How do we best safely return to in-person cuddling Post-Pandemic?

In the USA as we start to see a couple states beginning to enter the early stages of reopening, it makes me consider, what are the best practices to safely return to in-person cuddling in a new world once the pandemic is over? Obviously Covid-19 isn't going to disappear overnight if ever, so the risk of catching it will still remain even when the shutdowns in every state are over. We are going to have to adapt our cuddling practices to be safer. Since professional cuddling isn't regulated, in times like these it can be helpful to look at pro cuddling's cousin massage therapy which is regulated.
For example, in Connecticut massage therapy is not considered an essential business so you cannot legally practice massage right now, so I feel you shouldn't be cuddling until massage is allowed again in your local area. It will be interesting to see what safety precautions massage therapists might be required to implement when they reopen. I'd love this to be a brainstorm of any thoughts/creative/fun ideas that might help us stay safe when we embrace each other again.

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Comments

  • @SouthFlorida4U I know you mentioned you might ask a cuddle client to shower immediately prior to session and to change their clothes before and after each session, in addition to you yourself doing that as well, on top of maybe having masks worn in session.

  • Regardless of whether stares are reopening , doesn't mean things are safe and back to normal unfortunately.

  • @pmvines Yes I agree. That's why I thought I'd put this out there to see what people's thoughts are because the way we go about cuddling is probably going to be vastly different forever. I just feel like it's a good rule of thumb that you shouldn't even try cuddling with someone you aren't quarantined with until massage therapists are allowed to practice again. When we do cuddle again we've gotta proceed with caution for sure.

  • It will likely take a lot of trial and error before we can establish a new sense of normalcy for sure

  • First and foremost before I post what I feel comfortable in, might not be for most and that's okay. Be kind. I posted this in my Facebook. That we each have many different viewpoints/feelings and that's okay. Be kind!

    So I will start having sessions as soon as the bans are lifted in Miami, Florida. I will take extra precaution when screening clients by asking how their health has been in the past month, have they been in contact with anyone recently that has gotten sick and other health questions, also I'll be asking them to shower right before meeting, washing hands right before we start a session, and avoiding face to face gazing and such, but I will do other positions that can facilitate a session. I might ask clients to wear a mask also....I'm still debating. I can make changes as I feel comfortable and by what I see what's going on in my city and in Orlando. Those are the two places I do sessions. Also I plan to shower right after each session to help in anything that might linger. I will be changing clothes as well for every session. I've been doing this for almost a year and I've never gotten sick from a client. Also I have never gotten the flu shot in 15 yrs and I have not had the flu. I hope I can keep that going, doesn't mean that I can't get something but grateful I haven't yet.

    Also I personally don't believe in getting vaccines, so I will refuse to get one. (THIS IS MY OPINION) Its against my beliefs and I don't feel like they are helpful. Viruses like these mutate quite fast and a vaccine will never be able to help 100%. Another thing is we don't even know if we catch it, that we will get immunity which would be the same as getting a vaccine. But apart from that I don't believe because of my beliefs. I should have the freedom of what I put in my body or not, I'm grateful that for now I can choose what this country was founded on and thats my rights! :) Super grateful.

    Also, I can understand everyone's concerns and I totally get it and would never advocate for others not to take the vaccine.

    All I can suggest for myself is making sure to stay healthy in other ways to keep the immune system working by eating right, exercising, spiritually taking care of myself and taking vitamins and minerals to boost my system.

  • Also I want to add that when I mean bans for my city, I mean all bans on non essential workers and such. I will be looking for the massage therapists info. I think its a great way to see what they will be doing too. :)

  • It might be a long time before things can go back to 'normal'.

  • edited May 1

    @SociallyAwkward Yes that's for sure. It's difficult to accept as a cuddler where one of the things we enjoy the most is the most discouraged activity, but we've got to accept it as best we can and find other safer ways to connect in the meantime.

  • Ok so if there's a vaccine available, I would definitely avoid seeing a pro cuddler who refuses to take it. That is just taking unnecessary risks. A pro cuddler is seeing so many different clients, each one of those clients increases the risk that the pro cuddler has been exposed to the virus that causes covid-19. Unless a pro cuddler has taken the vaccine, he or she is a danger to the cuddling clients they are seeing.

  • In fact, I would go so far as to suggest the site add a checkbox for profiles for pro cuddlers saying whether they have a recent vaccine or not for covid related viruses. Every few years there may be a new vaccine as it mutates. We are never going to be free of corona viruses, but we can at least protect ourselves. They are working on vaccines right now.
    Vaccines are the reason things like measles, and polio are so rare in the developed world.
    they aren't new, and they have saved countless lives.

