Touch Me… Please!

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Bonus: Cuddling: A Step-by-Step Guide (Or, Notes from a Cuddle Dome Love Leader).

It was two in the morning and I was awake again, tossing and turning under the quilt with a restless yearning. My body had been used to being held, loved, stroked and pleasured, and it was suffering withdrawal symptoms.

I’d been separated—and celibate—for almost a year and was badly missing intimate physical contact. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not that I couldn’t find a massage therapist or a casual partner. I’d had plenty of massages, but none of them quite hit the spot. And casual partners weren’t exactly abundant at the time, for some reason. It wasn’t sex I was after, anyway—it was loving touch. The kind of touch a new lover naturally showers on their beloved in the early days of exploration and wonder.

I knew what I needed and was willing to ask, but finding it was another story. Luckily the dry period didn’t last long, though, and pretty soon my body was again feeling that happy glow that comes with being touched with love.

In the years since, when I take time off writing to see clients for healing, I’ve noticed how common it is to see people whose whole energy is begging, ‘touch me—please!’ Not that they’re necessarily aware of it, or looking for me to touch them. It’s just that they may not have had intimate contact with another person in years, and may have even forgotten how to allow themselves to be touched. Even if they’re in a relationship and sexually active, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are experiencing true intimacy and loving touch. Sex and intimacy don’t always go together. I wonder how many people go through adult life without being properly touched?

Our bodies are built for connection. Not just a casual hug or hand on the shoulder.

We’re built to thrive on love, and intimate touch is a natural physical manifestation of love. And by intimate touch I mean the kind that says ‘I’m right here, fully present with you, in this moment,’ rather than intimacy which is just about genital contact. It’s an intimacy which can be shared with anyone we love, not just sexual partners. Studies have shown that the cells in our bodies expand when they feel love and contract when they feel its opposite, and our ability to use our touch to transmit that energy to another is an innate gift which we all carry.

Modern society is moving further and further away from touch as a natural, integrated part of everyday life.

To fill the gap, we have created services that people buy and sell, but it’s not that same and we’re losing touch with our own natural ability to bring healing and pleasure to those close to us.

Massage is needed in the world because love has disappeared. Once the very touch of lovers was enough. A mother touched the child, played with his body, and it was massage. The husband played with the body of his woman and it was massage; it was enough, more than enough. It was deep relaxation and part of love. But that has disappeared from the world. By and by we have forgotten where to touch, how to touch, how deep to touch. In fact touch is one of the most forgotten languages.” ~ Osho from ‘Hammer on the Rock’

Reawakening that ability for loving touch can be one of the simplest and most beautiful gifts to ourselves and our loved ones. At its most basic, just showing up and being willing to touch someone with the intention of bringing healing or love can be a comforting experience for another. And sometimes it’s as easy as that. We may shy away from placing soothing hands on an aching back or stroking a tense head, thinking drugs or a doctor are more efficient, or not wanting to spend the time. Surprisingly, though, it can be all that’s needed to shift a mood, lighten discomfort, or unlock a deeper emotional layer that’s ready to be cleared. More importantly, touch connects people and increases that sense of trust and love in the world in a way that doctors and drugs struggle to do.

In essence, reclaiming our ability to lovingly touch another—whether child, friend or lover—can be as straightforward as practicing the following four qualities. The more often we practice them, the deeper our touch can go.

Clear intention. Be clear about why you want to touch another and stay focused on that intention. Are you intending to create a sense of well-being? Or pleasure? Or comfort? Whatever it is, be clear in your mind about it before you start. As an experiment, ask a friend to close their eyes and try two variations of the same touch—stroke their arm once while thinking of your favorite movie and then a second time while intending that they feel your love. Then ask if they noticed any difference.

Love. It sounds simple to say ‘love the one you’re with’ but it’s not always that easy to access a feeling of love for someone at the drop of a hat. So find another way in to the energy—twiddle that internal dial until you find that feeling of love somewhere inside (try music, or the face of a lover, or the memory of a warm summer’s day). Use your mind or senses to find a catalyst that can bring you back to a deep feeling of love, then refocus the energy on the person you’re with.

