A Touchy Subject: How to Work on Being Touched

Old and young hands together

I am a very physically affectionate person. If it were socially acceptable I would introduce myself to new people by biting at their stomachs and nuzzling their neck.

Almost every week I swap full-body massages with my girlfriends. I kiss people goodbye and hello and my poor husband has bald patches all over his otherwise hairy body from being love-nuzzled.

Cat Licking GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

I think one of the saddest lessons life teaches us is to not let ourselves be touched. Men learn not to “be gay” and women learn, often through experiences with sexual assault, to be afraid.

With introversion finally getting its time in the limelight (calm down introverts, you can have the limelight on you and still hide under the stairs in the dark) and every talk show host/therapist/blogger talking about setting your boundaries, it is easier than ever to not let yourself be touched.

To touch is to trust

Yes, I think you should challenge yourself to let someone touch you. To touch is to trust. I think it is something worth working on. And I know no one else will tell you this because you are scary with your thick outer shell of scales and that look on your face like you’ve seen some shit. But I’m gonna because mama loves you and knows what’s best.

In all seriousness, I get it. Once you’ve been violated, not touching and letting yourself be touched is not only the instinctual thing to do, but it is easy to tell yourself that those feelings should not be questioned, ever.

So let’s prod at that sensitive area. Today I want to talk about how to touch and be touched when that’s the last thing you want to do.

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DG Fall Essentials

Girl with a scarf holding a cup of coffee.

Things have been getting a little heavy around here at Damn, Girl. From declaring war on happiness to shitting on Lifetime movies, it may be time to take a walk on the lighter side.

This week I couldn’t decide between writing about “Why Your Grandma is Kind Of a Slut” or “The Surprising Health Benefits of Puppy Blood,” so I opted for a third option. A classic: Damn, Girl Fall Essentials.

Cat GIFs - Find & Share on GIPHY

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Minimalism? Oh Fuck It, Let’s Buy Stuff.

Empty room

I grew up poor. Like…in conditions that you don’t even associate with being possible in a first world country.

Abandoned building in Detroit poor. “Running water? What the hell is it running from?” poor. Three siblings glued together on a dirty mattress in front of an open oven in the kitchen in December CAUSE WE GONNA DIE! poor.

It has given me an appreciation of things. Physical things. Amazing, tangible things.

I swear to God, for the first five years I had a dryer, I legit used to take out all the clean towels and just lay in the pile, purring. “Where’s DGGYST?” “She fell asleep in the towels again.”

Cats cuddling in a towel

I’m firmly out of my towel fixation. (That’s a dirty lie. May I never become so jaded as to not appreciate warm clean towels.) My love of creature comforts continues, but I am trying put that aside. After all, happiness is an inside job. I’m going to try forest bathing, a vow of silence, a retreat of the spiri…oh fuck it let’s buy stuff!

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Fuck High Heels

A woman in high heel shoes

I’ve made a pretty revolutionary decision. I’ve decided to never wear anything uncomfortable ever again. Like. Ever….

Bridget Jones holding up a pair of large panties.

I’m doing a whole series on this shit. It’s about self-care and feminism and honor! …Or possibly me just being fed up with being fucking uncomfortable. I’ll be hurling all of my itchy, too tight, too high-necked, too-anything out of my closet and into a pile where I will urinate on them and light it all on fire and dance naked around the smelly polyester bonfire….Oh, like you have anything better to do on a Friday night.

I’ll be starting this purge with my shoes, because no itchy sweater, no tight pant, no binding dress can compare to the mass discomfort and mass destruction of high heels.

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