Thursday, August 14, 2008

Psak On TV Dating

Here's an interesting twist in the news thanks to the new hit Israeli show, Srugim:
In one episode, one of the women on the show, Reut, debates whether to go out on a date with a man she's been introduced to, after she already agreed to go out with her tutor. When her friend expresses her displeasure with the decision, Reut responds: "Why do you care who I go out with? Even Rabbi Aviner said that it's ok to date two people at the same time."

One of the viewers, perplexed by the moral dilemma, sent Rabbi Aviner a question, citing the show and asking whether this indeed reflected the rabbi's view.

Rabbi Aviner responded: "Certainly not," and proceeded to explain that dating two men simultaneously is generally a dishonest and immoral act. However, the rabbi admitted that there are some exceptions to the rule.

"Only in unusual cases, when the woman is older and time is running out, and the guy takes his time making a decision," is it ok to multi-date.

However, writers for the show said they based the quote in the episode on an answer provided by the rabbi to the same question about a year and a half ago. At the time, the Aviner responded: "It's immoral, unless you're old and can't wait."
It's an interesting psak in general, if only because it's an interesting issue to have a psak about. I thought that people generally don't really "double-date", though plenty will 'look into' more than one person at a time, or even look into people while they're still dating someone if they think it's not going to work. But certainly to see a shaila asked because of what was quoted on a TV show is pretty new...!