What do you think about non-Jews on JDate?

by singlemomseeking on January 7, 2009

Neither of the most recent men I’ve met on JDate — “The Leading Jewish Singles Network” — were Jews.

One man told me the truth in our first email, which I appreciated.

The other man waited half an hour into our coffee date to smile coyly and say, “I should tell you know that I’m not Jewish.”

The percentage of JDate’s 650,000 members identifying themselves as religiously “unaffiliated” is now 13% and rising, according to a feature in Nerve.com. JDate has even added the option of designating oneself “Willing to convert.”

I’d love to know what you think:

If non-Jews are posting their profiles on a Jewish dating site, are they are misleading everyone?

Seriously, how far can you stretch it online?

Both of these men explained to me they had many Jewish friends, who’d persuaded them to give JDate a try. (Or, maybe they think that Jewish women are hot in bed?)

Technically, I’m only a half-Jew anyway.

If an observant man ever contacted me — the kind of guy who goes observes the Sabbath — I would tell him the truth up front. (This hasn’t happened to me. I don’t think Conservative Jewish guys go after single moms, unless it’s for… oh, never mind.)

I like JDate because the majority of the guys I’ve met are educated, intelligent, well-read, and family-oriented.

Being Jewish is not a deal breaker for me.

But being honest and upfront — from the start — is crucial. Don’t you agree?

~~~

Photo of the Star of David, a symbol of Jewish identity

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{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Angie January 7, 2009 at 5:24 am

I am not Jewish — more agnostic than anything else, but go to a Methodist church when I go. I would not see a problem with a guy being on JDate and not Jewish as long as he was very upfront.

That said, however, I peeked at JDate when you were talking about it here. The site clearly defines itself as a place for Jewish people to meet like Jews. It’s not an aside, it’s the main focus. So, for myself, I would not be comfortable putting a profile on the site because I would feel like I was stepping on the wrong soil and presenting myself as something I’m not. If I were not agnostic and religious in some respect I would probably not feel as uncomfortable…

Angie´s last blog post…2009 Goals – 3 & 4 of 4 – More Fun/Less Consumption!

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Carolyn January 7, 2009 at 6:00 am

I have looked at the guys on JDate. I was impressed. But I worry that it would be strange to go on JDate as a non-Jew.

My aunt married a Jew (20 yrs ago). I was in their wedding. He’s my favorite uncle, and even since I’ve had a thing for Jewish men.

When all my girlfriends were taping up poster of the NKOTB, I was crushing on Jeff Goldblum. It’s funny, but true. lol

Carolyn´s last blog post…It’s All About Your Perspective

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Amy Nathan January 7, 2009 at 6:58 am

Rachel!!! I can’t stand it that non-Jews are on JDate. The purpose of JDate is for Jewish singles to meet. Jews, non-Jews and everyone else can be on any number of sites that allow you to check off your religious preferences. I recently read a JDate profile that actually mentions Jesus. C’mon folks. That guy did not belong on JDate. Meeting someone who shares my heritage and culture is very important to me. I am Jewish and my children are Jewish. If I perchance met a non-Jewish man and we were “a match” I know that would be OK with me…but when I make a list of what I want and really believe is best for me right now, Jewish is at the top of the list. And yes I believe that when a guy on JDate designates “will tell you later” under ethnicity — all kinds of bells go off. Uh huh, church bells.

Amy Nathan´s last blog post…Where does the story start?

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MindyMom January 7, 2009 at 9:03 am

Well I’m not Jewish but it doesn’t seem right to be on a Jewish dating site if your not Jewish. I don’t think these same non-jew men would post profiles on gay dating sites, do you? That’s why there are specific sites available to join – so people can find specific things i potential dates. On line dating is so messed up!

MindyMom´s last blog post…Single Moms: Guilty

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singlemomseeking January 7, 2009 at 10:16 am

Amy: You’ve made me realize that I’m so used to seeing non-Jews on JDate nowadays that it doesn’t faze me. Thanks for the wake up call.

Mindy: Interesting point about gay dating sites. Would straight singles post their profiles there? Uh, no.

Angie and Carolyn: The biggest issue for me here is honesty. If he doesn’t say upfront in his profile that he’s NOT Jewish, I wonder if he’s hiding anything else.

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Allison January 7, 2009 at 10:23 am

