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We could all use a hug right about now. It seems like a cruel joke, that now is also a time when we need to be distancing from each other.

In this episode, we explore the importance of physical touch, and lie down with a professional cuddler (back in a time when snuggling up with strangers didn’t mean blatantly disregarding health advice).

‘Hug’ by Cristina Marras

What does it feel like when you want to hug someone but you know that you should not? Or when you do, despite knowing that you should not? This is the new normal, when even the most mundane tasks, like taking the shopping to your elderly mother, become source of worry and doubt.
This story was made for Sarah Geis’ project Audio Playground.
Producer: Cristina Marras

Music: ‘Vibrion Phonetica no.3’ by Max Sergeev, ‘Axanometric’ by Dural

‘What’s up with cuddles?’ by Elsa Silberstein

Who doesn’t love a cuddle? Well, if you think about it, it’s kind of a strange thing for us to do. Two adults, wrapping their bodies in amongst the other, and lying there. In the age of the sanitized hand and the elbow bump, we’re getting less up in each other’s grills. This is the story of the humble cuddle, and why we do it.

This story was made for Elsa Silberstein’s podcast, The Done Thing.

Producer: Elsa Silberstein

Music: ‘Box of Frogs’ by Dave James, ‘Kaleidoscopic Imagination’ by Flouw, ‘Oh Please’ by Matt Goodman, Kate Rawlings and Tom Leigh

‘My Pre-COVID Cuddle’ by Lee Robinson

The lockdown rules in Victoria have left many feeling disconnected and devoid of physical contact. Now more than ever, some Victorians just want a hug.

Before COVID was a thing, Lee Robinson paid a visit to cuddle therapist Sarah Belle to explore the benefits of platonic touch in a 1-on-1 cuddle session.

This story was made as part of a series exploring Australians with interesting jobs, called Do Quit Your Day Job.

Producer: Lee Robinson

Supervising producer: Evrim Şen

Music: ‘Peacoat’, ‘Astrisx’, ‘Slimheart’ and ‘Diatom’ by Blue Dot Sessions

All The Best credits:

Executive Producer: Ryan Pemberton

Victorian State Coordinator: Mell Chun

Host: Maddy Macquine

Episode mix and compile: Julian Wan

Community Coordinators: Chloe Gillespie and Danni Stewart

SYN Community Coordinator: Lee Robinson

Social Media Producers: Matilda Fay and Angela Moran

Photo: Kristina Alexanderson via Flickr