A COLLAPSING SYSTEM: A Conversation with Shadchan Mimi Levitin About the Absurd Shidduch Demands of Parents of Boys in Eretz Yisroel


A COLLAPSING SYSTEM: A Conversation with Shadchan Mimi Levitin About the Absurd Shidduch Demands of Parents of Boys in Eretz Yisroel

Interview by David Lichtenstein



  1. I think I’m going to vomit. This was so nauseating to listen to. I never knew Yiddishe kinder are sold like chickens in a street market. Pheh!

  2. How can you possibly have this on Matzav, when the people speaking here clearly have an agenda?!!
    To call Yeshiva bochurim Cannibals?? עפרא לפומיה!!
    I personally know shidduchim that happened with wonderful bochurim from Ponovezh and no such demands were made.
    How don’t you check your facts before you smear a complete segment of the עולם התורה?
    Did you check this first with whoever your Rav or Daas Torah is??
    I think you owe the Torah world an apology.

    • THe Interviewee made it quite clear that she was not criticising everyone. Those that dont do this, kol hakavod to them . Those that do are behaving like cannibals. They eat up their families!

    • What world are YOU living in? You are only outraged because the truth hurts! No one has to check with anyone to report what is public knowledge.

  3. Missing the point.
    In order for the Roshei Hayeshiva to keep their particular Yeshiva in the “Top-Yeshiva” status, they have to be able to prove to the Boys’ parents that, this particular Yeshiva can get you a $250,000 Nadan.
    That is why those Roshei Hayeshiva CAN NEVER let their Talmudim go into a no-money Shidduch, It will spoil their financial reputation.

    • really? Can I have the phone number of a good boy who doesn’t cuz I have 2 great girls at home…
      I don’t know why she hopes she hasn’t discouraged anyone from making aliyah. I hope she has.

  4. Wicked evil arrogant people. There is no way their marriages can have any kiyum, if so much unnecessary pain is caused to reach such a milestone. Yesh din viyesh dayan. Somewhere along the way, there will be pain and suffering amongst such families. Baruch Hashem I don’t live in such a sick sick Country. Sick evil people.

  5. You’re offended by a moron AOC who says something stupid like not having children but not embarrassed to proliferate a recording from a supposed frum perspective calling Bnei Torah (Malkie Rabbanan) CANNIBALS?!?!

  6. It’s basically an “I want, I must have, I am entitled” generation. And all that “because I learn Torah”, which teaches decency, histapkus, and contains something about “lo sachmod”. When did all that become secondary?

  7. It made me sick to hear this interview.
    It is so sad – yet we know this to be the truth.
    It shows how much “ga’avah” these bochurim and Roshei Yeshiva have
    And nebech how many lives this has ruined. lives of the parents, the poor girls, and eventually from these boys themselves,
    All in the name of Torah no less.

  8. It is a shame that when one agrees to give money to support Torah learning in a Yeshiva/Kollel he finds that he is financing an expensive apartment for some kid of this R”Y or R”K.
    I wonder whether that donor can get back his money in a Din Torah
    That money was definitely taken on false pretenses

  9. I didn’t listen to the audio, but how is this different from absurd demands made by boys stateside? Cars (late model, of course), ‘full support’ (hundreds -sometimes thousands- of dollars per month plus the ridiculous expected expenses of new furniture, chosson watches etc. We have travelled so far from ‘pas bamelach’, it’s scary. It’s heartbreaking to see beautiful, erliche bnos yisroel completely bypassed because their parents are in chinuch, klei kodesh or just plain not rolling in dough. When the first question is ‘how much support’ (and the second is ‘can you send me a picture’) we have missed the boat!

