This could be a good follow-on to my essay “What’s in a Hug?”, included in my book Did Jesus Have a Cat. I recently learned, on the ABC News on a Sunday morning as I was getting ready to go to my usual Sunday service of choice, that a woman is offering professional snuggling services. She says it is just snuggling, no sex, clothes stay on. For an additional fee she will spend the night. She says this is not prostitution. Some people disagree.
So of course, being a more than average “inquiring mind,” I tried to access the web site; www.thesnuggery.org. On my first try, I couldn’t get to the site – it was overrun by high traffic. Surprise, surprise. A million other viewers had done the same thing – immediately rushed to their computers or smart phones and tried to Google the site.
I‘d recently hit a dry period in my writing and was waiting for just the right stimulus or ping to get me going again. This may be it. According to the web site:
“Research provides us with ample evidence that physical contact with others has a positive effect on our physical and mental health. Yet, we live in a culture that does not sanction touch simply for the sake of touch. We’re afraid of touch. Studies have found that people in theUnited Statestouch openly less frequently and with less positive feeling than people in many other countries throughout Europe, Africa, Asia, Central andSouth America. Consequently, we tend to be more agitated and aggressive, both verbally and physically, than people from places where affectionate touch is open and normal.”
The web site goes on to explain how, during touching, the brain produces more serotonin and endorphins. “Happy chemicals” are produced (duh – she’s not just whistlin’ Dixie here). Similarly, fewer bad chemicals that produce depression and suppress the immune system are produced. Her web site explains that a staff of snugglers are available to, well….snuggle with you. The snugglers are pictured on the site with their bios and it all seems very touchy-feely, therapeutic and beneficial to mankind. Continue reading