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#469135 - 08/19/14 09:53 PM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
focusedbody Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 355
Loc: NY
Thanks everyone, for your responses.

Recently I came across something in a book recommended on this site, Sexual Anorexia.

One of the definitions of healthy sexuality in a family is the distinguishing between different kinds of contact: nurturing, affection, and erotic.

For those of us who got an unconscious mix, it may be helpful to go through a process of understanding and feeling the difference.

This reminds me of the years I spent teaching young children. At the time I was probably in pursuit of distinguishing between nurturing and affection.

Erotic contact, on the other hand, often lacked some conscious resonance for me. Perhaps because it got thrown in with other kinds of contact. That may be one reason why I always got the signals confused.

Peace, kindness, and hope.

FB
_________________________
Lose the drama; life is a poem.

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#469172 - 08/20/14 12:37 PM Re: being touched [Re: don64]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 123
Hi Don,
Originally Posted By: don64
mother has always told me she loves me, but has never been willing to touch me!"
Same here. She also told me that no-one would be good enough for me, which effectively made it much harder for me to find the kind of intimacy in which I do well.
Originally Posted By: don64
If physical intimacy is ever in my life again, it will have to be with someone who is verbal, because I will have to be able to talk about my feelings. Talk about them so my history does not determine my present.
I've found this too. I've bailed from three "healing touch" practice groups because effective communication was lacking. I've also bailed from 4 men's groups and a healing circle for similar reasons (men's groups had no interest in healing touch, healing circle wasn't really interested either). Currently I'm looking into the asexual community. Hopefully things will work better there.

Cheers,

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469246 - 08/22/14 01:58 AM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
learning2remember Offline
Member

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 263
Loc: Europe
I'm sure my mother would insist that her touching me was only affectionate, nothing erotic involved. I never questioned that for years. Then, as an adult, I realised that I had been uncomfortable with her touches. It was also true once that I saw a couple on a train, and the woman was "affectionately" touching her boyfriend/husband. There was nothing inappropriate about it, other than she seemed like she couldn't keep her hands off him and there were in public, but what I mean is they were fully clothed and she wasn't touching him between the legs. But something about the way she stroked his shoulders, his side, and had her hand on his hip...all of this reminded me of the way Mom touched me. Also there is a larger picture (Mom sometimes watching me get dressed, Mom giving me pornography, asking about my sexual experiences, etc.) that help me see her touchign in a different way. I'm not as receptive to my wife's touch as I wish I were. I'm ok if she lays her hand on me; it's if she starts stroking that I'll just take her hand off of me and increase the distance. This is a natural reflex for me, and it took some time to realise she found this hurtful.

I found an illustration in a book once, and I really wish I'd bought the book at the time. It was about how comfortable men and women are about being touched in certain places. IT was based on some kind of research, and it broke the body into different sections: shoulders, torso, thighs, upper arm, lower arm, calf, etc. (I think it was that segmented.) The interesting thing was that there were some real differences, and, if I remember right, guys were much more averse/triggered/whatever to being touched on the torso and hips and maybe even thigh. (I think there was also something about who did the touchting: parent, spouse, male or female friend.) Anyway, when I saw it I was interested that there were real differences between teh genders, and that my own preferences fit the male pattern.

Anyway, I'm not great about being touched.
_________________________
"This is not my shame, this is their shame." Mona Eltahawy

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#469336 - 08/25/14 12:40 AM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
focusedbody Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 355
Loc: NY
Learning2remember:

The issue here seems to be about the state of the person doing the touching. When someone I know is not fully present, but acting on an impulse that doesn't involve me or recognize me, that is when I feel something going wrong.

When I look all the way back to my childhood, I consider the fact that some of the physical contact in my family may have started to have an unspoken amount of anxiety involved. When I experienced that in my family, it's possible that I then transferred that to what was happening one day at school.

What seems important here is working towards some repair and healing. For me, I think I have been looking for moments when touching might feel safer for me. There is some risk involved in remaining open to this, but with awareness, I can work through the feelings.

It also seems important to focus on the question of what touch is communicating. Like anything else, one would hope that there was a feeling and conscious acknowledgment that communication is two-way. Even the one touching must have some concern about the experience of the other person. This would hopefully be true for both men and women. Both people must be present enough to share the experience with a sense of trust, even if new feelings are being explored.

It can be difficult to separate out the difference between a wife and mother in this regard. In any case, I wish you the best in your process of considering the subject.

FB
_________________________
Lose the drama; life is a poem.