  10. its simple every market is controlled by supply vs. demand – there is a big demand and unfortunately a small supply ( whether real or imagined)
    and then there is the big Q which i am confused about and that is hishtadlus vs. bashert
    lastly having had 2 children get married in the past year ( hodu lashem oif yede gezugt bekorov)
    i dont think i did anything right , there doesnt seem to be any rules in this shidduchim business see the simcha listings all kinds of boys & girls are getting engaged daily meaning poor girls get married , heavy ones , broken homes , weaker students..etc…brothers off..etc.. is it all bashert is it a gezeira clarity anyone
    ps all those story books about europe and poor girls having no shidduchim …and giving her to the farmers ignorant son because ” nisht doo gelt” is that how it really was ???

  11. I’m just curious. When meshulachim come thru for hachnasas kallah, are we actively supporting this insanity? These numbers are off the charts CRAZY! I don’t believe any of them would fall under the halacha of tzedaka, not even remotely. $400,000 dollars to get married and that’s before support?!

  12. This is a tragic situation. As Mrs. Levitin mentions to blame are some Rosh Hayeshivous who encourage their talmidim to only look for money, this is incredible how can a regular ben-torah or a even a working couple afford upwards of 500K shekel to marry off their daughters, but the clincher what bothered me the most when she says that the few who can afford to pay for the top boys are some Rosh Hakollim who travel the world collecting funds for the members of their Kollel, when really the money is going into their pocket to marry off their daughters, this is a huge travesty. She does not mean that all Rosh Hakollim fit that description, but there are numerous ones who do this is terrible outright GENAIVA, they make a Kollel to marry off their children, the honest ben-torah can’t get to first base and his daughters get older. Also, something else bothered me immensely that the few top rated yeshiva’s (not sure who gave them the rating) their talmidim can demand 1m shekel and this is what their Rosh Hayeshiva’ s are telling them this has to stop , When my sons (and they all went to top yeshivas here in the USA & Israel and were B’H top learners and still are) not one Rosh Hayeshiva directed them to look for money they directed them to make sure they were compatible and the house was a torahdig home (but of course my sons were in the USA)

  13. I salute the questioner for his direct questions and also the interviewee for her honesty.

    Whatever happened to Mesiras Nefesh for learning?
    Rashi was a merchant etc etc etc

    The system appears flawed and corrupt, however we cannot criticise Roshei Yeshiva or can we?

    • If you want I can get you a pashkavil signed by r elyashiv r steinmann r shmuel Auerbach or anyone else putting her in chairim those signs are worthless and unless you see an original signature their names on them are not worth more.

  14. you can plotz! here is a billionare poking fun at fellow yidden maybe whos ratzon and sheifus are unrealistic,
    1. the 31 yr old – a meshugana so thats why he is 31 – irrelevent to the discussion
    2. boys and girls dont choose their parents so the girls father thinks this bochur is ” the catch” & asked for this hoping for a nes, and the boys father takes a wrong turn
    3. the shadchan answered properly all the q’s
    4. the chazal ringing in my ears ” leolem yimkor adam kol ma sheyesh lo veyisa bito letalmid chochom dont know pshat? ( i didnt ask for money when i got married nor for my kids but the shaaloh is a shvere?
    5. the teretz iis its lemaleh miderech hateva the same as david’s BILLION
    how anyone in america supports a family is also a big kashe?

    • Kol mah SHEYESH lo – what he already HAS! These people are borrowing money (and collecting) with no means of paying back!

      Plus, who is to say these boys qualify as “Talmidei Chachamim.” The “best” boys in the “best” yeshivos is a different standard.

    • I sold my belongings, then there wasn’t any left for daughter #2.
      I tried telling the shadchan I would support the boy lemaleh miderech hateva, but they didn’t like that answer.

  15. I am very confused. How does this fit with the idea that the gedolim are praised and admired for living very simply with barely any furniture and gashmiyus. Please explain b/c this seems very contradictory to me.