Presence. You can’t hear what another’s body is trying to say to you if your mind is busy, so bring that mind fully into the moment! Focus on the sensation of touch, or on synchronizing your breathing with the person you’re touching, if you need to have something to keep the mind busy with. Being present brings a stillness, and intuition reaches us through that stillness.

Trust. Trust that you can bring a sense of well-being and love to another by touching them. Trust that somewhere deep inside, you know how and where to touch them. Then follow your instincts, get on with it and see where it leads you.

Feelings of pleasure and well-being aren’t just for the lucky one who’s being touched, either.

The beauty of feeling another opening under your touch and discovering the depths that can be hidden in the body brings with it a deeper connection to the mysteries of life as well as a sense of profound gratitude for this simple gift. So find a partner and get touching! Then teach your kids.



Relephant Read: 

The Cuddle Sutra & the Benefits of Touch Therapy 



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Ed: Kate Bartolotta

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anonymous Sep 20, 2015 4:05pm

I am crying while reading this. I have such a deep need for loving, tender, non-sexual touching that the lack of it feels physically painful to me. I feel like my whole body and soul is slowly starving without loving touch. I am married and have a OK sex life but it severely lacks intimacy and true connection. One shouldn't feel lonely and deprived after having sex. Then surely the sex is the wrong kind!!! I am glad to see there are more people in the world that feel the painful loss of true connection. This is truly sad.

anonymous Jun 5, 2015 12:31am

Aaaaah… human touch. after my divorce, I was celibate (by choice) for 5.5 years. I had a baby to take care of and a full time job to keep me busy, not to mention a broken heart to mend. I’ve never felt lonely or thought I had to have a man in my life, but being touched I missed terribly. I was married to an-almost-nymphomaniac for seven years! I went from 90 to 0 overnight. There was a much younger co-worker, we liked each other, but I knew it wouldn’t be more than a “booty call”, when he transferred we all went out for drinks, in the parking lot he hugged me and my knees almost gave out, I melted. It took all my will power to say no when he called later that night. Touch is magical.

anonymous Jun 4, 2015 10:56am

Two words: Thank you! Ever since my wife left me over a year ago and the eventual very quick divorce that I endured I have struggled to find a way to express to friends and family that this is exactly what I have been feeling. To go from being able intimately connect with a life partner to absolutely no intimate contact with anyone is like a nuclear explosion of frustration. I have had no other partners since she left. Completely celibate because of moral and religious reasons; but I would like to think that Physical intimacy is more than just what the world tells us it is.

While, I didn't know my wife was going to leave and may have been cheating for sometime there were authentic, tender moments we shared and a simple touch, a hug, a kiss, a massage of the neck is something that can never be quite replicated and is a void that can never be entirely filled again once lost.

Your article articulates very well what those of us experience this on a daily (or even minute by minute) basis. I wish people understood.

anonymous Mar 25, 2015 3:03pm

It’s nice to see that more people understand that! It is now possible to buy such loving touch if we need it. At the Cuddlery (, we try to give this affection needed.

anonymous Mar 25, 2015 9:05am


I get the feeling you will feel it when I say I can relate to the subject matter.Thank you.

anonymous Dec 16, 2014 9:07am

Hey Freya… a new/recent reader here.

I don't know how valid my opinion is, as I'm only a young man (24, turning 25 in literally a month) but in my most recent relationship I have learned how important it is to just touch my current partner in a more loving an gentle manner.

Let me first point out that I am male, and I have always been… even now, a sexually active person. Sex has been probably the most important thing for me as a young man… feeling that it was the most important connection to have with a partner.

In my most current relationship, a relationship in which sexual intercourse itself didn't happen for the first 11 months… I have realised what I missed in every relationship past where sex was something that happened within the first month previously.

I realised that although sex was a great experience, and that in the past I had both great sex and not so great sex (bad sex is a myth, right?) but I still didn't feel what it was like to truly be intimate with a partner of the opposite sex. The cuddling after sex, that usually ended up being the closeness during sleep, was what I truly ended up enjoying. An arm around the woman I shared my bed with, or her arm around me… that was where I was happiest. If that wasn't happening, I doubted myself as a person.

