Skin Hunger

Discussion in 'General Sex Discussion' started by Dreama, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. Dreama

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    Last year, my spring semester Health and Wellness class discussed the issue of sexuality. Within this discussion, I learned a new term: Skin Hunger. Our instructor defined this as the level of touch that one needs to experience from others, whether it be the loving touch of a significant other, or a passing pat on the back from a family member or friend. A few minutes ago, I was thinking about this, and thought it might be a neat question to pose to my fellow :sf ers. So, guys, what is your level of skin hunger?


    Personally, I need a lot of touch from other people. I don't really have a huge level of personal space, so I get a lot of touch, and I'm happy. All of the times that I have been depressed that I can think of, I also did not as much touch via human interaction. I cannot help but wonder if all of that somehow contributed(?).
     
  2. Bluesy

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    I'm a touchy-feely person, myself, and I agree that touch is necessary to mental well-being, but what may be surprising is that it doesn't necessarily have to come from other people. Hugs and other affectionate contact stimulates the release of oxytocin in the brain (an abundance of oxytocin is why the drug Ecstasy makes people feel so good), but we also get an oxytocin boost whenever we pet and cuddle animals...and I wouldn't be surprised to discover that social animals like dogs and cats are also reliant on oxytocin production for emotional well-being. Touch is certainly necessary for bonding.

    Sounds like a reasonable theory to me.
     
  3. FlirtyChick

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    I am a touchy-feely person, and I hug everybody!!! I love to hold my hubby and be held by him, and I enjoy kisses too. When it comes to my little one, I cannot hold and touch her enough either! Bluesy's point about animals is a good one. Our dog used to sleep on a blanket on the sofa, and used my hip as a pillow when I was next to him. When our daughter was born we stopped letting him do that in order to put him in the proper pack order (below the baby). He is an itchy nervous mess now. Perhaps he needs some cuddle time after the child goes to bed......
     
  4. djmercer1

    djmercer1 New Member

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    my wife is similar in that she requires alot of contact. we also have a intact male setter that is as you describe, i wonder how hell take to the baby and being demoted. our bitch dog is quite standoffish and i think shell be ok because she only wtches and comes for a pet when she wants it....

    btw, i require little to no contact and this causes us problems..

    dave
     
  5. FlirtyChick

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    We didn't demote our dog in the beginning. He was is gentle as a lamb, so we relegated him to the loveseat, where he was happy as a clam. When the baby started pulling up, she pulled up on the loveseat and made eye-contact with him on his level. We heard him growl for the second time in his life, and we promptly threw him (literally) outside for the rest of the day, then banished him to the floor. This was our fault. It is the responsibility of parents to protect both kids and the animals. I urge you to read about and become familiar with the pack instinct that dogs possess, and learn how to make sure you safely bring a baby into your home. The dog should be in the lowest order in the house. Some people think we are crazy, but I would rather have them think that than have a child with a damaged body/face.
     
  6. djmercer1

    djmercer1 New Member

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    i only worry about my male as ive had a couple of runins with him over the years, he had to learn that he was lower than my wife and also that he was lower than my niece and nephew on the totem pole. once taught he take his position of protecting pretty seriously, but he knows his place. i only worry because he has to learn a new lesson and i 'hate' to have to rough him so hell learn it... my other dogs( i have 10 in total, mixture of males and females) are sweet peas, but where hes in the house he seems to be a little thick between the ears....but he respects authority.

    dave
     
  7. Dreama

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    Oh yeah, I don't know what I would do if I didn't have my parents' dogs at home. I love them, and miss them so, and when I'm away from my fiance, it definitely helps to curb my feelings of sadness. Animals are awesome...Unfortunately, we can't have pets in our new apartment, so we'll have to wait a few years (until we get out of married student housing) to get pets.
     
  8. BassDude

    BassDude New Member

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    Djmercer1...I'm no expert (although I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night:p), but here's some thoughts about dogs and babies/kids...don't assume dogs think like humans, because they do not. Now, I am a dog lover (umm...don't take that literally!), but you do have to conisder that a dog is a predator...that is their instinct...make sure you fully understand what that means when you have a dog and a baby in the same house. Dogs are driven almost entirely by instinct and just a little bit of cognitive ability. It's very easy for a dog to see a baby as beneath him/her in the pack hierarchy...if the baby is crawling or lying on the floor and it's even a medium-size dog...the dog thinks he outranks the baby because he's at a higher elevation. The dog also expects the baby to act like a dog, since that's all he instinctively knows...how many babies stare? (That's the body language of aggression/domination to a dog. I can make our dog lie down by simply staring at him.) A baby staring at a dog could provoke an attack from an otherwise peaceful dog, which is really just the dog asserting that he outranks the baby.