  • If vaccination only protected the person who is vaccinated, that would be a personal choice ; but vaccines also protect everyone they might pass the disease onto, so it is a collective choice.

    A person who chooses to not be vaccinated, is nevertheless benefitting from the reduced prevalence of the disease in the community, caused by their colleagues and neighbours, who have been vaccinated. As @Melancholy says, without the high uptake of vaccination for many diseases, our world would be a very dangerous place. The lockdown for Covid-19 is only needed, because there is no vaccine, yet.

    Choosing to not be vaccinated, is like choosing to not wash the crockery in a shared house, knowing that someone else will do it. Or choosing to serve the collective meals on crockery that might have been washed, if someone else did it.

  • Let’s take a look at this problem from another perspective, with an example of flu. You want to date someone. And you both know about such an infection as flu, of course. And you both know that flu is contagious and it is an infection. And you do not know about this Covid-19 yet, it is just does not exist. You also know that during the 2018–2019 season CDC estimated 35.5 million people getting sick with influenza. The US population was about 328.2 million in 2019. That means that about 1 in 10 people catches the flu (the peak is in fall/winter). That means if you meet 10 potential partners in a row, the chance you will get the flu is close to 100%. Does it happen in reality? No, because it is just statistics. And you have the immune system that protects you. When you meet someone on a date, do you wear a mask and ask you buddy to wear it too? No, you don’t do that. You cannot even imagine that, it is so weird. All of a sudden, this Covid-19 shows up. What changes? It is just a cold/flu type of virus, and it causes the pneumonia, too, like the flu viruses. You are told about the social distance and wearing masks, by CDC and mass media, all over the world – that is the difference. So, and what? If you are going to follow this mass media guidance, the social life is ruined. If you are going to wear mask, how are going to see and feel emotions and feel that energy of another human being? Will mask protect you against anything contagious? Partially, maybe. At the same time, it’ll hide the human essence. Dating and cuddling as well as other social activities are not a work (even for pro), it is a personal and mutual enjoyment of being with another human. With the Covid-19, the mass media has caused a huge mess in human relationships, putting a lot of fear into it. What is the solution? Here is my point – let’s keep being humans, exercise common sense and healthy lifestyle (and hygiene), and maintain and make stronger immune system which is the best protection. P.S. When someone gets a flu shot, how do they know if it really works? I had not gotten shots for over 20 years until 2017, and I had never had the pneumonia. In 2017, I got the flu shot, and got the pneumonia. The official efficiency of the flu shots is about 60%, according to CDC. Period.

  • @Technhap
    Covid-19 has several specific features which make it different, as far as we know :
    1. It has a relatively long incubation period, during which the person is contagious ; so a person who finds they have it, can have interacted with many people in the meantime.
    2. It can be transmitted by air, or direct contact, or indirect contact ; so it is hard to avoid, and to trace who might have caught it. The only solution is severe social distancing, so that the R-value stays below 1.
    3. The people who are dying of it, are those at the end of a chain, often those in care homes, so catching it puts them ultimately at more risk. The young couple cuddling, are unlikely to suffer badly, which risks making them blasé.
    4. There is no vaccine to protect people, and some don't respond to even the best medical interventions ; the only weapon humanity has, is the "scorched earth policy" of cutting metaphorical fire-breaks between places the virus can multiply i.e. human beings.

    The other difficulty is that the virus is so new, that we don't know enough about it, to make informed decisions.

  • @geoff1000 I do not want to get into a long scientific arguing about any vaccine efficiency and effectiveness, just a short catch. Following your words, I did just a quick search in the professional literature for epidemiologists and infectionists (anyone can do it!). To my surprise, #1 - no one vaccine can guarantee exactly 100% protection (that is why before any vaccination we sign waivers), #2 - they (professionals) are still arguing about how to estimate (!) vaccine efficiency and effectiveness, they just do not know that (!). The result, again, we sign waivers and, if we get sick because of either of the infection or just that "bad" vaccine or something else (who knows), we have no right to request anything for the damage to our health. That is the reality. The bottom line - it a personal choice to educate yourself and make informed decisions about everything (!) in our lives. Specifically, if someone believes (for whatsoever reason) that masking yourself and separating yourself from others for cuddling will work, just do it, and enjoy your life in mask and self-isolation, for years ahead. And when that one will get into a care home, let them ask if it was worth of wearing mask and staying 6 feet away from other people for the entire life. P.S. Would not be it better for them to go directly into a monastery? You see, it is a personal choice of everyone how to live your own life. Disclaimer: I have nothing again monastery and monks, it's spiritual and their personal choice, that is their life, and I am not a God nor a manipulator.

