Look Who’s Coming for Rosh Hashanah Dinner

Written by Editor on . Posted in Advice Columns

Reader Question:

 The High Holidays are a time when many families come together to celebrate. What advice do you have for readers bringing home a significant other to meet the parents (and/or Bubbe, Aunt Sara, and assorted cousins) for the first time?

Our Best Tool

Written by Laura Goldman on . Posted in Advice Columns

I don’t know about you, but around this time of year I start to gear up for school. Yes, school supplies are a part of it, but mostly the preparation is mental. I start thinking about summer homework and whether it has been completed, school schedules and extracurriculars, carpools, doctors’ appointments, and which teachers my kids will have this year.

Getting Ahead in the Undergraduate Admissions Game

Written by Nikkee Porcaro on . Posted in Advice Columns

The clock strikes midnight. You careen down the stairs, your slipper sliding off your foot, your (night) gown fluttering behind you, as you race to the velvet-upholstered seat. You have to make it in time! Click-clack, click-clack, and you’re off — and the race is on.

Staying True to Yourself as a Single

Written by Shaina Gold on . Posted in Advice Columns

I always wanted to write an article about dating. My friends would hear stories from my countless dating escapades and encourage me to write a book. This week I am turning 34 years old. As I reflect on this past year, I decided to celebrate my birthday by writing my very first article. Just a little something to cross off my bucket list.

Online Resources for Federal Jobs

Written by David Marwick for KempMillJobAssist on . Posted in Advice Columns

Understanding the federal hiring process is the first step in the process of applying for a federal job. These two for-profit companies provide webinars, trainings, online guides, and other services to those seeking federal jobs. Some of these services are free, but others require payment. Both companies offer email sign up lists for updates on new resources.

Get High on the Holidays

Written by Rachel Burnham on . Posted in Advice Columns

Reader Question:

 Holidays are a time when some singles feel at odds with the family-oriented atmosphere pervasive in the Jewish community. What advice do you have for singles who want to reinvent the holiday experience for their lifestyle?

The Goodbye Blues

Written by Editor on . Posted in Advice Columns

Do you have a question for Rivkie? 

Email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dear Rivkie,

A good friend of my teenage son (let’s call him Mordechai) moved away this summer. Mordechai is upset about his friend’s departure, especially since they have known each other for most of their lives. He is a well-adjusted kid, and has many friends, but this is really throwing him for a loop. How do I help him through this rough patch?

Married to a Wimp

Written by Rabbi Steven Baars on . Posted in Advice Columns

Take a guess. Out of 100 wives, how many would say they are married to a wimp? In my totally unscientific study based on 30 years in marriage counseling, I estimate 99 out of 100 would answer in the affirmative.

Shadchan Search

Written by Rachel Burnham, Dating Coach on . Posted in Advice Columns

Life is a series of matchmaking experiences. We seek the right friends, job, community, shul, and, of course, the right spouse.

Ready to Mingle — But He’s Not Single

Written by Editor on . Posted in Advice Columns

Need some advice? Send your questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Dear Rivkie,

 I have been dating an awesome girl, “Batya,” for a few months, and am very happy with her. We have been part of a local group of Jewish singles that hangs out and attends a lot of Jewish social events. We also attend singles events such as the American Friends of Lubavitch shabbatons for young professionals in the greater Washington, D.C., area.

Here’s where it gets sticky. Recently, Batya told me that she thinks it’s inappropriate for us to continue to attend these gatherings together, since they are really meant for singles looking for their bashert. I am a very social person and I really enjoy these kinds of shabbatons and other similar events. I assure her I am obviously not looking for someone else to date when we go, as we are a couple, but she doesn’t seem happy that I’m reluctant to give up this habit. I really like this girl.

What do you suggest?

 Signed,

Confused Kalman

 

Dear Kalman,

Oh, dear. When I got this question, I did a quick survey around the dinner table, and here were the results:

“Survey says: BZZZZZ!!!”

If you are too young to get this reference, it is from the 1970s game show “Family Feud.” When a contestant got the wrong answer, a very loud noise occurred, and boy did you know they were wrong.

Anyway, Kalman, everyone in Rivkie’s house sided with Batya.

To preface what comes next, I just want to say that we are assuming that you are dating for marriage and not just “for fun” here, and this answer is based on that underlying assumption.

When we are dating someone, a process is in place so we can really get to know that person. Do we share the same basic belief system? Do we want the same sort of family life? Do we have fun together? Do we like each other’s families? (That last one is not a requirement, but it’s awfully nice.) You get the idea. It is difficult to get real answers to all the questions when you are still going to singles events.

A bigger issue is that when you attend these singles events, you are sending off a signal to other girls that you are available. It’s likely that not everyone in the room will know that you and Batya are an item, and someone may approach you, looking to meet you as a prospective single, and then what? Without meaning to, you could cause a girl a lot of embarrassment, which we know is a major no-no, not to mention an aveira (sin).

Think about it. You are at a singles event, you approach a girl to introduce yourself, and then she says, “Sorry, I’m here with my boyfriend.”

I mean, ouch. No, sir! Talk about false advertising.

Dating is also about learning how to compromise when you and your significant other don’t agree. Sometimes, it’s about what to watch on Netflix, while at other times, it’s something bigger, like, “Should I quit my steady job and start a new business?”

So, how about a compromise?

You love to be social, right? You’re a real people person. Why don’t you use that gift to make your own, not-exclusively singles shabbaton right where you are? Could you and Batya organize a fun event or outing with young professionals and be in charge? When you do a project together, that can tell you a lot about the other person, how they interact with people, and what their strengths and weaknesses are.

It sounds like your heart is in the right place, Kalman, and I’m sure you don’t want to do anything to hurt Batya. Look at it as a win that you aren’t at these singles events anymore. Make your own fun with Batya and try to help other young Yidden find their bashert. Just because you are paired up doesn’t mean you can’t socialize anymore. You just have to tweak it a bit. Boundaries change and you must prioritize Batya’s feelings.

And don’t forget, Rivkie loves to attend weddings. Wishing you all the luck and happiness!

All the best,

Rivkie