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#469349 - 08/25/14 04:27 PM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 123
Hi Focused and Learning2Remember,
Originally Posted By: focusedbody
When I look all the way back to my childhood, I consider the fact that some of the physical contact in my family may have started to have an unspoken amount of anxiety involved.

This is very likely in my case too. There was little attention placed on the emotional, sexual and political aspects of relating in my youth. My mother's emotional world was going through hell when I was born and she undoubtedly experienced male touch as being sexually charged.

Originally Posted By: focusedbody
It also seems important to focus on the question of what touch is communicating. Like anything else, one would hope that there was a feeling and conscious acknowledgment that communication is two-way.

The only approach to healing touch that I've come across that seems to address this issue in a satisfactory way with non-paid partners is Quantum Touch (see:http://www.quantumtouch.com/) . The "recipient" in this model is very much in charge and is the primary driver as the "healer". It is often done sitting or standing which empowers the person on whom the treatment is focussed. The intention of the method is to support a high quality level of Love.

An infant can't take charge or communicate much to adults. It takes very sensitive (and well supported) adults to understand the touch needs of a newborn.

Thanks for writing about this important aspect of relating. I've found it very challenging to secure safe non-sexual touch. Men, in my experience, typically are very averse to touching other men at all (with the exception of punches to the shoulders, hand shakes, and perhaps a hug). Women can be challenging for me in other ways. They tend to stir up feelings of sexual attraction in me and relate to me in ways where my feelings aren't welcome.

I hope this is helpful.

Cheers,

"GAATT"


Edited by gaatt (08/26/14 01:42 PM)
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469362 - 08/26/14 05:43 AM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
learning2remember Offline
Member

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 263
Loc: Europe
It helps me that we are talking about this. It is hard to pinpoint, but I think Mom touched me in ways that focussed on my masculinity, sort of stroking my shoulder rather than just patting my back. There was something about the way she touched my legs. (which she also commented on.)

I'm sort of thinking these things started when I got as tall as or taller than her.

It could be that with a different mother and son, where everything else was normal, some of these things would be ok. BUt in my case it is part of a bigger picture.
_________________________
"This is not my shame, this is their shame." Mona Eltahawy

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#469376 - 08/26/14 01:51 PM Re: being touched [Re: learning2remember]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 123

Hi Learning2Remember,

Originally Posted By: learning2remember
It could be that with a different mother and son, where everything else was normal, some of these things would be ok. BUt in my case it is part of a bigger picture.

I haven't identified much of anything in my mother's touch that was inappropriate other than she currently is unable to provide me with loving non-sexual touch at all. I'm not sure it's so easy to see. An infant needs loving touch. I'm pretty clear that that didn't happen in my very early youth. I once did a hypnosis session in which the practitioner asked me to visualize my mother's energy. I was terrified of what I saw! The energy in her lower body (1st and second chakras) was horrible! I'm sure that an infant would pick up on that and feel it, regardless of how he was outwardly touched.

I hope this helps as you explore your own history of touch.

Sincerely,

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469427 - 08/27/14 06:47 PM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
learning2remember Offline
Member

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 263
Loc: Europe
Thanks for the thoughts.
_________________________
"This is not my shame, this is their shame." Mona Eltahawy

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#469508 - 08/30/14 10:19 AM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
learning2remember Offline
Member

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 263
Loc: Europe
It happened again. We were at the movies with my family, and innocently enough my wife just placed her hand on her leg above my knee. I really hated how that felt. I know there was no "pain." It was harmless, but it felt terrible. I've learned not to take her hand off when that happens. There was a time when I did that, and I still hear, "You freak out whenever I touch you" and "I know you hate to be touched" (Not true...is it?) So I let it stay there, sort of gritting my teeth. I see it as progress that I could put up with it, but I wish this wasn't so difficult. And, yes, it's Mom's fault. VERY her fault.
_________________________
"This is not my shame, this is their shame." Mona Eltahawy

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#469537 - 08/31/14 08:17 AM Re: being touched [Re: focusedbody]
newground Offline
Chatroom Moderator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 10/11/11
Posts: 770
Loc: michigan
sometimes when that happens and the touch is uncomfortable, I just take my wifes hand off and then just hold her hand. she likes that and it gets stares and even comments sometimes because its so "cute" but in the mean time I can not crawl out of my skin.
I don't know if that might help man, but its worth a try
_________________________
Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee. let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, thou damned whale! Thus, I give up the spear!"
Herman Melville

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