I am touch deprived so I do not struggle with this issue you are talking about. What does really help me is cuddling my teddy bear for long periods of time and sleeping with him, really made a huge difference in my life. I really hope that you find something to help you. Good luck.
@wedon'tdowe i have tried a massage before and I hate it, they would yell at me I am too tense and would tense up too much.
@Rain I don’t have a teddy bear but I have wiener dogs, they let me cuddle w them from time to time, they’re feisty though.
I’ve always been tense w people touching me especially family, like for hugs and stuff and I’m not sure totally why, I mean there’s some physical abuse and emotional stuff from when I was younger. My dad made a weird comment the other day saying that I never liked being touched as a kid and he wondered if someone did something to me. Idk what I’m supposed to do w that. My parents used to spank us kids and use the belt etc.
Last year after my incidents at work being touched at all was definitely a no x100. Sometimes I want the comfort but I can’t handle it. I freeze, tense up, dissociate or get ready for a fight which you know is not an ideal reaction for someone trying to give you a hug.
I have cats. They love, no demand, being held and hugged and cuddled. They sit on my lap and on the back of the couch with their heads on my shoulder. They sleep next to me with head in hand, stretched out against me. They are completely non-threatening, loving, attentive, so I get lots of what I need without having to deal with the scary stuff people dish out.
I try to rotate through a couple different things depending on exactly what is happening...
Sometimes I hold something (pillow, some object I like).
I go walking for a long time and just head nowhere.
I watch mindless TV that have 0% chance of triggering me (cooking shows).
I think about all the people who have helped me in bad moments, even when it wasn't convent for them and they didn't have to...
I hug my pillows in my pillow fort, wrap a heating pad around my midsection and hug a pillow and wrap up in my favorite blanket all at the same time, take a hot epsom salt bath and practice alternate nostril breathing while listening to something that soothes me in the moment, hula hoop as it reminds me of the boundaries of my personal bubble...i made a giant hoop that serves really well on those days, create something healthy and tasty to hug myself from the inside out....and that's all I can think of in the moment.