While some might say we live in a touch-deprived society, Robin Marie of Lawrence is working to bring people closer together by being a professional “cuddler.”
A person who provides comfort, reassurance, hugs and general snuggling. For $80 an hour.
“It can be as simple as me sitting on the couch just sitting next to someone. It can be holding hands with someone all the way to we`re laying horizontal on the bed and we are spooning,” Marie said in an interview with Fox 4 KC.
Marie has been involved in therapeutic touch for more than a year. She was certified through a website called cuddlist.com.
“There is a training process that you go through and practicum as well and then you get certified by going through an evaluation with a specially-trained cuddliest,” she said.
Marie has about 30 clients ranging in age from 20 to 75 years old.
“The baseline agreement that I have with every client is if either of us are ever uncomfortable we agree to speak up and say something,” Marie said, adding that professional cuddling can help people feel connected and more comfortable in their skin.
“That is something touch does for us through oxytocin release, neurotransmitter release,” said Marie.
This was Amy Thompson`s first time doing it. The 27-year-old believes this kind of contact can help with understanding consent, especially in the #MeToo era.
“There’s this huge consent crisis where people don`t know how to explicitly communicate with each other and being a safe space like with what Robin does could be extraordinarily beneficial to myself and others,” Thompson said.
Marie said she provides a platonic touch aimed at setting boundaries. Boundaries that include cuddling while reading, watching a movie, doing restorative yoga, eye-gazing, meditating, or spending time in nature.