Woman pays exorbitant amount of money to be cuddled by a complete stranger for an hour

Mary Duncan

*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events as told to me by a friend who experienced them firsthand; used with permission.

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Imagine the loneliest you ever were in your life.

Imagine being totally alone, isolated, kept away (granted, by your own choice) from society for years to avoid a pandemic. Imagine never leaving your house to go out for dinner, to shop, to visit with friends.

Imagine not touching another human being for over two years.

That’s what happened to my friend Brigit when she shut herself in when Covid started.

Brigit was by far the most scared person of the pandemic that I have met so far. She stocked up on essentials in the first weeks before the first lockdowns started and then started ordering in. She ordered her food, her toilet paper, he dog’s medicines, her own medicines - everything came through the mail and then sat in a box for two days outside her door while she waited for Covid to die.

But inside herself, she was dying.


I talked to Brigit a lot during the pandemic, but she obviously wouldn’t leave her house to see me and wouldn’t welcome me to her house to visit because I exposed myself too much. But something happened in the last few months that has made her change her tune.

Not surprisingly, Brigit fell into a deep depression and would call me crying about how much she missed her husband who had left her for another woman a year before the pandemic. She cried to me about how she missed his simple touches, his hand holding, the way he rubbed her back and cuddled her at night.

So Brigit did something that I never would have expected her to do.

She turned to Craigslist.

Brigit ran and ad in Craigslist for a “Cuddling Companion” whose duties it would be to (fully clothed and completely platonically) lay in bed with Brigit and cuddle her for a set rate per hour, rub her back, and give her foot massages. The candidate for this job had to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of that and a negative Covid test the day of the cuddle.

Finally the day came and afterwards I couldn’t wait for Brigit to call me and tell me what it was like.

“It was weird,” she said. “He didn’t feel like my husband, he was thinner, it wasn’t as satisfying as holding someone bigger, but it was good to be touched. It was so good to be touched,” she said.

I finally got up the guts to ask her how much the man charged. Two hundred dollars an hour was the answer, and the first time he came, he stayed for five hours. That’s $1000 worth of cuddling and in the end it didn’t do much to relieve her loneliness, it just made her more lonely for more cuddling.

If I were Brigit, I would have turned to online dating during the pandemic and required the same vaccination and negative test status, but that’s just me.


What would you have done?

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I write about relationships and parenting, life, society, people, and sometimes also beer.

Connecticut State
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