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Chapter Thirteen

Halachos Concerning the Wedding Night

210. What is the Halachah if the bride was not a Nidah at the time of the wedding, but became a Nidah before the first time they have intercourse?

If the bride became a Nidah immediately after the wedding ceremony, or if the groom was able to have relations with her but did not and she then became a Nidah, he is not allowed to be alone with her without chaperones. All of the Halachos mentioned in Questions 204-206 are applicable.

211. Are there any Halachos which apply to the bride and groom on their wedding night?

The first intercourse which they have is called bíilas mitzvah. One of the reasons for this is that through this first intercourse they are able to fulfill the Mitzvah of piryah vírivyah, having children.

After the bíilas mitzvah is completed, the husband must immediately separate from his wife, and she is considered a Nidah regardless of whether or not she saw any blood. The husband may not, therefore, sleep on the bed with her, but must immediately get up. This applies even when the bride is a young girl who has not yet started to have her period.

222. Do any special Halachos apply if the wedding ceremony takes place on a Friday?
As long as the bride and groom were alone together in a proper yichud, (Seclusion) during the day, it is permissible to have intercourse Friday night. This also applies when the bride is a divorcee or a widow.

However, if the bride was a Nidah at the wedding and her seven clean days were completed on Friday night, the Halachah is different for a virgin and for a divorcee or widow.

If the bride is a virgin, she may go to the Mikvah and they are permitted to have intercourse Friday night. The Mishnah Berurah brings down the in the first instance (líchatchilah) this is permissible, though, only if the bride and groom were together in seclusion (yichud) beforehand. However, a proper yichud is prohibited while she is a Nidah (See Questions 204-206). Therefore, what they should do is, after the ceremony, have the bride go into the room which belongs to the groom, and the chaperones, or other people, should continually enter and leave the room.

However, if the bride is a divorcee or a widow, she is not permitted to go to the Mikvah Friday night or to have intercourse that Friday night, since it is prohibited for the husband to make a kinyan (acquisition) on her on Shabbos. This would also apply on Yom Tov. As mentioned previously, they are not allowed to be alone together without chaperones until she goes to the Mikvah after Shabbos.

223. What is the Kesubah?
The Kesubah is the marriage contract. This Kesubah must be kept in a safe place since it is prohibited for a husband to live with his wife without one. If the Kesubah is lost, another one should be written and a competent Rav consulted.
224. Is it permissible for the newlyweds to go on a honeymoon after the wedding?
The custom of going on a honeymoon is totally foreign to Torah ideals. As we learned, the bride and groom must separate after the first time they have intercourse, and the bride has all the Halachos of a Nidah for at least 11 days. Taking a pleasure trip during this time is very inadvisable since such a trip can lead to transgressing the various prohibitions applied to a Nidah.

After the bride has counted has seven clean days and has purified herself in the Mikvah, they can go on a pleasure trip.

225. Is there any advice that can be given to a woman to increase her chances of becoming pregnant?
The Sefer Aruch Hashulchan writes that in order to help a woman become pregnant, she should be advised not to turn over onto her stomach immediately after having intercourse since this will cause the sperm to fall out.

She should also refrain from washing that area for three days after she goes to the Mikvah to avoid destroying the sperm, since many women become pregnant within those three days. If a woman determines that she ovulates at a later time, then she should refrain from washing that area at that time. If a woman is having difficulty becoming pregnant, a basal thermometer can be used to determine at what time of the month she ovulates. During those three days, she should also refrain from doing a lot of walking, which could cause the sperm to fall out.

Blessed is the woman who is careful with these things.

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