  16. Whilst totally not justifying the system what has come out of this is extreme Moitze Shem Ra. We can all agree that the system is messed up. However, to slag off Roshei Yeshiva and Roshei Kolleim who are genuinly working their guts out for their Bochurim and Avreichim is totally disgusting and out of order. And if this is going to cause people to give less money to genuinely struggling moisdos in Eretz Yisroel then someone is going have to give din vcheshbon.
    PS, my aunt and uncle in Bnei Barak married off 3 kids in the last year. Their daughter and son in law with a baby are living in a yechida on the roof of their appartment.

    • the fact that they’re living in a yechida doesn’t mean they haven’t put down money on an apartment that’s in the process of being built. That’s how it usually works

  17. my children and grandchildren BH did TOP shidduchim from top families. our answer when asked about money (which actually did not happen too often) was: they are loving parents and will do the best they can for their children. PERIOD. you know, there are other ways parents can help their children without writing a check

    • You’re full of it. Nice ideals/hypotheticals without money is NOT going to get your child into a Rosh Yeshiva’s family. You are a gornisht.

  18. The truth hurts. But to trash the system with out offering an alternative is also not productive. My suggestion is set up interviews with wise askanim who can offer constructive criticism. There is no toeles in just “hock”.

  19. Nothing new here.

    Dowries have been around for millennium.

    The conversation is mostly amusing, besides for the FLAT OUT DISDAIN R”L on R Shteinman Zt”l, from both of these characters.


    Beyond the fact that It is simply not true {rav Shteinman never had a Yeshiva}.

    I find this whole conversation amusing, where does it say that you need to marry a fellow from a top Yeshiva ?

    Maybe the “smidgen of Gaavah” is on the girl’s parents as well.

    There is no shidduch crisis in EY.

    Economics for dummys- SUPPLY & DEMAND baby.

    • I think they were bemoaning the fact that most people can’t even afford average boys from average yeshivas. Also, there certainly is a crisis in EY for those who don’t have that kind of money.

  20. This is horrible and I imagine will turn off many people and families from the yeshivish, shiduch world…. I hope my kids meet their match in University/friends etc.

    • Do you know how much University costs? Americans are at an all-time high of student loan debt with young adults going into marriage with $400,000 in debt between them. That is not including the interest, which of course gets higher if they are not able to find an adequate job right away. Telling your child to marry someone he/she met in University isn’t necessarily the answer.

  21. this just proves what ive been saying all along the shiduch crisis is not caused by the age gap a manufactured excuse so all the asskanim can pat themselves and say we cant help it
    the criss is caused by the demands of the boys and if the girls family cant live up to it the boys can wait till next years crop
    if you take out the support factor you have solved the shiduch crisis
    no age gap nonsense

    • Amain. I’ve been saying that for years.
      The Loh yutzlach’s who started the age-gap hoax, did it for one reason and one reason only. To fleece the gullible gevirim without actually having to redt a single shidduch. The hustler’s of the age-gap hoax NEVER had a single Yeshiva enforce their stupid worthless kol korei. BMG would cease to exist if the dumb 21 rule was instituted. Thanx to the apikorsim who were trying to bail out the Aibishter.

  22. While I think it’s terrible that certain boys ask for so much money my parents felt that they would pay part (maybe I wasn’t really a good boy though I’m still learning and some of my friends who got 100’s of 1000’s of shekalim are not) I was turned down a few times because either oh he must not be that good if he doesn’t ask for as much as others or because when it came to negotiating while my parents didn’t ask for more than they were giving which was not much the girls family felt that we were not giving enough and that both sides they and us should give more so don’t always blame the boy or the boys parents the girls parents can sometimes be the same hardheaded

  23. If people continue to pay these exorbitant dowrys, nothing will change. The rich will pay even more for who they want and the poor will become even poorer.
    Speaking of the rich, I know someone who ‘bought’ a son in law. The rich family is well respected and nice people, and the son in law is the nicest guy, but he is now meshubed to his father in law (and wife), must go where he is told for shabbos, yom tov, vacation… He may have it all given to him, but its not a happy life.

