In my last post, I talked about “bro cuddling” and some of my past bro cuddling experiences. I’ve cuddled with many fantastic men, all same-sex attracted (SSA). I can say with absolute certainty that these moments have been some of the most beautiful, moving, and totally platonic expressions of intimate love I’ve ever experienced.

Some might be reading this with reservations, or maybe you can’t wait to have your first cuddle.

Before you eagerly set out to find your first cuddle buddy, though, I’d recommend reading these basic pointers and guidelines based on my own past experiences with bro cuddling.

Before I begin, I’d like to give the disclaimer that I am not making the case that all SSA men — or men in general — should cuddle. For me personally, bro cuddling has been a very helpful and wonderful thing. But I realize it may not be the same for everyone. Cuddle culture, however, is quite common in “Side B / SSA” men’s groups, and I feel it should be discussed.

So, here now are Eugene Heffron’s 5 tips for bro cuddling. Make of them what you will.

1. Establish your boundaries before bro cuddling.

Say you’ve met another SSA guy (or if you’re lucky enough, a touchy-feely straight guy), and you’ve hung out a bit with him. Maybe you wanna have a sleepover or spend time somewhere just the two of you. Even though it’s a bit awkward, it’s a good idea to say something along the lines of:

“Hey, physical touch is very important to me. But how comfortable are you with touch?”

Depending on your friend’s response, you two may figure out that you both want to cuddle each other. However, make sure you set boundaries in the areas of cuddling too. What positions are okay and not okay? What parts of the body are off-limits?

For example, I’ve had guys tell me they’re uncomfortable with spooning.

In my case, I’m good for just about anything other than genital contact — which is pretty much a no-brainer. Whatever agreement you reach together, be respectful of each other’s wishes and stick to your boundaries.

2. Bro cuddling is better with established relationships.

I’ve heard many unfortunate stories of men overeagerly meeting with each other just to cuddle — only to cross over into sexual territory.

Just because you meet another SSA guy who likes to cuddle doesn’t mean that you should.

Make sure you have a good foundation with this other person; even better if you truly love him. Not only will the temptation to sexualize cuddling be lessened, but the experience will also be far more beautiful and meaningful.

If you cuddle someone without taking the time to build a proper relationship or form any sort of emotional intimacy, then the experience may very well become the platonic version of sex on the first date.

3. Erections happen in bro cuddling.

I’m going to put it bluntly: arousal and erections do happen during cuddling. Don’t panic! That doesn’t automatically mean the physical experience is an inherently sexual one.

In my case, I think it’s just how my body reacts to affection. I’ve also gotten erections when my puppy has snuggled into me, but that doesn’t mean I’m joining “Your Other Beastialities” any time soon.

I won’t lie: my first bro cuddle produced some unpleasant blue balls. Again, don’t panic as this only happened on my first time. Personally, my arousals and erections have lessened on subsequent cuddles as my body gets used to the experience.

However, this may be different for others.

4. Make sure you’re bro cuddling for the right reasons.

This is pretty straightforward. Are you cuddling with your brother because you love him and want to enjoy a shared moment of platonic intimacy? Or are you doing it to get a sexual high and masturbate afterwards?

Your answer should be the former and not anything like the latter.

I don’t have much else to say about this since it’s pretty self-explanatory, but bro cuddles should be about platonic intimacy and love and not about sex. Similar to what I’ve said about mutual nudity: when bro cuddling, be honest with yourself about your intentions.

5. Bro cuddling isn’t for everyone.

I’ll echo a lot of my previous thoughts on nudity: bro cuddling is not the ultimate experience or sole foundation on which to base a brotherly relationship. Yes, I’ve found bro cuddling to be a great thing, but it can be easy to idolize and distract you from fully knowing your brother — and being known by him.

Many guys may not want to cuddle for various reasons. Either they’re not touchy-feely, find prolonged physical contact uncomfortable, or feel that such touch may trigger them into sexual sin.

If you feel any reservations about bro cuddling, that’s okay. I’d advise you to abstain or use extra caution with cuddling if you feel it will lead you to act out.

If you feel bro cuddling is not right for you, I’d still highly advise that you incorporate at least some physical touch with your friends. Studies have suggested that lack of physical touch is unhealthy; humans have a basic need for touch.

Try placing arms around shoulders or hand-holding or hugging, at the very least.