    Now, here's something most people miss: if you are in the room with the dog and the baby, and the dog knows you are the "alpha dog", then the dog will be peaceful. Guess what, if you walk out of the room, the pack hierarchy (and the pack dynamics) have just changed...the leader is gone, so the dog is more likely to try to assert his position as the new leader in your absence (even if it's only a momentary absence). And this is even true if, say, you and your wife are in the room, the dog recognizes you as his leader but not your wife...if you leave, the dog may try to "claim" the leader position by asserting his dominance even though your wife is in the room (since he doesn't see her as his leader). This is why people hear a growl from an otherwise peaceful dog and run back into the room to find the dog ripping their child's face off. Doesn't sound very good does it?

    My main point: don't take any chances with your child. A dog can be replaced...your child cannot. Don't leave any baby or young child unsupervised with a dog for even a moment. Our daughter is 5 years old, and only this year have I begun to allow her to be alone in a room or downstairs alone with our peaceful old dog while I'm upstairs. He clearly understands that she outranks him, will follow commands from her, etc.

    Here are some things you can do to insure that your dog clearly understands that you and the other people in the household outrank him/her:

    1) Humans eat first, dogs eat last.

    2) If dog wants to be petted, he must follow a command first (sit, lie down, give paw, etc.) If the dog nudges you to be petted, guess what...he's just given you a command! If you follow it, the dog is now in charge. If the dog nudges you or your hand, give him a command, then pet him only after he executes the command.

    3) Humans control the door. Humans go in and out first, the dog goes after the humans. If the dog needs to go outside or come inside and you're not going too, the dog must follow a command (sit, whatever) before you open the door for him.

    4) Dogs are not allowed on furniture or any point where they can be at a higher elevation than the humans (including the children or a baby). In nature, the leader gets the most comfortable and/or highest elevated place to sleep. If you let the dog on a couch while the baby is on the floor, you've told the dog he outranks the baby in the pack hierarchy.

    5) Do not step over the dog if he's lying in a doorway or threshold...make the dog move. Tell him to move...if he doesn't, nudge him with your foot. Controlling entries/exits to rooms is done by the leaders of the pack.

    6) When you give the dog a command, say it in a low growly voice and stare the dog in the eyes. You don't need to be loud...dogs can hear incredibly better than humans. When you praise the dog use a high-pitched happy/loud voice. If the dog refuses to follow a command, force him to, and only give the command one time. Stare him in the eyes without blinking or looking away until the dog follows the command (assuming the knows the command...dogs can easily build a vocabulary of 10-20 commands...) move closer in a threatening manner if you need to. Eventually the dog will glance away (which is dog body language for submission).

    7) Don't leave food out for the dog all day. Put food out (after the humans eat), give the dog 30 mins or so to eat, and if he doesn't eat, take the food up and put it away. The pack leaders control the food.

    8) If you have a dog door, close it and lock it. Don't allow the dog to use it anymore. The pack leaders control the entries and exits, and you want your dog to be clear that he's not one of the leaders.

    9) Dogs are not human and DO NOT feel jealousy. I see so many folks "comfort" their dog after he barks, growls, nips, etc., at a child or other human because the dog is "jealous". Hello...you've just praised the dog for being aggressive/dominant...that's the worst possible thing you can do. The dog should be scolded, grab his mouth shut and bonk him on the head, send him to his place/crate/whatever, forcefully put him outside, leash and force him to lie down, whatever. Even the most peaceful friendly dog in the world still has the instinct to be aggressive...especially if children are involved you have to send a very clear message to the dog that aggression toward humans/children is absolutely not allowed. When our dog growled once at our little girl, I grabbed his mouth shut, popped him on the head, dragged him by the collar to the door, practically threw him outside in the cold, and left him there all day. (And I am generally VERY kind and gentle with our dog, so the dog knew he had done something very bad.) When he came in, he had been demoted from the couch to the floor, as evidenced by a dog pillow waiting for him. He got the message quite loud and clear, and was extremely happy to have a pillow on the floor to sleep. He has never growled at our daughter again.

