SEMGIRL

Hi, I was just your typical 19 year old Seminary girl in South Jersey (if you don't know where I mean, you are probably on the wrong blog). We all have nisoynos, challenges, and experiences, both positive and negative. Here is where I have decided to share some of them.

Name:
Location: Lakewood, New Jersey, United States

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Diets and Motivation

A close friend of mine is the last one in her class to be still single at the ripe old age of twenty. It doesn't even matter that not all her classmate's marriages are happy ones. She's an alta maidel and her classmates aren't. That's what matters. Her parents feel that this horrible situation is due to the fact that she's not ultra thin. As a result they are forcing her to go to Weight Watchers with promises that once she looses the weight her chosson will magically appear.

She is a very bright, sweet, intelligent, extremely talented, attractive girl that would make a wonderful wife for any bochur. As a lifetime member of Weight Watchers myself, I can tell you that the first thing that any lecturer tells you at meetings is that you have to want to lose weight only for yourself. Not for your parents, fiance, husband, relatives, friends, or any other reason. Otherwise, you will fail to loose weight or just gain it back with interest.

Its also sending a very bad message, that the shallow, baser values of Hollywood and Madison Ave, R"L, that concentrate primarily on the external, are seeping into the most heimish homes and communities, regardless of how insulated they appear to be.

Another major pitfall of this is that its likely these girls will tragically just marry someone who is mostly attracted to them for their looks, and after one or two children, when there is a lot more of you to love, serious Shalom Bayis problems will emerge.

Its very prevalent that girls who have such pressure placed on them by their well-meaning, but misguided families have poor self images and very low self-esteem. As a result many tend to end up in abusive marriages. Furthermore, years of obsessive dieting can sometimes cause fertility problems and/or miscarriages c"v.

All this considered, why are young girls torturing themselves to be ultra thin? Why are supposedly loving parents tormenting their poor daughters to conform to some shallow bochur's adolescent fantasies? Why are some of the mothers of these bochurim encouraging their sons to demand ultra thin girls? Why aren't those who have influence with bochurim speaking out against this ridiculousness?

I wish I had the answers to these questions. All I know is wonderful girls like my friend deserve husbands who will appreciate them for themselves and not what dress size they wear.

61 Comments:

Blogger Y.Y. said...

i lost my weight for other people and it has been 7 years and i havnt gained back an ounce
if she diets and gets thin her chussen will arrive faster for sure guys want hot looking thin girls rather than good hearted fat girls sorry but that is reality
so she should shed her weight as soon as possible so she cant find a guy

11/16/2006 7:42 PM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

How much do you weigh, yy? Thats how much you're poor wife needs to loose.

11/16/2006 8:17 PM  
Blogger Shpitzle Shtrimpkind said...

Sem – Great post!

Very sad story. I don’t think anybody is gonna take her for her looks, shiduchim generally don’t work like that. Rather, SHE is gonna be convinced that shidduchim is all about the looks. Parents have no right to use the poor girl's desperation to finally make her skinny. They have no right to relate one issue with the other. Absolutely terrible.
A lot of heavy girls get engaged fast and a lot of thin girls wait a little. There is no connection.

YY – Are you ever going to get rid of that idiotic picture of a military boy next to your name?

11/16/2006 9:17 PM  
Blogger Shoshana said...

The damage is going to be done to her self-esteem and self-image and that is something that, no matter how much she weighs, she is going to have an extremely hard time changing. These kind of situations are breeding grounds for a girl viewing herself as unworthy, no matter what she looks like. And when her prince charming doesn't come running the second she loses weight, her situation is just going to get worse and worse. That is going to permeate her entire life, in every area she attempts to succeed. She needs to value herself for who she is, not what she looks like. An unfortunate fact is that self-esteem for women is tied into their looks, but she needs to put her best face forward no matter what her size. And she desperately needs to find people in her life who support her and show her the beauty she holds inside herself.

