Are DC-NOVA relationships geographically undesirable?

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We at Gather the Jews operate under the motto: “The more the merrier.”  The more people that come to our events, the better.  The more people that visit our website, the better.  The more people that connect with  Judaism, the better.

It’s for this reason that we don’t seek to divide Northern Virginia from DC from Maryland.   We’re in the business of gathering, and it makes us feel super when we have participants from three “states” (I know DC isn’t a state!) at our events.

But while this DC-NOVA harmony might work for Gather the Jews, does it work for dating relationships?  Over at, Samantha writes that the travel time between DC and NOVA makes it impossible to have an across-the-river relationship.

You might be thinking that the D.C area is very large and offers a fair amount of young Jewish singles. I would agree with that, but I am talking more specifically about the NOVA dating pool. What’s the difference? Distance. Yes, we are just 15 miles outside of the city, but with the constraints of public transportation and the area’s traffic, is it really logical to start a relationship with a city boy?

This concept of dating where you live got me thinking back to some of the JDates I have been on. I tend to not even bother with the guys if they list D.C or Maryland as their location. I have never gone out on more then two dates with someone who lived in the city. Is that a coincidence or am I subconsciously turned off by the distance? Am I an anti-cityite?

Samantha’s article is cute, and a fun read, but for those of you with too little time, here’s the conclusion she comes to:

I think that is how dating is like finding a home. It’s your own personal preference and what you are comfortable with. Location is important, but like finding a home, sometimes a compromise has to be made. If you spend enough time and look at all your options, you will find what you are looking for.

Good stuff.  Geographic undesirability (GU) is very much something we DC folk think about (heck with NOVA, I even call Columbia Heights GU).  And although I might put the blame on NOVA residents for putting the distance between us, I come to the same conclusion as Samantha:  GU isn’t an immediate deal-breaker, but it’s a pretty big obstacle.

Click here to see Samantha’s piece.

Have thoughts on this subject?  Share them below!

3 replies
  1. D
    D says:

    I’ve found that it’s not necessarily so much geographical distance, but rather (perceived) ideological distance and old-fashioned provincialism that drives the wedge here. DC people (actually the women, since I don’t date or take stock of this vis-a-vis guys) often have this preconceived notion that NoVA is this backwards, bumpkin-filled hicksville that’s not worth their time and would be politically anathema to visit. Plus, the DC crowd often comes off with a bit of a condescending superiority complex once they find out you (gasp!) don’t live in the city.

    I’d imagine that DC people pride themselves on being the most liberal in the area, but on this article’s issue, they’re the closed-minded ones… and that needs to “Change.”

    • Stephen Richer
      Stephen Richer says:

      Hmmm. I’m not liberal, but I definitely treat anyone not living in Dupont or Logan Circle with extreme suspicion…


  2. Jon
    Jon says:

    There are plenty of reasons to be in VA and having dated someone both across the river, and blocks away there are advantages and disadvantages to both situation. The reality is that 15 minutes on the metro, is really just that. People often have a preconceived notion of stereotypes that go along with crossing zones and its these stereotypes that are the deal breakers, not the actual distance themselves.


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