In the fall of 2009, two years after a broken engagement, and following a string of unfulfilling relationships, my parents surprised me with a three month subscription to JDate. I was ready to do whatever it took to find the right guy, and had fun crafting my profile and picking the right words: If he was out there in cyberspace, I was hoping my profile would help him find me. Mere days after I set up my account, I received a message from LikeaMensch (a name that made me smile, as I was looking specifically for a mensch), saying, “If given the chance, I’d like to make a fool of myself in attempt to impress you.” His humor caught my attention, and I wrote back, “Just let me know when so I can bring my camera!” LikeaMensch, a.k.a. Josh, and I emailed non-stop for two days, and then made the leap to phone calls. I remember the first time I called him, knowing well he was nowhere near his phone. I blushed when I heard his voice, thinking it sounded so warm and familiar, like home. We set up for our first date within a week, and spent four hours at a local diner with our eyes locked laughing; two hours passed before we realized we’d never been served our meal. It was as close to love at first sight as I imagine is possible in the midst of reality. By our second date, I knew our budding relationship was something significant and, by the third date, Josh told me he knew he’d be my husband someday. I laughed at his “joke,” but quietly wondered if I was really in the presence of the man I’d marry.
On November 5, 2010, while celebrating our one year anniversary, I unwrapped a Nook from Josh, and he pointed me to a story he’d written called “A Match Made in Cyberspace.” The first page looked like my old JDate profile, and it read:
“Once upon a time there was a beautiful, smart, funny, dorky, awesome, fantastic, exuberant, girl who also had a plethora of other wonderful traits. Her world was in a perfect place, just needing that one final piece. Her parents knew just where she’d find it, a wonderful, magical place called the Internet. In that Internet, there was a mystical land called JDate.”
“Once upon a time there was a funny, smiley, joshing, and awesome boy. His world was taking turn after turn for the better and he was finally ready to find that special someone. He had been toiling away in the mystical land of JDate for some time, and was about to give up. That’s when he stumbled upon a newcomer to the world of JDate. He couldn’t believe his eyes how perfect she seemed. To test the waters he sent her a flirt. The flirts turned to emails and the emails turned to a first encounter… and from the moment he laid eyes on her, he knew he wanted to be with her for the rest of his life. And she seemed to agree and their lives turned into a great romantic adventure. It was pure bliss. There was no way they could be any happier. However, there was just one more question that needed to be answered.”
I looked up at Josh and began to cry, and looked back down to find: Rachel Simone Schneider, Will You Marry Me? He was down on one knee in the middle of my living room, and I couldn’t say “Yes!” quickly enough. We’re getting married on November 13, 2011.
Now, when people ask how we met, I sing JDate’s praises. You are not just a dating site for Jewish singles: You were the place where my future husband was waiting to find me. I am forever grateful for your role in bringing us together. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
My advice to people on the matter of internet dating is always to give it a shot, because you truly never know who’s waiting there for you. What I wrote to you was so true: On the other end of my computer was the man I’d marry. Hindsight is funny, isn’t it?! If I’d known that the day he messaged me, I would’ve laughed it off. I think people shy away from internet dating, but truly it’s a great avenue to meeting people, especially when you’re a nice Jewish girl looking for a nice Jewish boy. So many of our friends met on JDate and subsequently married. It’s nice to have a modern matchmaker!
I am so thankful to your service. I had been an on-again-off-again user of the site for many years. The one thing I learned from JDate is that sometimes you have to sift through a lot of dirt before you can find your gold. I had this feeling that I’d eventually find the woman I was to marry on JDate, and thankfully I proved myself right! It’s the biggest advice I can give to anyone who is about to give up on JDate, that you just have to stick to it. If you find yourself being burnt out, there is nothing wrong with taking a break. Don’t focus on a relationship for a little bit. Take some time to focus on yourself, and then go back to checking profiles. When you feel good about yourself, you will see that finding the right person for you becomes a lot easier.
Rachel and Josh
New York, New York