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Antisocial Distancing

Physical touch is very important to many of us and it seems that our society does our best to eliminate touch at every turn. Have you ever heard the term “I’m a hugger”? This typically means that the self admitted hugger knows that he or she recognizes the most love by physical contact.

Most adults simply don’t touch each other and this is amplified by those living during a global pandemic where we live with the term “social distancing”. It seems like it would be better named antisocial distancing.

In our oversexualized world, touch is oft equated with sex and it simply isn’t true. While it is true that sex requires touch, it is not true that touch requires sex or even sexual intentions.

Physical touch is not satiated by regular sex, in fact human touch is more about touch that demonstrates care and affection. This is about touch as part of someone’s non-romantic relationships. Think about your dentist, your co-workers and your friends. A huge hug would be looked at differently than buying them a gift or running an errand for them.

Romantic relationships seem to be the only way for people who best recognize love to get their fix. I personally feel that physical touch is essential for me to achieve a deep connection with anyone. You will find that many people frown on hugging your kids too long especially for you men. If your daughter’s love language is physical touch, don’t let society create a rift between you. Let me be the first to tell you, there is nothing more beautiful than a father who is not afraid to give his daughter a huge wonderful hug. Give her a spa night, do her hair, manicures, pedicures and even shoulder massages.

As a physical touch person, I want to question our western culture’s view of touch and sex. It is no wonder that so many of us feel so empty and broken. When it comes to affection, many of us are strictly denied the language that we most fluently speak. I would argue that physical touch is a language in itself and simply another way of communicating. A gentle caress communicates love and affection while a slap across the cheek indicates anger.

Don’t know your love language? Take this quiz to find yours out.

We all desire varying levels of physical affection. Some of us want very little while others want nearly constant touch. If quarantine has left you feeling distant or depressed and you need help, don’t hesitate to reach out. If you live in the US, you can reach out to the national helpline at 1-800-662-HELP and if you live elsewhere, feel free to reach out to me and I’ll either find someone to help you or do my best to help you myself.

Regardless of your love language, just know that I love you. I posted this because I know that you needed it today.

<3 Emma

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Ruined-Julie

Thank you for that nice message.
Here in France we are rather in favour of physical contact even if I agree with you that it tends to disappear, or that physical contact is often misinterpreted.
Especially since the Covid period unfortunately calls into question our cultural foundation based on proximity.

Ruined-Julie

Yes, that’s for sure. Kissing on the cheek is a tradition here, as is shaking hands.
Unfortunately the Covid has got the better of that for now.
You take care of yourself, too.

Martin49

Should I read this as you having a problem with social distancing?

Vikter

Some of the most tender and loving moments I have with my wife are with doing things that involve touching her with no sexual contact. I love doing her nails, and we try to plan spa nights for her every few weeks at least. Usually afterwards all I want is to lay in her lap and fall asleep.

In my previous profession I was in direct contact with colleagues physically for hours. Passing things back and forth, needing to press past people in tight mildly dangerous situation. In order to be an effective team you needed to give up a fair amount of personal space. This created pretty tight bonds and intimate knowledge of how the people near you work. I would often know who was doing what and where with only sound.
It would also weed people out that were not compatible with the team members, not necessarily bad at their job but their timing and rhythm in sync. I could know within a week or two if a new person would fit, and team members would all vote on new hires.

Touch is very important, especially with children. Young kids need the safety that a parents touch brings, older ones need the confidence that a parents touch can inspire, and adults need the reminder contact (with out a pandemic going on, please be safe) is healthy.