Harchakot of Niddah

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Basic Laws

  1. A man is required to separate from his wife during the time she is a niddah until she has a hefsek taharah, counts seven clean days and dips in a kosher mikveh. [1]
  2. This prohibition remains even if many years have passed since she became a niddah. It remains until she has a hefsek taharah, counts seven clean days, and dips in a kosher mikveh. [2]
  3. Because of the seriousness of separating from one's wife while she is a Nidda, Chazal enacted several fences to help the couple avoid situations that might bring them to transgress the prohibition of physical endearment during this period.[3]

Touching

  1. According to the opinion of many Rishonim, among them Maran HaShulchan Aruch, contact between a man and his wife who is a niddah is a biblical violation. Due to this fact, the Rabbis instituted many safeguards to prevent this. [4]
  2. It is forbidden for a man to touch his wife who is a niddah even in a slight way and even not in an affectionate way.[5] He may not even touch her clothing, nor she his, even if the clothing hangs loosely off the body and the person will not feel the touch. They should be also be careful that the clothing of one does not touch the clothing of the other. [6]
  3. A husband and wife are permitted to touch each other's clothing when the wife is a niddah while the clothes are not being worn by the spouse. [7] Similarly they are allowed to touch each other's bedding while their spouse is not lying on it. This applies even if the clothes or sheets are stained. A man is also permitted to remove his wife's sheet from her bed and put it on his own bed, even if the sheet is stained, as long as the sheet is not designated specifically for her use. [8]

Intimate Speech

  1. One should be careful not to act in an overly frivolous and light-headed manner when his wife is a niddah, nor should they speak of intimate matters, in order that they not come to transgress. [9]
  2. Some poskim permit playing games together when your wife is a niddah unless it leads to lightheartedness.[10]

Seclusion

  1. A man is permitted to be alone (yichud) in a room or house with his wife when she is a niddah. However, a man may not have yichud with any other woman, married or single.[11]
  2. If a bride is a niddah at her wedding, the bride and groom may not be alone together. The couple must have a constant chaperone. [12] Due to the sensitive nature of such situations and the severity of any misconduct, a competent Rabbi should be consulted for instruction.

Using the Same Utensils

Eating from Same Utensils

  1. It is forbidden for husband and wife to eat from the same plate or bowl.[13]
  2. Regarding eating from the same serving plate: if it is a food that one places the food on his own plate before eating (such as rice, meat, or salad), it would be permissible. If one puts the food directly into his mouth from the serving plate (such as nuts, seeds etc.), it would be forbidden to share that. [14]
  3. It is forbidden for a married woman to eat from the same bowl of food with other men other than her husband, father, brothers, and sons.[15]

Eating at the Table Together

  1. The husband and wife may eat on the same table if they make a sign between them to remind them that she is a niddah. They should place an item that normally isn't on the table between the two of them. [16] Additionally, they can sit in different seats than they normally would[17], use separate placemats[18], or sit on opposite ends of a very large table which can serve as a reminder.[19]
  2. According to many poskim the prohibition to eat together on the same table doesn't apply if there are others eating with them, even without a sign to remind them.[20] However, the prohibition to eat from the same plate still applies.[21]
  3. It isn't respectful to use sefer as a heker.[22]

Eating Each Other's Leftovers

  1. A husband cannot drink the leftovers of his wife's drink in front of her as this is considered a sign of closeness.[23] This is one directional, meaning the husband cannot drink from what remains in the wife's cup, but the wife is permitted to drink from what her husband leaves over.[24]
  2. The following are exceptions to this rule:
    1. If the drink is poured into another cup it would be permissible.[25]
    2. If someone else drank from the cup after his wife, the husband may drink.[26]
    3. If the wife drank from it but not in front of the husband, and the husband knows that she drank from it, one who is lenient has on whom to rely, but blessing will come to one who is strict.[27]
    4. If the husband doesn't know that his wife drank from it, he doesn't need to be told.[28]
    5. If the wife leaves the room, the husband can drink what remains in the cup since he is not drinking in front of her. [29]
  3. According to Sephardim, if a woman drank from a cup and left over part of it and they refilled it it would be permissible for the man to drink.[30] Ashkenazim don't accept this leniency.[31]
  4. For Sephardim, this prohibition only applies to drink and not food.[32] Ashkenazim, however, are strict for food as well.[33] Even for Ashkenazim, if the wife simply tasted the food like for Shabbat, the remaining food would not be called leftovers.[34]
  5. Whatever piece she ate from is considered leftovers but if there are multiple pieces of food touching one another and she ate one piece the others aren't considered leftovers. This applies to items that usually eaten separately like meat, fish, fruits or nuts, however, a dish which is considered like one food, such as vegetables cut finely, are considered leftovers even though she ate some pieces and left others. Even when there's no issue of leftovers they may not eat on the same plate.[35]
  6. It is permissible for the woman to cut a piece off a large bread and eat it and the rest isn't considered leftovers. However, if she takes a piece of an individual loaf, the rest is considered leftovers. Even when there's no issue of leftovers they may not eat on the same plate.[36]
  7. It is permissible for a husband and wife to use the same butter or cream cheese container to take to spread on bread, yet there is room to be strict. However, they should be careful that the woman doesn't take on the knife more than she needs and leave some over on the knife, which would be considered her leftovers.[37]