    10) Praise your dog when the baby is around, and totally ignore the dog when the baby is not around. This makes the dog associate the baby with praise...that dog will be really happy to see that baby after a while!

    11) Walk the dog, run with him, or give him some way to get plenty of exercise. A tired dog is a good dog.;)

    Our daughter absolutely loves our crazy old hound dog...and he's very gentle with her (except when he steps on her feet) because he knows that's how we demand that he be. He won't even play tug with her, only my wife and I...he lets go if she grabs his ropey when we're playing tug with him.

    Btw, don't feel like you are abusing a dog by demoting them either if/when necessary. Dogs have the instinct to be adaptable to their pack hierarchy (that's why dogs and humans get along pretty well)...dogs have the instinctual realization that they may be or become the bottom dog, and they are happy (actually, quite stress free...wouldn't you be?) with that role.

    HTH,
    BD
     
  9. BassDude

    BassDude New Member

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    Oh, but I digress from the true purpose of this thread, eh? Yes, I absolutely love touching and being touched. I could curl up on the couch just about all day. Hugs, kisses (lips, cheek, neck, whatever), hand-holding, pats on the back, whatever...I like it all. Touch is one of my "love languages". I hug everybody (even male friends that I really like and who are comfortable with it). If you're female and I know your name (and you don't smell like you've been rolling in a barnyard or something), you're probably going to get a hug. If I don't know you well, it'll be one of those highly acceptable "A-frame" hugs where we both lean forward from the waist. If I know you really well and really like you, you'll get one of those full-body back-rubbing twisty-turney kinda hugs.

    My little daughter and I often snuggle/wedge up against each other on the couch to watch cartoons or what-not. I love getting a long hug from my wife. I hope that my wife and I are teaching our daughter to be affectionate.

    I grew up around mostly women (mother, grandmother, aunts, cousins) and they were all very affectionate with me when I was a kid. I guess it stuck.

    BD
     
  10. Bluesy

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    If you ask me, a no-pets policy is just as discriminatory as the old (and now illegal) no-children policy :( I can't imagine not having pets!

    Just a note on dogs and babies, etc....I used to babysit a little girl, 2-yrs.-old, in my home, and I have a German shepherd. My shepherd has been given all the love in the world, tons of attention and affection, balanced with gentle and consistent discipline, and she is predictably the biggest sweetheart in the world who never tried to assert dominance, not once, over the little girl I babysat. Mind you, this shepherd was the alpha female in her litter, which means she is incredibly bright and independent-minded. The only hazard I ever encountered was trying to keep the dog from accidentally knocking the girl over (she's been known to walk into the furniture from time to time :eyes). If discipline is unkind or isn't tempered with love, you get a cranky dog who will try to assert dominance merely for the power trip. Funnily enough, children are exactly the same way... I've seen this scenario played out many a time (with dogs and children).

    And just a small reminder, physically forceful discipline like hitting, or anything that could potentially cause physical harm or stress, is illegal, just as it would be with children. And I do realize that dogs are not children, having given my dog a mild shake by the ruff (along with a growly reprimand), then having her do a lie-stay near my feet for several minutes, whenever she's transgressed her boundaries in the past (maybe 3-4 times in her 11 years).
     
  11. BassDude

    BassDude New Member

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    Yup, definitely agreed. Don't get me wrong, I would never suggest anyone be abusive to their pet...give it to someone who will love it instead if that were the case. My post was probably a little strong, but I really don't like to take chances where babies or children are concerned...I'd much rather be safe than sorry, and I see so many people being quite irresponsible with dogs and children. A child can do only a little damage to a dog...even a small dog can do some serious (even fatal) damage to a child (even a small dog is still an instinctual predator). Why take any unnecessary chances if they can be avoided by simply taking the right precautions?

    How the dog behaves is much more a reflection of the dog's master than the dog itself, so kudo's to you for teaching your pet right. :D We've done a pretty good job with our dog as well...he's gentle, a little too friendly (if you follow me ;)), and reasonably well-trained (although he's stubborn as a...well...a hound dog :cool)...but, he definitely knows that aggression toward humans is not tolerated by either of us, and that's an awefully good thing for a dog to be clear about! Training him was quite difficult and took a whole lot of patience given he's a stubborn hound dog, but I'm known to have a definite perserverance about me (ie. I was more stubborn about it than he was! ;))

    BD
     
  12. Bluesy

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    I actually felt compelled to say something because I wasn't sure what DJmercer meant by "rough him". I realize that it was a very vague statement and could've meant something perfectly harmless...I was trying to be ambiguous (was...but not anymore, I guess :eyes) and not point any fingers while addressing a concern.

