This month, I only menstruated from Saturday afternoon until Tuesday evening–3 1/2 days. I sort of feel gipped out of my Niddah time. Last month, by the end of the week, the Niddah observance had created this incredibly powerful sexual tension between us. This month, sure, there were moments when I really wanted to hug or kiss him, but I held myself back. There weren’t ever any moments when I really, really considered breaking the rules (once, I was sitting on the couch next to him and forgot I wasn’t supposed to touch, so I jokingly jabbed him in the elbow after making a bad pun. I immediately realized my mistake, pulled away and said, “well I guess that’s the most action you’re going to get all week”)
Our arrangement did create some logistical problems. We were planning to spend Shabbat together in my community. I had arranged for him to stay in the apartment of a friend that was going to be away. I did this for two reasons. First, when I was making the plans, I wasn’t 100% sure if my roomates were going to be home. They prefer that guys not sleep over in the apartment, so I’m respectful of that. The second reason is because he didn’t want to be parading to the community that he was sleeping at my place, even if that is what would end up happening.
My roomates ended up going away, and Friday night he did sleep at my place. Saturday I got my period, so Saturday night he stayed at my friend’s apartment. This was just annoying. We spent all day Saturday together, and all day Sunday together, but he had to go back to a different apartment in between. Instead of just waking up together, eating breakfast, and then heading out for the day’s activities, we had to mutually agree upon a time to get up, call each other on the phone to see if the other was awake at the agreed upon time, have him walk over to my apartment, while I spent that time drinking coffee and getting myself ready.
This sexual tension thing is tricky. Like most things in life, it requires a happy medium. Just as the sexual tension will be lost if a couple spends every moment together in bed, it can also be lost if a couple separates themselves to the extent that they have completely removed all possibilities of tension. I think of it like a magnetic field. If you hold the opposite poles of the magnets too close to each other, they’ll attach together, but if you hold them too far apart, they’ll be completely outside each other’s magnetic field and have no acknowledgement of the other magnet whatsoever. If, however, you hold the magnets near each other but not to the point of attachment, you’ll have this excellent magnetic tension that can deeply improve the magnets’ desire for each other.