Other Items

  1. A man is permitted to dry his face and hands with his wife's towel when she is a niddah. He also may use her toothbrush. There is no need to set aside a toothbrush or towel for her exclusive use when she is a niddah. [38]
  2. The couple may stand an umbrella together, as long as the umbrella is big enough to allow them both to be under it without touching. [39]
  3. A couple may read from the same book as long as they are careful not to touch each other.[40]

Sitting on Her Bed

  1. The husband may not sit[41] on his wife's bed when she is a nidda since it will cause him to have improper thoughts, whether she is present or not, even if the linens have been changed to new ones.[42]
  2. The wife may lie on her husband's bed as long as he isn't there, and may sit on his bed even if he is there.[43]
  3. A couch which isn't exclusively used by her, the husband may lie on it even in front of his wife.[44] The husband can sit in a chair, even if it is special for her even if it is a reclining chair in which she takes naps.[45]
  4. If his wife is out of town for a few days when she is a nidda the husband may lie in her bed.[46]
  5. When the wife is a nidda, the husband shouldn't use pillows or blankets that are used exclusively by her.[47] If they regularly switch sheets after they are washed and they aren't exclusive to the man or woman, it is permissible to put her sheets on his bed when she is a niddah.[48]
  6. It is forbidden for a man and wife to switch beds when she is a niddah. However, they can switch when she is tahor and as long as he slept in his new bed once before she became a niddah he can continue to sleep there even when she's a niddah.[49]

Separate Beds

  1. The couple may not lie together in one bed, even if it is large and wide.[50] Even when they are in different beds the beds must be separated.[51] How far apart should the beds be? According to the strict halacha it is sufficient as long as they are separated in any amount as long as the sheets and blankets don't touch, however, the poskim recommend that the beds should be separated two feet.[52]
  2. According to many poskim it is permissible for the beds to be separated even if they are attached by a headboard, however, some hold that it isn't reccomended and some hold it is forbidden unless the headboard is just next to the beds but not attached.[53]
  3. The beds can be touching if both of them are not in bed.[54]
  4. They must use separate blankets.[55]
  5. Some poskim hold that it is permitted for them to sleep in separated beds under one canopy[56], while others hold that it is forbidden.[57]
  6. It is permissible for him to touch his wife's bed unless she's in it, in which case one should refrain from touching it unless there's a need.[58]

Sitting Together

  1. It is forbidden for a man and wife to sit together on a bench or couch that isn't attached to the ground.[59] If someone is sitting in between them it is permitted.[60]
  2. It is permitted for a man and his wife to sit on the same heavy couch since it doesn't wobble from the weight of one of them.[61]
  3. Some hold that the minhag of Sephardim is to allow a couple to sit on the same bench, while others are strict.[62]

Traveling Together

  1. A couple may travel together in a private car or by public transportation, even when they sit next to each other as long as they are careful not to touch each other or each other's clothing.[63]
  2. Traveling in a car for a vacation or pleasure trip is permissible.[64] However, some poskim are strict unless the traveling is for a purpose.[65]
  3. If the couple is using public transportation and they want to sit next to each other, he should sit on the outside and she should be near the window because he can be more careful and they should preferably place an item between them since it is difficult to otherwise avoid contact.[66]

