It’s a Saturday night and I find myself underground in a dimly lit room at the Hawthorn, a cocktail lounge in San Francisco’s Financial District, holding a whiskey in one hand and a pink neon glow stick in the other.The event I’ve just walked into is Jewbilee, proclaimed the “hottest monthly party for Jews in their 20s and 30s.” Jeremy Doochin, one of the organizers, has set his beer on the table between us so he can snap the glow stick around my wrist, turning it into a bracelet.
“Tova, you have so many guy friends — how can none of them be prospects? An older divorced woman I know talks to me about the bleak pool of prospects that awaits women each year they grow older and remain single.Like me, Lianne was once a more observant Jew, having become more religious in her twenties, attracted to family-style Sabbath dinners and holidays.And like me, Lianne believed modern orthodox Jewish men would be more likely to want to marry and have children, which is what she and I both yearned for.At a recent Jewish singles mixer, I made the requisite small talk with the men assembled, but it was only when I met another single mom at the event that I found an instant kindred spirit. I’m blessed to say that, between my two exhausting and hilarious children, ages 3 and 6, a mostly amicable relationship with my ex-husband, my full-time job and a circle of close friends, I’m feeling pretty rich right now (despite what my bank account says).“Hey, Tova, you’re talking to the wrong gender,” my friend running the event chided me as she walked by the two of us deep in conversation. When my children spend nights with their father, I feel no palpable sadness at spending the evening alone, sprawled out on the sofa in my pajamas watching Netflix. ” — she responded with a look of pity and a whisper.The stigma has been watered down by the sheer number of those with , she might jump in, suppressing any unease if their personalities don’t click – a reality that could lead to unhappiness, discord and ultimately divorce.