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Also the age when shidduchim start may vary by community.
In frum circles, especially among Hassidim, eighteen is the age when shidduchim start and shadchanim take notice.
Both sets of parents talk to each other, and then when the setting is more relaxed, they go into another room, leaving the man and woman in the living room to speak among themselves.
Some use this opportunity to actually ask each other pertinent questions, while some just want to see if they like each other, relying more on the information they got from the shadchen or from other people.
Some engage in it as a profession and charge a fee for their services.
Usually a professional matchmaker is called a shadchan, but anyone who makes a shidduch is considered the shadchan for it.
The number of bashows prior to announcing an engagement varies, as some have many bashows while others have as few as one, which is typical among the children of Hasidic Rebbes.
Bashert (or Beshert), (Yiddish: It is often used to refer to one's divinely foreordained spouse or soulmate, who is called one's "basherte" (female) or "basherter" (male).
The first recorded shidduch in the Torah was the match that Eliezer, the servant of the Jewish patriarch Abraham, made for his master's son Isaac (Genesis Ch. Abraham gave him specific instructions to choose a woman from Abraham's own tribe.It's expected that the couple keep the shadchan up-to-date on how the shidduch is going at regular intervals.