Passing Items when a Woman is Niddah

  1. A man may not pass an item directly to his wife when she is a niddah, nor may he receive an item directly from her, lest they come to touch. In order to pass an object, they must place the item down on a table or chair for the spouse to pick up from there. [67]
  2. Even if the couple are in public and do not want others to know the woman is a niddah, they may not be lenient. They must place the item down and allow the spouse to pick it up, and not pass it directly. [68]
  3. One should be strict not to push or carry a large heavy item with one's wife who is a niddah.[69]
  4. A couple may not even pass a long object, such as a bench to each other when the woman is a niddah. In extenuating circumstances though, there is room for leniency, if they can be sure to avoid touching each other in the process. For example, if a couple lives on a high floor and there is no elevator, and they need to carry a baby stroller up and down stairs, and it cannot be carried by just one of them, the couple may be lenient and have the husband carry the bottom of the stroller and the wife the top, or vice versa, as long as they can be sure they will not touch in doing so. The law is the same with getting a stroller on or off the bus, or other similar situations. [70]
  5. A man is permitted to throw an object to his wife when she is a niddah, as long as it is not done in a lightheaded, frivolous, playful manner. One who is strict and refrains from doing so is praiseworthy, however. This only applies for Sepharadim. For Ashkenazim, the strict ruling is the law, and according to them, a man is not permitted to throw an object to his wife when she is a niddah. Even Ashkenazim may be lenient if the man throws the object into the air, and the wife catches it on the way down. [71]
  6. During the wedding ceremony, the groom may place the ring on the bride's finger, even if she is a niddah, he does not have to throw it to her. However, it is proper that he be as careful as possible to avoid touching her when giving her the ring. He should place it on the tip of her finger, and allow her to let it slide down her finger. [72]
  7. At a berit milah (bris or circumcision) if the mother wants to hand the baby to her husband who is the sandakthe person who holds the baby on his lap during the berit), it is the Sephardic custom to be lenient by having the baby placed on top of two pillows. The woman holds the baby by placing her hands underneath the bottom pillow, and the husband takes the baby from her by lifting the top pillow along with the baby, while the bottom pillow remains with the mother. (In this way they avoid touching). This custom has deep roots among the great Sephardic sages and the Ge'onim. The Ashkenazim though, are strict in this matter. A woman who just gave birth may not pass the baby directly to her husband who is the sandak. Rather, another man should take the baby from her and hand him over to the father. [73]
  8. When a woman is a niddah, a couple is permitted to pass a child to one another, as long as they will not touch, and as long as the child is able to go from one parent to the other on his own, since he is essentially carrying himself (nos'eh et asmo). However, one who is strict and refrains from doing so is praiseworthy. This is for Sepharadim. Ashkenazim though, who are strict regarding throwing an object to one another, should be particularly scrupulous in this matter as well. [74] However, even those who are lenient to pass a child when the wife is a niddah, should be strict if the child is extremely small, even if it can go from one to the other by itself (because its size increases the likelihood they will touch). Another case they should be strict is if the child is ill God forbid and too weak to go from one spouse to the other on its own. [75] Even when the baby is able to "carry" itself and go from one spouse to the other on its own, the couple should still pass the child to one another only when it is really necessary. For example, if the baby is crying and will suffer if the father does not take him from the mother. [76]
  9. Also, if the couple passes the child in a playful manner, that is prohibited, since doing so promotes intimacy. [77]
  10. It is preferable that a person be strict to not feed his baby while his wife who is a niddah is holding the baby. If necessary though, they may be lenient, if they are careful not to touch each other. [78]

Expressing Affection

  1. A husband may send jewelry or gifts to his wife or send her flowers when she is a Niddah as long as he isn't too effusive with his love for her lest they be drawn to do something prohibited.[79]

Looking at One's Wife

  1. A husband may enjoy his wife's look even when she is a nidda and we are not concerned that just looking at her will tempt him to transgress anything. However, he may not look at the parts of the body that are usually covered.[80]
  2. When a woman is a niddah the husband may not see areas of her body that are usually covered. The definition of what he usually sees uncovered depends on what she would normally wear at home with no one else besides her husband. It is permitted for him to see her hair uncovered when she is a niddah.[81]
    1. A woman doesn’t need to cover her hair inside her house when just her family is around when she’s a niddah[82], others disagree.[83]
  3. A husband may be present with his wife in the delivery room when his wife is giving birth if his presence helps calm her down but he can't look at his wife when she's actually giving birth. [84]
  4. A man may not look at the clothes of another woman who he knows even if she is not wearing them so that one doesn't come to improper thoughts.[85] However, he can look at his wife's clothes even when she is a nidda and even if she is wearing them. [86]

Hearing her Sing

see Listening to Women Sing: Married Women

  1. According to those who allow listening to one's wife sing when she's a niddah, it is likewise permitted to hear her play a musical instrument.[87] However, those who are strict on listening to her sing would also be strict on listening to her play an instrument if it could lead to endearment.[88]

