I get it. We touch people for a living. That is not, however, an invitation for something, shall we say, more X rated.
It's a hot topic amongst us Massage Therapists: we teach it to students and learn how to handle it in the moment; we emphasize staying safe and avoiding harm, even joke as professionals about the times it happens. It's a little-talked-about-outside-the-profession secret, the clients asking for more than they're going to get phenomenon.
You may be shocked to learn it happens to most of at some point. It's happened to me 3 times over the years, and most recently to a friend which spurned on this blog post.
A couple of months ago I hosted some colleagues for a roundtable discussion, and what's the first thing we chat about? Getting solicited. Insert a laugh on some of the stories along with a heated debate on how outrageous it is this thing still happens... until a colleague pointed out this little tidbit (and rightfully so):
The oldest Profession in the world is Prostitution.
The Second Oldest is Massage/Touch.
Often by the same people.
So, sex and Massage are still linked in the greater cultural mind, as shown by the prevalence of 'massage parlors’ and TV shows like 'the client list'. (I hated this, by the way, and found it really uncomfortable as a professional MT). It will take time for Massage to earn the respect it deserves as a healthcare profession. Incidentally, that's a whole other rant about the need for better education and consistent licensing from state to state in order to be taken more seriously and educate people on what we actually do.
Yes you'll likely get an erection from being touched. No, we don't care. Yes it's normal. No it doesn't mean anything.
So I get it. Really. But sexy fun times are not for sale here.
Photo Credit: Meet the Fockers film via fanpop.com