By Lindy Earl
Does anybody else start singing Phil Collins when you hear the words physical touch? Or, if you’re older, maybe Olivia Newton John? Anyway . . .
Physical touch is hugely important in life. There are studies where babies who are held simply do better than babies who are left alone. Touch is a human need.
In relationships, touch is important, but a dangerous area. You can’t touch too early or you could scare someone. You can’t be too aggressive for the same reason. If somebody is interested in you then your touch, or advance, will be welcome. If you’re misunderstanding the signals then you could be labeled as moving too fast (to say it kindly).
I once had a nice flirtatious touch, on a coffee date. We were both holding our coffee on the table, and our hands were almost touching, so he gently brushed my fingers with his, almost imperceptibly. It was a good touch. Sadly, I had no interest in the gentleman by the end of the evening, but it was a good touch.
He is the same gentleman who told me that, in a new friendship (admit it, it’s not a relationship yet), the woman needs to be the one to break the touch barrier. It’s simply safer. It can be a very simple touch – a shoulder or an arm touch. Since he had told me this during a prior phone conversation, I did find it interesting that he broke the touch barrier first.
Touches can hold a world of meaning. A handshake is often a first touch and says a lot – is it firm or weak? Is it wet? Is it too long?
Casual touches are a great way to move a new relationship along. Bump into them while you’re walking – just a nice, flirtatious hip or shoulder bump. Touch their arm during a conversation.
Touching can be incredibly romantic or erogenous, depending on how it is used. Men, if you have not yet learned this, touch a woman’s face just before you kiss her. Lift her chin or gently brush your fingers against her cheek or slide your hand behind her neck. It’s sexy! Any gentle face touch is sexy.
This is a family venue so we are not discussing erogenous touches, but we all know they exist. It’s important to know what touches work for what person. Some people love to have their hair touched, others want their back rubbed, so know your partner.
So the first step is to read the signals as to whether or not a touch is invited. Start with a gentle, casual approach. Move on from there. Grab her hand! Touch her back when you’re crossing the street or entering a door, gently leading her. Touch her arm while you’re chatting. Hold his arm while you’re walking. Non-verbal communication will let you know if the advance isn’t appreciated.
Touch is important in life. We all need physical contact! It does not have to be erotic – that’s a different thing. Just being with someone, snuggling on the couch, touching thighs . . . these are all great ways to get closer to someone. Touch truly conveys a wealth of feelings. If you’re both in the same place emotionally, touch will confirm it and be incredibly enjoyable.
That’s Life after Divorce.
Lindy is a Speaker, Columnist, Author, and Consultant.
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