Smelling her Perfume

  1. A husband should not intentionally smell his wife's perfume when she is wearing it, while she is a nidda. If he inadvertently smells it, it is not forbidden.[89]
  2. A woman may place a fragrance close to her husband so that he can smell it for the beracha of Besamim in Havdala.[90]
  3. A woman may smell her husband's cologne.[91]

Acts of Service

  1. Being a nidda doesn't prevent a woman from serving her husband as she does during her pure days besides for pouring a drink for him, making his bed, and pouring water for him to wash his face. Thus, a woman may cook, bake, set the table, etc. as she always does even when she is a nidda.[92]

Making the Bed

  1. A husband may not cover his wife with a blanket when she is a nidda.[93]
  2. It is prohibited for a woman to make her husband's bed in front of him. However, in the following circumstances it would be permitted:
    1. If she is only changing the blakets and pillows, that is permissible. It is only forbidden to change the sheets and bed covers.[94]
    2. If it is done not in front of him. Even if he is in the room, if he is looking away it would be permissible.[95]
    3. If she simply is making up the bed in the morning after he wakes up, that would be permitted. It is only forbidden if she is doing so when the husband is about to lie down.[96]
  3. All of these laws apply in both directions. Thus, the husband cannot make up his wife's bed, but all of the aforementioned leniencies would still apply.[97]

Pouring Water for the Husband to Wash With

  1. A woman may not pour water on her husband so he can wash his hands, feet, and face even if she is careful not to touch her husband since this expresses affection. [98]
  2. There is no prohibition for a woman to prepare water for her husband to wash his hand for netilat yedayim.[99]
  3. # All of these laws apply in both directions. Thus, the husband cannot prepare water for her to use for washing her hands, feet, and face, but all of the aforementioned leniencies would still apply.[100]

A Niddah Going to Shul and Cemeteries

  1. Ashkenazim have a minhag that woman don't look at the sefer torah when they are a niddah[101] and don't go to a cemetery when they are a niddah unless she would feel bad by not being able to go to the cemetery.[102]
  2. A woman who is a niddah may recite brachot and daven regularly.[103]

