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Sex and Skin Hunger

skinhungerwater19J W Waterhouse The Awakening of Adonis (detail)

Here is a guest post by a client talking about how sex workers have helped the issue of ‘skin hunger’ for him personally, following a discussion we had during our booking, which he has mentioned below.  I invited him to contribute to my blog after this discussion as I am always happy to hear of positive benefits which sex (and/or sex work) has for both men and women.

The answer to the question “If I died tomorrow, would I die a happy man” has a much different answer after my first months punting than my answer would have been immediately prior to starting my punting journey. Now I would die a much happier man. Compared to the relatively miserable, grumpy old man I had become, my mood is now significantly higher and seems to have been improving steadily over the course of my, so far, brief punting journey.

Towards the end of my first month’s punting, during a session with a lovely red-headed lady from the South Island, I made a throw-away comment about my happiness levels having increased as a result of my foray into punting. The lady in question was interested in this comment and, during some slow, pleasurable moments, as we chatted and discussed the general topic, I became intrigued by the improvement in my general mood and happiness levels and, after the session had ended, went looking for possible explanations as to why a month’s punting could lead to such an improvement in my mood.

The background to my punting is that I am a guy in my mid 50’s, who was in a long term relationship for almost 30 years, until that relationship imploded roughly three years ago towards the end of 2011. When I started punting in late October 2014, I hadn’t seen or touched a naked female in real life for roughly three years. And my long-term relationship hadn’t been in great shape for 3 to 5 years prior to the split. The frequency of sex during those later years meant that my marriage could be defined as a sexless marriage. That is, having sex once a month or less. During the later years of my relationship, there had been huge frustration on my part, as the higher libido partner, with not only the lack of sex, but more so the lack of affection and cuddling.

When I returned to being a single man, for a lengthy period of time I wasn’t that interested in pursuing relationships. Just as I am now. I don’t want a relationship. A fuck buddy would be nice. But a partner is not on my horizon.

...I gave some thought to my dilemma of wanting to experience the delights of sex again, while not wanting to have the bother of a relationship. Purchasing sexual services was not something I had…
About two months ago I gave some thought to my dilemma of wanting to experience the delights of sex again, while not wanting to have the bother of a relationship. Purchasing sexual services from sex workers was not something I had ever really seriously contemplated, but as I gave the idea more thought decided that entering the world of punting was going to be the solution I would choose to solve my dilemma.

My first punt was a great experience. And, as my punting experience grew over my first month’s punting (six punts with four women), I came to realize how skin hungry I had been. I found I absolutely loved drinking in the beauty of the naked female form and came to love being able to massage the beautiful women who allowed me to book time with them. Sure, the penetrative sex was great, but I was finding that, for me, the period leading up to sex where I could view and massage the naked female form was an intensely pleasurable time. There was even a moment in one booking when I was massaging a lovely lady for an extended period, that I wondered whether the lady in question may have been feeling a little guilty at being on the receiving end of a lengthy massage instead of either delivering the massage herself or moving the session on towards penetrative sex.

Subjectively, at the end of my first month’s punting, I felt a lot better in myself than I had for a considerable period of time. Mind you, after such a long drought, perhaps having sex with four different ladies – with repeat visits to two of the ladies – in such a short period of time may have elevated the mood of any straight male.

As google helped me to look for information related to skin hunger, several links to work by Dr Kory Floyd gave me some pointers to possible explanations as to why satiating my skin hunger could lead to an improvement in my physical and mental health.

For example, in a piece for Psychology Today, Floyd wrote that there were lots of benefits from touching another person’s skin besides the obvious like less loneliness and more happiness to lower stress levels, anxiety or mood disorders and susceptibility to depression. 

...lots of benefits from touching another person's skin besides the obvious like less loneliness and more happiness to lower stress levels, anxiety or mood disorders and susceptibility to…
These findings don’t establish that skin hunger causes all the opposite negative conditions, only that people who feel highly affection-deprived are more likely than others to experience them. If you’re one of those people, though, these findings probably come as no surprise. Affectionate contact is so necessary for a healthy life that we suffer when we don’t get enough.

