Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Expressing affection before intimacy

27 December, 2016


Is there any halachic obligation for a husband to say nice things to his wife (or anything at all) to make her feel loved before being intimate? I remember seeing something along those lines in a kalla book several years ago but my husband says he cannot find a source for it. Thank you


While it is common sense that a husband should speak words of love and appeasement to his wife before relations, this idea appears in a number of sources as well.

In Talmud Bavli Eruvin 100b, amidst a discussion of proper conduct during relations, the Gemara cites a verse (Iyov 35:11) "me'of shamayim yach'kmenu", that we should learn from the behavior of the bird. The Gemara goes on to explain that a husband should act as the rooster that appeases the hen before (as well as after) relations.

The Ramban in Iggeret Hakodesh writes that a husband should speak to his wife's heart to arouse in her feelings of love and desire.

R' Yakov Emden writes in Siddur Bet Yaakov that a husband should appease his wife with words (as well as hugs and kisses) to make her happy and arouse desire in her.

Please feel free to get back to us with any further questions.

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