Links

Sources

  1. Torat HaTaharah p. 95, Taharat Yosef 3:1
  2. Torat HaTaharah p. 95, Taharat Yosef 3:2.
    • Tosfot Shabbat 13b s.v. biymey points out that from Rashi (Ketubot 61a s.v. michalfa) it sounds like there would have been leniencies of harchakot when a woman was counting her shiva nekiyim after she stopping seeing blood. Rabbenu Chananel (Ketubot 61a) also implies like rashi. However, Tosfot argues that this is totally incorrect since until the woman completed her shiva nekiyim and went to mikveh she is equally forbidden to her husband with a penalty of karet. The Rashba (Torat Habayit 4a), Raavad (Baalei Hanefesh p. 10), Rosh (Ketubot 5:24), and Rambam (Isurei Biyah 11:18) hold that really there is no difference between a women when she is seeing blood and when she is in her shiva nekiyim. The Rashba even argues that Rabbenu Chananel only meant if she went to mikveh twice but that it isn't proper to do so. See the Rivash 425 and Ramban Shabbat 13b who forbid this practice of going to mikveh twice.
  3. Taharat Yosef 3:3
  4. Torat HaTaharah p. 96
  5. The Gemara Shabbat 13b indicates from a conversation with Eliyahu Hanavi that it is forbidden for a man to touch his wife even in the slightest way when she is a niddah. See the Ravyah (Niddah no. 173) and Or Zaruah 1:360 who permit a man to touch his wife when she is a niddah in a non-affectionate way. All other rishonim reject this opinion. These rishonim include the Tosfot (Shabbat 13b s.v. biymey), Ramban (Hilchot Niddah 8:3), Rashba (Torat Habayit Hakatzar 4a), and Rambam (Isurei Biyah 11:18). Shulchan Aruch 195:2, therefore, forbids touching even not in an affectionate way.
  6. Aruch Hashulchan 195:5, Badei Hashulchan 195:15, Torat HaTaharah p. 97, Taharat Yosef 4:5
  7. Torat HaTaharah p. 97-98, Taharat Yosef 4:5
  8. Torat HaTaharah p. 97-98
  9. Torat HaTaharah p. 96-97.
    • The Avot D’rabbi Natan 2:1 writes that it is forbidden to speak unnecessary speech. The Tur 195:1 and Rashba (Torat Habayit 3b) explains that it is only referring to intimate speech which could lead to sin. Meiri Niddah 64a agreed. Shach 195:2 codifies the opinion of the Rashba.
  10. Mishmeret Hatahara (195:7 v. 2 p. 264) quotes Rav Elyashiv as saying that playing board games such as chess and checkers together with his wife when she’s a niddah is forbidden. Chut Shani (Niddah p. 223) argues that playing chess or games is permitted unless it leads to lightheartedness.
  11. Taharat Yosef 3:4
  12. Torat HaTaharah p. 97
  13. Taharat Yosef 3:6:1
  14. Taharat Yosef 3:18
  15. Rav Chaim Palagi (Kaf Hachaim 4:8) writes that it is forbidden for a married woman to eat from the same bowl with men other than her husband, father, brothers, and sons. His proof is the gemara Shabbat 13a which establishes a comparison between a niddah and a married woman for purposes of how we should be cautious not to violate any prohibition. Just like with a niddah it is forbidden to eat from the same bowl so too it is forbidden for other men to eat with a married woman from the same bowl.
  16. Shulchan Aruch YD 195:3, Taharat Yosef 3:16:2.
    • The Mishna Shabbat 11b establishes that it is forbidden for a man to eat with his wife when she is a zavah so that they don't come to sin.
    • The Rambam writes that it is forbidden for a man to eat on the same place as his wife when she is a niddah. However, the Raavad (Shaar Haperisha no. 1) argues that it is forbidden even on the same table. Ramban (Hilchot Niddah 8:3), Tur and Shulchan Aruch YD 195:3 follows the Raavad.
    • Does Heker Work? The Ravyah (Niddah no. 173) writes that it is forbidden for a man to eat with his wife when she is a niddah even if there is something unusual on the table to remind them. He writes that the rabbis of Narvona agreed with him. The Hagahot Mordechai (Shabbat no. 452) cites this opinion. The Gra YD 195:8 and 88:2 discusses these opinions and their proof from Shabbat 13a. However, the Raavad (Shaar Haperisha no. 1) holds that it is permitted for a husband to eat at the same table with a niddah as long as there is something to remind them such as only one eating on the tablecloth. The Rashba (Torat Habayit 3b), Tur and Shulchan Aruch 195:3 agree. See the Ramban (Hilchot Niddah 8:3) who allows using something unusual only if there's no other table available.
    • What this dispute might be based on? The Sidrei Tahara 195:7 explains that there's two concerns of eating at the same table. The first is that merely eating together is a symbol of endearment. The second is that by eating together at the table they might come to share food on the same plate as we find by eating milk and meat at the same table. He tries to show that this was a dispute between the Raah and Rashba and that the Rosh was concerned for both approaches. According to the first approach, the Sidrei Tahara concludes, that having something unusual on the table is ineffective since either way their eating together will still cause endearment. But according to the second approach as long as there is something unusual on the table they will remember not to share food.
