Archive for the ‘News’ Category

The Numbers Game… and How it’s Become Lopsided

by Tamar Caspi under News,Online Dating,Single Life

A new book written by economist Jon Birgir titled Date-onomics: How Dating Became a Lopsided Numbers Game supports my theory about dating being a numbers game — and he’s taken it to the next level with research and statistics. Unfortunately, the results may not inspire you, especially if you’re female! The book asserts that since there are more women attending university, that means that educated women will outnumber men at that level, which will lead to a further increase of the lopsided ratio.

The advice from the author? Open your mind to a mixed-collar marriage (professional women marrying working-class men). Interestingly, there are a few cities that are worse off than others when it comes to more educated women than men: New York (38%), Raleigh (49%), and Miami (94%).

One area that has more hope for women? The Bay Area (Silicon Valley and San Francisco specifically).

Find other tips for increasing your numbers game in How to Woo a Jew: The Modern Jewish Game to Dating & Mating.

Ode to the Fall Date

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,News,Online Dating,Single Life

Here in the Midwest, the temperature finally dropped this week, and it’s clear fall has arrived.  I knew this because it was cool outside, yes, but another telltale sign was the state of the outerwear section of a department store I was in last week – it seriously looked like the bread aisle in a grocery store right before a predicted snowstorm! With the fall air comes renewed date ideas — picnics in the park and baseball games are replaced by fall festivals and things involving pumpkins. In honor of the season, here’s a somewhat poetic ode to autumn.

Apple picking and all the rest

Fall DatingLeggings, boots, a puffy vest.

Pumpkin this, pumpkin that,

Spiced lattes in a vat.

Candy apples at simchas torah,

Only two months til we light the menorah.

Take your gal on a hay ride

She doesn’t like it? At least you tried.

Hanging around a hot bonfire

Sit too close and you’ll perspire.

New fling at the end of its days?

Try to lose him in a corn maze.

Log on before it’s too late –

Search profiles and make a fall date!



by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,News,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

A few weeks ago I answered a JDater’s email about ghosting, and now it’s a topic of an article in The New York Times. So why is disappearing so popular? There’s definitely an awkwardness to telling someone you’re not interested, but you can get past that with just a little etiquette:

  • Before a Date:

At least make contact to cancel. If the excuse is a lie, don’t just stand the person up, that sucks.

  • After a 1st Date:

It’s awkward to let someone know after one date that they didn’t entice you enough for a second. Since you can’t use the “it’s not you, it’s me” excuse, this may be the one situation where it’s understandable to just disappear. Plus, it’s not so hurtful after just one date.

  • Between 2nd and 6th Dates:

You owe them some sort of explanation, but you don’t have to get personal. You should call, but an email or text is marginally acceptable. Let the person know you don’t see a future together, but you think they’re awesome and wish them luck. Ghosting at this point will give you a bad rep and will sour what otherwise would be remembered as a nice couple of dates.

  • After 6 Dates… Until ‘The Get Serious Talk:’

There’s absolutely no ghosting at this point. If you’re ending it, you need to call and say something, anything. Even if you lie and say that you have been dating someone else and it’s become more serious, it’s better than ghosting. You owe them a phone call. You don’t need to engage in a conversation and don’t fall into the trap of why, how, when, who, etc. Just be respectful. More than six dates means you’ve been dating about a month or more, and that’s a substantial enough amount of time.

  • After ‘The Talk:’

Don’t pull a Charlize Theron like the article says and ghost on an official boyfriend or girlfriend. Just don’t do it. Bottom line: put yourself in the other person’s shoes and think about if you’d want an explanation, excuse, or even just a superficial apology… or if you’d be okay with never hearing from someone who you were interested in. Follow me on Instagram @howtowooajew

Dating Insights From Sukkot

by Caryn Alper under JDate,Judaism,News,Online Dating,Single Life

People are on JDate for a variety of reasons. Some people are on every dating site and app available; and it’s just one of many used to increase the number of people they meet. Others are on JDate because their mom threatened a nervous breakdown if they didn’t sign up. Others might like to find a nice Jewish person to date, but religion isn’t am absolute deal breaker. And still for others, their dating philosophy might be Jewish or bust. Whatever brought you here, we all have something important in common: we’re all Jews!

