• Before making a single edit, Tropedia EXPECTS our site policy and manual of style to be followed. Failure to do so may result in deletion of contributions and blocks of users who refuse to learn to do so. Our policies can be reviewed here.
  • All images MUST now have proper attribution, those who neglect to assign at least the "fair use" licensing to an image may have it deleted. All new pages should use the preloadable templates feature on the edit page to add the appropriate basic page markup. Pages that don't do this will be subject to deletion, with or without explanation.
  • All new trope pages will be made with the "Trope Workshop" found on the "Troper Tools" menu and worked on until they have at least three examples. The Trope workshop specific templates can then be removed and it will be regarded as a regular trope page after being moved to the Main namespace. THIS SHOULD BE WORKING NOW, REPORT ANY ISSUES TO Janna2000, SelfCloak or RRabbit42. DON'T MAKE PAGES MANUALLY UNLESS A TEMPLATE IS BROKEN, AND REPORT IT THAT IS THE CASE. PAGES WILL BE DELETED OTHERWISE IF THEY ARE MISSING BASIC MARKUP.


WikEd fancyquotes.pngQuotesBug-silk.pngHeadscratchersIcons-mini-icon extension.gifPlaying WithUseful NotesMagnifier.pngAnalysisPhoto link.pngImage LinksHaiku-wide-icon.pngHaikuLaconic
"Don't touch me. Don't ever touch me."
Guts, Berserk

This is a character who simply doesn't like to be touched, whether it be by a stranger or someone they know. They may be this way as a result of a bad experience, simple shyness, or because they just don't have the tolerance/patience for such things. Sometimes there's something wrong with them in a dangerous way and they know it. There's a good chance that they may be something of a loner as well. Sometimes they change for the better later on, sometimes they don't and sometimes the fact that they don't like to be touched isn't treated as a problem in the first place.

If it is treated like a problem, expect their Love Interest to attempt to fix it at some point. Most of the time, they succeed but the amount of blunders and time it takes depends greatly on the genre and nature of the story.

In real life, this is called tactile defensiveness, and is common in abuse victims and people with conditions like ADHD or autism spectrum disorders, and ESPECIALLY with OCD, but even then, some people just don't like it and can't explain why.

For instant hilarity, pair them up with someone that has No Sense of Personal Space or a Cuddle Bug. However, if you don't want them to punch you in the face, Air Hugging may be a better choice. May sometimes be a trait that Tsundere share.

Examples of Hates Being Touched include:

Anime & Manga

  • Lucy in Elfen Lied became like this as a result of her terrible childhood, though she doesn't mind if Kouta touches her.
    • Mayu also follows this to a degree; the manga implies that her traumatic experience with her stepfather has soured her on men in general, and finding Kouta in the bath groping Nyu doesn't help. Ironically, she appears to bond most closely with Bandou, who generally treats her like crap, except for when he saved her from the "Unknown Man".
  • "Father" in Fullmetal Alchemist has a mentality of not letting inferior humans laying a hand on him. Eventually, however, he did get physically ass-kicked by Edward in the finale due to his powers weakening.
  • Naruto: Sasuke and Gaara are the most prominent with Sasuke often proclaiming "Don't get so close!"/"Don't touch me so familiarly!" and Gaara threatening to kill people and/or giving the death glare. Gaara eventually got better about this, and Sasuke seemed to have stopped caring (maybe he just got used to Orochimaru grabbing him with snakes, and everything else seems minor by comparison).
  • Full Metal Panic: Sagara Sōsuke, due to his highly paranoid nature. Most people know better than to try to get too touchy-feely with him. This is particularly obvious in that one episode of The Second Raid, where Chidori drags him out to get a haircut and he ends up holding the barber at gunpoint when his reflexes act up. In the same episode, though, it is shown that he is utterly calm about being touched by Chidori herself (who ends up being his personal hair stylist this way). Ironic, seeing how Chidori has probably single-handedly dished out more corporal punishment to him than all of his enemies combined.
  • Guts from Berserk, as mentioned in the quote above, as a result of being raped by one of his adoptive father's men during his childhood. The only exception is his Love Interest, Casca, and even she almost got strangled to death during their first time together due to Guts flashing back to what Donovan did to him.
    • It's especially interesting to note that Guts Hates Being Touched except by his Love Interest Casca, and yet he didn't seem to mind when Griffith held his face in his hands, got really close following their first duel, looked into his eyes, and said "You belong to me now, Guts."
    • During his stay with the Band of the Hawk, Guts did appear to be getting over this, as he became more chummy with his comrades and became more trusting of others close to him. Then the Eclipse happened. You can guess what state Guts reverted back into.
      • Based on this information, you can say that Guts' issue with people touching him has a lot to do with his trust in others, not just a single traumatic physical experience. After his time with Casca, Guts really doesn't talk about his childhood after that, but after the Eclipse, he goes back to hating being touched. It goes to show how much he felt betrayed by a man that he trusted, the second time in his life.
    • Once used for hilarity rather than drama, though. When he refuses to join the Hawks in a huge celebration after his first major battle with them, Pippin just grabs him, hauls Guts over his shoulder and drags him to the group kicking and screaming.
    • And as for Casca, after being raped into insanity by Femto during the Eclipse, she has shown signs of this herself. When Guts tries to touch her following the ordeal, she responds quite badly, both when she and Guts are with Godo, Rickert and Erica immediately following the Eclipse, and later in the Millennium Falcon arc after Guts' personal Beast almost gets him to rape her, where she bites Guts' hand and then hides behind Farnese, the only one who she seems to allow to touch her. Which only adds to Guts' misery considering how close they were before everything went to hell. This does not necessarily stop when Casca is finally back to sanity: while Casca doesn't blame Guts at all for what she went through, the PTSD she gained from the whole incident kicks in whenever she sees him. . .
  • Shinji Ikari from Neon Genesis Evangelion. Just about any kind of physical contact is beyond Shinji's comfort zone, particularly involving women although he does tolerate Kaworu touching his hand in one episode. And it does not do him any good in the long run either.
  • Ranma of Ranma One Half. He gets extremely nervous when girls try to do something physical to him, and is vehemently heterosexual, which means he gets extremely violent if men try something on his "girl form". Part of the blame for this might be because he is inevitably battered by Akane if she sees him in something that looks compromising, while the other girls vary between aggressively flirting with him and hitting him for pretty much the same reason.
    • Of course he isn't above using the Glomp himself as a tool to get an advantage on a rival or opponent, or standing on other people's skulls as a form of saying hello.
  • Hisoka from Yami no Matsuei. Explained to be due to his messed up family history, Muraki raping him, and the fact that he's able to read the memories / feelings of others when he touches them. Yeesh.
