So, why are we so afraid to surrender to tickling? What’s the worst thing that could happen? We laugh. We fidget and perhaps struggle a bit. What is the big fear? Come on, we know what will happen when our partner hits that tickle spot on our side and under our armpit. We will just laugh again and again and again. We will lose ourselves for a bit as tickling takes over and forbids us to remain complacent in our protective shell. No, tickling will rip off our protective shells. Our adult stance in life will be temporarily threatened.
Any macho shields men try to hold onto will be torn away. Think about it. A big strong man with lots of muscles suddenly finds himself restrained with his arms tightly above his head. His stomach muscles retract and contract over and over again, his armpits involuntarily flexing, as he is forced to respond to tickling’s dominant summons.
A strong powerful woman finds herself dominated by a partner who decides to use tickling to get her to surrender. She must let go. She has no choice. She must become submissive, as her caveman/cavewoman throws her over his/her shoulder, throws her down onto the bed and tickles her. Tickling makes her see herself as a primitive being as her ticklish body demands she respond with laughter and arousal. Her man/woman gets to be the dominant species for a bit and tickling helps him/her accomplish that. All she can do is laugh about it as tickling temporarily takes away her control.
So, is this what we are so afraid of? Can tickling really awaken the parts of us that hate losing control, but also love it at the same time? Are we frightened by this duality within us? Are we embarrassed by such a loss of control?
Tickling is a strange phenomenon. We love it or hate it, or we love and hate it simultaneously. Tickling makes so many people uncomfortable. If tickling makes us uncomfortable, we should explore why that is. If it holds that much power over us, shouldn’t we embrace it and get to know ourselves better?
For those people who have the desire to explore their ambivalence about tickling, it can be like entering a room where the door is stuck. You want to get in, but are nervous as to why this particular door has been stuck for so long. Why is it that every time you try to open that door, it remains stuck, jammed, or perhaps even locked? Why is it that every time your partner tickles you, you only allow it to go on for a very short time, or forbid it completely?
If you are afraid of tickling or hate it, you can get through that door by giving a loving partner or friend the key. Now, it is up to the person doing the tickling to be loving and use that key wisely.
Tickling can be a source of deep ambivalence for many people. It often can feel good, the gentle sensation of fingers caressing your arms, or gentle nibbles and kisses on your neck. Those same sensations can turn torturous for many and become unlikeable and greatly resisted.
I find it very amusing when tickling so often has the last laugh. When tickling finally grabs us and pulls us into its torturous clutches, we are helpless creatures. We are so human and our flesh proves that to us by making us lose complete control of ourselves and our reactions.
For people who love being tickled, it is actually a challenge, seeing how much we can take. How much squirming, laughter and surrender can we actually withstand? That is the thrill of tickling, the equivalent of an exciting amusement park ride that scares us, but thrills us all at once. We fear it, but we want it. We want to prove we can handle it.
Isn’t it strange how we can have such a love-hate relationship with tickling? We like it a little bit and can sometimes handle small doses, but when the kid gloves come off and the tickling becomes more intense and even torturous, we hate it for having such power over us.
Yet, we may discover that we also love being tickled and becoming aroused as tickling frees us from the parts of us that remain stuck and complacent.
Copyright © 2015 Veronica Frances