While living in that super hot apartment for my first year of college, my roommates wanted to set me up with someone that they thought would be the perfect match.
I was terrified, as what guy would want to date a girl he can't touch?
Turns out they were right, we were the perfect match!
The first date was nerve-racking to say the least. Felt like I was going to puke on him or something, thing is if I had he probably would of just smiled and cleaned it up.
I'm not sure if he was so perfect because he was my first love or if he really was my perfect match.
After a few weeks of dating, I started to trust him. He never tried to touch or anything, despite what I know was natural human nature for basic contact. Sometimes he would try and then stop himself.
We had great conversations, talking all night long on the phone. Texting hundreds of messages a day, and so much more. All kinds of non physical contact. I fell for him, we fell for each other.
I had therapy every week and he would be waiting afterwards to walk with me back to my place. Not just here but he would, when possible surprise me everywhere and walk with me, help to get me home without any incidents.
I thought this is so sweet, he knows he can't touch me in anyway. Yet he cared so much, and was always there, no matter what.
He also had no issues with my exhibitionism, he said he liked it, but it wasn't for him. I thought, we'll see about that. He was kind of one, but nothing like me, he just needed a little push.
Now imagine really really wanting to touch someone, to kiss them, to feel the gentle touch of my lips on his.
To feel his arms around me. It was something I desired so much.
Keep in mind I had never kissed a boy, guy anyone ever romantically. This was all stuff I missed out on in high school, my desire was so intense.
As much of a good time we had, I would often cry afterwards wondering if it would ever happen. It felt like this was never going to go away.
I pushed myself hard, letting him touch my my hand or arm but soon as he touched it, I would go into a panic attack, and cry uncontrollably.
My therapist told me I needed to keep trying, all these years of not facing the fear had not helped. At least now I had a really really good motivation.
I needed to figure out how to get past this. I wanted to touch him so bad and I wanted his touch.
It was by pure accident.
We went swimming at the rec center and playing, water fights and just playing around.
I leaned into him on accident in the pool and he caught me, to keep me from going under. Pure reflex on his part.
I was nervous but it was okay. It was nice, it was better than nice. He was holding me and there was only a small amount of anxiety as a result.
It felt like a miracle.
We learned that when we were both in water, I could handle it. It wasn't so overwhelming.
Now it was definitely a combination of years of therapy, desire, want and the ability to touch him. I don't think I could of done this with just anyone, had to be the right man. The right person, as I trusted him with all my heart.
I don't know why it worked in the water, maybe cause the sensations are different and it tricked my brain.
We spent a lot of our dates and free time at the rec center.
We tried to move it out of the water, nope. I still had the problem, even after several months of this.
During summer break we went up the mountain, camping by the reservoir.
Lots of us where there, big party. All of my friends and many of his and even others.
It didn't take long for me to say hey lets go skinny dipping on the first day and lead the way.
He followed, and so did almost everyone else. What good times and a blast it was.
Since we knew we could touch in the water. I wanted to show off to him and to have physical contact.
It was great, to have him hold me. Nothing sexual, just hold and caress. I wonder how many college age guys could hold their girlfriend this way and just cuddle in water. Didn't want to try anything further just yet. Not a great place to have a breakdown either, soo many people there, could lose progress.
We made plans for when we got back though, we went into the city to rent a hotel room with a big deep jacuzzi tub. It was the kind of place with themed rooms.
I really wanted him, but I was scared not only from the touching but from what happened before. Yet I still trusted him and knew he would be gentle, kind and wonderful.
First time, we got in the tub and cuddled. Hours of this, until I was a wrinkled old prune. The next day, we got some of those scented bath bombs. Tried those and, well he was so gentle. It was super nice, won't go into details but YES it worked.
After that experience we were able to move to the bed and despite shaking like a wet leaf in a rain storm, every time he touched me, we were able to cuddle in the bed and sleep together. It felt like heaven.
We were able to go out in public and hold hands, and have his arms around me. It was so great to kiss, hmm...kissing.
This is how I made it through and past my Haphephobia.
Forcing myself for a great man, facing the pain, water and him having a great deal of patience, love and understanding for me.
I am not sure if water was a requirement or if it just helped. I do suspect that with him, this would of ended up the same way. May have taken a lot longer though.
This was a journey of five years of not being able to have physical contact with a man, and it was finally over.
You can imagine the joy my father had when I came home and gave him a huge hug. There was so many tears everywhere, tears of joy!