I was redd a shidduch by someone I trust. He knows the person well and was able to give us a very thorough picture of who the person is. My parents and I liked what we heard and called one or two people who are not on the résumé. They confirmed the positive information and we are ready to say yes. Is there any benefit to calling the people who are on the résumé?
Insofar as no amount of research is capable of providing a surefire guarantee that a suggestion will lead to a marriage, I believe that the true purpose of looking into a shidduch before saying yes lies elsewhere. First and foremost, the objective is simply to obtain a meaningful degree of comfort that the idea has potential regarding compatibility. And second, it is with intent to ascertain that there are no glaring red flags with regard to the person that has been redd, or their family, that would preclude one from pursuing the shidduch, despite the otherwise seeming like-mindedness of the two individuals. Nonetheless, even subsequent to these goals having been achieved, being that there will inevitably be areas wherein one remains nescient, a final leap of faith will always be necessary before agreeing to proceed with a date.
Accordingly, it is my opinion that steadfast confidence in the veracity of the information that one has received is far more important than whether or not the source of that information can be traced back to a piece of paper that is inherently limited and often perfunctorily prepared. Consequently, in scenarios such as the one presented, I believe that the value in seeking further clarification specifically from those who have been listed on the resume is very much dependent on whether one feels they have yet attained a sufficient measure of ease and contentment vis-à-vis both of the aforementioned objectives.
Meaning to say, it is an entirely subjective realm. For those who feel that enough reliable data has been gathered, albeit of alternative provenance, to responsibly take that plunge into the unknown, calling on resume references is not positively obligatory, nor is it fundamentally beneficial. In fact, there comes a point when stratagems to amass more and more material about a prospective spouse result in doing more harm than good. However, for those who find favor in what they have heard thus far, but remain somewhat apprehensive due to not having spoken directly with listed references who can be expected to have credible and key insights based on immediate familiarity, a few more conversations may aid in attaining the level of comfort that is needed to go forward.
In short, as long as one appreciates that purpose of the endeavor is not to gain a firm grasp on certainty, but rather, to build up one’s confidence so that it reaches a fair and reasonable benchmark, either approach is equally valid.
May the Maeir La’aretz Viladarim Uleha Birachamim illuminate for us all the path to judicious and prosperous decision-making.