Session Rate: $95/hour + travel fees
Baltimore, MD | Washington, DC | Big Island, HI | Los Angeles, CA | San Diego, CA | roaming cuddlist
About Annie Hopson
How Annie Started to Cuddle
When I was at the University of Delaware, my parents made me a massage table as a reward for not quitting college in favor of massage school. I did graduate with a degree in physics and math education and I taught school for many years. Along with that, I also got myself the professional massage therapy training I had always wanted — and so much more.
In my massage practice, I often encountered people who were more touch-hungry than tense or injured. They would have been better served by being held, rather than kneaded. However, my massage therapy professional ethics had little for them but shame when they asked for a mutual touch experience. Offering mutual touch during a massage session is illegal in Maryland and many other localities. It felt frustrating to not be able to serve my clientele to their best interests within the bounds of my massage profession.
So, if you’ve ever left a massage session feeling thoroughly touched, yet still disconnected, you might try a cuddle session instead. Professional cuddling is a new and differently effective way to achieve profound relaxation. I am a Cuddlist because I know the magic of platonic, caring, physical communion. With me, you can experience that personal empowerment of having true clarity around giving and receiving touch.
Annie Featured in the Press!
- ABC7 Interview
- The Beacon – A Touching New Profession
- Washington Post – I went to get hugged by a professional cuddler. Here’s how it felt.
- Washington Post – People are paying for cuddles? And it’s not what you think.
- Voice of America – Professional Cuddling: A New Occupation
Who Sees a Cuddlist?
“I have just too much going on in my life to maintain any relationship. I just want to be held and caressed so I can mellow out and have “me time” without having to give back. Is that selfish?”
“I was so sick that it stretched my family to the limit. It was all they could do to keep the household running without my participation. They were too exhausted to hold me and give me the attention I really needed. Is that selfish?”
“My partner and kids need so much from me! I have to hold the whole family together and take care of everything. I just long for a break where I get to have what I want, even just for a little while. Is that selfish?”
No, it’s not self-ish.
“Growing up, my family was never touchy-feely. It never occurred to me that hugging and holding could be a thing, so I fell into relationship after relationship where touch was rare and perfunctory. Now I want to experience what I missed. Is it too late to learn how to trust another person’s touch?”
“My partner just doesn’t understand my need for holding and focused attention. I love them and I want to stay in the relationship. Can I have my basic touch needs met without cheating on the relationship?”
“Oh man, I just long to have more touch in my life, but every time I reach out, I feel rejected. Some people tell me I’m creepy or needy or that I come on too strong. How can I get what I want without putting people off?”
Through the years, I’ve met so many people who could use some gentle guidance as they discover the different kinds of touch they really want and need. This practice has the effect of facilitating personal growth and expanding your touch expertise to include providing a felt sense of boundaries and ease in asking for what you want without being attached to getting it.
One of my favorite types of cuddle clientele are people who are perhaps between relationships and want to approach future connections from a place of desire rather than from a place of lack. If we aren’t careful, we can develop a touch-hungry neediness that can make us susceptible to making poor long-term relationship decisions. When the person we are dating is the only one available to fill our short-term touch needs, we can fall into relationships out of habit rather than choice.
My mama has a saying: “Never go shopping hungry, cuz you’ll end up bringing home food that’s not good for you.”
It took me quite a while to develop the kinds of friends who have the emotional intelligence skills necessary to give quality attention and intimate platonic holding when needed — without wanting to move into my home and share my bank accounts. In my cuddle-verse community, people with higher touch needs than their life/dating partner can have these needs met via cuddle dates with other friends. As a healthy touch expert, I can stand in for that kind of friendship for you when you don’t have one handy, and I can help you to enrich the kinds of friendships you have if that’s what you want.
Having said that, I welcome people of all ages, genders, identities, orientations, abilities and cultural backgrounds. If you are looking for a safe space to let it go, relax into my arms and just BE; if you just need to be held and heard, then let’s talk.
Will People Know?
They won’t know from me! I take my confidentiality quite seriously. My desire is for you to leave our cuddle session feeling the warm glow of focused attention and gentle care. Other people may notice some side effects though:
- People in your life may notice that you look more relaxed and perhaps even look younger.
- You could develop a clarity in your interactions like never before.
- Communication goes more smoothly when you become more confident about expressing your own needs while respecting the needs of others.
So let’s slow down, connect, enjoy each other’s presence. Cuddling is a radical act of self-love that is shared with another individual (or more). When we make the conscious choice to nurture our bodies and feed our hearts through intentional touch or any act of self-full love, we show the world (& ourselves) that we know we are worthy.
Whether you choose to work with me or with another professional Cuddlist, I want that for you.
You want that for you, too.
May you have all the blessings and joy you deserve.
Session information from Annie Hopson
How to Schedule
Click the Request a Session button and fill out the form. Please remember to include where you live, since I do travel to some very different parts of the world. Once you complete your cuddle request form, I will contact you to schedule a complimentary 20-minute (or so) phone conversation with you where we can get acquainted and go over your intake questions. For a quicker response after submitting your request form, text message me at 443-355-4325 to schedule your complimentary 20-minute intake conversation right away.
Respecting this procedure helps me to become more comfortable with you as we determine whether we really are a good fit. You’ll have time to speak about any desires, questions, or concerns you may have. We’ll usually schedule our first cuddle session during this conversation.
There is a non-refundable scheduling deposit of half the cuddling fee in advance for new clients in order to guarantee your spot. This deposit counts towards your session fee and is forfeited if there is a last minute cancellation. At the beginning of the session, you pay the balance with cash or PayPal or Visa/MasterCard.
What to Expect
When you are with me, I want you to feel welcome and relaxed, as though you are on vacation with someone who cares about you. You have my complete attention, and I’m in no hurry. Stress falls away.
You can expect a nice handshake with an invitation to a warm hug. It’s perfectly fine to say no to this invitation to touch.
From the beginning, communication like this serves to establish trust. It’s important that we build trust from the start. We follow with a short conversation, making a commitment to keep open communication about the rich platonic touch experience we are creating.
Our agreements and established intentions carry us through our session, ensuring that comfort, needs, and boundaries are being communicated and respected all around throughout our time together. This gives us a safe space to discover the shape of our cuddling. While staying firmly within the boundaries of the Cuddlist Code of Conduct, I enjoy being creative during our session. Limited only by imagination, our cuddling becomes a dance of mutual consent.
Because I am a traveling Cuddlist, I don’t necessarily have any place of mine near you where we can meet. There are other cuddling possibilities! They include
- a public park or the beach
- a movie theater
- a coffee shop with comfy sofas
- a hospice or retirement community
- an Airbnb or other rented space
- possibly your residence or
- another place that you suggest.
We will negotiate traveling fees and other costs. I do have a sliding scale for people who have special needs.
Tell me you read all the way to the end, give me useful feedback, and I will give you 15% off your first session and add a half-hour of free cuddle time onto your second session!
I hope to see you soon!
Skills & Specialties
January 1-12, 2020 southern Florida
January 15-25, 2020 Mid-Atlantic area, USA
January 27-February 7, 2020 New England/Boston
February 10-March 10, 2020 southern Florida
I have flexible timing to fit most schedules, including potential over-night sessions for a deeply relaxing sleep.