  • Yu Kanda from D Gray Man. Considering he spent his childhood up until about the age of 10 being used as a guinea pig for Body Horror-tastic experiments by the Black Order, this isn't entirely surprising.
  • Hibari Kyouya from Katekyo Hitman Reborn. If you try to touch him, chances are he'll "bite you to death" or give you a Death Glare.
    • This was also how Gokudera acted whenever Yamamoto, who has No Sense of Personal Space when it comes to anyone, got too close. At first.
  • Kaze to Ki no Uta: Rosemarine, by everyone except Jules and later Serge. Blame it on Auguste raping him when he was fifteen.
  • Setsuna of Mobile Suit Gundam 00 is a Captain Ersatz of Sousuke of Full Metal Panic (similar background as a Child Soldier) and shares Sousuke's aversion to being touched. Surprisingly, he extends this behavior to his Gundam as well, although he later grows out of it to the point he hugs Feldt and Marina without any sign of discomfort.
  • Hellsing: One of the things that sets off Seras Victoria is being attacked in this manner (in the anime at least).
  • Heine from DOGS Bullets and Carnage has a bad reaction to being touched by women (except Nill for some reason that no one knows). Although his aversion for women is part of his traumatic backstory, it's played for laughs once when Naoto assumes that it's because he and Badou are in a homosexual relationship, and twice when Naoto faints and Heine should catch her but...doesn't.
  • Fate Testarossa of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha is often sensitive to being touched. In the manga for the movie, Linith notes that Fate is sensitive to physical contact, stiffening up when she hugs her, possibly due to a lack of parental affection from Precia. In Episode 8 of A's, Fate blushes and recoils slightly when Lindy lays her hand on Fate's to comfort her when she wakes up after having her Linker Core stolen.
  • Kouji Minamoto from Digimon Frontier. He even says out loud in episode two that he hates being touched by strangers.
  • Kazuma from Kagerou Nostalgia either lashes out or shakes when touched by another guy after being attacked (and implied to be raped) by Shimari.
  • Urabe of Mysterious Girlfriend X slips out of her boyfriend's hugs and tells him not to do that without asking first.
    • Right after using her (as Tsubaki called them) Panty-Scissors and uses awesome moves to cut whatever conveniently located poster next to or behind of him into tiny shreds.
  • Satellizer from Freezing, due to the abuse from her half-brother Louis. Touch her and she'll beat the ever loving shit out of you with her big blade. Unless you're Kazuya Aoi.
  • Hyakujitsu no Bara: Taki in some scenes, where his reaction is either a slap or saying something along the lines of "Don't touch me with your filthy hands!" or "Know your place!".
  • Ciel from Black Butler. He appears to not enjoy physical contact, and has been shown slapping and insulting individuals for being too comfortable with touching or speaking to him. However, he tolerates Sebastian and does not complain when the demon picks him up or holds him. If he is stressed, he will also slap someone touching him away, proclaiming, "Don't touch me so easily!" This is a negative influence of the trauma he underwent during his time as a slave.
    • Ciel tolerates Elizabeth's physical contact, as well. The fact she's his fiancee, and has known him since they were little may have something to do with it.
  • Memori from Game X Rush. Possibly as a side-effect from his youth, where his family tended to treat him like a beloved pet (dressing him up, teasing him until he cried) than is probably good for a kid. Completely ignored in the second half of the manga, at least where Yuuki's involved.
  • A minor plot point in Kannazuki no Miko is Himeko's extreme sensitiveness to anyone touching her hair, "thanks" to her abusive foster father.
  • Seto Kaiba in Yu-Gi-Oh!, due to his pretty bad childhood and loner tendencies (though he wasn't raped...probably).
    • Some might argue that this is far more due to his superiority complex than to abuse, especially since his reactions to being touched seem to imply disgust (if he reacts at all?) rather than anything resembling fear. I guess some could argue that he's hiding these reactions, but he doesn't hide all the emotional (some even BSOD) moments that he experiences when a feeling of powerlessness is forced upon him--all of which overtly have nothing to do with being touched or abused.
  • Ichise of Texhnolyze can get like this at times. If he's not comfortable with someone getting too touchy or close for his tastes he either gives them a Death Glare or has a tendency to go berserk. It seems that Ran's the only one who can touch him without provoking some violent response and even then he tends to tense up a bit. He gets better, somewhat.
  • Genjo Sanzo from Saiyuki is the grouchy antisocial type who is usually averse, rather violently so, to both physical contact and small talk even with his close friends, much less random strangers. This is because in the years he spent traveling, he was forced to kill to protect himself from bandits, and more relevantly, rapists. It's also notable that the only one he really lets touch him is Goku, and even then it'll put him in a pissy(er) mood.
