Mishmeres HaSholom: Ask the Rav

Q: I often get calls for information about our mechutanim. The fact is that we had a very difficult time getting along with these people. So much so, that the young couple remains without an apartment of their own because of ongoing arguments we had with them every step of the way. I must note that we do have other mechutanim, and our arrangements with them went smoothly. These mechutanim have also married off other children and I know that they managed well with their other mechutanim. What can I tell people who inquire?

 A: The picture that emerges from your description is of two sets of mechutanim who managed to get along beautifully with other mechutanim. It is only when the two of you were arranging for the marriage of your children that you couldn’t get see eye-to-eye. This situation calls for further investigation. (In all probability, your mechutan is also wondering what to tell others when asked how he got along with you.)

It seems that both of you are fine people, and that you conduct yourselves decently. But because of your personality differences, you did not have mutual understanding as partners.

This particular situation is therefore not proof enough that either of you has difficulties getting along with others. You should thus preferably avoid answering these questions. If you are pressured into answering, you should emphasize that your mechutan did get along with his other mechutanim, and in your case it was only a matter of technicalities. Additionally, recommend that the inquirers call other mechutanim, to shed light on the matter.

It is recommended that you seek advice from a talmid chacham who is proficient in these topics. Advise him of all the arguments you had, highlighting that this mechutan didn’t have these arguments with the others. You will then get a clear halachic ruling of how to answer people who inquire.


The following questions and answers were taken from the Mishmeres Hasholom pamphlet in Israel. For details and inquiries please e-mail us at office@hasholom.org or call 972-2 5379160.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Hamodia.