Cuddle Buddy and Bonk Buddy Guidelines
by Frances Amaroux
What is a Cuddle Buddy?
"Cuddle Buddy" is a word describing a particular form of non-exclusive relationship between two or more people that involves negotiated levels of touching, hugging and cuddling - but is non-sexual in nature.
What is a 'BonkBuddy'
The difference between a HugBuddy and a BonkBuddy relationship is the inclusion of sexual behaviours in the BonkBuddy relationship. Negotiated Safer Sex is essential !!!- condoms are required unless you have negotiated to be exclusive with each other. Also prior to sleeping together, ensure you have a discussion about your sexual history(s) and any diseases you have or have had - herpes, candida etc
Why have a CuddleBuddy?
- When you're single and wanting some intimacy, connection and/or touch.
- When you're single and seem to have a habit of inappropriate short-term relationships or regular one-night stands - and realise what you actually mostly need is some intimacy and connection and touch.
- If you've been single for quite a while and think you're getting a little rusty in the relating department.
- Great practice for being in a 'real' relationship - creates opportunities to learn how to negotiate intimate relationships without the attachment and 'scariness' of a committed relationship
- When you're in a committed relationship and there is little or no touch - of course this needs to be agreed to with your partner.
- When you're in a committed relationship and away from your partner for some time and want some intimacy and touch (pre-agreed with partner).
Types of CuddleBuddies
1. Hugging and snuggling - perhaps including massage
2. All the above - plus sleeping together clothed, semi-clothed or nude
3. Short or long term - ie for one night only or ….
- A willingness and curiosity to explore deeper levels of intimacy and sensuality without sex.
- A reasonable sense of Self i.e. an ability to manage your emotions and deal with jealousy
- An ability to acknowledge and manage your sexual desires without shaming yourself or others
- Willingness to respect, and care for your CuddleBuddy
- Skilled with boundaries - Ability to say 'No' and ask for what you want
Who to have as a CuddleBuddy?
- Many CuddleBuddies have some level of sexual interest or attraction to each other.
- And some are very clear that they have no sexual interest.o It is NOT recommended you agree to hugbuddy someone if you have a strong sexual interest in them - that's called purgatory ;-).
- However, mutual respect and liking is an essential ingredient.
- For some people, it can be easier to have sex with someone they don't like that much, but much harder (and pointless) to hugbuddy someone you don't like.
- A CB relationship is very new territory for most people, so keep communicating what is going on for you and what you need - both before and during the relationship.
“Ask 100% of the time for what you want - and be comfortable about hearing a No” (thanks to the Human Awareness Institute)
Honesty is essential
- DO NOT agree to be a CuddleBuddy if you do not think you can keep your agreements around non-sexuality
- Ensure your CB is informed of any other sexual and/or HB partnerso If you are in other sexual or committed relationships.
- Ensure they know about your CuddleBuddy and negotiate till you're ALL comfortable about the situation.
- Inform your CuddleBuddy if you are contagious in any way, i.e. flu, cold sores, herpes etc o Don't expect your Hugbuddy to always want to be a Cuddlebuddy - always be open to hearing or speaking a respectful “NO” or “I'm moving on”
Some other topics you might need to discuss:
Q - If you are sleeping-together - do you sleep in the nude or with underwear on, or .....?
Q - Where are you okay and not okay being touched ??(remember this can change according to mood)
Q - Is kissing included? If so, where and how??Aside from a neutral peck on the lips, 'snogging' is not recommended for HugBuddies, as most people find it heightens sexual arousal. Remember, a Hugbuddy is a non-sexual relationship.
Q - What if he gets an erection??Men have erections for multiple reasons - and having one does NOT necessarily imply that the man wants to have sex. Many men feel very uncomfortable about their lack of control over erections - so treat any surprise visits as just a normal part of life i.e. don't pretend nothing is happening….make some light hearted comment…..chat more about it if necessary, and just go back to cuddling etc.
Q- Holding hands in public...Because a CB is usually a non-exclusive relationship, some CBs are not sure about how to relate in public. Some are happy to hold hands or snuggle in public, whilst others believe this is giving the wrong signals - i.e. “I'm taken” - when in fact they might still be single and open for a partner. Keep discussing your needs.
Because of the intimate nature of the HB relationship, people may feel just as jealous of a HB as a sexual partner. These feelings need to be expressed and acknowledged, but they must not be allowed to limit the relationship in any way. If the feelings get too strong, a different form of relationship will need to be negotiated.
Also to consider...
Dropping in at 2:00am for a cuddle….Many people feel lonely in the evenings and after going out at night - so ensure to be very clear on your boundaries if this is NOT OK for you
Communicate regularly. As well as your initial negotiation prior to Cuddle buddying, remember to check in regularly with your CB to see how they are going with the relationship... - Is it still suiting them ? - Are they saying all they need to say? - Do they want to take it deeper to another level? - Or back to an earlier level?
Advantages of CB/BB relationships
- Fulfil our human need for touch - i.e. skin hungero Limits other less satisfying encounters such as one night stands - because skin-hunger is not so immediate.
- Limits the 'mini-marriage' scenario - where people meet, have sex, and start a relationship without really thinking of the long-term potential.
- Present oriented - no expectations of the future - allows you to focus on what's happening NOWo Lessens co-dependent behaviours- because you know that it could end anytime, your focus is more on yourself and what you need rather than how you can please the other so they won't leave you. For potentially co-dependent people, this is very useful so they don't give their lives away to relationships.
- Fantastic practice for 'the real thing' - there is less fear of losing the other person because you're quite aware already that you could lose the other person any time. This makes it potentially easier for more truth about thoughts and feelings to be expressed