Cuddling is an intense experience — in all the good ways, yes, but it is not something to be taken lightly. I recommend reviewing these guidelines before your first or next cuddle session, mainly to avoid sexual triggering and get the most loving experience out of it.

I’m not toting these five tips as official “rules” — just some things to keep in mind before you move forward in the friendship.

Establish your boundaries, be responsible, and have fun! Happy cuddling!

Do you cuddle with your closest brothers? Is bro cuddling beneficial for you, or do you avoid it? What other tips or guidelines would you add to this list?

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    59 Comments
    • Reply Bradley Joel Morton

      24 January 2018, 8:15 am

      Thank you for these ideas. It is good to set boundaries; and I hadn’t, confusing the need for physical touch with sex. I avoided almost all contact with men (outside of work) just so I wouldn’t sin. Still unsure about myself, but I can be better. Thank you!

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 12:31 am

        You’re welcome Bradley! If you’re still unsure of yourself, keep working through your feelings. But yeah, we should never let our sin isolate us and make us alone just to avoid it. Otherwise it pretty much has power over us even when we’re not sinning.

    • Reply Christopher Jensen

      24 January 2018, 10:31 am

      Yes, yes, yes! To all of it! Thank you for sharing. For me, (a married man), bro cuddles are necessary to my survival and recharge my battery. It is my vitamin.

      • Reply Rickus Swanepoel

        24 January 2018, 12:16 pm

        Hi Christopher
        Just out of curiosity, what does your wife say about your cuddles? Thank you for your honesty.

        • Reply Christopher Jensen

          25 January 2018, 12:11 pm

          Hi Rickus. My wife knows where my heart and commitment lies, and it is w/ her and our family. She trusts me today and where I’m at and where I want to go. In the end, giving in to that lust monster just isn’t worth it. It’s wonderful and I admit I’ve swam in those warm waters many, many times, but only to find it just leaves me feeling dark and empty and sad afterward. I’ve come a LONG way at distinguishing the difference between lust and connection and feel like I’ve built some good defenses.
          When bro cuddling, there’s warmth, contentment, safety and complete and pure peace. I do NOT believe there is anything wrong or “sinful” in those behaviors whatsoever. It is human connection, and for whatever reason, I NEED that connection w/ other men. But as soon as our breathing gets more rapid and our bodies get more “writhy” and the sensual/carnal parts of us start to emerge, it’s time to blow the whistle. Sometimes it’s hard to do, but b/c I know how I’ll feel if I were to continue and the devastation it would cause to me, to him, to our families, to my metal, emotional, spiritual well-being, it’s just not worth giving in to the lust and dirtying the beautiful, safe connection we had together.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 12:28 am

        Thank you Christopher! Glad they’re so beneficial to you.

    • Reply Caleb Bykov

      24 January 2018, 11:04 am

      Great Article! Also made me feel a lot better about the erections i get when i cuddle with my dog. It was kinda freaking me out. My parents thought i had a sexual interest in dogs, and haven’t let him in bed with me XD Tryna find a good guy for cuddling localy with clean thoughts is hard :/

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 12:26 am

        Haha well you can rest easy now. And believe it or not, I don’t have much options for local cuddle buddies either. I often have to travel far and wide to visit my best cuddle buddies. Oh well, it gives me a reason to travel!

    • Reply One gay Mormon

      24 January 2018, 11:41 am

      Isn’t it interesting that we even need to talk about stuff like this? In my opinion, it should just be natural, and it can be awkward to put into words. I know many people (perhaps myself, at one point) who would say to stay as far away from temptation as possible…even if it meant isolation. I used to think I was being all “good” by isolating myself. I would never have to worry about sexual sin! But it bred a host of other problems.
      The thing is…I can imagine the Savior holding my hand, resting my head on His shoulder, Him putting His arm around me. I have a hard time imagining lying with Him and gazing up on the stars, but I bet He’d be willing to do that too. I sometimes still have shame and worry around getting an erection or other sexual feelings while cuddling. I’m not seeking those feelings and it isn’t about sex. Sometimes those feelings are annoying Little sidelines, other times I suppose they produce energy that can be used within the bounds the Lord has set.
      Nice, vulnerable post!
      -Alex Lindstrom (I don’t currently know how to change my user name from what it is…or I’m too lazy right now).