I actually went to JDate after having read your book & columns, and having a total bust of an experience on match.com. But right away I knew I wouldn’t feel right signing up, because it’s really not set up for me–I’m not Jewish. It’s nice that they don’t totally restrict it, but I wonder if the unaffiliated folks are just those, like me, who fizzled out on other sites.

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Allison January 7, 2009 at 10:26 am

I should add, that wasn’t the ONLY reason I went to JDate. The last wedding I went to was a Jewish wedding, and it was the most romantic, best wedding I’ve ever been to. I loved so many aspects of it. But I don’t know enough about Judaism to say yes I would convert someday; I mean, maybe yes maybe no. So clearly JDate is not for me!

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Kelly January 7, 2009 at 10:29 am

Kind of reminds me of when I, as a straight woman (and pregant at the time), joined a gay chorus at the urging of some friends who were members. I thought I was making a point about breaking through boundaries or something, but looking back I think it was silly. The whole point was for people of a specific group to do something together.

I think it’s very misleading to post a profile on Jdate if you aren’t Jewish, since that’s the entire point of the site, for people to meet others with similar beliefs.

Kelly´s last blog post…Me Again

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Eathan January 7, 2009 at 10:42 am

From my understanding, Jdate is for those who are Jewish and are looking for other Jewish dates. I don’t see why someone would be on there unless they are looking to convert. I personally would be irritated if you’re looking for a date that is jewish and found out they aren’t. That seems to be deception at it’s finest. I guess the common ground for people on the site is their faith.

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Lance January 7, 2009 at 11:27 am

I don’t have a problem with it as long as the profile states they’re non-Jewish or they state it plainly in the initial email. JDate is just another tool for meeting people, so I don’t put much weight on the Jewish angle.

I will tell you this, though. I have some player friends who state that JDate is a GOLDMINE compared to Match for meeting quality women in their particular cities. I haven’t tried it myself, but might the next time I’m single.

Lance´s last blog post…The Weekly: Secrets to a kickass new year, keywords from Brogan, Pavlina on Polyamory, me on resolutions, Hoffman on sex

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avigail74 January 7, 2009 at 11:35 am

Although, I’m pretty liberal and radical in many areas of life—I am adamantly opposed to having non-Jews on a Jewish site. JDate was specifically created for Jews to meet Jews. I do love that JDate allows Jewish people to mark off how religous (or not) s/he is. There are lots of other sites where races/religions/gender preferences can sign up and meet other kinds of people—Match.Com is terrific example. In short, I think it’s disrespectful.

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singlemomseeking January 7, 2009 at 12:40 pm

Avigail: I was hoping that more single Jewish women might chime in! It’s good to hear your take.

Lance: “the next time” you’re single? C’mon now, give this relationship a chance, will you!

Yes, JDate is a GOLDMINE for meeting quality women… now, where the heck are the quality men on there?

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won January 7, 2009 at 1:48 pm

I agree with those who said there is a time and a place for everything, and everyone. And JDate does not sound like the place for non Jewish people. It seems pretty elementary to me.

I have a question. What qualifies someone as Jewish? Are you simply Jewish because your mother is, or are there certain steps or such that one has to do in order to identify as such?

won´s last blog post…And So It Is…

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dadshouse January 7, 2009 at 2:03 pm

It’s not JDate that’s the problem, it’s online dating. I’ve met women who claimed to be triathletes who were anything but. There are married people on match seeking affairs. A non-jew on jdate? I’m not surprised.

Online dating sucks! Better to meet potential suitors through real-life networks and friends.

dadshouse´s last blog post…Cat Woman

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Janna January 7, 2009 at 2:46 pm

Isn’t on-line dating overall a big trap which is easy to fall in to?

I believe there are lot of lies going around the dating sites even though I’m just a beginner.

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Single Online Dating January 8, 2009 at 10:22 am

Non-Jews should avoid Jewish specific sites unless they are willing to convert prior to marriage.

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Heather {Desperately Seeking Sanity} January 8, 2009 at 2:40 pm

I’ve been around the block with online dating sites and I’ve never posted to JDate because, well, I’m not Jewish. While I know ALOT about the Jewish culture (my ex husband) is Jewish, I didn’t feel like a man who was on JDate would be looking for me, a Christian.

