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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

I Don't Care That You Dated A Jewish Girl


In my short yet eventful life, I have experienced many things regarding my Jewishness. I have experienced everything from out-right Jew hating to minor stereotyping. Yet of all these things, the one thing that bothers me most is not serious. It may even be considered complimentary. But I have always had a problem with it.

Why is it that when people (ok, mostly men) find out I'm Jewish or see the Star of David around my neck, they feel the need to tell me "Oh...I dated a Jewish girl"?

It's literally the first thing that comes out of their mouths. Like I should immediately feel connected to them because at one time or another they had dinner with/had drinks with and/or shtupped a Jewish girl. Maybe it's because there are so few of us that people think we may be like "Oh...yeah...you dated my cousin."


What's worse is that some even add to that:

"Yeah...after dating her I realized Jewish girls are bitches."

"Jewish girls are freaks in bed"

"Actually, maybe you know her...her name is Sarah...Sarah Goldberg"

"I LOVE JEWISH GIRLS!"

Now, the first two statements are complete stereotypes. There are PLENTY of nice Jewish girls and there are PLENTY who are as prudish as can be. The third one is just plain stupidity. Going along with what I said above...there are enough Jews out there that most likely, I will NOT know your ex-girlfriend.

In reality it's the fourth response that always gets me. Granted, I love being loved for my Jewishness (it's what gets me through many days). But at what point does this "love" turn into a fetish? Or is it already a fetish? And is this person now talking to me because they are interested in me or just interested in my Jewishness?

Another thing that gets me is when I meet non-Jewish women who, when they find out I'm Jewish, go into great detail about how they love Jewish men and how many they have dated. (As a Jewish woman, this upsets me for other reasons too...)

It's easy to see when someone has, let's say, an Asian fetish. While the word may signify it, the "fetish" does not have to be at all sexual. It can be a strong interest in the language or in the culture, through which a person may find acceptance and understanding. This then may lead him or her to date a person from an Asian background.

Is this so with Jewish culture? Sure, there are people who convert to Judaism, who find it more accepting than the culture in which they were brought up. But, from my personal experience, it seems that many are only interested in the Jewish body as a sexual object...that based on the standard social perceptions of Jews, we are exotic and different to a point.

I know that women from various ethnic groups do get reactions like “Oh, I LOVE Black/Latino/Asian/Purple People Eating women” so I do realize that it is sort of universal to be an ethnic minority and have someone love you. But I have asked friends who are Black and Latino whether or not people come up to them and say "Oh, I've dated a Black girl/Latino girl." Their reactions (i.e. looking at me like I'm crazy) tell me that, no, no one has every done that. And they are surprised when I say how often it happens to me. I've asked other Jewish friends and a few have said that this does indeed happen to them too, so I know I'm not alone.

I have been told to brush it off, that it is nothing more than social ignorance, but I can't. A man saying to me that he has once dated a Jewish girl means that he, in some form, has a pre-conceived notion of who a Jewish girl is. Thus his reaction to me may change based on whether or not the relationship with this woman was good or bad. Or I have to live up to the standards set by a Jewish woman who I have never nor will ever meet. It is another way in which we (Jews) get boxed in.

As frustrating as it is, I feel like maybe I can't avoid it. Unless I move to Israel. Or New York.

3 Comments:

  • At 11:12 PM, Blogger El Keter ben Tzadik said…

    Nah, it'll be worse in New York and Israel, because EVERYBODY in those places has dated a Jewish girl.

     
  • At 1:14 AM, Blogger Miss Hipstah said…

    Yeah, but then it might not be such a novelty.

     
  • At 1:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    *laugh* You forgot to add:

    "after dating her I realized Jewish women are neurotic; they get it from their mothers."

    'Freaks' has negative connotations, I'd go with kinky, or experimental, or creative. Otherwise, 4 out of 5 is pretty good! Why, what an coincidence that this is "literally the first thing that comes out of [goyim tattalah's] mouths." All those people thinking the same thing; it must be a conspiracy!


    "Oh...I dated a Jewish girl"

    "Yeah...after dating her I realized Jewish girls are bitches."

    "Jewish girls are [kinky] in bed"

    "Actually, maybe you know her...her name is Sarah..."


    L'shanah tovah tikatev v'taihatem! :-)

     

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