recent survey conducted by British sociologists found that 93 percent of young straight men in the UK have cuddled with another male friend. The sociologists noted that college-age men had more liberal attitudes towards same-sex touching, cuddling, spooning and other gentle contact. It happened more frequently between groups of straight guy friends.

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“We’re always cuddling, my lot,” said one participant in the study. “We’re all comfortable with each other.” Another participant added that these friends cuddles happen spontaneously and don’t often last for too long. “I love a quick cuddle, just so you remember your friends are about and are there for you.”

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Cuddling among straight friends was particularly common during communal hangovers after long nights of heavy drinking together. “‘If your mate has a headache you can like massage his head, or you just lie there together holding each other and laughing about how awful you feel,” a participant said.

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Furthermore, the survey found that 98 percent of young straight males had shared a bed with another guy, and they didn’t seem to think it was a big deal. “These men are able to share beds with other men without risking their socially perceived heterosexual identity,” wrote one of the sociologists who conducted the survey.

The sociologists went on to conclude that this liberal attitude towards male same-sex touching countered the notion that straight guys felt strong pressure from homophobia, which led to them avoiding casual, friendly touching and leaving physical violence or sporting activities as the only outlets for same-sex touching.

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