Now, recently in my not-so-sexual relationship… I've begun to appreciate that a loving touch… either a simple back rub, holding hands, holding her in my arms against my chest or whatever other embrace happened… the moment it ends, I miss it. I don't just miss it here and there… I depressingly cannot live without it. I cannot function without the feel of her arms around me or mine around hers.

Maybe I've replaced sex with cuddles as my form of intimacy… but the way I see it I replaced one volatile connection with one that enables me to truly appreciate the love and connection with my partner.
I have never felt more safe and "at home" than I have in the arms of my lover. I am happy, I am loved, and I am wanted in those arms… and that is, in it's most pure form, where I thrive.

Thankyou for sharing your article.

anonymous Feb 15, 2014 2:17pm

I completely related to your article and I think it is relevant for a lot of people, in our society. Since I am single, this is the biggest problem I have come upon…Being alone has never been a problem for me, I'm enjoying the time I can spend on myself and in silence…I don't mind having dinner alone, I love to go to the movies by myself, I can practice yoga everyday, I have a busy social life…But I miss touch. I miss intimacy, so very much. I am a physical person, I need touch, I need sex and gentle touching of a person I love…onenight stands don't do it for me, unless the person really cares about me. But if it's just sex it's not enough and I feel empty and a little bit sad afterwards. I don't want to settle for a relationship because I miss intimacy, but I'm really wondering, what if I am single for quite some years? How will I make up for the longing of physical intimacy? I hug friends and family, but still it doesn't seem to be enough. I'm not sad or feeling pathetic, but it is an issue I am struggling with…

anonymous Feb 14, 2014 6:44pm

I totally agree with some of the above comments concerning the oversexualization of our society. Personally, I have found it nearly impossible to begin touching anybody except my own parents in a loving way without the situation getting sexual undertones. Especially with the opposite sex this simply does not work, and with the increasing media hype concerning homosexual relationships I find this harder also with those of the same sex. Loving touch is usually misunderstood as a signal of wanting sex – and often also used for just that purpose. And when the other person misunderstands the meaning of touch and begins to get too intimate, I would have to put boundaries and push them away – which many seem to take as a sign of rejection and close up entirely as a result. So my solution has been to limit touching people to a more superficial and "safe" way – still craving for that non-sexual, intimate, loving connection with people around me. The western world is really sex-grazy. I'm so glad people in Africa and Latin America still know how to show love in a non-sexual way!

anonymous Jan 20, 2014 5:57am

I have been saying for years, touch is the first language, music is the second, spoken language is the third.

anonymous Jan 16, 2014 10:13pm

I think that touch does not have to be sexual but nurturing. As a former massage therapist, I was licensed to touch perfect strangers in a very ethical and loving way and the energy exchange was incredibly beneficial both to the client and to me. We all need touch for our well being. The touch of a mother to a child, a brother or sister or best friend can be as healing as words if not more because our heart is doing the touching and it has nothing to do with sexuality, This society associates touch with sex and, while we humans need that intimacy too, there are thousands ways to touch someone.

anonymous Jan 14, 2014 4:01pm

Just wanted to say thanks. Am crying here as haven't been touched, kissed or hugged in several years since marriage break up. Nice to climb in bed sometimes when kids want a hug.

anonymous Dec 24, 2013 3:51pm

A big problem is the sexualisation of touch. How many guys are afraid of reaching out to touch for fear of their advances being seen as some sleazy come on? On the flip side, how many women use the with-holding of touch as a bargaining chip to further their own agendas in 'friendship' or relationship. I know a guy in his 50's who has never experienced intimate touch, but always harsh judgements and power games. Over the years he has stopped trusting womens authenticity in this area period. Its a fucked up world!

anonymous Dec 22, 2013 4:16pm

Freya ~ This is the most articulate and real article I've read on Elephant Journal. Thank you for writing it. Paying it forward!

anonymous Dec 22, 2013 12:56pm

I work in the emergency room where I touch people for 12 hours a shift. I never thought that I would be the one who needed to be touched. But I yearn for another’s touch. I am married with kids but it never seems like its enough. Yes we all need to be touched. Thank you for a beautiful article about this need.

