Is the zing necessary?

I was recently discussing dating with a friend who is “in the parshah”, as they say. She had been seeing this bloke for a few months, and while theoretically he was an ideal match, she said she didn’t feel anything. She enjoys her time with him, but feels like the magic is missing. They have fun, there is always plenty to talk about, they share common interests and goals.

She isn’t a young flibbertigibbet in her late teens or early twenties. She is an accomplished professional in her chosen field, and has her head screwed on very well. She knows who she is. She wanted to know my thoughts on whether she should settle for someone who matched her well, or hold out for the zing, for the magic, for the violins and fireworks.

I wasn’t sure what to answer. For me and the KoD there was magic from the moment we met. But I know that many people don’t have that initial coup de foudre. It takes time to build a bond, a connection. Sometimes the magic doesn’t happen for a while.

She is scared that if she rejects this guy, that there won’t be anyone comparable to marry. That she was lucky to have found someone compatible – and maybe in time the magic will happen.

What are your thoughts?

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13 Comments

  1. amhausman says:

    I didn’t have zing when I first met my husband. The more I got to know him, the more I knew I couldn’t live without him. And years later, the zing is alive and well!

  2. jewishside says:

    I didn’t have the “zing” right away. I actually didn’t even know when he was going to propose (except my mother let me know the night before). In the beginning I think I may have stayed neutral consciously because I was afraid of being rejected, so I made myself seem indifferent. Then I was reading write ups about how you shouldn’t expect to “feel anything” while dating, that you won’t necessarily have “sleepless nights” and all that. Also, I was reading that when you date someone you like, you won’t be acting yourself since you want them to like you. You’ll be thinking about everything you say and do, to make a good impression. It was only by my second to last date that I started really acting myself, and came home saying I had a good time, because by then I had grew comfortable with him, and acted myself. Then once we were engaged, I felt like I can open up more, and that it’s for real, so that allowed me to start to feel something, and have that “zing” for him.

  3. I don’t know, how many months is a few months? If it’s been like 3 months and still no zing, that would make me very hesitant to continue a relationship…I mean, compatibility is very very important, but if there’s no ‘zing’ there, how will they sustain their relationship through difficult times, like when things don’t seem as compatible as they do now? There are bound to be points at which they disagree, and if you love someone it is a lot easier to compromise at that point.

    I’ve been through several relationships where the dude was perfectly nice, our goals were compatible, etc, but no zing. And they were not sustainable in the long term. When I met my husband on the other hand, I felt the zing immediately (we only met for a 40 minute coffee date, and later that night I was at a friends house and was already like ‘i hung out with this guy today and I think I really like him!”). Within 2 weeks of meeting each other we were hanging out every single night, because we liked each other that much. And liking each other that much that we always want to hang out is definitely a benefit when are going to spend the rest of your life with them.

    finally if the only reason she is dating this guy is that she’s scared she won’t find someone she actually feels anything for, that seems like settling to me. Now that is perfectly fine if she is settling for other reasons…like if having kids is really important to her and she is approaching the age where she can’t have them anymore. I don’t think it’s terrible to marry someone you like but don’t love, and focus your attentions on your kids you do love, if that’s what you want. But if she’s just doing this because she really wants to be married, no matter who to- that’s probably a bad idea.

  4. shorty says:

    I know a lot of people who didn’t necessarily feel the fireworks when they first met their partners. In fact they were probably turned off.

    I would ask your friend what does she feel is missing? Is she not attracted to this person (that would be a problem) or is she nervous to commit to THIS one and maybe her true soul mate would still be out there…
    two cents :)
    just my two cents.

  5. Vicki says:

    I didn’t have the zing the first time I met my husband. In fact, I didn’t really even want to talk to him because I was super-shy, but my parents made me because it was at a party and I had to be nice. Over time, as I got to know, him, I knew he would the be one I would marry. Of course, I didn’t tell him this two months into our relationship ;). I think a lot of Western culture is built up around the “zing” which just doesn’t hold true for everyone.

  6. YC says:

    A friend’s grandmother was asked him about him getting married. My friend, let’s call him David said:
    “Grandma, I am dating, went out with many women I just don’t feel electricity”
    Grandma answered pointing to the wall:
    “You want to feel electricity, put your finger in that socket”

    __________________
    regarding the question: I don’t know but please make sure you INVEST time, emotions and attentiveness before either of you move, be vulnerable.