  24. I think a BIG misunderstanding has happened here which MUST be clarified as it is besmirching many great people.
    Mrs. Levitin was trying to say that the Roshei Yeshiva or Roshei Kollel who offer such large amounts for a shidduch “are good fundraisers”. What she meant was since they already do fundraising for their yeshiva/kollel they know the people to approach for their own personal needs. SHE DID NOT MEAN THAT THEY TAKE THE MONEY RAISED FOR THEIR YESHIVA/KOLLEL AND THEN TURN AROUND AND USE IT FOR THEIR OWN PERSONAL NEEDS!! CHAS V’SHOLOM!!!
    It’s only people who have AN AGENDA to knock roshei yeshiva and roshei kollel who POUNCE on her words and read into it this obviously absurd accusation. LISTEN AGAIN. She tried to say it BUT was not careful to explain it clearly. BUT IT’S OBVIOUS WHAT SHE MEANT.
    Those who condemned this “outrage” OWE AN APOLOGY to these selfless and dedicated people. (NOTE: I am NOT a rosh yeshiva or rosh kollel or even related to one.)

  25. If a community desires to impose on people spiritual aspirations on other which have financial implications you have to pay for them mesirasa nefesh you can impose on yourself not on others. In america it is a crime that a generation of people were lied to and told not to worry about money a learn in kollel this created the american shidduch crisis

  26. If people expect others to learn and not go to work let them pay for it. If you have spiritual expectations you want to impose on others pay for them.This is how thing always were and this is how they will be. When the first shomer shabbos communities were organized in the USA a hundered years ago those who orgNIZED THOSE COMMUNITIES DEDICATED THEMSELVES TO FIND THEIR CONSTITUANTS SHOMER SHABOS JOBS.

  27. to: still wearing a hat and a jacket: you are absolutely wrong! perhaps the reason they have gotten such amazing spouses is because they almost all married into families living the lives they have been taught is the best and they want to emulate their parents. they learned from their families that ‘things’ are not what make for sholom bayis. and, if you would meet any of them, you would never think they are poverty stricken. perhaps they have been so successful BH is because talmud torah was never equated with big money. i am not saying it isnt important chas v’shalom, to help one’s children. parents put their married children thru medical and thru law school if they can. the argument is that those children are preparing for jobs that will benefit the world. well, excuse me, what my kids are doing is benefiting the world right along with their studying. there is, i must agree, one area which has not been figured out yet, how to pay tuition, so really it is the rebeiim who are subsidizing the evreichim even more than the parents. one of these days we will figure that out, too

  28. I’m just waiting for the interview with Mimi Levitin regarding Rosh Yeshivas who made a gezeira (Names available upon request) – making it Ossur for any of their boys to do a shidduch with a girl who’s grandmother from the mother’s side was born in North Africa!!!! Commonly called (derogatively) chetzi-chetzi. The common Motzei Shem Ra D’Oraisa phrase used is “He is so good a bocher he deserves an Askenaziya” — instantly deriding a major portion of Yiras Shomayim Torah families of Klal Yisroel. The Shadchanim only seem to encourage this “New Torah” behavior.. Hashem should only save us from ourselves.

  29. The Chassidishe world does not work this way. The families split the expenses and the apartment (if they can afford one) equally. And after learning for as long as they feel they can, the husbands go out to – excuse the expression – WORK. Amazing, ain’t it?
    By the way, anyone hear of the k’suba which makes the husband responsible for supporting his wife?
    Even G-d’s Torah can be twisted out of shape. Hashem yishmor.

  30. Sickening! Maybe there should be an end to shidduchim completely. Let the boys and girls just meet. If they like each other, they can build a life from scratch if need be. Go without. Earn what you can and spend less than you make. Save up. Things do not have to be handed out on a plate. And if a boy is not getting support, well then (gasp), get a job! Man up. There is NO SUCH THING as a top boy. Give me a mentsch any day…learning or not. I would davka NOT want a boy from these so called top yeshivas. I would also be very wary of which yeshivas I donate to as well.


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