anonymous Dec 19, 2013 11:29am

I love this post, truly. (and I'd love to read the study about cells expanding and contracting with love and it's opposite, if you know where to find it) The disembodied hand in the picture, however, makes the title "Touch me… please!" slightly creepy. Cousin It, this article was not directed at you… but nice photobomb.

anonymous Sep 25, 2013 5:49am

Really nice. A touch can actually make people happy and feel relaxed and relieved and as aptly mentioned by you "It’s an intimacy which can be shared with anyone we love, not just sexual partners". so the touch intention matters 🙂

anonymous Sep 19, 2013 7:59am

I just wrote a blog post inspired by this beautiful article. Thank you!

    anonymous Sep 19, 2013 12:34pm

    I'm going to hop over and have a look this evening! Thank you for sharing the link.

anonymous Sep 18, 2013 12:31pm

This is really difficult for me to even read, after years of explaining to my wife that I NEED this (and giving her at least weekly massages, and daily intimate touching) I still can't get anything more than a once a year massage for my birthday. Her excuse is that that is just not how she expresses her love, but she clearly likes to receive love in that fashion, and will even start physically nudging me when I stop rubbing her back while we lay in bed. Frustrating.

    anonymous Sep 19, 2013 7:11am

    So often women think it's a women's 'issue' but my experience is anything but that. I have heard from so many men that they feel this lack in their lives – and somehow it seems a much harder one for them to address in a social context. Much love to you, dear reader. May you find a way to connect that brings happiness.

anonymous Jul 8, 2013 6:23pm

"Modern society is moving further and further away from touch as a natural, integrated part of everyday life." Wow, that caught my eye. We would probably define ourselves as enlightened, liberated, tolerant, etc. when we're really uptight. I wonder how much video/photo porn, sexting and the life have to do with the breakdown of touch?

Very much enjoyed this thought provoking article. There are so many life situations that drop people into the sensory deprivation that you describe. I hear it from care givers of disabled spouses, for example.

    anonymous Sep 19, 2013 7:09am

    Thank you for the extra depth you've added here… I've also wondered how much of the porn/sexting activity is due to sensory deprivation.

anonymous May 27, 2013 6:53pm

This is why I have cried the few times I have had a massage. Thank you for validating the feelings I cannot seem to resonate with my husband.

anonymous May 27, 2013 3:09pm

I wish my husband would read this.

anonymous May 5, 2013 3:32pm

Hello Judy and thanks for your response,

I completely agree that the future needs kids and that kids need nurturing from their families in order to thrive in society. However, in today's society, the amount of sexual and intimate (too include touch) encounters that occur for the simple sake of sex and fun itself is far more prevalent than it has been in history. The need for familial honor and respect has suffered tremendously to a point where it is almost non-existent in places such as America. This has exposed younger and younger kids to intimate fun relationships, rather than waiting for marriage and other such institutions which normally restrict basic intimacies.

I would argue that for any type of touchy feely activities to occur both parties must be attracted, emotionally dependent, and must trust one another to varying degrees. This clearly demonstrates that there is a stronger than usual relationship between the two people partaking in the touchy feely exercise. I would also point out that this implies a stronger than normal emotional response. This explains fairly well why sex friend relationships rarely work out; that emotional response is there whether they are aware of it or not.

This takes me onto my main point. Im not saying we should stop having sex or any form of intimate relationships as a species. Rather I am saying that intimate relationships have become too commonplace, that we are learning to be addicted to sex at an early age, and that this greater than historical norm of intimacy is putting pressure on our species overall logical decision making. Furthermore, with over 7 billion people on our planet and with the larger majority not receiving proper education, this increase in sexuality is harmful to the continuation of the species.

Having loving households is fine, but as with any relationship there are dangers. The more dependent you are on someone or the more you "love" someone the greater the negative reaction will be if they are lost. Wars are started this way. People killing other people is rarely a logical decision, but more of an emotionally controlled one (and if it is a logical decision it is normally driven by an emotional agenda). Imagine losing your family, do you really think you would act in a logical manner in response? I can tell you lots of people in the middle east are in that state of mind..

