Farshidi; source: Institute for War & Peace Reporting (IWPR)
Increasing numbers of women have premarital sex and then undergo surgery to conceal the fact from their husbands.
Social attitudes in Iran have changed greatly since the 1979 revolution, but the taboo on premarital sex remains, at least in the public sphere.
Although the government tries to enforce draconian Islamic laws to curb relationships between the sexes, many younger people nevertheless go their own way- much to the consternation of senior Shia clerics.
An opinion survey conducted by Iran’s National Youth Organisation last year showed that 55 per cent of the 7,000 young men and women polled had had a girlfriend or boyfriend prior to marriage. Independent experts believe the real percentage may be even higher