Why in Chareidi circles do boys and girls after the age of Bar/Bat Mitzvah not socialise at all? Any mingling is unheard of, why is this?

Does this have a source in Halacha or is it just a 'chumra'-stringency- that Orthodoxy has accepted upon itself as a 'geder' (fence)?

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    Because it'll lead to mixed dancing, and I'm being serious to a degree. I think after a child's bar/bat mitzvah, since they're kaabalat al hamitzvot (especially in regards to them being shomrei negiah), I think it's preferable that boys and girls separate so that they don't come under any temptation (puberty being the driving factor). – rosenjcb Mar 8 '15 at 2:00
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    @rosenjcb I appreciate your opinion but the question being asked is if there is a source within halacha for this separation? – El Shteiger Mar 8 '15 at 2:17
  • I can't imagine anything other than minhag. I mean, like once you're kaabalat al hamitzvot and have a bar/bat mitzvah, the halacha falls on you like everyone else, so while you're not intellectually mature enough to understand the implications of living within halachic society, the parents and such still want to make sure you live halachic life. I'm really just throwing conjectures, sorry. – rosenjcb Mar 8 '15 at 2:19
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    @ElShteiger Your looking for a source ולא תתורו אחרי לבבכם ואחרי עיניכם אשר אתם זונים אחריהם – Nachmen Feb 10 '16 at 8:53

The source in Halacha is Shulchan Arukh (Even HaEzer 21:1)

צריך אדם להתרחק מהנשים מאד מאד...ואסור לשחוק עמה...‏
A man must distance himself from women very, very much...it is forbidden to play with her...

among lots of other things men shouldn't be doing with unrelated women.

Many of the specific examples brought there and elsewhere in older texts have been traditionally understood to be culture and context dependent (see this article for example). Thus something may be halachically forbidden in one community and permitted in the other. No need to judge someone else for being practicing differently than you. Speak to your personal rabbi about what sorts of restrictions are appropriate for you.

  • The article you linked discusses issues of hirhurim like uncovered hair or walking behind a woman which may or may not change based on society. Have you ever seen anyone claim that interacting with women, the fear being it can lead to actual arayos, works the same? – user6591 Mar 8 '15 at 3:52
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    @user6591 Literally Maasim Bekhol Yom that Orthodox Rabbis speak and interact with women (to whatever extent is the norm in communities where doing so is the norm). And you're asking for "anyone"?? – Double AA Mar 8 '15 at 4:00
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    @user6591 I don't know what you're not getting. – Double AA Mar 8 '15 at 4:16
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    @Matt I don't think that would be an improvement as despite its title the responsum never mentions standard socializing. It's really a big צ"ע I think, but it was probably meant to be polemical after all, so nu nu... – Double AA Mar 9 '15 at 1:41
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    I hear that, (especially considering the intro, I think R Moshe himself considered the teshuvah to be somewhat polemical), though he does sort of answer the question by emphasizing that klal Yisrael has always been stringent in this area and have enacted gedarim etc – הנער הזה Mar 9 '15 at 1:44

If you really need a Shulchan Aruch which addresses this type of issue, I'll quote from the end of hilchos yom tov siman 529 where the Mechaber just finished talking about simchas yom tov and what bad things can come out from too much fun. He then brings from the Rambam:

"Beis Din is required to appoint watchmen on the festivals to go wandering and searching in the gardens and orchards and rivers so that men and women won't gather there to eat and drink which can bring to Aveira. And also warn all the people not to mingle men and women in their houses in happiness, and not be drawn after wine so as not to come to Aveira, but rather all should be holy".

The Mishna Berurah points out that the truth is this is required at all times and whoever has the ability to stop people should, but during the holidays these acts are more common.

The Aruch Hashulchan in siman 583 siff 4 says men and women should not be going to Tashlich together, and if a certain place has women going there, men should rather not go at all.

There is also a Torah Temimah on Esher 1 9 גם ושתי עשתה משתה נשים בית המלכות אשר למלך אחשורוש. He brings the gemara in Megila 12a that darshans we see that she also had bad intentions because it didn't say beis hanashim. Torah Temimah explains that Beis nashim would have meant the women sitting separate from the men, as it is it means they were also in the Beis Malchus, men and women mixed.

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    I don't see how this answers the question. Having a mixed-gender holiday party with wine and "not socialize at all" / "any mingling" are not the same thing at all. – Double AA Mar 8 '15 at 3:16
  • @Double the wine issue is a separate statement, it might not be clear from my translation, but I was trying hard not to deviate. Inside the shulchan aruch its clearer. The holiday issue is addressed by Mishna Berurah, he said we should not say its a localized issue on the holidays. – user6591 Mar 8 '15 at 3:25
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    I agree that mixed holiday-esque parties would be equally included even not on holidays. You don't seem to understand how this doesn't answer the question: it addresses parties not any-ol'-mingling. – Double AA Mar 8 '15 at 3:27
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    I don't think a party in this context is defined by the length of the attendance list. BD needs to make sure people are acting appropriately. – Double AA Mar 8 '15 at 3:38
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    No it doesn't. Sorry. You just added the words "hanging out" to the ShA. It just doesn't say that. Read the words. I don't have anything else to say really. – Double AA Mar 8 '15 at 3:45

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