However, I did use a Christian dating site a few times and I was shocked at the amount of people who used the term “Christian” loosely. I thought that a Christian site would be easier to meet a Christian with like minded morals and beliefs than it would be on a place on match.com.

Guess what? I met more Christians, and my current boyfriend on match.com

But I guess it wouldn’t really matter if people were upfront and honest. I don’t do fake or pretenses well.

Heather {Desperately Seeking Sanity}´s last blog post…You Wanted To Know…So I’ll Tell You…

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Schvach January 8, 2009 at 3:09 pm

I think that any person who registers with an on-line Jewish dating service does so with the aim of meeting and dating Jews; hence, a
non-Jew needs to identify him/herself at the outset. Shades of Nuremberg? Maybe, but there’s really no penalty.

Schvach´s last blog post…

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Mama Dharma January 9, 2009 at 8:25 am

OMG! I have been under a rock, clearly. I don’t watch much TV but I need to start watching “The Batchelor” now, LOL.

Anyway, about the non-Jews on JDate. I don’t know that it’s misleading, per se, but a bit weird.

As we all know, Jews have more cultural baggage than most about intermarriage due to all the persecution, family pressure, etc. So a lot of the people on JDate are probably fairly serious about “keeping it in the tribe” if you know what I mean. Anyway I think that the person should mention it in his or her profile if not Jewish or mention willingness to convert as the previous poster mentions. It’s kind of a courtesy, that’s all.

won: I think Rachel blogged about this lately, the “official” definition of a Jew is someone whose mother is Jewish. I think it’s BS but that’s what most people think.

Mama Dharma´s last blog post…Crazy random dating story…

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Brian January 9, 2009 at 7:15 pm

Hmmmm! I’ve met many White/Jewish women on Black Planet. Woud you accept a Black Jew?
Don’t get me wrong thou… I see your point but hey It happens… they want us? Eh?
Does that site have a disclosure that it is discriminatory in it’s membership process? I’m not Jewish so I wouldn’t know… but now im curious about signing up! LOL just joking…. I said just curious…
B*

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Judy R January 10, 2009 at 1:35 pm

what’s the big deal? there are plenty of women on jdate that prefer to be with a Jewish man, and are open to being with a non-Jew. if you are not one of these women,so you click to the next profile…..big deal. for the non-Jews on jdate…you should definitely mention it in your profile….lying may be the bigger turn off than the religion.
if jdate was a store, what would you do? would you put up a sign that says non-Jews stay out? if a man wants a Jewish wife and family, why deny him entrance to shop?
for the people that made comments comparing this to straight people getting on gay websites…i have one thing to say to you……….grow up!!!!
i am a single mom, who is currently on jdate….i think religion is the least of jdate’s problem…..but hey this isn’t my blog…….

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Linda Sherman January 10, 2009 at 2:53 pm

Great discussion. I agree that authenticity is absolutely the best way to go. I think it is OK to be on J-Date if you are not Jewish so long as you state you are there because you want to date Jewish women/men.

I am a Community Manager on a social network for upscale Singles 30+ living in Los Angeles (SingularCity). When people slightly outside that description want to join, I ask them to explain why in their self-description. We have some members from other areas but they all have a reason for wanting to hang out with this LA crowd. We are delighted that Rachel Sarah is a Group Leader “Single Parents Dating” on Singular City (OK, I begged her).

There is a discussion on the topic of lying on on-line profiles here at http://singularcity.com/november-10-16-2008/128-liar-liar. If I may give one more reference Jerusha Stewart’s Last Single Girls webisode series included “Lying for Love” in 3 parts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntY5raQLWXU

Linda Sherman´s last blog post…Happy Holidays Must Include a Hug

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Honey January 11, 2009 at 10:25 am

Isn’t Jason/The Bachelor’s son only Jewish if his mom is as well? I don’t think we know for sure that Ty is Jewish, only that Jason is. Which I didn’t know, actually! Fun fact, thanks, SMS!

Honey´s last blog post…Snowboarding, Sickness, and a Breakdown at the Grocery Store

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Princess March 8, 2009 at 1:32 am