  17. The Rabbenu Yerucham (cited by Bet Yosef 195:3) writes that it is permitted to eat at the same table as long as they sit in different places from where they usually sit. Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 153:6 and Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 119 hold like Rabbenu Yerucham. Badei Hashulchan 195:37 writes that some are strict not to rely on this leniency since it isn't the minhag.
  18. Shulchan Aruch YD 195:3
  19. Shiurei Shevet Halevi 195:3:2, Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 119, Taharat Yosef 3:16:3
  20. The Masat Binyamin 112 permitted a husband and wife to eat at the same table without anything unusual on it to remind them since the presence of other people will serve as a reminder to them. Chida in Shiurei Bracha 195:11, Rav Ovadia Yosef in Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 110 and Taharat Yosef 3:17, and Rav Mordechai Eliyahu in Darkei Tahara p. 44 agree. Badei Hashulchan 195:34 writes that the Rashba (Mishmeret Habayit 3b) held that the presence of others doesn't help and the Raah (Bedek Habayit 3b) only permitted it if someone sat in between the husband and wife. However, Badei Hashulchan concludes, someone who is lenient has what to rely on because anyway the Rambam's opinion is that as long as they aren't eating on the same plate it is permitted. Rav Mordechai Willig (Niddah Shiur 125) was lenient like Rav Ovadia Yosef.
  21. Masat Binyamin 112 writes that even if others are at the same table the couple shouldn't eat from the same plate. Taharat Yosef 3:18 agrees. The Pitchei Teshuva 195:5 questions this since it is obviously forbidden to eat from the same plate in all cases because he will be eating her leftovers. Rav Moshe Feinstein in Igrot Moshe 1:92 answers that if the pieces of food are small and he isn't eating the pieces that she started to eat there is no concern of leftovers but still there is a concern of eating on the same plate.
  22. Rav Chaim Kanievsky quoted by Ohel Yakov Kavod Ukedushat Sefarim p. 1
  23. Shulchan Aruch 195:4, Taharat Yosef 3:19
  24. Rama 195:4 writes that she is permitted to drink his leftovers. Shach 195:5 explains that there's no concern for a wife to drink his leftovers since she's not going to instigate an aveirah with him. Taharat Yosef 3:20 agrees.
  25. Rama 195:4, Taharat Yosef 3:19:1
  26. Rama 195:4, Taharat Yosef 3:19:3
  27. Taharat Yosef 3:19:4
  28. Taharat Yosef 3:19:5
  29. Taharat Yosef 3:19:6
  30. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 123, Taharat Yosef 3:19:2
  31. Shach 195:9 writes that even though they refilled it, nonetheless, the leftovers are still there and forbidden for him to drink. Badei Hashulchan 195:59 agrees.
  32. The Orchot Chaim quoted by Bet Yosef 195:5 writes that while there is a dispute whether leftover drinks are permitted leftover food is certainly permitted. The Sidrei Tahara 195:8 explains that since it isn't usual to drink from the same cup if a man would drink his wife's leftover drink it would be a sign of endearment. However, since it is normal to eat someone's leftover food it isn't a sign of endearment. Rav Ovadia Yosef in Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 125 and Taharat Yosef 3:21 agree.
  33. Rama 195:3, Shach 195:8
  34. Taharat Yosef 3:21
  35. Igrot Moshe YD 1:92, Badei Hashulchan 195:51
  36. Igrot Moshe YD 1:92, Badei Hashulchan 195:51
  37. Igrot Moshe YD 1:92, Mishmeret Hatahara 195:39. Mishmeret Hatahara (fnt. 111) in fact quotes Rav Elyashiv that the leftover spread on the knife isn't considered her leftovers since the main food which he's taking is what remains in the container.
  38. Torat HaTaharah p. 98, Taharat Yosef 3:6. However, Rav Chaim Palagi (Kaf Hachaim 4:8) writes that it is forbidden for a niddah and her husband to use the same hand towel. Mishmeret Hatahara 195:14 argues that it is permitted.
  39. Taharat Yosef 3:11
  40. Taharat Yosef 3:14
  41. Although the Bach 195:5 argues that it is only forbidden to lie in one's wife's bed when she's a niddah but sitting is permissible, the Tur and Shulchan Aruch 195:5 rule that even sitting is forbidden. Shach 195:10 cites Bach but Taz 195:6 argues. Badei Hashulchan 195:77 is strict for Shulchan Aruch.
  42. Raavad (Baalei Hanefesh Shaar Haperisha p. 25) based on Rav Hai Goan, Rashba (Torat Habayit 3b), Shulchan Aruch YD 195:5. The Levush 195:5 explains that the reason for this prohibition is that he might have improper thoughts about his wife when sitting on her bed.
  43. Taz 195:6, Badei Hashulchan 195:79, Taharat Yosef 3:24
  44. Badei Hashulchan 195:80, Taharat Yosef 3:22
  45. Beer Moshe 5:144, Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 135, Taharat Yosef 3:28
  46. Pitchei Teshuva 195:9, Badei Hashulchan 195:77, Taharat Yosef 3:25
  47. Badei Hashulchan 195:82, Taharat Yosef 3:23