11/17/2006 9:31 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

i think shoshana is very very right.

the sad thing is that with all this emphasis on weight alot of stunningly beautiful girls get over looked, even if what you are looking for is beauty (which isn't ok at all and it needs to be beaten in to boys from an extreemley young age that girls are much much more than things to look at)

a case in point was a friend of mine durring my 8 mo stint in public highschool, and also from my time in middle school. She was a jewish girl, and rather over weight. She had a drop dead gorgeous face, and at least when i knew her was very very pleasant to be around. However noone would appriciate her for that because she was well over weight.

and alot of boys really missed out because they where that silly.

another case in point of a story that i once heard, a young woman was on the beach sunbathing, refusing to remove her clothes because of how she felt she looked, when a woman of lower middle age, ridiculously corpulant, stripped off her clothing to reveal a white bathing suit (meant for someone a good number of sizes smaller than her) and walked very confidantly down to the water to swim.

The eyes of every single male in the entire beach where trained on her, and not one of them could look away. Not only that the women where looking at her as well.

As the teller of the story related it, she had such an air of confidance that she quite frankly exuded self worth and made her self very attracted to everyone present.

a good sense of self worth can make anyone attractive (not arogance, that does the opposite) just simple self esteem. People go crazy over those who have self esteem

(something i would do well to learn)

11/17/2006 12:03 PM  
Blogger jewish philosopher said...

Weight Watchers is a great program. I just joined three months ago and I've lost about 20 pounds (5 more to go!). I love it. And they don't encourage ultra-thin. I am 6'2". I weighted 185. My goal from WW is 160. Ultra-thin would be 145. WW just means good, healthy nutrition. I do WW Online. I don't waste time at meetings and it costs $5 a week - the best money I've ever spent.

Having said that, looks are important. I'll tell you why. Let's say you marry a beauty and she turns out to be nasty and hard to live with. Well, at least you have something - she's beautiful. But let's say you marry a plain girl and she turns out to be nasty and hard to live with. What have you got? Believe me, there are ugly women with rotten characters as well.

However, realistically, a man has to look in mirror and not expect more attractive looks than he has himself. If he's short, fat and bald, probably he should not wait for Scarlett Johansson, unless he has a few million in the bank.

11/17/2006 12:46 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

and plain women sometimes have the most wonderfull personalities.

and to boot a misserable demeanor will not make up for a pretty girl

however a wonderfull personality and a real emotional connection can in every way make up even for a plain girl. (and so to an ugly girl, but i'm still yet to meet the person who could truely be classed as ugly)

11/17/2006 2:28 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

should have been the other way.

A pretty girl will not make up for a misserable demeanor.

11/17/2006 2:29 PM  
Blogger Sara with NO H said...

The fact of the matter is, bochrim look at looks first. If there is no physical attraction, more times often than not, the boy doesn't look any further. (not always because of what he thinks, but also because of what he's afraid of what his friends and other people will think) At the shabbos table this week, there were 4 bochers at the table. 1 was a chosen and the others were answering questions. My friends mother asked one of the boys, have you ever liked a girl that wasn't pretty? Of course pretty doesn't just mean in the face. Pretty can mean weight, teeth, scars, etc. He bluntly stated no. I can see how a guy who has looks going for him would have trouble accepting a girl this day in age that didn't have it. actually, come to think of it, even guys who doen't have looks going for them have unusally high standards.
Same goes for girls. In the dating scene, if a girl doesn't think the guy is attractive, she's going to be annoyed by other things that come next. It does help to trim down before going on dates. It shows the boy that you not only care about your own well being but you care about his. And I'm not saying ultra skinny either. But I am saying that it helps the girl and the guy in the process and for the future.

11/18/2006 7:17 PM  
Blogger Hoezentragerin said...

"A lot of heavy girls get engaged fast and a lot of thin girls wait a little. There is no connection."

Shpizel, it's different in the yeshivish/ none chasidish world.
There's more emphasis put on "hidor mizva," hence the obsession with female looks.

11/18/2006 7:26 PM  
Blogger ms. shtark said...

i think that it's sad that ppl are obsessed with looks but that's the facts. i have also said no to guys who i thought was ugly (and had zero personality to boot!) and probably guys have done the same with me. that's life. that's how human beings are made and yeah we should work on ourselves but whatever. so it's worth the effort to look the best you can!

11/18/2006 7:35 PM  
Blogger wearywife said...

I think this post refers specifically to weight obsession....who says a plump girl cant be attractive? Why is skeletal considered beautiful?(ie-sz 0-2)

11/18/2006 8:11 PM  
Blogger jewish philosopher said...