I know, I know, duh. This is JDate, not ChristianMingle or FarmersOnly. But, the holiday of Sukkot offers some interesting insights on why this is important. This week is Sukkot, a joyous Jewish holiday that celebrates our trust in G-d. We eat, socialize, and even sleep in a sukkah, which helps us remember how He protected the Israelites for 40 years as they wandered in the desert. One way we observe the holiday is by waving the lulav and etrog in all directions. In the grand tradition of Judaism, there is no shortage of commentary and discussion on the details of this mitzvah. But, I wanted to share one in particular that struck me as relevant to why we are all here on JDate.

The four species of plants (the etrog, the lulav’s date palm, myrtle, and willow branches) that we shake together are distinct and have their own meaning and symbolism, suggested by their fragrance and/or taste. (Why is it always four? Four sons, four questions, four cups of wine, etc.) One common interpretation for the four species is that each one represents a different kind of Jew, based on their levels of Torah observance and wisdom. I won’t go into the details of which is which, and all the specifics of the observance levels. But, the lesson here is that on Sukkot, we bind together the lulav and etrog and shake them all around us, symbolically binding together all types of Jews. The different kind and types are secondary — each Jew is important and we need all four types of species to fulfill the mitzvah of Sukkot.

So, you might be here because Grandma Esther threatened to sit shiva if you marry out of the tribe. But Grandma might be right — Sukkot teaches us that it’s important to stick together, and that every single Jew is an important part of our nation and our purpose. So, next time you dismiss someone because he or she has a different level of kosher observance or Jewish knowledge or family tradition, think again. These are important compatibility factors, but also, we are all Jews and should strive to be inclusive and accepting of each other.

Vanity Fair and the “Dating Apocalypse”

by Tamar Caspi under News,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

Vanity Fair’s article about how dating apps have changed — and possibly eradicated — dating was filled with shock value. People who use Tinder and other similar apps (think: swipe right) know that it can be used just for hooking up, but there are also plenty of couples who met via those apps. You wouldn’t know that by the article as it was all about how many hook-ups occurred, how often, how quickly, and how easily.

That was probably the worst part… a consistent theme throughout the article had to do with the ease of the hook-ups, and how it was more often than not the men that dictated the extent of the hook-up: one-time, a continuing thing, or a relationship. And the women have to go along with this hoping that maybe they can change a guy’s mind and make him want more than a hook-up. But, the catch-22 is that most of these men don’t want a relationship with the type of girl who will hook-up after few (if any) interactions, after being matched on one of these apps.

So here’s the deal: if you just want to have fun, then go ahead with the apps. But if you’re looking for a relationship, then you need to stick to a site like JDate where people take more time and effort to create profiles and select prospects. Do you want to be somebody’s priority or somebody’s option?

The swipe right apps have so many participants that it can give you a false sense of how many eligible prospects actually meet even a minimum of your criteria, which leads to a false sense of thinking you can do better than the awesome person in front of you. These dating apps are addictive because they are quick and easy, and there are seemingly always new singles to swipe. Don’t get caught up and have unrealistic expectations of who you can meet on an app where the goal is just hooking up.


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Patti Stanger is Single Again

by Tamar Caspi under Entertainment,News,Relationships,Single Life

Last week Bravo! TV’s The Millionaire Matchmaker Patti Stanger announced that she and her boyfriend of three years had split up. Patti got ahead of critics who would doubt her abilities as a matchmaker when she herself can’t seem to find a forever mate. And her statement is spot on:

“I’m a human and I own my issues… But that doesn’t change the fact that I’m incredibly good at my job. I excel at setting people up and helping them fall in love. Look, how many Pro Football Hall of Fame coaches have scored touchdowns in the Super Bowl? Coaching people into winning the big game is a different skillset than winning the big game yourself. I’m really good at being a love coach. In fact, I’d say I’m one of the best. But, at playing the love game myself? I’ve got some work to do and I’m chipping away at it. I know I’ll win my game soon, but until then, I’m going to keep being the best coach I can be.”

It reminds of the phrase “those who can’t do, teach,” and that’s exactly what Patti is doing. She can see the issues other people have and helps them to work on them while finding partners who would complement them — all the while she admits that she herself is a work in progress, setting a great example that none of us should ever stop trying to better ourselves.

I myself have admitted that my divorce, as well as most of my past relationships, made me better at dispensing dating advice. Does that mean I know everything about relationships? Absolutely not. Does that mean my relationship with my fiance is perfect? No. But, admitting that is what makes me — and Patti — good at what we do.