I have been in the long process of converting to Judaism for several years. One thing, that’s held me back is that, as much as I really do want to convert, I will not do so, if it means that I won’t ever get married or have children. It’s not something I’m wiling to budge on. I just joined jdate finally b/c it was the first opportunity to meet a sizable amount of possible jewish matches for me. I checked the “willing to convert.”
I don’t think that non-Jews on jdate are a bad thing, as long as they are upfront about it & willing to convert.

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marica May 31, 2009 at 4:51 pm

simply because you can’t tell people that this is an apple field and then you grow oranges there as well.

it is a Jew site and not a Christian or Muslim. if you are not Jewish and you like Jewish woman or men. Then, you should fine a site that have mix religion like match. COM. you say there what is your religion and you make the decision weather you ok trying with some one who is not the same believe as yours.
That is a specific site for Jews only and it should stay this way and if you not then go to match. COM they will take just any one and then it will be up to you too to make that dictions if it works for you or not.
Jdate is for Jews and any other way it will be misleading and that is not good.

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Anon September 10, 2009 at 5:19 pm

What about people who were raised in Jewish neighbourhoods and have mostly Jewish friends, and have more in common with Jewish culture/religion than other cultures/religions? Where are they supposed to go? IMO, they should be allowed to join, but should state that they are not “officially” Jewish up front. Honesty, in any relationship, regardless of faith, is important.

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Krissy April 25, 2012 at 2:41 pm

I agree, and most of my friends are Jewish, and I would not lie about my religion and I am wiling to convert. But people should at the very least tell the truth. You could filter your email to only Jewish members, but then if somebody is wiling to convert, then that is something to maybe consider. I think now that you have to be a paid member, people on there are probably more honest, as they are looking for somebody serious. I mean if a person says they are wiling to convert, they would probably not pay if they were not serious about that.

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Matine September 30, 2009 at 5:52 am

I am Jewish and on Jdate. I have absolutely no problem with someone being there that is not Jewish. Simply state that fact in your profile, and leave it up to individual members to decide if they want to go out with you or not. Simple as that.

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Kiana October 27, 2009 at 7:43 am

yeah that does seem kind of misleading, going on J Date if your’e not Jewish, but then again that could be questioned, because Jewish isnt just a religion, its a cultural/ethnic identity also. There are plenty of agnostic Jews on alot of sites including J Date. So could i equate that with a white guy having a preference Asian girls being on an Asian site?

I would just be kind of put off being there, im not Jewish and i would expect any man there to expect me to be Jewish so I would feel silly.. Not to mention i don’t see a specific reason i’d go scoping out Jewish guys. I do date Jewish guys sometimes, but i think th ats because im in NYC and you just can’t help running into them. Yes i will admit, many of them are nice guys, that doesn’t mean they are ideal partners or soul mates. At the end of the day we are all just humans with our flaws

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ashley January 16, 2012 at 3:52 am

i came to jdate because of the commercial. I have brown hair so I had a connection with the commercial actors, I don’t know why there is a 4 year old girl on the dating commercial???????

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Krissy April 25, 2012 at 2:21 pm

I am on JDate, but I was not born Jewish, why I joined cause 1, I am wiling to formally convert, 2, I learned about the religion from my ex, 3 my friends recommended it. That said, I do think people should be honest. Not allowing non Jews who are wiling to convert would just invite people on to lie, cause on a dating site, it is your word that people are reading. I don’t however see the point in joining if you are not wiling to convert or open to the idea, as it is a paid site. Also, why would you lie if you rae looking for a serious relationship with somebody, they have to find out sometime right? Religion has an impact on your life in many ways, how you want ot raise your family your lifestyle, so I do understand why people want to date within there faith. I don’t think however that an honest non-jew wiling to convert would be taking away from somebody who wants to date only Jewish people because there would still be the same amount of Jewish people on the site. Being honest is important in any dating site, also now that you have to be a paid member, I think most of the members are serious about what they put on there, JDate used to be free.

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