Skeletal is ugly and if you become ultra-thin or skeletal on Weight Watchers, then you're not following the program.

11/18/2006 8:29 PM  
Blogger Independent Frum Thinker said...

Gut Voch!
I hope this won't get misunderstood, and that it doesn't offend anyone, but here goes.
There is a problem in society at large, in that it attributes way to much importance to external beauty. Unfortunately, this attitude creeps in to our Frum world too, with all its bad ramifications. Ideally, a boy should not put so much emphasis on looks, but reality is that he may have already been "contaminated" by the outside world. In the state that he is in now, he simply can't live with someone he doesn't find attractive, as that could lead to disastrous results. Telling a boy at age 23 or so, who finds himself not attracted to heavier girls, that he shouldn't focus on externals, is like telling a sick patient not to go out in the cold without a coat. It is simply to late. At that point he must only marry what he finds attractive. The real issue is bringing up our children in a way that they never reach the stage that they focus overwhelmingly on externals. And that nowadays, is no easy feat, but we must try.

11/18/2006 9:27 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

There's nothing wrong with a young man or woman declining to meet someone they find unattractive. (I know. This is blindingly obvious, but some of the commentors here seem to have trouble with this simple concept.) The good news is that the range of what different people consider to be attractive is reassuringly wide; not everyone wants skinny, and even if they think they do, they can still be attracted to another type once they meet.

11/19/2006 12:11 AM  
Blogger yingerman said...

True, skinny is popular 'cause of hollywood
is russia before WWII fat girls were IT
thin was sickly and meant no money for food
anyway since love at first sight is a myth (lust yes - love no) a couple have to be attracted to each other
I mean look at how many size 4's are now 16's 'cause of a pregnancy and in most cases the hubby doesnt give a flying rats a$&
he loves his wife and sees past her physical apearance
Hey I didn't she's allowed to stink
but after a while both grow old grey and lumpy together

But all this means squat on a first date, right?

11/19/2006 12:42 PM  
Blogger wearywife said...

Once again who says skinny is beautiful? Does anyone remember an actress named Marilyn Monroe? She was considered one of the most alluring, attractive women ever and she was a size 16......she was called a blonde bombshell!

11/19/2006 1:05 PM  
Blogger nuch a chosid said...

she should go for chsidish innoucent bochur, who's not so filled up with the whole mtter of looks yet, yeah i know so many of us are kvetching in ther blogs, with negetive comments on our beautiful lifestyle, but u can kvetch and hate o love any lifestyle, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and yes many of us still are more innoucent and look deaper then the skin when it comes to shiduchim.

11/19/2006 2:32 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

Nuch AC: Theoretically a good idea, but I'll bet she wouldn't go for it. B/c she's got her prejudices like everyone else.

11/19/2006 4:57 PM  
Blogger Lakewood Venter said...

It's a sad but true reality! Guys want a wife who looks good, not a wife who is good!

11/19/2006 5:24 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

Well, that might be what they want before they marry, but afterward it's a different story.

11/19/2006 9:36 PM  
Blogger Pragmatician said...

the pressure of Shidduchim have turned many a loving parent into a neurotic crazy person.

While I agree with you and find middos and intelligence much more important than the girls' weight(if whithin reason) I as a men am shocked at how friends admit that physical appearance is a major consideration.

11/20/2006 11:36 AM  
Blogger jewish philosopher said...

Monroe was at most a size 12

http://www.snopes.com/movies/actors/mmdress.htm

11/20/2006 1:24 PM  
Blogger Dave J. said...

I have heard this way too many time "he should love for who i am". Well in the ideal world that woman will create looks wont matter. Unfortunately for people who are overweight, this is not the case and looks do matter. So yes if she is skinnier she is more likely to get more dates and later to get married. Whether the parents should pressure her to be skinny is an issue in itself, but yes it is true if she sheds the pounds, guys are more likely to be attracted to her and possibly marry her.

11/20/2006 2:19 PM  
Blogger Teddy Douglas said...

We don't need parents forcing a mature girl to lose weight, but if it makes her more attractive and she has someone else paying for weight watchers, why not do it? I'd love if someone offered to sponsor my fitness program. I haven't fit into a 30 waist in years!

11/21/2006 11:18 AM  
Blogger Teddy Douglas said...

