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Cuddle parties - silly American fad

Does the thought of getting gripped in a bear hug by your sweaty next door neighbour fill you with revulsion? Or getting clasped in an evil colleague embrace while wearing nothing but your pyjamas leave you cold? What a shame Cuddle Parties have mushroomed onto the social scene then.

Cuddle parties are a new American way "to really reach out and touch somebody else" - without having to be friends or even bed mates with them first. They are airy fairy gatherings which aim to break down social boundaries and encourage intimacy between perfect strangers - on the premise that forced physical contact with unknowns is good.

So what are the rules? Cuddle parties usually kick off with a 'welcome chat', a run down of the 'rules' and a gentle warm up in the form of a group hug. The consenting adults then change into their jim jams and lol about on the floor waiting for someone to ask them for a cuddle.

Cuddling can take all forms, from spooning and snuggling - to nuzzling and three way hugging, and the parties last on average 3 hours. "I love experiencing the feelings that come up when you connect with each individual person," says cuddle party goer Linda Hunter.

Even when the feeling comes with a rogue erection attached? Thats right, according to cuddle party organisers getting a chubby on is par for the course - and nothing to be ashamed about. Quite the opposite, it should be communicated to other party goers in the spirit of wondrous sharing.

Which has just about hammered the nail in the cuddle coffin for us.

Check out some hard core cuddling - and hope it's a fad which never quite reaches these shores.

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