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

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Touching during seven clean days

16 July, 2003


Shalom, and thank you for a site open to difficult questions.
I write respectfully re : this beautiful but difficult mitzva. For many, many of us, nidda is a time of sadness, stress and pain. For many women, desire for their husband is very strong from the 8th -15th day, the white days. I am a ba'alat teshuvah. Is there any current halachic discussion about laws against marital touching during the 7 white days?


You are quite correct that for many women niddah is a time of sadness, stress and pain. The emotional effects of the hormonal cycle are often compounded by the sense of isolation due to the inability to touch. However, this is not a modern phenomenon. The issue of relaxing prohibitions during the white days was already discussed in the Talmud and Middle Ages and rejected. Thus, the focus should be on what can be done within the marriage to reduce the sadness and stress (such as putting aside quality time to talk to one's spouse) that does not involve touching.

We are concerned that you refer to days 8-15 as the white days. This means that you have seven days before you can get a valid hefsek taharah. While this certainly happens, it is on the long side. Are you really still getting red stains on your bedikah cloths if an exam is done on day 5 or 6? If you are getting brown stains, it would be a good idea to consult with a rabbi to determine whether or not these are in fact problematic.

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