Floyd’s piece ends with “Fortunately, skin hunger doesn’t have to be a permanent condition. Each of us has the capacity to get more affection in our lives.” And for me, the way I am choosing to get more affection into my life is through the hire of escorts to provide a service that I believe results in physical and mental health benefits.

Looking back on on my first month’s punting, I am glad I crossed that divide between punters and non-punters.

Summary – What does Floyd’s research and communications mean to this newly minted punter?

Satiating skin hunger through consensual sex and naked cuddling or massage, even when those consensual sexual services have been paid for, has considerable mental and physical health benefits...
 Satiating skin hunger through consensual sex and naked cuddling or massage, even when those consensual sexual services have been paid for, has considerable mental and physical health benefits for me. Perhaps I am suffering from confirmation bias and only looking for research that supports my subjective experience. Even with that in mind, I feel much, much better mood wise at the end of my first month’s punting than I did at the start. To my mind, Floyd’s communications resonate and seem to provide a valid explanation for why I have an improved mood and am, in general, a lot happier in myself.

1) For those who like to consume information via youtube video, there is a 45 minute video of Kory Floyd discussing affection deprivation on youtube.

2) For anyone who is more interested in reading research papers, Kory Floyd has a paper titled “Relational and Health Correlates of Affection Deprivation” that is available for download. The paper’s abstract reads:

“This paper articulates the construct of affection deprivation, the condition of wanting more tactile affectionate communication than one receives. Individual- and group-level variance on the construct is investigated and its social and health correlates are identified in a survey of 509 adults. Affection deprivation shows no correlation with age and no relationship with ethnicity, but men report significantly higher affection deprivation than women. Moreover, as affection exchange theory predicts, affection deprivation shows positive associations with loneliness, depression, stress, alexithymia, preoccupied and fearful avoidant attachment styles, and numbers of personality disorders, mood and anxiety disorders, and secondary immune disorders. Affection deprivation shows negative associations with general health, happiness, social support, relationship satisfaction, and attachment security.”

3) My transition from non-punter to punter was much less stressful of a transition than I feared it would be. After having an upbringing where my mother managed to load me up with several large suitcases of luggage, I certainly never envisioned I would be able to get over those imbedded childhood memes that considered sex work unclean – I can still hear my mother’s shrill voice across the years “.. she’s just a slut.. a prostitute..”, along with my mother’s face contorted in a look of contempt for the object of her derision. The fear of contempt can be a powerful thing.

4) If the only way to engage an escort’s services was via a parlour or brothel, I’m not sure I would have become a punter. Being able to research online made the initial contact much easier, and visiting independent ladies means being able to avoid the embarrassment of seeing parlour receptionists and other punter.  Overall I am very glad I have made the transition, and that New Zealand’s legal environment allows punters to be able to purchase consensual sexual services to alleviate their affection deprivation without fear of criminal charges. 

I am very glad I have made the transition and that New Zealand's legal environment allows punters to purchase consensual sexual services to alleviate affection deprivation without fear of…

6 Responses to Sex and Skin Hunger

  1. […] am aware as a sex worker that there can sometimes be a trench between men wanting intimacy due to skin hunger issues and those dealing with and trying to bargain with sex […]

  2. […] who happen to all be circumcised or not to the man whose mother brought him up to believe that sex workers were to be derided, our families affect us sexually far into the future. […]

  3. […] deprived of affection. As a counterpoint to the misery Arndt documented by the affection deprived, a recent post by a client, provided anecdotal evidence on the improvement in the quality of my client’s life when he […]

  4. […] that most people have an idea that sex and in particular orgasms are healthy and good for both men and women and I’m all for anything wholesome and legal that inspires sexual exploration.  I […]