Dont get me wrong, i know this world is never going to turn into some logic thinking Volcan planet. However, we need more logic and more global thinking otherwise we are in trouble…

    anonymous May 6, 2013 7:43am

    I see your points better now, and I agree. I meant to tell you that someone as thoughtful as you on these matters need not deprive him or herself, because a truly kind and loving relationship could give you even more positive energy to do good things. Being part of a loving, respectful couple working together to improve their community teaches younger people by example. If the right person crosses your path, I wanted to encourage you to let yourself have that kind of happiness with confidence that your logic will not evaporate! I do also agree that loss and grief, when they come, are very difficult to handle. An awareness of their inevitability and daily gratitude that they have not arrived as yet is part of what helps remind one to be more patient and loving. Sorry to be such a busy-body, at least I'm a well-meaning one! Perhaps part of this is convincing myself to think smaller, because when I try to think about larger world problems, I have a tendency to become lost and paralyzed.

anonymous May 5, 2013 7:05am

I am grateful to you for choosing to dedicate yourself to helping your fellow humans. We certainly do live in perilous times. I would point out, however, that the preservation of the human race requires children and that in order for children to grow up as strong, loving individuals capable of continuing life-preserving work, they need exactly what Freya has so wonderfully described. And they would benefit from parents who live the truth of it as well. The world needs pockets of happiness in homes — a kind of "love locally, think globally" type of thing. The temptation to say "I've got mine" and pull down the shades and hide from the painful world is there, but it is far from inevitable. After all, I am talking to you instead of going in the living room where I have loving hugs and fun available upon request. Being high as a kite is okay, as long as the string is still attached to the Earth! Of course, you know better than anyone whether you can manage this, but I hope you meet someone who shares your values and visions, or who at least supports you in your work, because you deserve to be happy as much as anyone else. Humans are emotional beings and we need balance. That's logical, isn't it? Bless your heart!

    anonymous May 5, 2013 3:33pm

    Looks like i did the same thing as you..

anonymous May 5, 2013 2:21am

I disagree with your article. Not necessarily that it is in accurate, as i would argue all of it is accurate.

However, what I do want to comment on is instability. Though this may sound absurd, I would argue that physically distancing yourself from other people promotes emotional and mental stability. Further I would also argue that mental instability is something that current day society lacks the most, making it one of the largest issues we need to rectify.

Note, im not talking about crazy people when i say mentally unstable like bombers or people shooting up schools. I'm talking about the average Joe. From my experience, and frankly everywhere i look, i see a complete lack of logical thinking in decision making. In fact, i would say a majority of the decisions that are made are based off a persons feelings rather than their logic. This is a scary thought to me, as my primary moral obligation (and i think it should be for almost everyone) is the continued preservation of the human race. We see terrible decisions being made everyday all around us everything from basic RELATIONSHIPS to global warming.

Anyway to get back to the touchy feely aspect of this argument… I have not had sex in 5 years. Dont get me wrong, when i am in love its amazing, it feels ecstatic. However, I also know im as high as a kite at the same time.. I know my thinking processes are being greatly swayed by emotional preferences. If you analyze yourself during these states, you will be hard pressed, i think, to argue against this. This is a dangerous aspect of love. I can tell you i have been more productive and beneficial to society as a whole in the last 5 years than any period of time in my life. I have actually made the decision to completely give up on relationships because of how much more stable and logical my brain works.

Im not saying we should stop having sex and relationships. What I am saying is we need to calm our sexuality down. We are so sex and relationship craved in this society that we cannot think straight and this will have consequences. Our history during the Victorian era may have had it best, when sex and relationship was a familial obligation rather than an industry.

    anonymous May 5, 2013 2:23am

    Note there should be an edit button so when you re-read your work you can edit that spelling error in the second sentence..

