Seraphin

Asexuality and touch?

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Seraphin

Hi,

 

I wanted to know if not wanting to be touched was something common among aces or just a personal quirk. Not a phobia, I don't normally think about it and I don't feel fear, just slight repulsion.

 

For as far as I remember, touching was not my thing. As a child I remember feeling disgusted by having to hold hand with anyone. The feeling of sweaty skin on mine was like touching garbage. It gets a lot worse when it's sexual touch. I remember recoiling in absolute instinctive horror as a girl rub herself again me like a sexy cat, at a drunk party. Seeing the faces around, I knew that was not the reaction expected by the crowd. Even now, the only touch I tolerate (not appreciate, never appreciate) is from close friends or family.

 

Is that something others feel, and if yes how do you deal with it in your daily life? Particularly with a significant other, is there even a way to be more than friends if skin to skin contact is kinda of the table?

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Galactic Turtle

Some aces do experience touch aversion but others are cuddle maniacs. I think it's more of a person to person thing rather than a sexuality thing.

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Purple Wanderer

I can tolerate never repulsed just get an overwhelming feeling of "awkward".   Even with family.

 

 

Only SO's not feel weird

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The Dryad

Well... it's pretty true that I hate any kind of physical contact, it just feels alien. Even with family members, and even for prolonged periods of time.

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Gareki

Moved from Asexual Relationships to Questions about Asexuality

 

Gareki

Moderator for Asexual Relationships

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Moon Spirit ☽

I'm indifferent to touch, unless it is unwelcome.

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Bronztrooper

My family wasn't really a 'touchy-feely' kind of family, so most touch had more to do with getting someone's attention or when we were playing.  If I don't know a person and they touch me, I'll just stare at them with a look that pretty much says "Why are you touching me?".  Actually had one time when I worked at Amazon where I was stretching (mandatory at the beginning of the shift and after coming back from lunch) with my arms straight out behind my back and leaning forward.  After a couple of seconds, I felt someone grab my arms and move them upwards.  I looked behind me and saw a guy who had just clocked in there and when he saw me looking at him, he let go and walked away.

 

During that moment, my first thought was "Who the hell is touching me?", then, when I looked at that guy, I was seriously tempted to say to him, "Dude, don't fucking touch me."  Normally, for me to think about saying something with that kind of tone to someone, the person in question has to be someone I don't exactly like, but the guy who grabbed my arms (which, in all fairness, was likely him wanting to help me stretch) immediately made me want to say that and I didn't even know the guy to begin with.  I'm not even sure if I ever even talked to him.

 

So really, I don't like people in general touching me, much less someone I don't even know.  I'm ok with certain people if I'm particularly close with them (namely my sister, though, I had a girlfriend in my senior year of high school that I really enjoyed being close to and we cuddled quite a bit).  I'm fine with handshakes, taps on the shoulder to get my attention, and stuff like that, but anything more than that- such as hugs- depends on who the person is.

 

I'm also not really keen on touching other people for anything other than greetings or getting their attention, especially not hugs.  I tend to ask my sister for hugs more often than she asks me, tbh, but that's because I'm really close with her.

 

But then, I'm not really sure if it's just a thing for asexuals.  It seems to be common for asexuals to not like being touched, but it's also just as common for them to enjoy being touched.

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LadyOracle
11 hours ago, Galactic Turtle said:

Some aces do experience touch aversion but others are cuddle maniacs. I think it's more of a person to person thing rather than a sexuality thing.

Lol, love the term cuddle maniac. That's me. 

 

We never cuddled at home, maybe that's why. I don't like touching people I don't know, but with friends and partners it's different. I could go on all day. Unfortunately I'm usually alone, so I really miss it. 

 

I'm guessing it's not an issue specifically related to asexuality, but I'm interested to see the replies to find out... 

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Seraphin
5 hours ago, Bronztrooper said:

Actually had one time when I worked at Amazon where I was stretching (mandatory at the beginning of the shift and after coming back from lunch) with my arms straight out behind my back and leaning forward.  After a couple of seconds, I felt someone grab my arms and move them upwards.  I looked behind me and saw a guy who had just clocked in there and when he saw me looking at him, he let go and walked away.

 

I get that, one time a guy grab my wrist on the streets because I didn't hear him asking for change with my headset on, and I was surprised by the rage I felt. I'm a chill guy normally, but I nearly punched him on instinct and I was seriously mad for quite a while after that.

 

Thanks for your answers! So it's not a compulsory feature of asexuality, but it seems to be quite common. How do you deal with it, is it something you talk about with others? I usually just endure, but it doesn't help me enjoy the company of others. On the other hand I feel really awkward saying to someone 'I don't want you to touch me'. It makes it sounds like I'm repulsed by them personally even if that has got nothing to do with it.

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LadyOracle
2 minutes ago, Seraphin said:

How do you deal with it, is it something you talk about with others? I usually just endure, but it doesn't help me enjoy the company of others. On the other hand I feel really awkward saying to someone 'I don't want you to touch me'. It makes it sounds like I'm repulsed by them personally even if that has got nothing to do with it.

