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Please see here for the source that on the night of a woman's expected menstruation, anything other than "relations" proper is permitted.

What acts are included under this permission? Put another way, what is the aspect of "relations" that is forbidden for this night?

I have endeavored to write this question in as tzniusdik a manner as possible. Please consider editing it (rather than deleting) if you have an idea about how to make it more tzniusdik. Thank you.

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    I don't understand what is unclear in the source you gave – Double AA Mar 27 '16 at 1:58
  • @DoubleAA How specific do you want me to be? – SAH Mar 27 '16 at 9:38
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    For the record, a woman's expected wesset may be during the day. The question, as currently phrased, only addresses the night. – Lee Mar 27 '16 at 15:12
  • @Lee according to strict opinions, the question would only be shayekh at night – SAH Nov 15 '16 at 21:47
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Ḥakham Mordekha'i Eliyahu writes in the chapter on Perishah Samukh LaWesset in his Darke'i Taharah (my translation/emphasis):

נוהגים להתיר חיבוק ונישוק, אך אם אדם מכיר את עצמו ויודע שדבר זה עלול להביאו לתשמיש המיטה או לאיסורים אחרים - ירחק מזה. וכן ראוי להיזהר שלא לישון באותו הלילה במיטה אחת שמא תראה בתוך שנתה, ונמצאו שניהם ישנים במיטה אחת כשהיא נדה. והמחמירים לפרוש גם עונה קודם עונת הוסת, טוב שיחמירו גם שלא לישון במיטה אחת בעונה זו.

[...] It is customary to permit hugging and kissing; but, if a man knows [...] that this may bring him to marital relations or other prohibitions - he should distance himself from this. Furthermore, it is proper to keep from sleeping in the same bed in the event that his wife becomes Niddah while sleeping [...]. For those strict not to take part in marital relations in the 'onah before the wife's expected menstruation, it is proper not to sleep in the same bed during said 'onah.

In Taharah In Halakhah And Aggadah (heavily based on the works of Ḥakham 'Ovadyah Yosef), the meḥaber writes (my translation):

ב״עונת הפרישה״ אסורים בני הזוג בתשמיש המטה, ומותרים בחיבוק ונישוק, כל עוד שלא ראתה האשה דם. ואולם טוב להחמיר שלא ישנו יחד במטה אחת, [שמא תראה דם בשינה ולא תרגיש בו,] אך לישון בקירוב בשר ממש, אין להתיר.

During the 'Onah of Separation, the couple is prohibited from taking part in marital relations; but, is permitted to hug and kiss as long as the wife has not seen any blood. Nevertheless, it is good to be strict not to sleep in the same bed (in the event that the wife will become Niddah while sleeping and will not realize it). But, to sleep in close contact is prohibited.

  • How does one not realize they became niddah? I was under the impression that niddah does not begin until the bleeding is noticed. – ShamanSTK Mar 27 '16 at 20:35
  • Hypothetically, a woman could bleed during her sleep to such a degree that, even without a forbidding feeling (הרגשה האוסרת), she would be considered Niddah. See the laws of stains (Dine'i Ketamim). – Lee Mar 27 '16 at 20:59
  • @lee And wed be so machmir about a safek derabanan? Does tumat ketamim apply before the stain is found anyway? – Double AA Mar 27 '16 at 23:14
  • @DoubleAA I'm only learning Hilkhot Taharah for the second time now and am by no means whatsoever an expert. My previous comment was my feeble attempt at understanding the pesaq cited. Nevertheless, assuming it is indeed "only" a Safeq DeRabbanan, why would we knowingly put ourselves in a situation with a high likelihood of turning into a safeq? – Lee Mar 28 '16 at 13:43
  • @Lee Depending on the woman and the weseth in question, it might be a very low likelihood indeed. Knowing if it is formally required or not is a big deal. – Double AA Mar 31 '16 at 2:51
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Gemara Shevuot 18B

ת''ר {ויקרא טו-לא} והזרתם את בני ישראל מטומאתם אמר רבי יאשיה מיכן אזהרה לבני ישראל שיפרשו מנשותיהן סמוך לוסתן וכמה אמר רבה עונה
Our Rabbis taught: Thus shall ye separate the children of Israel from their uncleanness; R`Josiah said: From this we deduce a warning to the children of Israel that they should separate from their wives near their periods. And how long before? Rabbah said: One 'Ona.

Rif Shevuot (dapey haRif 1B):

עונה: או יום או לילה ‏
or day or night.

The Ran explains that the Gemara talk about the Ona of the Vesset itself[1], e.g. if the Vesset is in the middle of the night, all the night is prohibited. The Ran says (according to Rashba, against Raah (Torat Habayt, Bedek Habayt)) that this ban is Derabanan, gives 2 proofs, 1.- Vestot Derabanan, 2.- If the husband leaves on a trip, sexual intercourse is allowed (Yevamot 62B)

The Raavad in Baaley hanafesh Shaar Haprisha says that the ban is for the intercourse itself is banned but without additional physical distance contrary to Nidda time. he also mentioned the lake of rabbinic ban when Tashmish is a Mitsva. There is not mention of problem to sleep in the same bed.

Shulchan Aruch Y.D. 184, 2 writes the same thing.

Shach sk 6 allowed hugging and kissing (this expression "chibuk venishuk" does not include "Biat Evarim"), {some poskim prohibited hugging and kissing and some others says that despite not prohibited, it's better to avoid this.}


[1] Nowedays certains Posskim teach to begin the separation in the Ona before Onat Havesset, See Taz sk 2 (B.Y in name of Or Zarua). See Shach: nowedays the whole ona is considered as Shaat Vestah because the hour is not everytime the same. So, the previous Ona is prohibited as onat havesset. And with the Or Zarua's chumra, 2 Onot before the onat havesset are prohibited, but the Pitche teshuva permits to just ban one Ona before Onat Havesset.

  • What is "biat evarim"? Tzniusly of course – SAH Apr 22 '16 at 2:21
  • @SAH a contact that is not fulfilling the definition of Mishkevey (2 poss.) but that is involving s. pleasure – kouty Apr 22 '16 at 2:25
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    How do you know Shach does not allow Biat Evarim? He doesn't say that phrase anywhere that I see. (It seems reasonable that he'd forbid it, I just don't see it anywhere explicitly. Do you?) – Double AA Oct 9 '16 at 20:19
  • @ Double AA My intention was to say that biat evarim is not included in the term chibuk venishuk. If it is not clear have you an advice to express this clearly. I did not write he prohibits but he is not allowing. Sorry – kouty Oct 9 '16 at 20:38
  • @Double AA see please if it is better formulated now – kouty Oct 9 '16 at 20:43

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