  • Hinako from Bitter Virgin has this in regards to men due to suffering several years of sexual abuse by her stepfather.
  • Soma Mitsuya of the manga Golden Days.
  • Zettai Karen Children: Inverted trope. People go out of their way to avoid physical contact with psychometers. Sakaki expresses open jealousy that Shiho has people willing to hug her and hold her hand.
  • Galaxy Angel Rune's Apricot Sakuraba is like this around men in the sense that she can interact with men without difficulty, but if a man touches her, her super-strength kicks in and she literally reflexively kicks the man's ass.
  • Light Yagami of Death Note.
    • L is probably one too, as hinted by the fact that he doesn't like touching either objects or people, and will only use his fingertips to do it.
  • Kyuubei Yagyu of Gintama is bad with being touched by men, however slightly. More often than not, she'll hurl any such unlucky guy.
  • Japan of Axis Powers Hetalia does not react well to Italy hugging and kissing him. Or to Korea trying to claim his breasts. Or to waking up naked next to Greece. It's one of the surefire ways to make his stoic exterior crack, really.
    • Due to their Tsundere personalities Romano and England can be like this too.
  • Satoko of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni has been abused by her Evil Uncle so long and has such severe emotional trauma regarding the disappearance of her older brother that sometimes even the mere action of patting her on the head can lead to her having convulsions or reacting violently. Hate Plague is an ugly thing. Poor kid.
  • Inami from Working. At least, towards people of the male variety.
  • Arashiko from MM! also hates to be touched by males.
  • Miu from Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple though not as extreme doesn't like to be touched. She got a little ticked that someone touched so easily. Also, anyone who approaches her from the back will be flipped over.
  • Bleach: Nova from the anime. Arguably, only with women. He doesn't mind sitting on Chad's shoulder, yet he hides his face when Rukia or Rangiku touch him and he changes into his plushie form when he has to touch Rangiku's arm to combine his powers with hers.
  • Due to his shy nature, Rito from To Love Ru doesn't like it when Lala or any of members of his Unwanted Harem cling to him.
  • Nabari no Ou: Yoite. Though he ends up allowing it of Miharu sometimes, "'Don't touch me" is easily the phrase he says the most.
  • Yukinari of Girls Bravo is heterosexual so he hates it if another guy touches him and he hates it if girls touch him because he has a bad allergic reaction that flares up whenever he is touched or beat up by girls. Miharu being the exception as she seems to be the only girl in the world that doesn't set off his allergy.
    • Kirie at times, especially if the touching is meant to be perverted.
  • Kira of Mars was raped by her stepfather when she was fourteen years old. As a result, she became averse to male touch and shy to the point of muteness.
  • In Tsukigasa, Azuma can't stand contact from other people ever since he was raped by his uncle. Since he never told anyone why, his Love Interest Kuroe was always trying to force him to get used to it.
  • Daryl Yan of Guilty Crown. He mentions a fear of infection at one point, but since he's just as leery about physical contact with clearly uninfected people, that seems to merely be one of many excuses.
  • Karakuridouji Ultimo: Jealous/Jealousy. Considering he nearly sliced off Yamato's arm after he touched his shoulder...
  • Leo of Pandora Hearts sometimes acts this way.
  • In Afterschool Charisma, Mozart hates being touched by non-clones, as Shiro finds out at least three times. Once Mozart discovers that Shiro might be a clone, he does a 180 and has No Sense of Personal Space with Shiro instead.
  • Due to her Tsundere persona Louise of Zero no Tsukaima often reacts violently and/or coldly when she's touched (especially if its in a perverted manner) or has her personal space invaded. Saito, being heterosexual, could get like this around guys but he doesn't mind if a pretty girl touches him (though he does mind if Louise is around when a girl touches him because that usually means he'll get punished by her).
  • Madarame from Genshiken is a bit uncomfortable around acts of physical affection.
  • Tsukasa from the oneshot Kuroneko Guardian due to having been raped by a burglar.
  • Kyo of Fruits Basket is like this because he changes into a cat due to the Sohma curse whenever he gets hugged by a non-cursed-Sohma woman. He more or less mellows out about this in regards to his Love Interest Tohru.
  • Inner Moka of Rosario Plus Vampire doesn't like to be touched. As Tsukune found out the hard way very early on in the second serialization.
  • Revy of Black Lagoon has a Hair-Trigger Temper and as such can be quite violent about being touched at times. The fact that she was raped as a teen quite explains it.