  7. Rainy says:

    The problem with the “zing” is that it changes over time and we seem to think that without it, a relationship is less than okay. But what some people miss is that while zing, if you are lucky, changes into something deep and abiding, you can come to that deep and abiding place without it. Let me be really clear, I have issues about this issue! My husband of 13 years left me because there was no “zing” after we’d had some children and built a life. Because deep and abiding wasn’t enough, without that zing, for him. Now he’s dating 23 year olds and moaning that there’s no deep abiding love or foundation in his life.

    There’s no right or wrong answer, I don’t think, but I do think zing is overrated!!

  8. batya from NJ says:

    i feel that the “zing” is not a crucial ingredient to a successful & lasting marriage. i think it was my husband who joked, “you wanna see stars, i’ll hit you over the head & you’ll see stars”! chances are he got that line from an old tv show or something, but i feel that seeing stars is not necessary. just b/c hollywood & romance novels push the whole “in love, violiny” kinda stuff it means nothing. after all, look how many hollywood marriages fail. in short, i think your friend does not need the “zing” b/c that infatuation honeymoon period does not continue thru marriage forever. in fact, i just heard dr. pelcowitz, a renowned psychologist talk about marriage & he said that marriage is like a U shape. it starts off on a high & while a couple is busy with work & child-rearing it starts going downhill a bit but the good news is that it picks up down the road once the kids start getting older & the parents don’t have the same pressures that they had while the kids were younger & at home. i liked his explanation & i agree with it b/c i think it is the reality for most long-term married couples (including the happily married ones).
    that said, it is very important that your friend be physically attracted to the guy. she doesn’t need to think that he looks like robert redford but she needs to want to be with him physically. if he in any way shape or form repulses her esp after they’ve been dating awhile then that is a BIG RED FLAG. also, a necessary ingredient that the couple must have in order for this marriage to succeed is RESPECT. from what you wrote, it doesn’t appear that your friend has so much respect for the guy (but i could be mistaken). the sense i got was that she is feeling neutral about him & is ok about marrying him but she feels like she is settling. THAT is also a big problem. i don’t know how successful a marriage can be if 1 or both parties think that they are settling. i think for it to work, she needs to be excited about marrying him but not necessarily to have that Zing/see sparks/stars etc…there is a difference between being excited about your marriage & “seeing stars”. anyhow, i wish her much hatzlacha in her decision.

  9. Z! says:

    I think that people feel the zing differently, and that the zing changes.
    Simpler more relaible feelings like respect, admiration and appreciation are much stronger indications of a healthy relationship.

    I’d like to talk about the more common natural “feeling safe” zing. That zing is the one to embrace forever. You know that whatever comes you will get through it with a companion and best friend and lover. I believe that the strongest relationships are built on the slow smolder rather than the fast burn.

  10. Helene says:

    Sorry, I disagree. It was love at first sight for my hubby and me. We were fixed up by a mutual friend. Less than two weeks after we met, I KNEW we were meant to be together forever. And that was 37 yrs. ago!!!! Yes, indeed , the zing is still there. Personally, I think zing is another name for sexual attraction. I have many friends, male and female. But I am attracted to my husband in a way that I don’t have with any other “friends.” Keeping that spark or zing alive, with all that we have going on in our lives, is what makes a great marriage.
    Just my 2 cents on the subject. But I’d never settle for a man without zing. It’s there or it isn’t. Listen to your heart.

  11. mekubal says:

    mrs. mekubal here, and when we first started speaking on the phone (long distance shidduch) there was no zing for me. it was after a short, self-imposed separation that I realized I couldn’t do without him and told my parents I was dating a Rabbi (I was a 26 year old professional, out on my own for ages, etc.) the first time we laid eyes on each other in Sea-Tac airport, the zing was there.

  12. Z! says:

    mekubal- you are very lucky.
    My hubby tells me of his dating days and how he would foster a relationship online with a girl only to meet her and be dissappointed by a lack of attraction on either side.

    B’H that didn’t happen when our eyes met!

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