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 12:24 am

        I feel like going super out of your way to avoid sin and temptation is like going through life wearing a hazmat suit. Sure you’ll probably never get sick. But at the same time you’ll miss out on so much life. You’ll miss feeling the breeze, the sun on your skin, the grass beneath your feet, you pretty much wouldn’t be living. Yes we must be careful. Be hygienic and wash out hands before eating so that doesn’t mean we should never feel the grass in our fingers sometimes.

        • Reply Fred

          28 January 2018, 7:47 pm

          There’s a difference between shutting yourself down and going out of your way to avoid temptation and sin. It’s bad to become a hermit, yes, but going out of your way to avoid sin and temptation is not just good, it is exactly what we are supposed to do. “Let there be not even a hint of sexual sin among you” is not a guideline. Going out of your way to avoid sin is what we are called to do. You are correct in saying that doesn’t mean we should not do anything, per se. To be honest I’m not even really saying you’re wrong in what you’re saying, but I think you should phrase it better.
          Also while I’m here, the “Your Other Bestialities” line was brilliant, and I completely agree there.

    • Reply Mark Smith

      24 January 2018, 12:07 pm

      Eugene, thanks for sharing this! Lot’s of good info. One thing I wanted to add is being an older man (I’m 57), I’m finding it really difficult to find other men who are open to cuddling with me. Most of the guys in YOB are younger (most a LOT younger) and are uncomfortable cuddling with “dad”. I get that. And I feel uncomfortable even bringing the subject up with them. But, I would really like to experience it more. So far, men my age who I’ve found who want to cuddle want a lot more. Not sure what to do at this point.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 12:17 am

        Heya Mark, I totally hear you there. All I can say is keep trying. I’ve met some SSA friends my age who have cuddled with older men and have been comfortable with it. And I’m sure there are some older cuddly SSA men out there who definitely don’t want more than cuddling. Don’t give up! You’ll find someone for sure one of these days.

        • Reply One gay Mormon

          25 January 2018, 12:39 am

          Hey Mark…my cuddle age range is rather large. Ha ha! I’m a total cuddle slut. But for reals, you’d be in my arms! I have a local group here where I live with many young and old and we enjoy this kind of healthy, platonic touch.

    • Reply Robert Fleming

      24 January 2018, 1:01 pm

      Eugene, that has to be one of the best guides I’ve read on cuddling. Love the bit about relationship. That’s important. I’ve personally cuddled a close bro and little more than cuddling, but that was the best part of it in retrospect. Without it, you don’t have anything.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 12:14 am

        Heya Robert! Great I’m glad you found it so helpful. But yeah you absolutely need the relationship established before cuddling. Besides it makes it all the more better, deeper, and meaningful!

    • Reply Eugene Heffron

      25 January 2018, 12:28 am

      Absolutely Brad! Cuddling without a relationship is like a platonic one night stand or hookup. Might leave you feeling exhilarated at first but feeling empty afterwards.

    • Reply Eddie

      25 January 2018, 7:29 am

      “Try placing arms around shoulders or hand-holding or hugging, at the very least.”
      I like these suggestions of engaging in other physical touch as means of working up to bro-cuddling. Without prying Eugene, did you ever go straight to bro-cuddling with your *established relationships* or did you take it slow with small displays of physical touch leading up to bro-cuddling? I could totally subscribe to this piecemeal approach of small intimate touching leading to the bro-cuddle. Another question about bro-cuddling is what type of *venue* works well for it? Meaning is it best on a loveseat, couch, bed, or other? Not asking for details, of course.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        25 January 2018, 9:35 pm

        Ha indeed it is better not to bro cuddle on the first date. If you wanna cuddle me, better take me out to dinner first. haha!
        Often times I let a lot of my bro relationships slowly evolve. A vast majority of them I meet on Facebook beforehand and just have a general chit chat get to know you thing and so where we go from there. If it keeps going then we’ll often have a Skype session beforehand which can help you size up a person pretty well. Often times physical touch sort of evolves out of sharing a good connection. We usually have a little talk on physical touch in which case cuddling almost always gets brought up. From there we’ve typically set boundaries and cuddle away once we meet. I can only think of one instance where I didn’t have a chat with a guy about touch and cuddling just evolved on its own from there. As for venues, I’ve cuddled with guys on couches and on beds, so I find just about anywhere soft and comfy works.