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The Kind of Love We Should Aspire To

by Tamar Caspi under News,Relationships,Success Stories

This is the post from Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook and author of Lean In, from Tuesday, the day she buried her husband, Dave Goldberg, after his sudden passing.

“I want to thank all of our friends and family for the outpouring of love over the past few days. It has been extraordinary – and each story you have shared will help keep Dave alive in our hearts and memories.

I met Dave nearly 20 years ago when I first moved to LA. He became my best friend. He showed me the internet for the first time, planned fun outings, took me to temple for the Jewish holidays, introduced me to much cooler music than I had ever heard.

We had 11 truly joyful years of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership that I could imagine… He gave me the experience of being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved – and I will carry that with me always. Most importantly, he gave me the two most amazing children in the world.


Dave was my rock. When I got upset, he stayed calm. When I was worried, he said it would be ok. When I wasn’t sure what to do, he figured it out. He was completely dedicated to his children in every way – and their strength these past few days is the best sign I could have that Dave is still here with us in spirit.

Dave and I did not get nearly enough time together. But as heartbroken as I am today, I am equally grateful. Even in these last few days of completely unexpected hell – the darkest and saddest moments of my life – I know how lucky I have been. If the day I walked down that aisle with Dave someone had told me that this would happen – that he would be taken from us all in just 11 years – I would still have walked down that aisle. Because 11 years of being Dave Goldberg’s wife, and 10 years of being a parent with him is perhaps more luck and more happiness than I could have ever imagined. I am grateful for every minute we had.

As we put the love of my life to rest today, we buried only his body. His spirit, his soul, his amazing ability to give is still with it. It lives on in the stories people are sharing of how he touched their lives, in the love that is visible in the eyes of our family and friends, in the spirit and resilience of our children. Things will never be the same – but the world is better for the years my beloved husband lived.”

I read these words and am brought to tears by the raw, honest emotions. The kind of love Sheryl is describing is not a love you see every day, but it is the kind of love we should all aspire to have. There’s a reason people say not to settle — and this is why. You need a true partner, someone who believes in you and supports you unconditionally, a person who makes you feel like the luckiest person in the world, and who is also your best friend to top it all off.

Express Yourself

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,News,Relationships,Single Life

Your body language communicates more than your actual words… by A LOT! 55% vs 7% to be exact, with the remaining 38% of communication coming from your tone of voice. (When people say that more than 90% of communication is nonverbal, that could be referring to the math of 55+38=93%.)  So, what does this mean when you’re dating? It means you need to be cognizant of how you’re sitting or standing, your facial expression and what kinds of looks you’re giving, as well as how you’re saying what you’re saying.

If you don’t want the person you’re speaking with to automatically go on the defensive when you say something that could be perceived as offensive, or something that could easily be taken the wrong way, then make sure your arms aren’t crossed across your chest or placed on your hips. Make eye contact and smile so that your eyes give off warmth. Take a few deep breaths before you start speaking and relax your shoulders.

And while you’re at it — think twice about what you’re saying, does it even need to be said? By the way, these tips are also good for giving off an approachable vibe when you’re looking to attract others!

She Blinded Me With Social Science

by Rabbi Josh Yuter under Date Night,JDate,News,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

She Blinded Me With Social Science: Deconstructing that NY Times “To Fall in Love with Anyone” Article

I was in the middle of drafting this week’s post when I noticed several friends of mine sharing a recent New York Times article titled, “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This.” It’s easy to dismiss such a tantalizing headline as mere clickbait, but the article is based on an actual published psychology experiment in which participants felt “closer” to each other after answering a series of 36 personal questions — and the author herself says she fell in love with her partner because of it.

For the people who gave this article a superficial read, it would appear that true love could be yours if you just performed a simple exercise. And if this sounds too good to be true, rest assured, it most certainly is.

Because I’m me, I downloaded and read the original scholarly article (it’s since been pulled from the web), published in 1997 in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (23:4) with the decidedly less enticing title, “The Experimental Generation of Interpersonal Closeness: A Procedure and Some Preliminary Findings.” When discussing any study, the first thing to consider is what exactly is the study trying to measure. To wit:

             We should also emphasize that the goal of our procedure was to develop a temporary feeling of closeness,not an actual ongoing relationship (364)

So right off the bat we’re not talking about how to establish a meaningful relationship, but rather to create fleeting moments of connectedness. How do we accomplish this?

