I have heard a few times the idea that a woman can theoretically marry any man (and be happy), as long as she works on herself. Presumably because the happiness of the relationship depends on the woman, or because a woman has the ability to change her husband for the good, i.e. Leah and Dinah had the potential to turn Esav around.

Has anyone else heard of this idea, or know what the source is?

1 Answer 1


Source: Kidushin Daf 7a (and again in 41a):

דהא איתתא ניחא לה בכל דהו כדריש לקיש דאמר ריש לקיש טב למיתב טן דו מלמיתב ארמלו

Since a woman is happy to marry anybody, in accordance with Reish Lakish who said: A [woman] prefers to be "a couple" rather than being single.

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    Does this mean she will be equally happy in any relationship? It just means its better than nothing. I don't see how that answers the ops question
    – Double AA
    Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 14:24
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    @DoubleAA: The question was not if she'd be "equally happy in any relationship" but "that a woman can theoretically marry any man (and be happy)". Reish Lakish asserts that she's happier being married than being single. He doesn't say "how happy" - but she's at least somewhat happy. Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 14:35
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    Calling the lesser of two evils "somewhat happy" is a little bit of a stretch. You can construct lots of morbid examples to prove that to yourself
    – Double AA
    Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 14:41
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    @DoubleAA I am 99.99999% sure that this is the source for the idea the op refers to. It jumped right in to my head the second I finished reading the question. It can certainly be interpreted that way, and it evidently was when it was related to the op.
    – Baby Seal
    Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 17:39
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    @BabySeal It's davka not what I thought the OP referred to. I thought he was referring to the issue of the bat kol and shidduchim (isn't there an alleged gender non-parellel in the way that gemara is phrased? something like that; don't remember how it goes)
    – Double AA
    Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 17:40

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