Comic Books



 Bobby: Clovis don't like to be touched.


 Kuzco: No touchy!

  • Lars from Lars and the Real Girl. Due to childhood trauma, he feels physical pain whenever he is touched by anyone... except, of course, Bianca.
  • Ardath Bey (alias Imhotep, the Mummy), from the original 1932 The Mummy:

 Ardath Bey: Your pardon; I dislike to be touched — an Eastern prejudice.

    • The remake from 1999 has a Shout-Out to this. Imhotep is meeting with the Egyptologist who tries to shake his hand. Beni, acting as Imhotep's interpreter, stops him, saying, "Prince Imhotep does not like to be touched. Silly Eastern superstition, I'm afraid."
  • Pandorum has the Knife Nut, Nadia.
  • In Three O'Clock High, this is the reason why Buddy challenges Jerry to a fight after school. Buddy clobbers several other people who touch him.
  • The former half of David and Lisa is in an asylum because, among other things, he's afraid that touching people will kill him.
  • In Clara's Heart, the eponymous character freaks out whenever the main character touches her. This is because years ago, her son raped her.
  • Coraline Jones in Coraline.
  • Used hilariously in Buffalo '66. The main characters are posing as a fake married couple for a picture (long story). The main character reveals he hates being touched and angrily tells his fake-wife, "We are a couple who don't touch!". The fake-wife in question? Christina Ricci.
  • The Demon from Paranormal Activity 3. When Katie accidentally bumps into it, it...doesn't take it very well.
  • Implied with Hanna, she damn well floors a guy when he tries to kiss her.


  • Christopher Boone in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Justified in that he has some sort of autism spectrum disorder.
  • Sparrow from Emma Bull's Bone Dance. It's because Sparrow is neither male nor female, and the only such person zie knows, so zie is sort of self-conscious. Unfortunately, one of Sparrow's best friends has No Sense of Personal Space, and... It Gets Worse. Sparrow maintains this trait throughout the story.
  • Chronicles of Thomas Covenant. "Don't touch me!" is virtually Thomas' catchphrase, and his aversion to being touched is a good yardstick of how alienated or hopeless he feels at the time.
  • Jos from the Warchild Series hates being touched, and will flinch or jerk away if someone tries to, due to the abuse he suffered at Falcone's hands. He also has a tendency to back up if someone moves closer to him.
  • Relg from The Belgariad, a religious fanatic obsessed with his personal purity, is like this due to his fear of being defiled. His aversion to physical contact, and his companions' complete disregard for it, are something of a Running Gag. He gets better about it in the sequel, though.
  • Charles in the Alpha and Omega series is his father's hitman. Given that werewolves occasionally go crazy and need to be mercy killed, he shuts himself off from social contact, especially physical contact, to prevent heartache if he ever has to kill them. The other werewolves all notice and give him his personal space. This causes complications in his relationship with his mate, who misinterprets his stolid demeanor.

 Anna: "Someone told me you don't like to be touched."

Charles: "Not usually. But I love your touch. Touch me any time. Any place. Anywhere."