    So true! I totally agree. We did the whole puppy obedience school thing...obedience drills until we were both exhausted...dogs are such a huge investment!
     
    #12 Bluesy, Jan 3, 2008
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2008
  13. cbrmale

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    Going to the original posting, I am more touchy-feely than my wife, but only with women who I am intimate with. Australians are very stoic, and touching anyone other than an intimate partner JUST NEVER HAPPENS. We sometimes see American movies and television and wonder about all this male hugging and slappning backs and so on; it just doesn't happen here at all.

    Africans are even more stoic than Aussies, hence my wife's non-need to be hugged between sexual escapades. But she does it (hugs) just for me.
     
  14. Puss_in_boots

    Puss_in_boots Adminatrix
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    That's interesting because Americans are considered very standoffish compared to European men,...at least Southern European men. I don't see a lot of men being physically affectionate with each other up here in Sweden. Personally I think TV portrays American men as being much more affectionate than they really are. There's still a rather profound fear among men of being seen as "sissy" or even homosexual if they show the slightest bit of physical affection for one another. However, I have noticed that there's a lot of roughhousing going on among men who are close friends or family members,...wrestling and play fighting and the like. Although it's not very affectionate, it is a type of physical contact.
     
  15. Dreama

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    Yeah, especially for us folks who do not want children. But, we can't do anything about it, until we get out of school. Oh well. :mad I guess I should be happy we even have a place to stay. My school has to approve the marriage, and they have been known to deny people housing. (It's a private school). If that had've been my case, we would have left.
     
  16. Dreama

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    I definitely think that counts, especially if it's play.
     
  17. slamd097

    slamd097 New Member

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    I am a bubble boy. I have my personal space, and I like it that way....however, I will let the guard down when I see friendliness. If I sense hostility, then the bubble is up, and I am grouchy..lol
     
  18. LPjammin

    LPjammin New Member

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    That's...

    ...interesting. There are times I am a bear that just needs some alone time but I am a high skin hunger person. Hugs, hand shakes, lots of touching with friends and family, guys and girls.

    One of the reasons I am separated, now that you got me thinking about this, is she is a LOW skin hunger person. She'll kiss and hug and hold hands and enjoys some cuddling after sex but she does not like back rubs, doesn't like giving them nor much for scratching one another, hates being tickled, doesn't like wrestling around, does not like being gone down on, does not enjoy lots of touching and caressing for foreplay.

    We're a bad skin hunger match.

    Good stuff, Dreama!
     
  19. LPjammin

    LPjammin New Member

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    See...

    ...I am a burly he man kind of guy and most all the men in my life are; best friends, brother in laws (my bro, btw is gay) but we're all, especially me, huggy/touchy. My best friend and I tell each other we love one another readily. My bro and I hug and I hug his lover and pals hello and good bye at ease. Us hetero's shake hangs, hugs and so on.
    But it feels odd shaking and hugging with my father. He was a ZERO affection father to me in terms of hugs, I love you, etc. He did physically played with us though. Through us in the air, try to drown us...LOL


    Interesting.
     
  20. Joe

    Joe
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    :eyes
    You've obviously never been a landlord of residential housing. Big dogs can quickly ruin a back yard, and they'll tear up door screens by scratching to get in, not to mention doors and door frames. They can soil carpet to the point it must be replaced, and I've seen it so bad a couple times that the sub-floor had to be replaced. Believe me on this one, if you owned a nice apartment building you would quickly become discriminatory against pets too.

    I've advised my kids to NOT get any pets until they own their own home. (It hasn't done any good, but I did give the advice.) My son got his dog first, then had to buy a house FOR THE DOG -- a 2000 square foot dog house! My step daughter and her hubby also didn't heed my advice. They got a big dog (actually huskey-wolf), then hid it from the landlord so they wouldn't get kicked out of their apartment. The dog totally ruined the carpet. Now they're living with her in-laws because they can't find decent rental housing and can't afford to buy. She hates the dog because it's caused them so many problems.

    Sorry to be so negative about dogs, but I've been a landlord for 30 years and have seen the problems they can cause. We also have a very gentle, loving old dog. And we have old carpet in our house that we're waiting to replace until the dog is gone. (She's 16 and won't be around much longer.)