  • https://www.cnn.com/us/live-news/us-coronavirus-update-05-01-20/h_8777111fc29b9d8d0ba92a172350a7b8?utm_source=fbCNN&utm_term=link&utm_content=2020-05-01T17:37:45&utm_medium=social

    Yeah. No good any time soon. If you ignore science, then don't be surprised when you too, become a statistic. The worst part of the clear lack of regard to others in our society here, it's not about YOU, our constitution begins as WE THE PEOPLE. it's EVERYONE'S right to be healthy and safe as well as personal rights to our lives is crucial, but not at the cost of others.

    Over 200k citizens of America are dead now that would relatively be alive right now and the numbers are stacking every day. 1 million people worldwide that we only know about.

    I don't see how this is anything but outright selfish to our clients, coworkers and family when we continue to ignore the body count and assume that your need outweighs the protection of others.

    How are you servicing others mentally and emotionally if you just keep lining up these sessions to potentially infect others, asymptomatic doesn't mean you're in the green light to be near others.

    My best friend's healthy husband was a nurse in NY. He's dead. Not even been a week yet. You going to tell my grieving friend that it's just like the flu?

    If you choose to live in a dangerous mantra about how YOU are affected and YOUR rights are all that matter, then you start to ignore, disassociate and disdain those that fall through the cracks, who you don't know their medical history about and you clearly don't read a history book about how these pandemics work.

    This is a general response to any idea of cuddling someone this early on, I'm currently on day 49 on self isolation, because I care more for others health even if I'm seemingly "healthy" then to return to cuddling anytime soon. I actively talk with all my regulars at this time and try to boost morale because it's about connection to me, anything else is a bonus.

    Stay safe, stay informed, & stay vigilant for yourself and others. 👍

  • @Technhap
    "it is a personal choice of everyone how to live your own life"

    Almost every choice we make, affects others, to a greater or lesser extent. That means when you make a choice "for yourself", you are in fact also making a choice for others ; and that may not be the choice they would wish you to make for them. Even a person engaged in a risky sport, who kills only themselves, can cause upset to those who knew them and whoever finds the body.

    We all have different appetites for risk, including the risk of feeling guiltily about the effect our actions have on others. In this case, many governments around the world have set a temporary standard for the risk of Covid-19 transmission, which is Social Distancing. Anyone choosing to not do that, is nevertheless benefitting from the choice of others to follow the inconvenient rules ; and that is just plain selfish. Ditto for vaccination ; and it doesn't need to be 100% uptake and 100% effective, to be useful. A good analogy is Enriched Uranium, where the chain reaction for power or explosion relies on a percentage threshold of the U235 isotope. Vaccination is like converting enough of that U235 into U238, so it cannot take part ; or soaking a percentage of wooden sticks in a pile, such that lighting one, doesn't light all of them.

    Covid-19 virus particles outside human bodies, only last a few days, human beings are carrying them and producing more of them. We are the victims, but we are also the cause ; and as I and others have said, those who are dying, are very rarely those who were not following the Social Distancing rules, but were the old, and the sick, and the health professionals looking after them.

    One may as well say that I want to follow my hobby of planning landmines ; and it won't be dangerous, because I'll be careful to not visit the same place twice.

    The worldwide lockdowns can't continue indefinitely, because they are stacking up problems for the future ; and they will be able to be eased sooner, if more people were following the ones we have now.

  • @geoff1000 True, 100%. And let me just paraphrase you a little bit: "Even a person engaged in a complete self-isolation, who suffers only themselves, after signing the vaccine waiver and getting the vaccine, can cause upset to those who knew them and whoever finds the body." :'( On a separate note: I personally follow all the gov recommendations when public, and keep public safe from myself. I just consider those recommendations not adequate and manipulative with regards to the public, scientifically and politically, from my point of view (I have a PhD in chemistry and have worked with biological materials, and familiar with the protocols and procedures). That's why I express my opinion, especially here on this forum. Because cuddling, as a partner dancing, and dating are all intimate, and between both adults, with a mutual consent. And all that is about trust between two, not when the officials will tell you: "Ok, you are good to go to hug and cuddle!" I believe they will never tell us that exactly. Instead, they will tell us something politically correct and manipulative, as usual, to shut up any potential lawsuits or protests, even weak ones. Again, from any point of view, it comes down to everyone's personal decision, how to do that and when, even in an unbelievable scenario that everything is lifted in mid-May. Good luck!

