I have been reading your blog on an irregular basis since about the time I came back from seminary. I have a question for which I realized you are the only person who would know the answer! Here it goes:
Once I went on a date with a pretty yeshivish guy. After the date, when back in the car, fastening our seatbelts, our arms touched quite extensively… I am still wondering if it was accidental. Do people have some kind of maneuver to avoid this on shidduch dates? I think in most cars it’s probably difficult to avoid this if both people are fastening it at the same time… It was my first shidduch date, and he said later on he just recently started driving, so it could have been his first shidduch date where he was by car…
What do you think, would guys deliberately do such things?
My response: The mere fact that he let you wear a seatbelt negates his yeshivness, any yeshivish person worth their weight in a salt would have had his passenger seatbelts taped like shabbos lights just in case you attempted to put on your belt. He would have done this because as a yeshivish person he would have high respect for public embarrassment, although none of safety. Seat belts are highly untznius, the separate the breasts and make it obvious that you are a women. This is assur and being that he not only allowed you put on your seatbelt, he didn’t even have them taped, which has led me to believe that you were on a date with a right wing modern orthodox guy that claimed to be yeshivish.
Other clues into his yeshivishness might help the commenters decide if he touched you purposefully, which I think he did. In the yeshivish dating world, touching by accident could lead to nightmares down the road. Have you ever heard the story about the girl who stepped in front of a truck and was saved by her date, who felt it more important to save her life than keep the laws of niddah? Well she rejected him on the grounds that he didn’t even have to debate with the yetzer harah whether to touch her or not, this means that his tayvas were so strong that they had already broken him down.
I have heard of embarrassing situations such as the one you described in which the folks were walking down the street and they bumped shoulders repeatedly, in the yeshivish world this is considered date rape and has grave consequences including a severe reduction in your shidduch market value. Fortunately the couple got engaged shortly after the shoulder bumping incident and now they are on a seminary speaking tour where they speak on the dangers of premarital touch.
So the answer is, yes he touched you purposefully and he probably liked it. It depends where you and him are from. It seems that BT’s and Gerim get touched because guys think they are whores, we were kind of taught that in yeshiva – every girl who isn’t frum must be a whore. Since yeshiva guys don’t know how to make a move, a little seatbelt fastening action can’t hurt.