  48. Badei Hashulchan 195:82
  49. Badei Hashulchan 195:81
  50. Gemara Shabbat 13a concludes that it is forbidden for a man and wife to sleep in the same bed when she is a niddah. Shulchan Aruch 195:6 codifies this. Taharat Yosef 3:2 agrees.
  51. Rama YD 195:6, Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 149
  52. Pitchei Teshuva 195:11 quotes the Mekor Chaim who says that the beds need to be separated by any amount. Rav Ovadia Yosef in Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 149 agreed. Shiurei Shevet Halevi 195:6:2 quotes the Arizal as saying that the beds needs to be separated so that the sheets and blankets don't touch. In terms of the amount of space he writes that it should be at least the width of a person and preferably an amah (60cm) so that they don't come to touch and the blankets don't come to touch. Shiurei Shevet Halevi adds that the minhag is to put something in between the beds. Mishmeret Hatahara 195:87 writes that the beds should be separated the amount of a person's reach so that they don't come to touch. Badei Hashulchan 195:109 and Rabbi Willig (Niddah Shiur 126 (min. 45)) agreed.
  53. Mishmeret Hatahara 195:87 writes that it is permissible for the beds to be attached with a headboard. Shiurei Shevet Halevi 195:6:2 writes that it isn't recommended unless they are actually detached from the headboard. Badei Hashulchan 195:107 writes that if the headboard is attached to the beds it is forbidden.
  54. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 155, Taharat Yosef 3:33
  55. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 154, Taharat Yosef 3:5
  56. Maharam Elshakar 91 writes it is permitted for a couple to sleep under one canopy even when she's a niddah based on Eruvin 63b. Shach 195:11 quotes this. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 154 accepts the Maharam Elshakar and says that it would apply to a canopy that was attached to the beds as long as the beds were separated.
  57. Badei Hashulchan 195:108 explains that the Maharam Elshakar was only talking about a canopy that wasn't attached to the beds but if it was attached it is forbidden.
  58. Badei Hashulchan 195:78
  59. The Shaarei Dura (Niddah no. 18) writes that a man shouldn't sit on the same bench as his wife but it is only a chumra. The Trumat Hadeshen 251 holds that this only applies to a bench that is wobbly and not connected to the ground. However, if it is attached to the ground there is no concern. The Rama YD 195:5 codifies the Trumat Hadeshen. There are a number of explanations of this prohibition:
    • The Taz 195:6 holds that the concern is one of improper thoughts.
    • The Nekudat Hakesef 195:1 writes that sitting on the same bench which wobbles because of the weight of one's spouse is like touching one another. Alternatively, it is like sleeping in the same bed.
    • The Trumat Hadeshen 251 implies that the issue is causing endearment to one's wife by sitting next to her.
    • The Aruch Hashulchan 195:19 adds that the reason for the stringency is that it might lead to them touching.
  60. Rama 195:5 based on the Aguda
  61. Aruch Hashulchan 195:19, Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 144
  62. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 136 writes that the Sephardic minhag is to be lenient entirely about sitting on the same bench. However, the Ben Ish Chai (Shana Sheni, Tzav no. 23) is strict about a couple sitting on the same bench when she's a niddah.
    • The Shaarei Dura (Niddah no. 18) writes that a man shouldn't sit on the same bench as his wife but it is only a chumra. The Trumat Hadeshen 251 holds that this only applies to a bench that is wobbly and not connected to the ground. However, if it is attached to the ground there is no concern. The Rama YD 195:5 codifies the Trumat Hadeshen. Rav Moshe Feinstein in Igrot Moshe YD 1:92 compares a car to a bench attached to the ground since it doesn't wobble because of one person's weight. Therefore, it is permissible for a man to sit with his wife on the same bench in the car when she's a niddah as long as they are careful not to touch. Taharat Yosef 3:30 agrees.
  63. The Trumat Hadeshen 251 writes that it is forbidden for a man to go in a wagon with his wife when she's a niddah if the purpose of their travel is pleasure. Rama YD 195:5 quotes this as the halacha. Igrot Moshe YD 2:83 explains that this restriction only meant to forbid going in a wagon for pleasure but walking together for a pleasure trip is permissible. Similarly, going in a car for a pleasure trip isn't like sitting on the same bench and is permitted even for pleasure.
  64. Aruch Hashulchan 195:20 writes that it isn't proper to go on a pleasure walk if one's wife when she's a niddah just like the Trumat Hadeshen and Rama forbade traveling in a wagon together for pleasure. Badei Hashulchan 195:93 agrees. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 144 writes that it is an unnecessary stringency but nonetheless one has to be careful not to speak endearing words and come to levity.