      anonymous May 5, 2013 10:32am

      Yes, I know that one about the edit button. Thank you for taking the time to read and to post such a long comment. My intention was to raise the importance of touch, not sex necessarily – although, for me, sex is an important part of life (I accept this isn't the case for all of us). Touch isn't about sex, it's about touch and connection. And love isn't about being 'in love' always, it's about being in a place of connected, empathetic presence. So I agree with some of what you say, but not all. The point I would have to disagree with most is that we need to calm our sexuality down and promote logical thinking. I think what's needed is a connection between body, heart and mind so that both can be healthily, and fully, expressed. Much craziness comes from either the body operating solely from a place of emotion, or logic, or pure physicality.

        anonymous May 5, 2013 11:00am

        I understand you are talking about touch as a separate action from sex. However, for my argument they are one in the same. They both promote a great deal of emotional instability due to exorbitant highs with the consequences of lows, just like any drug… Even if one is not "in love", touch still promotes that emotional aspect, otherwise your post would be irrelevant. As you said, when you went a while without being touched, you yearned for it, which clearly demonstrates an emotional desire, struggle, and instability.

        When has solid logic ever been crazy?

          anonymous May 5, 2013 1:39pm

          The reply I posted to the article earlier today was meant to be a reply to your comment, but I made an error in how I posted it.

          anonymous May 6, 2013 1:21pm

          I've been enjoying this exchange, and it has a depth to it that this exchange of comments can't really do justice to. I see the human yearning for touch as similar to the human yearning for food or water – a fundamental need for nourishment. I'm not talking about the craving for a high that would be similar to that experienced in an addictive situation. The deprivation experienced by not having a basic need met can, in itself, result in craziness while having that need met can leave us peacefully able to get on with life. When a basic need is met, there's no need to be constantly thinking about it.

          anonymous May 6, 2013 1:21pm

          (second part – it wouldn't let me post the whole reply in one go!)

          But, having said that, what you're touching on in your comments is also an issue – although I see it as a different one to what I was intending to raise in my article. I do see that people confuse touch with sex, and that an unhealthy relationship to sexuality can lead to an imbalanced mind (and body). I still wouldn't advocate withdrawal as a way to deal with it, though. I would be suggesting a renewed connection with the naturalness of the body as the way to heal this.

          Thank you again for the interesting comments, and for the respect with which you've posted them. I hope other readers also find depth in the exchange.

anonymous Apr 17, 2013 3:32am

I really enjoyed reading your article here, it offers great information to the readers.

    anonymous Apr 17, 2013 3:47am

    Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment! And I'm glad you enjoyed it.

anonymous Apr 14, 2013 8:05pm

"Sex and intimacy don’t always go together." … I totally agree, Freya. Yet in my experience, too many people are using sex as a replacement for, or escape from, intimacy. And women have been getting more like men in that regard, rather than the other way around. Sex (making love is a better term, I think) could be an art form, with many benefits to both people, but I guess it pushes too many subconscious buttons to allow most people to travel down that path, and really let go into it. One of those buttons is that real & deep intimacy opens us up to deeper parts of our own inner-selves we might be afraid of, if we're not familiar with going to deeper places like that.

Ironically, I've always been highly appreciated for my willingness to be fully there with Loving Touch, and not in small doses, either. (And I am a long time massage & bodywork therapist, too, so I get great feedback on the competency part.) But finding someone who can, and will, reciprocate that touch has been one of my great disappointments in life. People love to receive, but … but … (((SIGH))).

Anyway, Freya, Regardless of how it might or might not actually be in Real Life and for how many people, your article is right on as to how is SHOULD be, at least to me. And finding it is one of the truly great blessings in life.

    anonymous Apr 15, 2013 3:25am

    Thank you for such a long, considered comment. I'm with you on everything you say and, like you say, finding a reciprocation in real life hasn't always been easy for me either. One of the driving forces behind my writing is that I hope that by raising topics – sensitively, like I feel I have here, or more directly, as I have at other times, others may be encouraged to share more openly. Which, in turn, may help those that are uncomfortable with touch, sexuality and deeper intimacy to explore outside their comfort zones too. My experience of working with clients is that so often the head, heart and genitals are disconnected and a process of reconnection is needed – which can come in many forms.

