- Question: [Thursday, 9th Marcheshvan, 5783]
My parents are going away, and are leaving me and my male cousin who lives by us to stay in the home. I know there is an issue of Yichud and would like to know if there is any way to make this work. We both have our own rooms, and we could be Makpid to lock our rooms whenever we are inside them and not be in the kitchen/living room, at the same time. Would this work.
Doing so does not suffice, and hence either you or your cousin must find another place to stay for the duration of time that your parents are away, or have enough other men or women stay in the home to prevent Yichud. If, however, there is a separate entrance from the outside to the room of the man or woman which allows them to never need to unlock their door, then there is no Yichud involved.
Explanation: It is debated amongst the Poskim as to whether locking the door of the room helps to circumvent Yichud in a home, and practically, majority of Poskim are stringent as the locking of the door is not a real impediment as one can easily open it and be within Yichud. Likewise, it is difficult to ascertain that the doors will always be locked by the other person whenever the male or female is outside their room, and hence this should not be relied upon.
Sources: See Imreiy Yaakov 10:25 and Biurim; Nitei Gavriel Yichud 30:2; See Poskim who rule that locking the doors never helps: Igros Moshe 4:65-19; Chelkas Yaakov 2:17; Minchas Ish 15:11; Poskim who rule that locking the door helps: Shaar Hatziyon 339:17; Devar Halacha 14:10 footnote 22 in name of Rav Chaim Zonenfeld; Poskim who rule that locking the door helps only for the girl but not for the boy when he locks his door: Divrei Malkiel 4:102; Chazon Ish E.H. 34:2; Devar Halacha 14:10 footnote 22; Imreiy Yaakov 10:25 and Biurim there