  • Raistlin Majere from Dragonlance tends to dislike physical contact.
    • Once to the point of snarling "Don't touch me! Don't ever touch me!" when his friend tugged on his sleeve. The poor guy just wanted to give him a present, too.
  • In Midnighters, Melissa hates being touched at the beginning of the books, anyway because she's a mindcaster. Physical contact "turns up" the person's thoughts.
  • In Dragaera Vlad Taltos's jhereg familiar "Loiosh", doesn't like physical contact with strangers. In Iorich, he thinks it's punishment to be petted by a young boy, and he expresses his distaste for being touched by a sorceress with a mental "Ewwwwwww!".
  • Shotgun Suzie from Nightside can't bear to touch or be touched, due to ugly events in her childhood. As of Just Another Judgement Day, she's finally starting to get over this hang-up.
  • Kahlan Amnell, and by extension all Confessors, in the Sword of Truth series are an inverse of this: Nobody wants to touch them, because their powers work through physical contact. Because of this, Kahlan is initially very surprised that Richard offers to help her up when they first meet, since ordinarily nobody would want to touch a Confessor willingly.
  • The main character of Roald Dahl's short story "Georgy Porgy". (He also has a Freudian Excuse.)
  • Lisbeth Salander from The Millennium Trilogy, as a result of a lifetime of abuse and suffering.
  • The Demon's Lexicon: Nick. Attempts at familiarity (unless you're Alan) will probably end with a knife in the offending body part.
  • The Bug, who is autistic, in Matthew Reilly's Hovercar Racer will only tolerate being touched by his mother and his brother. A crowing moment of heartwarming is when he throws his arms around his very surprised father.
  • Wendy from Ted Dekker's Skin.
  • The Kni'lina in Mikhail Akhmanov's Arrivals From the Dark books value their personal space called "kono" to the point of obsessiveness. Kono consists of an area of roughly 5 paces. Only family members, sexual partners, doctors, and servants are allowed to violate one's kono. Any other violation of the personal space is a big cultural taboo. The Kni'lina can be easily spotted by their behavior, as they constantly look around them to make sure there's no one in the immediate vicinity. The prevailing theory for this behavior is likely a plague that wiped out much of their civilization centuries prior and the need to maintain quarantine.

Live Action TV

  • Monk has OCD issues with being touched.
  • James May of Top Gear (who might also have OCD) apparently dislikes physical contact, especially "man-contact"
  • Ned from Pushing Daisies doesn't like to be touched, even though he can touch living people with no problem. Not that surprising given he re-killed his mother by touching her, has spent his entire life having to avoid touching his dog, and that touching the wrong (dead) thing can have very unpleasant results. Also, Aunt Vivian for reasons unexplained.
  • Ben from Carnivale, mostly due to being raised by a cold and uber-religious mother who told him he was "marked by the beast" because of his touch-based healing powers.
  • According to Lennier, the entire Minbari race from Babylon 5. Although some seem to be a bit more relaxed than him.
  • Oz
    • Tobias Beecher became like this because of all the abuse and horrible stuff that happens to him while he's in Oz. It's apparent in one scene where Keller comes up behind him, and he flinches when Keller touches him, much like an abused and frightened puppy would.
    • Chris Keller wasn't abused or hurt to the extent that Beecher was, but he does tend to shrug people off or shove them away whenever they try to touch him.
  • Malcolm Reed of Star Trek Enterprise. Good God.
    • Also in Star Trek, Vulcans in general dislike direct physical contact with non-relatives. Justified due to their psychic proclivities and respect for privacy.
    • On the planet Capella women regard any physical contact as a mortal insult (presumably exceptions are made for husbands) punishable by death. The wife of the late Teer (chief) is furious when Kirk pulls her out of the way of a sword thrust. "He laid hands on me! It is my right to see him die."
      • When McCoy touched her stomach while trying to examine her (as she was super preggers, just about to go into labor), she slaps him. Twice. But he gets around this by slapping her right back.
  • Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory (partially because he's a germophobe). When he hugged Penny, it was the highest possible expression of gratitude for him. Even then, it was the most awkwardly made and hysterically tentative hug ever.
  • Francis Wolcott on Deadwood.
  • Criminal Minds
    • In the episode "Haunted", the UnSub doesn't like being touched because it brought back to him traumatic childhood memories.
    • "The Big Wheel" has an UnSub hates it because he was extremely obsessive-compulsive and germphobic.
    • Interestingly, in both episodes listed above, the killer touches or is touched by someone they're emotionally close to near the end of the episode, and for once, doesn't mind.
    • A few very observant fans have pointed out that Hotch almost never touches anyone (Jack, Hayley, and occasionally Rossi) and when he does, it's usually a very emotional scene. He also tends to move away quickly when someone else touches him unexpectedly. It's implied that he was abused as a child in "Natural Born Killer":

 Hotch: You were just responding to what you learned Vincent. When you grow up in an environment like that, an extremely abusive and violent's not surprising that some people grow up to become killers.

