Australian 'cuddle therapist' charges up to R24 000 for physical touch, but genitals are off limits

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Illustration. Photographed by Klaus Vedfelt
Illustration. Photographed by Klaus Vedfelt
Klaus Vedfelt
  • Professional cuddling was introduced to many of us by Kourtney Kardashian.
  • Now, an Australian woman has claimed it as her professional job.
  • She makes her clients sign an agreement ensuring genitals and breasts are off limits for touching. 

An Australian “cuddle therapist” is speaking out about her unusual occupation revealing that clients pay hundreds of dollars just to hold her in their arms. Missy Robinson says hugging helps “heal the body,” and insists her services have nothing to do with sex.

While most of her clients are male, Robinson makes her clients sign an agreement ensuring genitals and breasts are covered at all times and strictly off limits for touching.

READ MORE | No more cuddling or sharing one bed for celibate couple after 5 years of dating and having a child

Her services range from a $100 (R1 800) “cuddle session” to a $1300 (R24 000) overnight stay. “We need physical touch for survival. At the end of the day, my service is about alleviating the symptoms of the breakdown of human contact.”

The SANE Australia advocate claims there were many serial killers who became who they were because of a lack of touch.

Missy said men can become aroused, but this was human nature, and her job was to deal with it maturely. Her clients range from men in their late 20s to 50s, but she recently had a woman call her, crying hysterically, after a break-up.

READ MORE | Apparently your cuddling style can say A LOT about your relationship

The woman said she had no friends or family nearby, so the next day, Missy drove to see her.

“I have a client that has done multiple tours in Afghanistan and struggles with PTSD. We cuddle, we watch TV. We talk a little bit about veteran life. Since starting the therapy, it is my belief he has greatly improved,” she said.

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Missy served in the Australian Army, leaving her with severe PTSD and anxiety after leaving the force. The cuddle therapist said the medication she was on after her service almost killed her.

READ MORE | Here’s why spooning with your partner sometimes feels better than sex

Following her time in the military, Missy went on to start the PR agency The Rebel Collective but then gave it up just before the pandemic to become an ambassador for SANE Australia, a mental health organisation.

She is now launching a calendar, with all proceeds going to the organisation.

Missy said she believes that cuddle therapy is a healthy alternative to traditional psychology, where you’re in a cold room sharing your secrets.

She lives by the quote, “We need four hugs a day for survival, eight hugs a day for maintenance and 12 hugs a day for growth.”

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