  65. <Ref>Taharat Yosef 3:31
  66. Torat HaTaharah p. 98, Taharat Yosef 3:7.
    • Shitah Mikubeset Ketubot 61 s.v. vekatvu cites Talmidei Rabbenu Yonah who explain that the reason it is forbidden for a man to pass something to his wife (and vice versa) when she is a niddah is because passing an object is like touching.
    • Tosfot (Ketubot 61a s.v. biymey) writes that Rashi personally was careful not to pass anything to his wife when she was a niddah.
    Tosfot rejects any proof from the gemara for the opinion of Rashi. The Rashba (Torat Habayit Hakatzar 4a) and Rosh (Ketubot 5:24) are strict. Shulchan Aruch 195:2 codifies the practice of Rashi.
  67. Torat HaTaharah p. 98. Rav Moshe Feinstein in Igrot Moshe YD 2:77 writes that a couple may not be lenient on harchakot so that she's not embarrassed because harchakot aren't so embarrassing and also they are part of halacha and we shouldn't be embarrassed to keep halacha. Rav Mordechai Willig (Niddah Shiur 123, min. 15-20) disagreed and held that kavod habriyot could be used to permit harchakot in public when it is embarrassing and not in private.
  68. Igrot Moshe YD 2:75
  69. Torat HaTaharah p. 98-99, Taharat Yosef 3:7
  70. Torat HaTaharah p. 99, Taharat Yosef 3:7:3
  71. Torat HaTaharah p. 99
  72. Torat HaTaharah p. 99-100, Taharat Yosef 3:7:4
  73. Torat HaTaharah p. 100, Taharat Yosef 3:7:5
  74. Torat HaTaharah p. 100
  75. Torat HaTaharah p. 100, Taharat Yosef 3:7:5
  76. Torat HaTaharah p. 100
  77. Torat HaTaharah p. 100, Taharat Yosef 3:7:6
  78. Taharat Yosef 3:13
  79. Rambam (Isurei Biyah 21:4), Shulchan Aruch YD 196:7, Taharat Yosef 3:36
  80. Igrot Moshe YD 2:75, Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 165
  81. Igrot Moshe YD 2:75, Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 165
  82. Shiurei Shevet Halevi 195:7:2
  83. Rabbi Mordechai Willig (Niddah Shiur 126 (min. 52-3), Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 167, Taharat Yosef 3:38. Shiurei Shever Halevi 195:7:3 is strict for the husband to even be present in the room when she's giving birth.
  84. Gemara Avoda Zara 20b, Rambam (Isurei Biyah 21:21), Shulchan Aruch EH 21:1
  85. Taharat Habayit v. 2 p. 166, Taharat Yosef 3:39, Badei Hashulchan (Biurim 195:7)
  86. Taharat Yosef 3:40
  87. Shiurei Shevet Halevi 195:6:2
  88. Pitchei Teshuva 195:1 quotes the Birkei Yosef 217:3 who forbids a man from smelling his wife's perfume when she is a niddah. Taharat Yosef 3:41 codifies this but adds that if he unintentionally smells it it isn't forbidden.
  89. Taharat Yosef 3:42. See Badei Hashulchan 195:2 s.v. velo who considers this idea.
  90. Taharat Yosef 3:43
  91. Taharat Yosef 3:50
  92. Taharat Yosef 3:26
  93. Taharat Yosef 3:56
  94. Taharat Yosef 3:56
  95. Taharat Yosef 3:56
  96. Taharat Yosef 3:57
  97. Taharat Yosef 3:59
  98. Taharat Yosef 3:60
  99. Taharat Yosef 3:61
  100. Shaarei Dura (Niddah no. 18) writes that a niddah shouldn't go into a shul. The Hagahot Maimoniyot (Tefillah 4:3) comments that the minhag was that a niddah wouldn't go into a shul. The Trumat Hadeshen (pesakim 132) permitted a niddah to go into shul on Yamim Noraim since otherwise they would feel bad not going to shul when everyone else is going. However, the Agur (no. 1388) writes that the minhag was that a niddah would go in a shul but just not look at the sefer torah when it is opened. The above discussion is all quoted in the Darkei Moshe YD 195:5. The Rama OC 88:1 quotes the dispute and concludes that the minhag was that a niddah shouldn't go into a shul. The Mishna Brurah 88:7 writes that the minhag today is to go into a shul but just not to look at the sefer torah when it is open.
  101. The Pitchei Teshuva YD 195:19 cites the Chamudei Daniel as saying that a niddah shouldn't go to a cemetery to daven. The Mishna Brurah 88:7 writes that a niddah shouldn't go to a cemetery. Shiurei Shevet Halevi 195 writes that a niddah shouldn't go to the cemetery because of a concern of mystical reason of tumah. However, it is permitted for her to go and stand 4 amot from the grave.
  102. The Shaarei Dura (no. 18) writes that a woman who is a niddah may not recite mention Hashem's name. The Darkei Moshe 195:5 quotes this as well as Rashi and others who hold that it is permitted. His conclusion is that the minhag is like the Shaarei Dura. Accordingly, Rama OC 88:1 writes that the minhag was that woman wouldn't daven when she was a niddah. However, the Bet Yosef 88:1, Magen Avraham 88:2, Pri Chadash 88:1, Gra (Maaseh Rav no. 58), and Mishna Brurah 88:7 write that there is no reason to be strict about this and in fact it is questionable how they can not recite brachot and daven when they are obligated to. In discussing teaching Torah to single girls the Tzitz Eliezer 10:8:4 writes that today we don't follow this Rama and the institution of the Bet Yakov seminaries is the proof.