Vincent Perotta: Some people?

Hotch: What's that?

Vincent Perotta: You said some people grow up to become killers.

Hotch: ...And some people grow up to catch them.

  • In Persons Unknown, Joe (post-reprogramming) is this, to the point where he attempts to kill anyone who touches him. In one case ( The Night Manager's), he succeeds.
  • On the Law and Order Special Victims Unit episode "Baggage" they learned from his file that a suspect hates being touched. So Elliot and Fin hold him down and threaten to rape him after he tries to get a lawyer. All this accomplishes is making the suspect wet himself and commit suicide with a small knife they did not take away from him. In case you were wondering the guy was a petty thief but completely innocent of the rapes and murders SVU was accusing him of.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Faith finds physical contact uncomfortable, due to her abusive parents. When she switched bodies with Buffy she was not used to Joyce hugging her, at all. She doesn't like Riley near her unless it's for casual sex. And she stabs Giles with a fork, before apologetically saying she doesn't like being pawed, unless she paws first.
  • Modern Family: Mitchell.
    • Barry, the handsome and homeless aspiring "Reiki" master in Slow Down Your Neighbors".
  • Both Eliot and Parker from Leverage tend to dislike being touched. Parker in particular has no problem with getting up in people's space to distract the guards when necessary, but she once broke a guy's fingers for putting a hand on her leg.
    • Parker certainly had abusive foster parents. Eliot's background is more mysterious, but with him being the fighter of the team, it makes sense that he wouldn't want to let his guard down too much. (And like Dean below, he has no problem with touching women.)
  • Dean Winchester from Supernatural starts out touchy about his personal space, and gets worse as the show goes on. Of course, he has a pretty good excuse.
    • Although he doesn't mind when his personal space is being invaded by a hot woman. Well, as long as she's not an evil demon or monster who wants to kill him.
    • You can usually tell how his and Sam's relationship is by how close he lets Sam stand. No chick flick moments, though.
  • On Without a Trace, the search for a missing autistic boy is complicated by this trope, as he fled from people who might otherwise have helped him whenever they made the mistake of touching him.
  • Emma Pillsbury from Glee. It's the reason she's a virgin.
  • Michael from The Wire, due to being molested by his stepfather.
  • Jake Bohm in Touch will thrash and scream when touched, often accompanied by curling into a ball and breathing heavily, much to the sadness of his father, though on rare occasions he will touch someone voluntarily.


  • A Streetcar Named Desire: Blanche desperately desires to be touched and fears it as well.
  • The title character in Tennessee Williams' Baby Doll tells Silva Vacarro, "Please don't touch me. I don't like to be touched."
  • Peter, from Peter Pan, is never touched by another character in the play. This trope is highlighted in the dialogue and stage directions shortly after he first meets Wendy.

 (She leaps out of bed to put her arms round him, but he draws back; he does not know why, but he knows he must draw back)

Peter: You mustn't touch me.

Wendy: Why?

Peter: No one must ever touch me.

Wendy: Why?

Peter: I don't know.


Video Games

  • Simone Cole of the Jericho Squad.
  • The Witch from Left 4 Dead, to the point of violently slaughtering those who "startle" her.
  • Variation of this, Tales of the Abyss with Guy, who doesn't like being touched by females only. Later discovered to be result of him being buried under all his female servants and sister's dead bodies who protected him during an attack on his home.
    • This is played for laughs. Even after it's revealed why.
  • Sam in Telltale Games' Sam and Max series.
  • Suzushiro from Princess Waltz, although it only really applies to men, but it's not quite Does Not Like Men because she just believes she should save everything of herself (including skin contact) for Chris.
  • In City of Heroes the flavor text on the Wisps of the Rularuu state that they do not like the touch of another living being.
  • Tsugumi Komachi from Ever 17 often uses the "Don't touch me" line. Which is why it's so horribly sad at the end with "Don't leave me alone!"
  • Hisui of Tsukihime, in honor of her sister. This is one of the reasons it's hard to realize the Twin Switch.
  • Morrigan of Dragon Age, who was raised apart from society and is creeped out even by handshakes: "And the TOUCHING! All the touching, even as a simple greeting!"
  • Fenris of Dragon Age II.
  • Xzar of Baldur's Gate has a "Stop touching me!" line.

