Friday, August 19, 2011

What Do "You Never Know"?

There are three insidious words being constantly overused, specifically in terms of dating.

"You never know."

This simple statement is the go-to persuasive argument for any sort of inconvenient or frustrating outing.

Singles event? "You never know." Shadchan stalking? "You never know." Online dating? "You never know."

What follows is, where does it end?

Maybe I should sit in different train cars every day. Maybe I should walk aimlessly through various minyanim. Maybe I should sabotage my car and act all helpless by the roadside. After all, "You never know."

There is also an underlying insinuation of  an irreligious mindset which I find disturbing.

The Eibishter established the concept of hishtadlus - one must do one's part. Not "You never know," but the minimum requirement that the Eibishter sees as one's part of the deal. He delivers the rest. There aren't different levels of hishtadlus for everyone; just sometimes Hashem holds off for His own reasons.

I do not have to flagellate my dignity, suffer fools, nor chase perceived saviors. Why should anyone treat me with respect if I don't? 

Maybe I don't know. And I prefer it that way.


SternGrad said...

You're quite right, the phrase "you never know," is over used in shidduchim, and I'm with you- it drives me crazy sometimes. Sure, sometimes it's valid, but I find that when people say "you never know" what they really mean is that they are 99% sure that whatever it is will not result in a successful outcome, but there is a 1% possibility that something good could come out of it, and it is worth it to try simply for that 1% of a chance. In that case, you really DO know, but you're deluding yourself into hoping for a miracle.

Princess Lea said...

There is also the insinuation that I am, of course, desperate, and so I should do every silliness which they, of course, would never do.

Mystery Woman said...

I always what point do we know we did our hishtadlus and it's time to let go and leave it up to Hashem?

Princess Lea said...

If your self-esteem is saying, "I'm not happy about this," you are waaaaay past hishtadlus. I'm not saying I haven't done some things anyway that I wasn't happy about (giving photos, for example), but at least let's not call that hishtadlus. Call that being held hostage.

singsingle said...

R’ Elyashiv is quoted by Reb. Tziporah Heller in a lecture : Shidduchim is an area where you have to put in the most efforts but, the results are not necessarily because of your efforts.

Princess Lea said...

What is effort, however? "Effort" does not mean doing things that, chances are, will not pan out. Going to a simcha so people will know you exist? OK. Running after shadchanim with an iffy success rating? Meh. Being proper on a date because one should be proper even though it is killing you? Thumbs up. Doing an invented yesterday segulah? I think not.

Yedid Nefesh said...

Its creepy the "you never know" constant, you start questioning and doubting what might have happened had you walked on the other side of the street.. so just do what makes you happy and feel accomplished and then you never know... :)

Princess Lea said...

If I walk on the other side of the street, that is bashert to some extent, right? In terms of bashert, I have to leave it to the Matchmaker in the Sky.