    Much love,


anonymous Apr 12, 2013 6:59am

Thank you.

anonymous Apr 12, 2013 5:55am

I touch my wife's back every morning in bed. Just a gentle rub arouses her and I can feel her mood change. It helps her start the day on a good note and it gives me a connection with her that I carry throughout the day. Touch is very important in maintaining an intimate relationship.

    anonymous Apr 12, 2013 7:20am

    What a lovely way to start the day! x

anonymous Apr 12, 2013 1:24am

thank you for this lovely reflections . . .
I would like to bring your attention to TANTSU . . . a practice of safe, non-sexual intimate full body holding and contact . . .
that addresses this very human need . . . maybe some day we will meet and I can share a Tantsu with you . . .


anonymous Apr 11, 2013 10:20am

This is so good, so real. I've been dating a woman lately, after several years of no dating at all. We're both in our early 60's and pretty tentative about the extent of physical contact we want, and/or how to reach for it. When we tried a near-naked massage recently, followed by some full body hugging, I felt like I was lying in a field during a gentle summer rain. It was all I wanted. Let the rest come later. Or not.

    anonymous Apr 12, 2013 7:18am

    'Let the rest come later. Or not.' Such beautiful words and perspective! Our heads can get in the way so much at times, suggesting that we should want more or different. Being able to take it as it comes and to relax into it fully is a skill that can take a life time to learn. Thank you for sharing so openly and so eloquently.

anonymous Apr 11, 2013 8:06am

Wow! Thanks so much for this wonderful article! It made me want to read your books!
I wish I could purr too!

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 8:53am

    If you discover how, please share! Best I can manage is a moan/groan which is nothing like a purr.

anonymous Apr 11, 2013 8:06am

Beautiful and yes touch is so vital to our well being, to our healing. The last relationship I was in my partner was incapable of any type of this kind of touch, and while I tried the relationship was domed from the start for sex alone cannot sustain a loving relationship. I felt like I was loosing my mind wanting to be touched and held, while he could only have sex and no touching. I have great empathy for his soul. Your article assists me in knowing that touch is key in our lives, and I am not and wasn't crazy to want it as part of a loving relationship. Thank you for stating it so eloquently!

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 8:53am

    And thank you for the eloquent comment. Its so easy to feel isolated at times, no matter how much we think we know. Knowing there are others out there who are of a similar mind and heart can be comforting, even if they're not with us in the flesh.

anonymous Apr 11, 2013 5:35am

Thank you for this essay. It validates the experiences I recently had with a loving partner. I wondered why I was "so needy" and craved her loving touch.

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 8:51am

    You're welcome. That loving exchange between partners can be such an enriching part of a relationship. Enjoy!

anonymous Apr 11, 2013 3:49am

I give my clients and my husband, conscious, connected touch. My son needs me to touch him too, thanks for the reminder. He does love it when I give him a massage.

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 8:50am

    Sometimes its just the reminder we need. Writing this helped me to remember too 🙂

anonymous Apr 11, 2013 1:57am

Your words ring very true. There are also things you can do that do not require you to change society around you, but rather to seek out settings where there human touch is valued differently. Try contact improvisation, an improvisational dance that centers on human contact. and movement. Within this particular dance tradition/subculture physical contact is recognized to be as necessary for humans as food and sleep.

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 3:15am

    Katja, yes! There are some wonderful movement practices out there. It's something I love to integrate in my own life, too.

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 8:52pm

Deep Sigh. Wow. Thank You.
(well, and purr too…) 🙂

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 3:14am

    I wish I could actually purr 🙂

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 7:17pm

Amazing article! I was born 13 weeks premature and at age 47 am in a beautiful lovingly nurturing relationship, where touch is connecting us in ways that I could only imagine. I had trouble receiving touch from my parents growing up and in my 20's and 30's. It was only since early 2012 in the current relationship I'm in that touch has been an amazing aspect and learning, growth and love are blossoming. Thank you, Freya for a lovely, touching (!) article.

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 3:14am

    Your words have touched me deeply, Doug. Thank you for the beautiful comment. Isn't it true that sometimes we value something more when it's been lacking? And our forties can be such an amazing time for blossoming.

