I have been involved in redding shidduchim for a few years and boruch Hashem have made a few. I try to be quite deliberate when I suggest shidduchim. I don’t just throw out names, but rather make suggestions that to me seem to be the right type for what each side is looking for. Yet, often, it is a challenge just to get the families to look into the suggestions I am making on behalf of boys and girls. Many times, it seems like they don’t even look into the ideas I have suggested. I would be very interested to learn some “trade secrets” to better redd a shidduch so that each side will take it seriously.
Insofar as my particular role in shidduchim is not that of a shadchan, I cannot claim to possess any manner of boots-on-the-ground or tried-and-true types of brilliant ideas with respect to cajoling or convincing families to take one’s ideas seriously. Especially by those who may be fielding shidduch suggestions from scores of scattered and recondite sources at once, and thus, cannot possibly give every last one equal time and attention. It can be a rather tough job cracking through the exterior walls people often construct between themselves and the world around them when they feel the need to self-protect or silo. What I can say, however, is that you are very much not alone. Indeed, I have heard similar sentiments expressed by myriad shadchanim, some of whom have gained notable acclaim across the globe, and one might assume that whenever they touch base with a family, everything halts in deference to their stature and reputation. Not so. No one shadchan will be able to have everyone’s ear to the fullest extent. That is perfectly fine, and to be expected.
As far tips and tools, then, the best I believe I can offer is to convey encouragement vis-à-vis the persistence, enthusiasm, and tenacity of the Chazon Ish, which I just recently learned of whilst perusing the pages of the presently published volume, Rav Chaim Kanievsky on Shidduchim(ArtScroll/Mesorah) – a magnificent work, and one which I would highly recommend for any and all to read. As it so happens, the Chazon Ishwas a prolific shadchan, and in fact, one of his final conversations on this earth was spent following up on a proposal he had made for the then single Rav Moshe Sternbuch. It is further relayed that the Chazon Ish himself experienced many failures in his tenure as a shadchan. Yes, even the Chazon Ish would frequently hit a wall in his efforts. I cannot personally fathom saying no to such a personage, for anything at all, but apparently it was not an uncommon occurrence. Nonetheless, he remained steadfast, undaunted and undeterred in his mission, and always pressing on with excitement and positivity, waiting faithfully for Hashem Yisborach to lend kiyum to his toil.
To be a shadchan is to be shut down, ignored, and passed upon with great regularity. Even the crème de le crème of the realm hear the word nofar more repeatedly than they do the word yes; whether it be a no to a fresh idea or a no to continue dating. That is the nature of the arena. And so, to succeed, the one quality to develop which I imagine supersedes all others, is perseverance: a willingness and determination to forge ahead, again and again, and time after time, and a profound yen for seeking that elusive yes, no matter how habitually and routinely a no precedes it.
May we all be zocheh to foster a deep and everlasting trust that the Melech Moshel Bakol will release his shefa bracha v’hatzlacha at just the right moment, in just the right place, for just the right couple.