When it comes to e.g. compulsory kissing after New Years or my birthday, at work for example, that is something I really hate. And I just tell people I don't do that. They make stupid jokes about it sometimes, but I don't care. It's my body and I'm under no obligation to share it with anyone in any way that makes me feel uncomfortable. Sometimes they try to pressure me and I just walk away or say no. Sometimes new people don't know and they take me by surprise, so then I'll just undergo it. Usually others will laugh and tell them I don't like it. 

 

I can imagine it would be more difficult in some work environments, or if you don't want to be touched by people you have a bond with, because it might affect career options or relationships. I don't know what I'd do then. 

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hward

I'm not a touchy feely person either. I don't even like hugs from my family, but on the other hand I'm quite happy to cuddle and play with my puppy so not adverse to those kind of cuddles...

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EggplantWitch

really don't like it, though I can just about tolerate it if I know it's coming and it's for a good enough reason e.g. at the doctor's, hugging visiting family members. I feel really threatened if someone is in my personal bubble without even touching me too, even if it's my own mum, and I have to step back. I'm fairly sure I'm autistic though (should be getting diagnosed in September) so I put it down to that, not that I'm ace. The idea of being near to someone I'm in a relationship with isn't as uncomfortable, but I've not exactly had any chances to find out for sure.

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Laplace

I almost never initiate physical contact beyond handshakes cause it feels out of character for me. I don’t mind casual contact like handshakes and hugs for family, but otherwise I’m wary of contact. I have little exposure to intimacy and I’m normally a very detached person so it makes me uncomfortable sometimes.

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Madao

I can say I am a hug maniac and touch sensitive both. I hug my family a lot, but I don't allow them to kiss me on cheek. I am not comfortable with my friends hugging me. I get all flustered when even a tip of the finger of someone whom I don't know touches my hand or body by mistake when I am alone. I can survive crowds in trains or modes of transportation though. 

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Seraphin
10 hours ago, LadyOracle said:

When it comes to e.g. compulsory kissing after New Years or my birthday, at work for example, that is something I really hate. And I just tell people I don't do that. They make stupid jokes about it sometimes, but I don't care. It's my body and I'm under no obligation to share it with anyone in any way that makes me feel uncomfortable.

When you put it like that, it's the obvious right answer. But I don't know if I have the courage to have people look at me like I'm weird, even if writing that I realize how 'high school' that sounds ^^ It's probably better to be honest on the long run I suppose, than just wondering how awkward you look every time someone kiss you on the cheek. Especially since in France we do that a lot... So much it sometimes makes me want to move to a more repressed, more protestant country.

 

9 hours ago, hward said:

I'm not a touchy feely person either. I don't even like hugs from my family, but on the other hand I'm quite happy to cuddle and play with my puppy so not adverse to those kind of cuddles...

Ha... I never considered that, but I do quite like touching animals. That's a good point, I have a kind of touch I enjoy, thanks for pointing that out!

 

8 hours ago, EggplantWitch said:

 I'm fairly sure I'm autistic though (should be getting diagnosed in September) so I put it down to that, not that I'm ace.

People talk about autism a lot on this forum. I don't think that's my problem as I am more hypersensitive to people's mood that the other way around, but I hope you find an answer that helps you. In the end I find that knowing yourself, even when the answer is not something you can do anything about, is always a source of peacefulness and a good way to steer your life in the right direction for you.

 

Thanks for your answers, they've help me sort out my feelings!

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LadyOracle

@Seraphin I'm not sure why but I've always been very blunt, I think it's how I was raised. I just genuinely don't care about the opinions of people I don't know or don't like, so it's easy for me. You don't have to feel silly for caring. But I do think it's a good skill to learn to choose whatever makes you happy and stick up for yourself. 

 

Are you HSP too? You said hypersensitive... I am, and part of the reason I don't like touching is that it's just too much for me. When I've already had a lot of things to process, it can be physically unpleasant or even painful when someone touches me, like a burning sensation that lasts quite long. 

 

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utca

I've never liked being touched. Not even hugs or things like that. I can't say if it's related to the aceness or not, but it's interesting to think about.

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RoonalWaslib

I really dislike shaking people’s hands, to be perfectly honest. I don’t know if it’s a touch phobia, or part of my germophobia.  

I really think that we as a society need to move to accept the fist bump as our primary means of physical greeting.

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Bronztrooper
4 hours ago, RoonalWaslib said:

I really dislike shaking people’s hands, to be perfectly honest. I don’t know if it’s a touch phobia, or part of my germophobia.  

I really think that we as a society need to move to accept the fist bump as our primary means of physical greeting.

I see handshakes as being a more formal thing, and since I'm a very informal person, I tend to stay away from it.  I also am not keen on shaking someone's hand because it just... feels weird.  Can't really describe it any better than that.

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Seraphin
14 hours ago, LadyOracle said:

@Seraphin I'm not sure why but I've always been very blunt, I think it's how I was raised. I just genuinely don't care about the opinions of people I don't know or don't like, so it's easy for me. You don't have to feel silly for caring. But I do think it's a good skill to learn to choose whatever makes you happy and stick up for yourself. 