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 4:35pm

Excellent article, Freya. It is just too easy to stay caught up in the 'proper' rules, behaviors and boundaries that alienate us from one another. Touch is the shortest path back to connection and wholeness…

    anonymous Apr 11, 2013 3:12am

    Thank you! The whole area of boundaries is a really interesting one too and one I'd love to have included here, but it would have stretched the length of the article too far. When is a boundary neccessary and useful, and when is it an excuse that covers up a deeper fear? Do we really need to set boundaries at all? All interesting for future conversation.

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 3:32pm

This is wonderful. As my marriage withered, the first thing I did was to find a massage therapist. Lovers as well, but that was not fully satisfying until I began to make connections. Thank you for touching on this subject for those of us who find ourselves, sometimes or always, with that human contact!

    anonymous Apr 10, 2013 4:11pm

    What kind of a world would it be if we could just ask, and receive, that kind of touch when we needed it? And offer it in return. I like to dream. But then all good things start off as dreams…Thank you for reading and commenting, Walker.

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 2:41pm

love this…
"The beauty of feeling another opening under your touch and discovering the depths that can be hidden in the body brings with it a deeper connection to the mysteries of life as well as a sense of profound gratitude for this simple gift. So find a partner and get touching! Then teach your kids."

lovely article, Freya

    anonymous Apr 10, 2013 4:08pm

    Thank you, Sheri. I'm glad it touched you.

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 2:30pm

I recently said to a new lover, with whom I will stay, that since our discussion about being together long-term I've felt a deeper connection from his wonderful, gentle, already-loving touch. We litererally spend hours stroking and touching – he has a thing for my crazy hair, which is completely amazing to me. The quality of the touch is something neither of us had, and the discovery has been absolutely mind-blowing. Thank you for writing about it.

    anonymous Apr 10, 2013 4:07pm

    Discovering that depth of touch for the first time is magical! Cherish and enjoy 🙂

    anonymous Jan 14, 2014 9:52am

    Zoe, totally agree. Unfortunately my relationship ended, but historically I wasn't used to touch as neither was she, and this was, by far, the best experience. We'd touch for hours. It was, indeed, mind-blowing.

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 2:17pm

Beautiful! I love the emphasis you give to the energy and intention of loving touch… it really brings a new level of depth and connection to a (sometimes) neglected concept. I can tell this was thoughtfully written 🙂

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 11:07am

Big Thank You for this!

    anonymous Apr 10, 2013 11:41am

    You're so welcome, Maria. x

anonymous Apr 10, 2013 11:05am

This is a beautifully written piece. Touch is so often misunderstood. Loving touch without expectations is often what we really need! Thank you, Freya. You're words touched me! Sending love your way.

    anonymous Apr 10, 2013 11:41am

    Gratefully received, Carolyn. Thank you!

Kate Bartolotta Apr 10, 2013 10:29am

Freya, this is such an important topic! I've been doing a great deal of writing and research on how touch's absence from our daily life has become a global problem. Thanks for writing!

    anonymous Apr 10, 2013 11:41am

    Thanks for the comment, Kate. It's such a broad subject, ranging from how we parent to how comfortable we are being close with friends to how we exchange with lovers. Worthy of your research!

Sheils Newson Jan 19, 2017 7:38am

Being a single mature person,human touch has to be the biggest thing I miss.I am lucky to have a very loving dog and cat though.Thank you for your inspiring posts

Anton Dell Dec 17, 2016 8:32am

I by no means wish to detract from the examples and experiences recounted here but only to draw attention to touch....and owning a pet! Look at the comments pet owners make about the unreseved love and Contact they get from their pets (especially dogs). Their need for uncomplicated touch is being met even by non-human touch. Nothing comares to the real thing, however. Thank you. Anton.

Darina Todirica Jun 8, 2016 12:52am

Once, during a yoga class I have experineced a kind of touch that I am still longing for

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Freya Watson

How we ground our heart-felt truths into the everyday experience of relationships, work and family is the foundation for a lot of my work. Finding our ‘truth’ is a challenge in itself, but living it day to day is an even bigger challenge.

My books are available on Amazon and you can also find me on Facebook and read more on my blog.