Did you say she's only 20? And she's the last in her class to get hitched? What did someone slip them all marriage pills or something?

11/21/2006 11:21 AM  
Blogger chaverah said...

3 words, GUYS ARE SHALLOW!
yes unfortunalty guys are very into external and there is nothing we can do. Women are alot more forgiving. we are the better half! lol.
Seriously, my friends that are not married are actually thin and pretty. So it doesnt just go by weight. God is in control.

11/23/2006 11:40 AM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

So are women who torture themselves to stay thin (as so many do) shallow too? And how about the many girls who dump guys b/c of their looks?

Look, if all you care about is looks, then, yes, you're probably shallow. But if the whole picture matters, there's nothing wrong with looks playing a primary role. That's not shallowness; it's hardwired into our genetic makeup, male and female.

11/23/2006 1:17 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

no yg, its absolutely shallow and inexcusable. It is not nearly so hardwired in to our genetic make up as you claim, and even if it was it simply means that we have an obligation to rise above it, as they proclaimed on tu be'av in the days of the temple "... beauty is vain, but a g-d fairing woman is one to be praised".

beauty will pass and everyone who is chosing a spouse is obligated to look past beauty and ensure that the person is primarily compatible on a personality and character traits level, only then does one have any permission to even so much as look at her in such a manner. (the halacha states that one may only look at a girl one desires to marry, hence one must already know that she is of suitable character and therefore desireable to marry).

halacha does not in any way condone marrying solely for looks, or even primarily so, and indeed torah speaks many very very harsh words about such behavior. We are required midoraisa to rise above such animalistic tendancies and to master them. We are to examine the midos and the character of the person and see if they are desirable, then we may look at them to see if they are also minimaly pleasing in the physical sense.

what you are doing is simply trying to justify and perpetuate an inexcusable situation that has been foisted upon the holy daughters of isreal and you aught to be really ashamed of your self for participating in it. Taking advantage of girls who desperately want to get married just to fulfil your own childish adolescent fantasies.

and if the boys persist, their teachers have an obligation to beat the stupidity out of them, one way or another.

11/23/2006 6:17 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

"no yg, its absolutely shallow and inexcusable."

Even if I were to agree that it's wrong (which I don't), it is certainly not "inexcusable."

"... beauty is vain, but a g-d fairing woman is one to be praised".

The pasuk is talking about beauty w/o fear of God. Both together is fine.

"halacha does not in any way condone marrying solely for looks, or even primarily so,"

Source(s) please. I don't think halachah says anything about it.

"indeed torah speaks many very very harsh words about such behavior."

Example(s) please. I don't believe there's any such pasuk in the Torah.

11/23/2006 9:23 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

"Taking advantage of girls who desperately want to get married just to fulfil your own childish adolescent fantasies."

How is wanting a physically wife taking advantage of girls who want to be married? I don't get it.

"and if the boys persist, their teachers have an obligation to beat the stupidity out of them, one way or another."

Right. Whatever.

11/23/2006 9:24 PM  
Blogger wearywife said...

JP....first of all clothing manufacturers are skimping on fabric so the size 12 of 30-40 years ago is not the size 12 of today. Secondly, even a size 12 is enormous by the unrealistic standards of todays bochurim. Lastly, at the risk of being mikshoul anyone, look at the photos of Monroe. Today's bochur would definitely consider her to be over weight.
Imagine that? One of the most alluring and attractive women in history would be probably be considered fat and undesirable by todays bochurim. If she was Jewish the shacchanim would be telling her to loose weight if she wants dates!

11/23/2006 9:53 PM  
Blogger wearywife said...

YG...can you explain why thin = attractive and plump = unattractive ?

11/23/2006 9:59 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

Can I explain it? Well, if we're talking about the difference between thin and plump, it's the culture. But once we move beyond plump to fat, it's b/c fat is objectively less attractive.

And it applies w/regard to men too. Girls prefer guys who are in decent condition; given a choice, they'll rate the fatty a distant second.

And tell me, can you explain why girls prefer a clean-cut guy over a guy with a scraggly beard? And why a guy with smooth skin is preferable to one with a bad case of acne? Shouldn't we look only at who has better midos?

