NEW SHIDDUCH CRISIS STUDY: 96% of Charedi Girls Get Married

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NEW YORK (Yaakov M / VINnews) — For years, Rabbanim, shadchanim, and community leaders have been trying to solve the shidduch crisis.

A breakthrough new study may provide key insights and data, which sheds light on the true nature of the crisis, and determine whether we should focus on different solutions than we’ve been trying until now. The data also may challenge some common beliefs that we have based on anecdotal experience and perception.

The research was published this month in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion (JSSR) by Dr. Yosef Sokol, a researcher and professor in the new PsyD program at Touro University’s School of Health Sciences,

Dr. Sokol’s team collected data which suggests that the vast majority of “Yeshiva Orthodox” girls eventually get married. If this is correct, it is a bombshell discovery.

To receive a free copy of this study via email, please email [email protected] 

Many believe that due to an increase in population each year, combined with the trend of older boys to date younger girls, the dating pool has more girls than boys. If that presumption is correct, the solution essentially is to get boys to date and marry girls their age or close to their age.

However Dr. Sokol’s study would appear to suggest that there are relatively the same number of boys and girls in the dating pool. If that’s the case, the solution to the crisis should probably entail helping girls find (and marry) their eventual match, sooner than they currently are, by figuring out why some boys and girls take years to get married, and tackling the problem from that angle.

Dr. Sokol collected information on nearly 9,000 members of the Yeshiva Orthodox (YO) and Modern Orthodox (MO) communities in North America.

A number of the key findings refuted common myths about the perceived shidduch crisis. For one, the prevalence of singlehood in Orthodox communities is lower than one might expect.

The study found that in Yeshiva Orthodox circles, 92% of both men and women were married by age 30. By age 40, that number was about 98% of men, and 96.1% of women.

Rates were somewhat lower in Modern Orthodox communities, where 81% of men and women were married by age 30. Just under 90% were wed by 40.

Another widely-held belief is that there is a large disparity in marriage rates between men and women. Not so, says the study. In Yeshiva Orthodox communities, about 88% of men and 92% of women are married by age 28.

“While these numbers may or may not be considered a crisis depending on your viewpoint they don’t seem to match what many people fear is happening,” said Dr. Sokol.

In performing the study, Dr. Sokol sought to alleviate some of the stress that singles feel as they become older and await finding the right match.

“People think there’s a shidduch crisis, they panic, and may choose someone, or push their children to choose someone, that might not be good for them,” he said. “Of course, the community should support singles and their families and continue to be sensitive to those who are waiting to find their bashert, but I hope my research can provide more accurate information about our marriage system, help relieve some of the widespread anxiety, and enable singles, community members, and leaders to make more informed decisions. I believe our community needs more data-based approaches to identify solutions and programming that will be most likely to help.”

The research team included Dr. Yosef Sokol, Dr. Naomi Rosenbach, Dr. Yitzchak Schechter, Chayim Rosensweig, Chynna Levin, and Shifra Hubner.

To receive a free copy of this study via email, please email [email protected] 


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