to all of my readers, is D.
Yes, you read that correctly. I, SD, have uttered sentences similar to the incriminating one mentioned above. See, I always thought of these as nasty statements. Ones I'd promise myself not to consider saying -ever. But at a recent vort, I found myself the object of pity all around. And, painfully, I was fully aware of the thoughts hiding behind the pitying glances. But, I wondered, how in the world did I know? Surely I’d never engaged in a pitying conversation like that one.
And then the truth hit me like a ton of bricks. I lowered my eyes in shame, horrified that I was amongst the ranks of these cruel and hurtful people. See, in my haste to condemn the pitying people, I forgot about a crucial faction. It's not only the Nosey shadchanim of the world that torture us singles in this manner. There is another group of people, equally good meaning, equally annoying, and just a tad bit more naive.
I once heard my high school sister on the phone. They were discussing a DH or head counselor who had just gotten engaged. it's really nice," my sister proclaimed. "She isn't so young..." Her voice trailed off as she most likely listened to her friend's take on the latest nebach case crossed off the list of "Shidduch Crisis Casualties." Suddenly, my ears perked up. I heard the name of this “older single" mentioned. It sounded familiar.
Upon further investigation, I discovered the reason that the nebach-case sounded familiar to me. She was in seminary with me. Yep. The older single. Did I mention that this story happened a year and a half ago?
Painful as it is to Say it, I know I've done this myself. want so badly to crawl into Calvin's little cardboard box and travel back in time to the year was in eighth grade, when an "older," single teacher of mine got engaged. want to bring along a muzzle and stop myself from uttering those horrific words. I want to undo the terrible wrongs I committed as a teenager.
And that wasn't the only time. I remember a discussion in high school about a girl who had just gotten engaged. "It's so so so nice," my friends and I had commented. “She really isn't young." And worse are the nasty speculations about the hardship facing the ones who hadn't yet been swept off their feet by prince charming.
I can't be the only guilty party, can I? I'm doing teshuvah though. Count this as my vidui. Now, by a show of hands, er, comments, how many of you are guilty of this grave sin?