Is A Married Couple Allowed To Clearly Display Affection In Public?

The concept of touching an intimacy within Judaism is sacred and holy. Touch is something that is intended to be not only loving but also intimate. When a man and woman touch, there is always the potential of a spark, and even a sexual element. Being that touch is seen as such, there are many laws within Judaism that prohibit the touching between men and women who are not married, unless it is one’s parents or siblings.

And even when they are married and intimacy is permissible, chances are this will not be publicly displayed. The reason for this is because deep affection, touching is considered intimate, and is inappropriate for it to be made public. The love and the depth a husband and wife share is something that should be felt, not something that should be seen.

The reason we don’t see a Jewish man and his wife dancing, hugging, holding hands, or touching in any way in public, is because that is an aspect of their relationship that is completely private and reserved for the two of them alone to share. Because it is so special, it is not something that’s meant to be out in the open.

Sadly, we have become so accustomed to seeing physicality openly displayed, that when it isn’t done, it appears strange. But if we recognize the intensity and feelings that should accompany any and all touch between a man and woman, we would most likely not be so quick to be nonchalant with it.

What then does it take to express true love and feeling? When touch is not part of the equation between those who are not married and is reserved for absolute privacy amongst those who are, then touch retains its power and value and does not become dull or ordinary. Although a married couple doesn’t display intimacy in public, it doesn’t mean it isn’t there. It just isn’t there for us to see.