 

Are you HSP too? You said hypersensitive... I am, and part of the reason I don't like touching is that it's just too much for me. When I've already had a lot of things to process, it can be physically unpleasant or even painful when someone touches me, like a burning sensation that lasts quite long. 

 

Not sure what you mean by hypersensitive, I just meant that I don't react well to being the center of attention, and I really overreact if people show negative emotions toward me, like by freezing or wanting to run away from the conversation. It's just your garden variety social anxiety, I think. But maybe my aversion to touch is linked, there a lot of things people communicate by touch and maybe my brain just is not capable of handling that and so it's sending strong over the top distress signals.

 

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mreid

I was never very touchy, except with animals. I was never exactly touch averse for as long as it was the casual accidental touches that happen when you interact with a person, but those you have to do out of "obligation", like kissing relatives or friends of relatives, have always repulsed me (or maybe it's just that my family and their friends are particularly repulsive, which they are). Or when people I am not close to just touch me for no reason, or to try to get close to me, that always irks me. (I have been guilty of that though as part of me trying to behave like a nomal person and thinking that other people wouldn't mind it because well, they were normal)

 

I always prefer to shake people's hands if I am not close to them.

 

On 8/10/2018 at 10:06 AM, Seraphin said:

I get that, one time a guy grab my wrist on the streets because I didn't hear him asking for change with my headset on, and I was surprised by the rage I felt. I'm a chill guy normally, but I nearly punched him on instinct and I was seriously mad for quite a while after that.

Ugh whenever someone does something like that I just feel like knocking them out, specially if it's a creepy hobo.

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Ace-actly

I was asking the same question today, mostly in the context of relationships as I was wondering how to explain to a potential interested party that it could take months before I'm comfortable with holding hands. Though in a positive view, I feel it makes any contact with someone much more meaningful to both myself and the person. I've noticed my family and friends don't go for a hug unless I initiate it so I guess it is almost more appreciated as it shows my comfort with them at the time. 

 

On ‎8‎/‎10‎/‎2018 at 11:06 AM, Seraphin said:

On the other hand I feel really awkward saying to someone 'I don't want you to touch me'. It makes it sounds like I'm repulsed by them personally even if that has got nothing to do with it.

I tend to tell people variations of 'liking my personal space until knowing the person better' and I've found the majority of people are surprised but respectful of it. 

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MrDane

Some like the touch but not when there is a sexual connotation attached to it. 

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012
On 8/10/2018 at 9:22 PM, RoonalWaslib said:

I really dislike shaking people’s hands, to be perfectly honest.

After I do that I can feel the other person's hand in mine for some time afterwards and it really annoys me, it's kind of creepy actually.  I usually wash my hands to start driving that weird feeling away.  

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Fluffy Femme Guy

Touches I'm okay with receiving:
Handshakes
fist bumps
hugs
Headpats/petting/playing with hair (I have nice curls)
Someone leaning on me, but only people I trust not to intend anything non-platonic. Mainly close friends and family.

When I did briefly date, I did enjoy kissing.

Never cuddled, nor do I feel the need to. Don't like the idea of someone holding onto me in a bed or on a couch, even if there's nothing sexual about it.
I'm not appalled by holding hands but I get nothing out of it. Don't see the point.

No erotic touching for me. JUST DON'T!!

 

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Midday.m
On 8/11/2018 at 10:00 PM, MrDane said:

Some like the touch but not when there is a sexual connotation attached to it. 

I like touch , that don't seem sexual tho....platonic touch (if there's something like that)  

but I strongly dislike PDA... 

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InariYana

I like touch a lot - hugs, cuddles, holding hands... I don't mind strangers touching me briefly like giving me a pat on the shoulder, or even dancing with strangers, unless it becomes sexually charged - that makes me so super awkward and uncomfortable that I want to vanish. 

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Fifi123

I am fine with handshakes, and I enjoy hugs from people who I am close to (read: my family). A pat on the back from a stranger is okay, at least in work situations. That happens occasionally.
Other than that, meh. For example, it felt reaaaaaaaally awkward for me when a coworker hugged me a few years ago, after I got discharged from the hospital.

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squaggly

Sometimes I'll love touching, but it depends on the time, place, person, and how the touching is happening. Some touching is too much for me, and some is perfect.

It isn't just asexual people who don't like touch, and not all asexuals don't like it. It's not weird at all to feel that way, or any other way really.

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JHC (pet in waiting)

I don't like touch. A hug from someone I like (not a stranger and obviously not someone I don't like) is ok but not great. I have a furry winter coat that people have stroked before, again: ok-ish. Skin to skin is worse, a handshake is not the worst part of the interview but I'm stunned if people want to shake hands in any other situations.

 

I don't like to SEE ANY PDA - even between parent and small child, it makes me feel uncomfortable. Partly it makes me feel excluded/lonely because it doesn't happen to me (but I wouldn't want it to... I don't have to be rational do I?).

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