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Sensate Focus


The Second Stage of Sensate Focus

In the next stage of sensate focus, touching is expanded to include the breasts and genitals. The person doing the touching is instructed to begin with general body touching, not to immediately move to the genitals or breasts. Again the emphasis is on awareness of physical sensations and not the expectation of a sexual response, and intercourse and orgasm are still prohibited.

The couple is asked to take turns trying a "hand riding" technique as a means of nonverbal communication. By placing one hand on top of the partner's hand while being touched, one can indicate if he or she would like more or less pressure, a faster or slower pace, or a change to a different spot.

Masters and Johnson caution that these nonverbal messages should be conveyed in such a way that the person being touched does not take over full control, but simply adds some additional input to the touching, which is still primarily done based on the interests of the toucher.


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