    • Reply Marshall R

      28 January 2018, 8:41 am

      I have talked in depth about cuddling with my straight male friends who are touchy-feely. They sometimes appreciate sitting next to me with our arms around each other’s shoulders or standing and having a n extended tight hug. When they do these things I really feel their love. They are not just faking it to humor me!
      When it gets to hand holding or anything else they stop and say, “That’s gay! I can’t! ” The reason they always give is that if they held a girl’s hand or cuddled with her, she would think they were having sexual feelings for each other. They have told me not to cuddle with a guy lying down because they believe it will eventually lead to sex and they don’t want me to be hurt.
      I personally believe hand holding is not sexual but I agree with them about not cuddling with a guy while lying down in private.
      Eugene, how would you answer my straight friends? Why is it ok for you to lie with another guy and cuddle alone, but it is not ok for them to cuddle with a girl?

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        28 January 2018, 11:47 am

        Those are good questions Marshall. First off that’s great you at least get some level of touch from them. I’ve gotten pretty much none at all from my straight friends my whole life.
        I think the fact that they say “that’s gay I can’t” pretty much speaks volumes. They’re apart of the touch-phobic culture of modern America that thinks that any large amounts of touch between men is an automatically homosexual in nature. Lots of other cultures have higher tolerance for touch between men, especially in India where men holding hands is common. I believe that all men need this connection with each other despite their orientation. Just because I’m attracted to men doesn’t mean I’m not a man and can’t partake in things other men can.
        I can say from a lot of experience that I’ve laid down cuddling with other men and its never lead to anything sexual. Of course it all depends on what you feel you can do. If you really felt like lying down cuddling with a guy would make you lose control and lead to sex then don’t do it. But if you feel like you and your partner have sufficient self control then by all means do it.
        For your last question, who says its not okay for a straight guy to platonically cuddle with a girl? If both parties had an understanding that what they were doing is not sexual and their intentions are pure then there’s nothing wrong with it in my view. Now if either of them were in a relationship with someone else then it would be more complicated but I won’t go there.
        Its like what Yoda says “you must unlearn what you have learned.” I know that my intentions are pure when I cuddle with other bros (and I sense theirs are as well) so in the end I really don’t care if society would call it “too gay” or “sexual” or “shows you wanna be in a relationship”.

        • Reply kirkdaniel74

          28 January 2018, 12:57 pm

          Hi, Eugene! As a follow-up to the concerns of Marahall’s straight friends, I wonder what your take is on the following concerns that I know many Christian brothers have on this issue, given some of Paul’s admonitions in the New Testament:
          1. Abstain from all appearance of evil. 1 Thess. 5:22. I know what your intentions are. But others may not. If they know you struggle with SSA and that you purposely cuddle, what does that do to one’s Christian witness?
          2. Neither give place to the devil. Eph. 4:27. Some feel that cuddling (prolonged physical contact) puts people in the position where they can be tempted. As such, it is frustrating the example of the Lord’s prayer, Lead us not into temptation, by walking right into it yourself.
          3. Considering the weaker brother. Romans 14, especially vs. 13. One may be every so careful to maintain boundaries in cuddling, but what do you really know about the effect this USD having on the other person? Does it cause them to sin in their mind? They may never tell you. They may have thought they were strong enough, but in reality, they end up being weak. Even if those were not so, what example is this to weaker brothers who are emboldened by strong ones engaging in this, and, your admonitions to carefulness notwithstanding, go out and cuddle and end up sinning?
          4. All things being lawful but not expedient. 1 Cor. 10:23, 24. This is, maybe. A summary of Alk of the above points. I know a lot of people who think that our conduct should be such that it edifies others. Even if one felt at liberty to cuddle, is it the best thing to do? Is it really the best example I can give to the weaker brother, the best way for me to avoid temptation, and the most glorifying to Christ?
          I’m curious what your thoughts are asking these lines, brother.