             Indeed, Aron et al. (1992) found that various measures of closeness have two latent dimensions of behaving close and feeling close (364). [Emphasis original]

Following this logic, the study decided to measure if acting in a way to achieve “closeness” would, in fact, generate the feelings of closeness.

            One key pattern associated with the development of a close relationship among peers is sustained, escalating, reciprocal, personalistic self-disclosure…Whereas behaving close in this sense could not really arise outside of a long-term ongoing relationship, it seemed to us that the subjective feeling of closeness, which is our focus, might well arise at least temporarily in a short-term interaction (364).

It turns out that putting in the effort of feeling close to someone else through personal sharing can even overcome or override some of the factors people normally assume do lead to connectedness.

            Overall, these data suggest that matching in terms of not disagreeing on important attitudes or leading subjects to believe that they and their partners will like each other probably has little impact on the overall closeness subjects achieve through this procedure, or even on their mutual attraction (367).


If you can find a partner for this exercise, can you actually find true love?

To summarize, one way two people can feel closer to each other is by actively sharing intimate personal aspects about themselves, with reciprocity from their partner. This can certainly be useful information for people who are trying to make a go out of a relationship, either dating or even after marriage. But, before you start printing out the questionnaire for your next date, keep in mind there are some crucial caveats which come with the research.

The experiment was done in a controlled environment where the participants knew each other to some degree as classmates, or otherwise the pool was not completely randomized. There was also no expectation of commitment or consequences attached, which could have lead participants to give more freely. Perhaps most importantly is that the participants were willing to participate. That is to say, two people made the conscious decision to try to open up to one specific person, at least for a short period.

Dating usually doesn’t work like this. If you’re meeting someone online or from a setup you’re effectively meeting a random stranger. Even if you ask out someone whom you know, you still need to get past the willingness aspect. It’s not just that people are incapable of opening up to someone else (though many are), but they may not want to open up – or at least not to this particular individual. Even the NY Times author admits, “I see now that one neither suggests nor agrees to try an experiment designed to create romantic love if one isn’t open to this happening,” which is of course an obstacle many of us can’t even get past.

And let’s say we do find a partner to undertake this exercise, do we actually wind up finding True Love? The authors of the study address this question and have some bad news.

                 So are we producing real closeness? Yes and no. We think that the closeness produced in these studies is experienced as similar in many important ways to felt closeness in naturally occurring relationships that develop over time. On the other hand, it seems unlikely that the procedure produces loyalty, dependence, commitment, or other relationship aspects that might take longer to develop…Thus the procedure is like other experimental paradigms such as mood induction procedures, the minimal group paradigm, or methods for temporarily lowering self-esteem: It is useful as a means of creating a similar although not completely identical state, but under controlled conditions permitting experimental tests of causal hypotheses and theoretical issues (371-372)

Practically speaking what we really have here is a strategy and mechanism for two people who are open to the possibility of getting close to each other to at least try to develop feelings of closeness. As the NY Times author stated, his could in fact indicate that love is indeed more “pliable” than we’d otherwise have thought, in which case we have more control to determine our own happiness than we’ve imagined.

Even if you find solace or encouragement in this empowerment, keep in mind you still need to work at the relationship, but more importantly you need to find that willing partner.

But then again, that’s why there’s JDate, isn’t it?

Thanksgiving STFU Guide

by Tamar Caspi under News,Single Life

The popular meme above that’s been making the rounds online is meant in jest, but for singles it’s like salt in the wound!

Singles know they are going to have to face the “Why are you still single?” and “Are you dating anyone?” questions more than once during the holidays. And it sucks. So here’s a handy guide for quick, positive responses that will shut up even the nosiest family member.

  1. Yes, I’m single right now, but I’m also thankful I received a __________ promotion at work.
  2. No, I’m not dating anyone special right now, but I have been very fulfilled by my volunteer work at ____________ to help ___________.
  3. Yes, I’m “still” single and used ALL my free time to train for a marathon/compete in a crossfit tournament/__________.
  4. No, I’m not married yet. I’m not willing to settle, I have too much to offer!
  5. It’s been difficult to meet someone because I’ve been busy exploring the world!

Keep it upbeat and happy by saying these responses with a smile. And when you go around the table saying what you’re thankful for, make sure to lay it on really thick by mentioning all the great family, friends, work stuff, hobbies, traveling, pets, and anything else positive that you can think of. Because it’s true — you are fortunate to have a full life filled with love even if it’s not necessarily coming from a significant other right now.