  • They should open up the economy. What’s killing more people is the depression and loneliness caused by this lockdown. It’s not realistic to stay locked down until we find a vaccine. Even the flu vaccine is a hit and miss. Millions still die from the common flu.

  • edited May 1

    @Melancholy You make great points! The Covid-19 Vaccine check box might be something for @Mark and @SoulcuddlerZ to consider adding to both professional and maybe client/enthusiast/profiles too once the vaccine is available. The only potential drawback I could see is that since people would be giving that information on the honor system, people could easily lie and list themselves has having been vaccinated for Covid-19 when they have not and may not have the intention of getting it.
    Vaccines are probably one of the top 5 most contentious topics out there because of the fact touched upon by @Melancholy and @geoff1000 : Some refuse vaccines on a personal basis "my body, my choice" but since our collective immunity to a disease effects all of us, not getting a vaccine effects far more than just the person refusing it.
    There are some states that recently started requiring all children to get all their vaccines in order to attend school, with no more religious exemptions. Some speculate that once we have the Covid-19 vaccine, they may try to extend that requirement to adults specifically for this vaccine.
    I'm on the fence about this because to physically force vaccines into people against there will seems draconian, but if we get to the point that we struggle to have herd immunity to a vaccine preventable disease and people are suffering and dying because of it that's just as bad. You could argue either way that rights are being taken away: # 1. injecting something into someone's body against their will takes away their rights and # 2. refusing vaccines risks taking away the lives of others if they become sick and die from the disease, so their right to live has been stolen from them. There will always be people on both sides of the vaccine debate, it will never come anywhere close to having 100% consensus in either direction.
    @MissAdventurous To clarify, in starting this forum, I wasn't advocating for a return to in-person cuddle sessions this early on. I just think it's important we start the conversation about how to safely cuddle again for when the time comes. In the coming weeks and months, as various states lift stay at home and nonessential business restrictions, people are going to want to cuddle again and I think we should be prepared as best we can to do that as safely as possible. Ultimately, I think it's going to be a personal decision to be made between a pro cuddler and a client (or any two cuddlers) as to whether or not it's safe to book an in-person session. I don't think there is one size fits all approach to safety when it comes to resuming cuddling. Think of it this way: How a store set's up it's physical distancing layout will vary widely from store to store, because no two stores have exactly the same original pre-Covid-19 layout. No two pairs of cuddlers are exactly the same, with many unique circumstances to consider. I was hoping this forum could serve as a brainstorming ground for ideas to reduce the risk of exposure in a session. As I mentioned above, I feel like it will be interesting to see when and in what capacity massage therapists are allowed to reopen. Even if they are one of the last businesses allowed to reopen, I doubt they'd be allowed to reopen with no restrictions at all, and it may be a good general rule of thumb for the pro cuddling industry to follow suit because of the similar high contact nature of both industries.
    @MacaronCuddles I agree with you to a point. Not to get political but I don't like President Trump, though something he did say about this made sense to me "The cure cannot be worse than the disease". I think it's vital that we had this initial shutdown to prevent an overwhelming surge of many people catching this virus at once and overwhelming our healthcare system, resulting in more deaths and less recoveries. Though, when we get to a point that's far beyond a minor inconvenience and people have been so isolated for so long that they contract mental health issues that may result in suicide, we might be doing more harm than good with longer-term shutdowns. This is similar to the vaccine debate, it's a no win situation. If you open the economy now we will have a surge of infections and more people will die, if go to the extreme of keeping a total shutdown in place until we have a vaccine, we'll have massive widespread mental health issues that could lead to a higher suicide rate with both personal and financial livelihoods destroyed, either way people will suffer and lives will be on the line.

  • edited May 1

    Going forward into the next two years of this pandemic, I believe there are three important considerations for folks who choose to cuddle: professional to client or enthusiast to enthusiast.

    Open communication: transparency regarding one's choice to be vaccinated or not, having contracted the virus in the past or not and so on. That at least gives a person the ability to choose whether or not to transact with another.

    Flexibility: to adjust one's way of transacting business in the world of new ongoing restrictions and concerns among clients. Adjusting one's mindset and criteria regarding how and whom one chooses to go cuddle with. And just being very mindful and vigilant around the way one practices personal hygiene.

    Respect: acknowledging the rights of others to not get vaccinated while doing what one must to protect oneself and one's loved ones. Even if it means passing. By the same token accepting one's responsibility to at least be safe to self and others by getting antibody tests periodically even as one chooses to not get vaccinated.