          • Reply Eugene Heffron

            28 January 2018, 7:25 pm

            Hey kirk, I’ll answer your questions one by one:
            1. I admit I may not have the theological credentials to dive deep into that scripture’s full context but really who cares what it looks like to others? Usually when I cuddle, no one else is there so its no big deal. I’d rather not cuddle in public anyways.
            2. It may be a source of temptation for some, but its not for me. I’d say it would be a lot more of a temptation if I were to cuddle with a Side A guy I didn’t know well like I talked about in my last blog. As I mentioned there, that time definitely felt more like a sexual experience and I was probably playing with fire then. But when I’m with dear friends I trust and have solid boundaries with, we’re pretty much not playing with fire.
            3. I always encourage my cuddle partners to be open with me. I tell them that if they are in any way feeling uncomfortable or sexually triggered during our cuddles to let me know and we can adjust our boundaries accordingly. Frankly I can intuitively sense that most of my cuddle partners have not cuddled with me for sexual kicks. I trust them and know they did it because they wanted to show they loved me and be loved by me. In the one or two situations where my cuddle partner was perhaps more sexual, the body language is more aggressive and rougher. Whereas with a more platonic brotherly cuddle its often a lot softer and more soothing.
            4. For me I can definitely say its the best way to avoid temptation and glorify God. I don’t want to have sex with men, but I do want to love them and be intimate with them. I feel like cuddling is the perfect expression for that. If I’m going to be celibate for the rest of my life and feel like I do at least need that physical touch from others to know they’re with me and I’m not alone. Since we are the hands and feed of God, I feel the mutual expression of platonic brotherly love through cuddling to be an abstractly spiritual experience of sorts. We’re not just touching each other’s bodies, we’re touching each other’s souls. I feel the love of God through my brothers’ warm embrances.

            • Fred

              28 January 2018, 8:02 pm

              I know I’ve commented a lot and I hope I’m not coming off the wrong way. I really do just want to hear what you have to say with some of this stuff. I just don’t see why brothers can’t show love for one another in other ways. Hugging and regular touch and acts of friendship should be able to prove love to one another, this whole cuddling thing seems to me an idol that disguises itself as a good thing. We shouldn’t need to cuddle, I guess.

        • Reply Fred

          28 January 2018, 7:56 pm

          Hi Eugene, I have a couple things.
          1. I don’t see why comparing cultures makes a difference. America is less touch-centric, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I don’t think that comparing our cultures to others is means enough to change ours. They also smoke more in India, that doesn’t mean we should too.
          2. If you are a man attracted to other men, then there SHOULD be limits that we have that others don’t. In the same way that a man who struggles with attraction to children probably shouldn’t babysit.
          3. This is just a matter of opinion, but a guy and a girl cuddling seems like no matter how platonic they claim it is,it is rightly frowned upon. It may seem harmless, and there may be cases where things like that truly are just ok, but I highly doubt their existence is very often.

          • Reply Eugene Heffron

            28 January 2018, 11:45 pm

            Don’t worry, I don’t think you’re coming across the wrong way. I totally get your arguments and happy you’re respectful with them.
            1. I completely disagree that there’s nothing wrong with America being touch phobic. It is a very VERY bad thing that it is touch phobic. Not having physical touch is not mentally or spiritually healthy at all. I would refer you this TED talk video that talks about just how important touch is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBdnjqEoiXA
            I would also like to point out that America hasn’t always been touch-phobic. Touch between men was very common but decreased due to the rise of gay culture and homosexuality. For that I would refer you to this article: https://www.artofmanliness.com/2008/08/24/the-history-and-nature-of-man-friendships/
            I believe this kind of touch is natural and necessary for all men, our past and other cultures really illustrate that there is nothing inherently wrong with it. Our oversexualized and homophobic culture makes it seem wrong.
            2. I disagree, I am a man and I don’t need special boundaries or have my SSA treated like a handicap. I’m not going to let my sexuality hold me back from being a man and enjoying what other men can.
            3. I can’t say I’m an expert here since I’m not straight. Our oversexualized culture makes it seem like platonic cuddling between men and women is impossible but I don’t think so. I’m sure it doesn’t happen often but I think it could be done. After all, I’ve done it with my SSA bros and nothing sexual happened so I’m sure the same could be done for a straight man and woman.

      • Reply Eddie

        15 February 2018, 8:44 am

        I don’t want to sound like I’m undermining anyone’s position here. You, Marshall, and your straight friends make a valid argument as cuddling could trigger unwanted sexual temptation for both scenarios — an OSA guy cuddling with a girl and two SSA guys cuddling with each other. I’m sorry guys, but this so difficult for me to find a reasonable compromise or solution. Frankly speaking, in a perfect world we shouldn’t have to resort to these measures in order to feel fulfilled and loved. But this is a fallen world. It is the mere appearance of impropriety that is unsettling and prohibitative. We need to exercise self control, a fruit of the Holy Spirit. We may have to agree to disagree Marshall. Use our best judgement to discern and govern ourselves. My best defense for Eugene is SSA guys have void that needs filled unlike OSA guys. Physical touch can help fill it. Yes, OSA need loving touch as well. This is turning into a ramble for me. Ramble over.