11/24/2006 1:20 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

for one you have the mishnah in perkei avos: "any love that is dependant on a specific consideration = when that consideration vanishes, the love ceases. . . [this is] the love of amnon and tamar" (perkei avos 5:16)

one of the things we learn from the incident of amnon and tamar is that amnon at first loved tamar because she was his sister. However he became obsessed with her appearance and made it the primary focus of his love for her, and was so enamoured with her that he sinned with her. After this he hated her.

physical appearance is only transient, and will pass; because of this we cannot chose someone primarily based on physical appearances because when we do so, when the girl becomes older she will become repugnant to him, and he will hate her and desire to be rid of her. Somewhere the gemorah talks about this in relation to the customes of the ninth of av, that that was the reason why they said beauty is vain.

however that said, there are many many other sources for it, and i will IY"H have them after shabbos, or on sunday.

11/24/2006 8:56 AM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

hnc:

Try and remember that you're looking for sources (a) that forbid a person to consider beauty in choosing a mate, and (b) where the Torah speaks "very very harsh words" regarding someone who does this.

The Mishnah in Pirkei Avos is nothing more than good advice. It says nothing about issur; it's not very harsh; and it doesn't imply that beauty should not be a consideration, only that it should not be the only consideration.

11/24/2006 9:50 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

its not to be your first concern nor your primary concern. Your first and primary concern is to be with her character, which is what i said. Your blowing things way out of porportion. Yes there is required to be some chemistry there, but your not allowed to let it enter the discision making process till everything else has been threshed out, and even then your not allowed to put things off just because she isn't the prettiest thing in the world.

and besides, you don't call it a helpfull peice of advice when it says don't talk excessively with the woman. Mai nafka mina?

11/24/2006 11:27 AM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

The nafka mina is that there it is a tzivui, a command: Don't talk excessively to a woman. Here, however, it is simply stating a fact, i.e., that ahavah which depends on an outside factor will not last. It is not a command, but a useful piece of advice.

11/25/2006 9:04 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

i'm sorry but according to my text the lashon is "אל" not "לא" The later is lashon tzivui. The former is a temporary prohabition. it's basic hebrew grammer.

theres no permenant prohabition here, it's more like a sugestion.

I believe this is ment to reflect the extremely subjective nature of this law. It includes not only the "אל" but further includes the inherantly relative term "תרבה" with no indication as to an objective measure of this suggestion. Hard to have a command when there is no objective measure included with the command isn't it?

(and btw, if you dissagree, go check a hebrew grammer book and we'll compare texts, and maybe barrow a third of forth text to also learn from. From what it says in perkei avos there is no real difference between the two, so it still stands, "mai nafka mina?")

11/25/2006 9:30 PM  
Blogger Dr Sooll said...

"Let's say you marry a beauty and she turns out to be nasty and hard to live with. Well, at least you have something - she's beautiful. But let's say you marry a plain girl and she turns out to be nasty and hard to live with. What have you got? Believe me, there are ugly women with rotten characters as well."

Ammended version:
Let's say you marry a plain girl and she turns out to be nasty and hard to live with. What have you got? A nasty wife

Let's say you marry a beauty and she turns out to be nasty and hard to live with. A nasty wife (who happens to be aethetically pleasing)

there are ugly women with rotten characters as well
-which is why any self-respecting man that wants to have a happy and fulfilling marriage will chose his wife based primarily on her character.

It is not uncommon to find someone attractive as a result of their personality/middos even if one didnt find them to be aesthetically pleasing in the least before getting to know them.

Remember that one is hopefully going to be living with their spouse for a long time. This is the rest of your life we are talking about here! Is this a decision to be made based on the aesthetic pleasability of one's appearance?! The appearance will become irrelevant quite quickly, the person will be crucial for life.

Please check out this discussion

11/25/2006 11:30 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

"i'm sorry but according to my text the lashon is "אל" not "לא" The later is lashon tzivui. The former is a temporary prohabition. it's basic hebrew grammer."

What are you talking about? There are many מצוות לא תעשה in the Torah that are commanded with the lashon אל.

11/26/2006 2:05 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

look in any grammer book, seriously.

now perhaps we should start threashing out what is actualy the "temporary" nature of this statement? what about it is "temporary" or perhaps confined to a specific instance?

seriously they need to teach you bochurim basic grammer. It would go a really long way.