    I could go on and on and add more to the above-mentioned. The point I'm trying to make is the cuddle universe pre CV-19 is and will be a very different one today and at least for the next two years. Hence, there are real adjustments that each of us will make in order to maintain health and safety. As we make such adjustments whatever they might be let's just not forget the importance of communicating transparently, and respectfully with each other and being flexible and responsible while we're at it. That's all!

  • There's no guarantee that a vaccine will ever be developed. Many viral diseases deadlier than C-19 have no vaccines, and the coronavirus family specifically is already tricky to deal with, as all seven strains are impervious to antiviral drugs. All attempts to develop a vaccine to SARS and MERS have failed, and C-19 is essentially a new strain of SARS. It is entirely possible that the world is simply a more dangerous place now, and that our only recourse is to find a way to adapt to a new reality.

  • Effective vaccination trains the body to have a quick response to a
    disease. It therefore prevents a person : suffering the symptoms of the disease ( personal choice ), and giving it to others ( collective choice ).

    If a vaccine can't be developed, or people don't want to have it, the next best alternatives will be either :
    1. A method to suppress the risk of transmission, as we have with HIV. This may be unnecessary for some, depending on how long natural immunity lasts.
    2. A quick and reliable test to determine if a person has so little ( or none ) of the virus in them, that they can't pass it on. We are currently mostly relying on obvious symptoms ; like the US had a physical activity sobriety test for drink-driving, whereas other countries have a breath-alcohol test.

    A person who has not been vaccinated against various illnesses, might be required to pass a test before being allowed to : professionally cuddle, work in a shop, cut hair, attend school etc. I think SARS was quite effectively detected by contactless thermal measurement of a person's forehead, and I don't think there is any moral or religious objection to that.

    Covid-19 seems to have a relatively long incubation period ( allowing travellers to spread the disease further before they become sick ) ; and if there is also a long period before they become infectious, a test every few days would be sufficient.

    This is the same as professional athletes being dope-tested, and I think airline pilots are alcohol tested routinely before flying. Porn actors who have unprotected sex, I think need to be regularly tested.

    The new "normal" might be for partners ( sex or cuddling ) to test each other beforehand ; as partners for casual sex now typically use a condom.

    There is no vaccine for the family of coronaviruses which cause the common cold, but maybe the same approach is feasible. If everyone could check each morning if they have it, and isolate themselves for N days as necessary, we could beat that too.

    The symptoms of the common cold are too mild to justify that isolation for most of us ( we are expected to "soldier on" ), but those who work closely with others, may be required to be more careful. Malingerers wanting a "duvet day", could be detected, by requiring them to keep the sneezed-into tissues over those N days, to prove they were ill.

  • I chose not to live in fear. :)

  • @snuggleme123
    Sounds like a good plan ; if you follow all the Social Distancing rules, and get a vaccination as and when one becomes available, you can minimise the fear of suffering from it, and / or passing it on to someone else.

  • My opinion is the virus is here to stay and will not be going anywhere, it will not disappear. And as a vaccine like it was mentioned before its not a guarantee plus its taking quite sometime before its available. So by having these restrictions put in place and then be lifted in due time will not make things better

  • Corinna virus is here to stay and by being on lockdown helps in someway but eventually we all have to return to our daily life ,and it won't change no matter if we are on lockdown or not

  • We will inevitability be returning to in-person cuddling both while this virus is still around (as it not or may not ever disappear) and before a vaccine is available (if one ever is). There are some professional cuddlers that have been cuddling in-person throughout this entire pandemic, whether or not that's morally right or wrong is another debate. All I'm saying is, we need to be prepared for when we resume activities of close contact while the risk is still present on some level. Does anyone have an tangible ideas of how we can reduce the risk as much as possible? Like maybe we could be taking temperatures prior to session in addition to the other things mentioned earlier on this forum.

  • @geoff1000
    My days are worry free my friend. :)

  • Taking temperature or wearing mask gloves prior to cuddling is a start but the question is will people be doing that on a regular basis forever?..it may start out that way but in due time everyone will let their guards down ,just recognize that the virus is not going anywhere ever so get use to it being here just like every other disease thats in this world

  • Honestly I don't see why we even should be in lockdown or stop the economy because of the corona virus,when aids came around sars, mosquito flu ,nile, anthrax etc etc All these other diseases came before the Corona virus and yet we all continue with our daily lives the ecomony was never in a shutdown. I don't see anything special about this Corona virus from the rest of the diseases that was here before

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