Spoiler Alert: the Advanced Level Safeguarding Training course features a cartoon that aims to illustrate how touch can be experienced in church by survivors of abuse and those who are sensitive to touch by another person who is not, for example, a close friend or relative.
I’m not sure that the point of what we are aiming to convey is exactly rocket science but it does perhaps make us pause to think about our own attitudes towards touch, whether wanted or not. It generally prompts a useful conversation and hopefully raises the level of awareness about the issue.
Thinking more widely about touch, it’s not just about people. I know that touching nylon or the material that old fashioned plastic macs were made of (remember them?) makes my skin crawl, and almost the thought of it makes me tingle as I write. Readers may also have their own texture touch phobias.
However here’s an innovative chance to have your say about how you feel about touch.
Last week’s ‘All in the Mind’ programme on BBC Radio 4 focused on a new research project that has been launched to ‘understand the similarities and differences in our experience of touch with the aim of increasing understanding of its role in health and well-being’. Developed by a team at Goldsmith’s College in London, the Touch Test will enable you to offer your own thoughts about touch including what you consider to be appropriate or inappropriate touch by others.
Here are links to the test through the BBC website:
The test is in two parts, the first taking 15 minutes and the second 20 minutes. There are full instructions and details about what is involved. The results will be published later in the year. Why not give it a go?