PhD touch research mentioned in Het Parool
I was contacted by a journalist a couple of weeks ago. She was writing an article about cuddle therapy, a relatively new phenomenon in the Netherlands. A cuddle therapist is not a certified therapist, it’s simply someone, generally female, who is willing to cuddle you and keep you company for a fee. It speaks to the great need for touch, especially for people with limited access to affective touch or social connection more generally. I recently tried a type of physiotherapy called haptonomy, which is quite common in the Netherlands, and often covered by one’s health insurance. It heavily involves the use of interpersonal touch to connect with one’s body to learn to regulate emotion. It wasn’t my cup of tea, but it’s a solid option for the touch-deprived, maybe more useful than getting a massage. Anyway, regarding the article, I simply answered some questions about the psychological and physiological effects of affective touch. The article is in Dutch, and can be accessed here.