11/26/2006 9:54 AM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

hnc:

I've never heard of אל connoting temporariness, but for all I know, it does have this connotation in modern Hebrew. I plan to check it out with my Israeli relatives shortly.

But even if so, it does not have any such connotation in Torah usage; witness the many מצוות לא תעשה that are taught with the lashon of אל. Witness also the Gemara that teaches that אל is one of the four leshonos of לא תעשה.

11/26/2006 10:26 AM  
Blogger Parsha Potpourri said...

Yoni - You may well know more grammar than us yeshiva guys, but the Gemora in Eiruvin (96a) states that every place the expression אל is used it is coming to establish a לא תעשה.

Still, it's not an advisable practice to pasken halacha l'maaseh from Mishnayos, and certainly not Pirkei Avos. One must provide accepted halachic sources to back one's claims. In this case, the Shulchan Aruch rules (Even HaEzer 21:1) that a man is obligated to distance himself מאד מאד (an expression almost never used in Shulchan Aruch) from women.

Please provide accepted and respected _halachic_ sources backing to support your claims that "halacha does not in any way condone marrying solely for looks, or even primarily so, and indeed torah speaks many very very harsh words about such behavior. We are required midoraisa to rise above such animalistic tendancies and to master them."

Finally, as to your claim that on Tu B'Av they used to announce שקר החן והבל היופי, please provide a source for this, as it seems to be not beauty which is שקר but your claims.

The Gemora in Taanis (31a) explicitly says that on Tu B'Av, the girls would go out so that the boys could select. The beautiful girls would proclaim "Make your choice based on good looks," those with distinguished lineage would proclaim, "Choose based on yichus," and the ugly girls would say "Make your choice l'shem Shomayim, but make sure to buy us beautiful clothes and jewelry." Seems quite clear that looks were indeed a strong factor, and no mention is made of any Rabbinical disapproval.

Feel free to express your opinions, but please back them up with sources. Looking forward to hearing some of them.

11/26/2006 10:36 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

its actualy a biblical hebrew grammer text, not modern hebrew.

el and lo are not in any way synonyms as you seem to imply.

11/26/2006 10:50 AM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

and I will have to ask the rabbi, as he's the one whom i hear it from repeatedly, ad infinitum.

I rarely repeat things i didn't hear from reliable sources

11/26/2006 10:52 AM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

I am happy to see that the bais Medrash is up and running . I believe the Gam' also says 'Three things make a man happy, a beautiful home, nice clothes, and a beautiful wife ' .

Welcome back PP, havent seen you in a while.

11/26/2006 7:21 PM  
Blogger Halfnutcase said...

sem girl, thats perkei avos as well.

however i got the source wrong on beauty is vanity. Its actualy from the aishes chayil portion of mishlei. (i told you it was there, however this is an excelent example of my difficulty remembering exactly where I read something.) Actualy i'm suprised that none of you recognized it and corrected it. many appologies for the bad source.

and anyway how do all of you interpret the halacha that states that a man may look at a girl he desires to marry? (I believe its the siman 21 in even ha ezer as well. It may be the 7th sif that i'm thinking of but that may well be wrong. In the kitzur however it is in hilchos yichud like the hisrachok meod comment) its obvious that they can't mean you desire to marry based on looks, because prior to that your not allowed to look at her, so how do you explain it?

further the mishnah in perkei avos, at least according to one of the rabaim where i went to yeshiva (a son of rav osduba the av bais din in crown heights [sorry cant spell], who, incidently, at last check heavily assists his father) is the source for that halacha (again i don't know how direct that source is) and understanding what exactly it asks of us will help us understand the latter.

11/27/2006 7:59 AM  
Blogger Lady Delish said...

Let's be real. Skinny, pretty girls do much better than the fatties in any society. Should we be upset? Of course! But I dont see anyone else gaining weight so that those that are fatter should feel better.

11/30/2006 6:12 PM  
Blogger Independent Frum Thinker said...

Halfnutcase and parsha potpourri,

Without getting involved in your actual discussion (since I already left my comment earlier), I’d like to clarify some quotes.

Parsha potpourri wrote:

"Finally, as to your (halfnutcase’s) claim that on Tu B'Av they used to announce שקר החן והבל היופי, please provide a source for this, as it seems to be not beauty which is שקר but your claims."