    • Reply Joseph Tanel

      28 January 2018, 3:57 pm

      I’ve never bro cuddled with anyone, so I can’t add anything to the list unfortunately. I just hope one day somehow someway I’ll be able to cuddle with a guy. It’s something I’ve longed for ever since I realized I needed it.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        28 January 2018, 6:54 pm

        I hope it happens Joseph! I’d say your best bet is to socialize with other side B SSA men if you can find a good group of them online or in person. Now, of course don’t go into it purely with the intention of finding someone to cuddle (better to find an all around intimate brotherhood) but I’m sure you’ll find something like that. Its pretty much where I found it, here on YOB.

    • Reply Doug

      28 January 2018, 6:36 pm

      As a man who has struggled with SSA I feel that although the idea of cuddling has good intentions it will weaken many who are working to lessen the desires that SSA has on them. This seems to me to be a “pinnacle of the Temple” activity (Luke 4: 9-12). We should not put ourselves in situations that put the Lord to the test. We should not want or need to be that close to someone of the same sex. We should also ask why do I need to be that close to another man. A hug when greeting or leaving, a hand on a shoulder for comfort at a specific time is one thing, but cuddling is another level that invites issues that those dealing with SSA do not need. Even if nothing sexual occurs the very appearance of such contact could bring dishonor to our Lord. It is a long difficult struggle for most with SSA and it’s memories are always with us, cuddling reminds us of what we were led from and not what we should be moving towards.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        28 January 2018, 7:36 pm

        Hey Doug, like I said in the blog, cuddling is not for everyone. I know some who have been struggling with hookups and cuddling reminds them far too much of that. I’ve never had physical sex with a man so that pull is no where near as strong with me. If someone feels too much like cuddling would lead them into acting sexual then it would definitely be advised that they avoid it. I’m curious about a couple things you said though:
        “We should not want or need to be that close to someone of the same sex.”
        Why? Says who? God? Or is it just society saying that? Men historically used to be that physically close together in the past in America but that died out when awareness of homosexuality and homophobia were on the rise. Its currently more common place in other cultures like India.
        “Even if nothing sexual occurs the very appearance of such contact could bring dishonor to our Lord.”
        I don’t believe God judges things on a surface level. If he sees to guys holding each other but can see into their hearts that they’re not doing it for sexual purposes I’m pretty sure he’d just shrug and say “nothing to see here folks, move on.”

        • Reply Doug

          29 January 2018, 2:30 pm

          Eugene, Let me reply to your last statement first. God may not judge only on the surface level but people do. As Christians we are not even to have the appearance of sin because we are the visible representatives of Christ to the world and even though the people watching us don’t live by God’s standards they know what those standards are and expect (should at least) us to follow them. If it is replied, “well, nobody sees us when we cuddle” then are we not back in the “closet” again. Cuddling is a tether to the old sinful life Christ freed us from. We are to flee the works of the old nature and every potential stumbling block instead of looking back like Lot’s wife did. You said, “Men historically used to be that physically close together in the past in America…” What documentation do you have that early American males practiced cuddling since that is the issue being discussed. I agree that men are too reluctant to show their affection for a good male friend, but those of us who have issues with SSA need to stay as far away from the sin that so easily besets us and cuddling does not help with that. Cuddling does not help leave the old life behind, cuddling has more potential for harm than for good, cuddling is too easily misinterpreted by the watching world and as the representatives of Christ we MUST care about what they think of us.

          • Reply Eugene Heffron

            30 January 2018, 8:49 pm

            I’m afraid we’ll have to agree to disagree on this Doug. I have cuddled with many men and have many friends who cuddle a lot as well and I can say its been extremely beneficial to me and to others. I’ve never had an issue with it turning sexual, and its been the same for most of my friends. While I can’t say I have historic evidence that men cuddled together, how about a Biblical example? John laying his head on the breast of Jesus at the last supper? Sounds to me they were having a nice cuddle and not worried about the appearance of Sin.
            I can’t say I really buy the appearance of sin argument. We shouldn’t have to conform based on people’s judgments or misinterpretations. If its not gay sex, then its not gay sex. If society views innocent platonic cuddling as promiscuous gay sex then that’s their problem. Judge not lest ye be judged.