Web Comics

Web Original

  • Nessiah of Dept Heaven Apocrypha had panic attacks when touched by others towards the beginning of the story, a result of his sexual abuse at the hands of Hector. Slowly, he's gotten better at handling it as long as he can see it coming, and doesn't mind Milanor touching him at all. The exception to this rule would be Kylier. It doesn't seem like he's ever going to get over that Mind Rape...
  • Summer Glau River Applewhite of Honorable Hogwarts cringes every time someone touches her, and occasionally has full-on panic attacks if she doesn't see it coming. The only person who can touch her without this happening is Vix. Which gives a whole new meaning to If It's You It's Okay.
  • Isabel Guerra of Survival of the Fittest v4 seems to have problems with this. Flashbacks show her recoiling from touch and she screams and falls into a bush after brushing hands with Dave Morrison. It even has been shown to extend to other people being intimate, such as her pretty much having a panic attack when trapped in the restroom with Rosa Fiametta and Felicia Carmichael making out during prom.
    • Version three's Endgame also shows Maxie Dasai to be like this, not reacting well at all to being hugged. Given what happened to the character, it's understandable.
  • Ti'Cira Hawk and Ryori Holloway of The Gungan Council hated any physical contact due to their time as slaves. It's become less of a problem now, though.
  • One of many cases of Hypocritical Humor coming from The Nostalgia Chick. She herself has No Sense of Personal Space and doesn't mind it when a certain man in a red tie gets close, but looks ready to freak when anyone else does it.

Western Animation


 Joker: Don't touch me, old man! ...I don't know where you've been!

    • The Joker then seems to have just been kidding about being angry, and he cheerfully reassures Sal that of course he'll help keep him safe from Batman. And then he kills Sal offscreen and leaves his grinning corpse for the Phantasm to find, so maybe he wasn't kidding after all.
    • He's not actually angry for being touched, but at Valestra for having the gull to tell him his "hands are just as dirty as mine! Dirtier even!"
  • Lemongrab of the show Adventure Time is angered by almost everything- ESPECIALLY being touched. When he raises his voice at Princess Bubblegum, Finn gives him a light slap on the hand and scolds him: "Watch your manners with the princess!" Lemongrab's eyes widen, and he SCREAMS in sheer outrage while clutching at his hand. Then he glares at Finn for a little bit, gasps, and rubs his hand some more, acting like nothing happened. Later, when he sends the candy castle staff to the dungeon, he gives Peppermint Butler FIVE EXTRA YEARS because Pepbut pulled on the leg of his pants.
  • The title character of Daria. More surprisingly, this also seems to apply to her boy-magnet sister Quinn; she once chickened out of a modeling class that required suggestive poses with shirtless boys, and once said that she only slow-danced after the fifth date.
  • Home Movies - Coach Mc Guirk tries a team-spirit exercise where they all put their hands together - Fenton anxiously blurts "I don't like to be touched!" Brendon adds "I think we all have space issues..."
  • Grouchy hates being hugged in The Smurfs cartoon episode "A Hug For Grouchy" and tries to avoid hugs from those who don't respect his feelings.

Real Life

  • This is often felt by victims of sexual abuse, particularly if they were a child when it occured. Through therapy, they can overcome this.
  • People who have Autism, Aspergers, ADHD, or similar syndromes can fit this trope or No Sense of Personal Space. At times, they may individually bounce back and forth themselves depending on their moods or who they are with.
  • Introverts typically don't like to be around people so touching is out of the question.
  • People who are hypersensitive or have very delicate skin may find that even a light brush or tap or poke by someone to be irritating, uncomfortable, or painful, and will go out of their way to avoid unneccessary physical contact with others.