Please do your homework before making such stinging allegations.

The source is the Mishnah in Ta’anis (26b). Although the Gemorah (31a) does say –
"On Tu B'Av, the girls would go out so that the boys could select. The beautiful girls would proclaim "Make your choice based on good looks," those with distinguished lineage would proclaim, "Choose based on yichus," and the ugly girls would say "Make your choice l'shem Shomayim, but make sure to buy us beautiful clothes and jewelry." –

However, THE MISHNAH chose to only tell us the following –

"The girls of Yerushalaim would go out . . . and say, Bachur, . . . don’t lift your eyes to beauty, rather family, Sheker HaChein V’Hevel Hayofi etc."

It’s definitely food for thought why the Mishna chose to ignore the other girl’s claims.
Perhaps because the Mishna did not condone the attitude of marrying a girl based only on external trappings.

12/02/2006 9:07 PM  
Blogger dzleeh said...

And like......hello?! obviously the girls are going to want the guys to go for whatever it is they've got going for them. Don't have to be a rocket scientist to figure that one out. And what's so wrong with that? How would people "snag" someone any other way?

12/02/2006 11:02 PM  
Blogger Y.Y. said...

yaakov out father chose rachel because she was better looking
enough said

12/03/2006 11:27 AM  
Blogger Single and Frum in the City said...

This society sucks.
Semgirl-nice response to YY

12/04/2006 9:02 PM  
Blogger Ahuva said...

"But if the whole picture matters, there's nothing wrong with looks playing a primary role. That's not shallowness; it's hardwired into our genetic makeup, male and female."

It is most certainly not "hardwired" into our genetic makeup. I tend to prefer men who would be considered to be overweight. Prior to "Twiggy" (1920s) women who looked well fed were considered to be much more attractive than today's walking coat hangers.

12/04/2006 9:49 PM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

Ahuva: I did not say that we are hardwired to prefer thinness, only that we are hardwired to prefer someone good-looking. There's no question that our preferences are always in flux, and have changed dramatically over the years. In fact, I think I said something similar above.

12/05/2006 9:06 AM  
Blogger yeshivaguy said...

Should say: There's no question that our ideas of what constitutes "good-looking" are always in flux ...

12/05/2006 12:08 PM  
Blogger Semgirl said...

IFT : I believe somewhere in Even HaEzer it mentions the tremendous rebuke of Chazal for marrying solely for $ or looks.

DZ: How about middos, personality, charm and chemistry.

Single: And other societies are better to women, lol..

Ahuva, Welcome to the blog.. Minor correction . Twiggy was in the 60s..
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twiggy

12/05/2006 6:55 PM  
Blogger Independent Frum Thinker said...

It's in Shulchan Aruch Even HaEzer Siman 2 Seif 1. The original source is in Maseches Kiddushin 70a.

However, it only mentiones marrying for the sake of money. It does not discuss marrying for the sake of looks.

I did find though, that the Ramban quotes that Gemorah in Igeres HaKodesh Perek 5, as referring to marrying for looks too. Apparently, he had a different version of the text than we do.

12/05/2006 10:55 PM  
Blogger dzleeh said...

SG: What I meant was that wherever each girl's self-esteem lies (whatever she considers to be her best internal or external qualities), that's what she will try to promote because perhaps that's where she sees her worth. So if you have someone who is not so good at book learning but is physically stunning, she might want someone to go for her based on emotions and looks and not her head. Why not? Why would she want to feel "stupid" for the rest of her life? Do you understand what I am saying? I'm not talking about what the GUYS look for or don't in the girls. I am talking about how the girls perceive themselves, and you can't necessarily always find fault with that.

12/06/2006 8:40 PM  
Blogger Single and Frum in the City said...

looks aren't everything.
Many ugly people have gotten married before their drop=dead gorgeous classmates. I'm a witness.

12/10/2006 7:49 PM  
Blogger wearywife said...

dzleeh...u have to ask yourself why girls perceive themselves in a certain way. For example, I dont think I ever met a teenage girl who's satisfied with her figure and/or looks. Why is that?
As a mother of teenage girls I would really like to know. Could it be that society influences how girls perceive themselves?
There's also peer pressure...the peer pressure to be thin.

12/12/2006 9:33 PM  

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