            • Doug

              31 January 2018, 5:02 pm

              Brother Eugene I would still say that advocating same-sex cuddling is not a best practices approach. It seems to me that you are too dismissive of the impact that our actions could have not only on the unbelieving world but also on a weaker brother. This practice would tend to bring people nearer to the old life Christ freed us from and not farther away from it. Your statement “if its not gay sex, then its not gay sex” assumes that physical sex is the only thing that matters yet our Lord said in Matthew 5:28 that if you look upon someone with lustful intent in your heart, you have already committed a sexual act. How do you know that same-sex cuddling is not giving those who struggle with SSA license to engage in those kinds of thoughts? The Scripture does not tell us to gradually ease our way out of our sinful life but to put it to death and have nothing to do with it. If an unmarried Christian couple were living in the same house alone they should be admonished to live separately until marriage even if they insist that they are not having sex, why? because of how it looks to the world. It may be unfair, but that’s the fallen world we live in. Well, I’ve had my say, thank you for the back and forth.

            • Thomas Mark Zuniga

              4 February 2018, 1:15 pm

              Nice respectful back-and-forth, you guys. I see where you’re both coming from. So grateful for this space where we can actually talk about this nitty-gritty stuff.

            • kirkdaniel74

              15 February 2018, 5:06 pm

              Thanks, Doug. You put my concerns into words so well.

            • Doug

              15 February 2018, 5:26 pm

              Thank you Kirk, I hope if you get a chance you will look at the book Norman Geisler and I wrote about the same-sex “marriage” issue.

            • kirkdaniel74

              15 February 2018, 5:44 pm

              I would like to. What is the name of the book?

            • kirkdaniel74

              15 February 2018, 6:34 pm

              I found the title.
              Doug, I’ve been writing about battles with depression and the reckoning of the sexual abuse I endured as a boy. I’m not a blogger at this point, but Cec Murphy published a piece of mine on his blog Men Shattering the Silence. If you want to take a look, it is called A Number and was published around Christmas. I have responded to some comments there, and if you click on my name, Daniel, you’ll see my profile. There’s a link to my email there, if you’d like to correspond. I’m writing quite a bit. Not sure if I willl put these musings into book form. But it is therapeutic for me to write and share. No pressure.

            • Doug

              15 February 2018, 7:33 pm

              It’s called Somewhere Under the Rainbow; A Christian look at Same-Sex “Marriage”. It is available on Amazon.

            • kirkdaniel74

              15 February 2018, 8:13 pm

              I found the title.
              Doug, I’ve been writing about battles with depression and the reckoning of the sexual abuse I endured as a boy. I’m not a blogger at this point, but Cec Murphy published a piece of mine on his blog Men Shattering the Silence. If you want to take a look, it is called A Number and was published around Christmas. I have responded to some comments there, and if you click on my name, Daniel, you’ll see my profile. There’s a link to my email there, if you’d like to correspond. I’m writing quite a bit. Not sure if I willl put these musings into book form. But it is therapeutic for me to write and share. No pressure.

    • Reply Alan Gingery

      19 February 2018, 11:26 pm

      Thanks Eugene for a thought provoking post. I think your suggestions for guidelines are good and I know that many guys with SSA greatly desire affection, not sex, so this could be something wonderful. I agree it could meet a need for affection that is a really strong need for us SSA guys.
      You mentioned that this is not for everyone. I just wanted to comment on that a bit further. For some men, cuddling would trigger past memories of sex that may cause emotional distress. Others simply could not control their sexual impulses and keep things platonic. It would trigger lust that they feel powerless to stop. I agree that this isn’t for everyone.
      At Journey Into Manhood weekend from Brothers Road, there is a process called Golden Father Holding that is quite different from cuddling both in its purpose and in the boundaries that are set beforehand. It does involve one man holding another man and its intent is healing. It is never done alone with two SSA men, there must be a third man present. It is always done fully clothed. It is never done on a bed. It is not done with someone you meet for the first time (no previous friendship). There are other guidelines to follow as well, but I mention these here for your readers who might like to try cuddling, but have some fears that it might progress beyond cuddling.
      Think carefully about setting mutually agreed on boundaries before you start, then enjoy a special time with someone you already have a friendship with.
      As a married man, I would not consider doing this without my wife’s knowledge that I was going to do it. I would have to have her permission first.
      I would not be opposed to a bit of cuddling myself with someone I cared about. Bromance!

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        20 February 2018, 1:45 pm

        Hiya Alan, thanks for your imput. I did have one friend that I cuddled with but he asked to stop because he struggles with hookup addictions and cuddling triggered him way too much. I’ve respected his wishes and we haven’t cuddled since. So yeah, there are those that would find cuddling way too triggering in which case they should probably avoid it. However I think if they cleaned themselves up from hooking up and made extra efforts for self control I think they could eventually successfully cuddle in a non sexual way.
        And, I would definitely recommend that any married men discuss this with their wives before doing it. I know a few married men who’s wives are totally okay with their husbands cuddling with other men, but they discussed it first.

        • Reply Alan Gingery

          21 February 2018, 1:20 am

          Yes, Eugene, I agree with you. Eventually, cuddling in a non-sexual platonic way could be useful (healing?) for your friend to receive non-sexual affection from another male, but he would need a time of sobriety from hooking up and that would also need a change in thought processes as well as from acting out. His body, heart, mind and spirit all need to be in sync in order for cuddling to be affection and not a lust trigger.

    • Reply Curtis

      30 May 2018, 6:45 am

      I’ve been confused for sometime and feel like I should talk about my experience. Awhile ago I was in this cuddle buddy relationship with a close friend. It started at a sleep over, with few other friends. We were all teens. And I seen him as a little brother only, nothing else. I had a girlfriend at the time and someone from the sleepover said aloud what happened. I think she broke up with me because of that, though she never said.
      Me and my close friend was still cuddling for a little while at a few sleepovers until I messed up. I had started an argument over nothing and we stopped being friends. Few years has past and we are somewhat friends , acquaintances I guess. Though we rarely talk. I’m wondering if I should try to patch things up if possible? I’m afraid it might be too late, we’re all grown up and living different lives now. I don’t really know what to say and my guess it would be awkward. But I am sad at how things left off.
      Awesome article though, cleared some things from my head.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        30 May 2018, 10:59 am

        Hey Curtis, you’re welcome! Glad it was able to clear some things up for you.
        I’m sorry to hear that things fell through with your cuddle friend though. I’m just curious, is he SSA too? But its never too late to try and patch things up. Especially if you’ve had some ample time of separation, then maybe it might be a good time to do so.

    • Reply Benjamin Russell

      4 February 2019, 3:49 pm

      Wish i knew of some folks in my areas (Mississippi) who were willing to try this is at least have this conversation

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        5 February 2019, 10:51 am

        I’m sure you’ll find some Benjamin. It can be hard finding the right people. But if you manage to find or hang around any Side B circles I imagine you’ll find some people more than happy to engage in cuddling.

    • Reply Nathan

      11 July 2019, 11:07 pm

      I definitely feel a need for this. I have a strong desire to be close to another man and share physical touch. The huge problem for me is what you mentioned first, Eugene: asking. I don’t know how. I’ve felt the power of touch from other people in random circumstances, but I long to experience it as an intimate, purposeful connection.

      • Reply Eugene Heffron

        21 July 2019, 11:00 pm

        Hey Nathan, so sorry for the late reply. I know how it is, trying to initiate it can be hard and awkward. With straight guys I’m not so sure because I haven’t experience touch or cuddling with straight guys. For other SSA guys its a lot easier because 90% of the times they tend to be touchy types. I think the best option is to be upfront. Say, “so I’m a physical touch person, are you okay with physical touch?” If they say yes, then discuss what types they are comfortable with from there.

    • Reply Casey Markovich

      13 March 2020, 9:35 pm

      I’ve slept with my bro Non-cuddling and no sexual way two times. I thank you to the person who wrote this article, because I would like to be cuddled, never been in a relationship but I have a real close friend as my bro. I at least know how this person feels about cuddling, I can start to have a conversation about cuddling… I thank you your other brothers blog. thank you!

    • Reply Mark Lundie

      6 August 2021, 3:15 am

      I am well into my adult years, and have never had sex itself with any man. However, ‘bro cuddling for me
      is a healthy, natural, and restorative social act that simply unites two males in an act of emotional connection that is healing and reassuring, giving a certain pleasure along with emotional reassurance. It has been with us since the dawn of humanity, and, with good reason, always will be.

    • Reply Bb

      14 May 2022, 5:20 am

      Thank you so much Bro!
      I’ve send this insightful and nice article to my bros because they love to cuddle but are a bit awkward 🥰
      I’m sure they found this very helpful!
      I am a female and I loooove to cuddle with my sissys 💓🤪
      Have a wonderful day!

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