Let's talk about... cuddling

Cuddle - verb: 
1. to hold close for warmth or comfort or in affection 
2. to lie close or snug
Somebody put "Baby, it's cold outside" on repeat.

Not only 'tis the season for TapBack, 'tis the season for Cuddle Cocoa. Yes, that innocent "it's cold why don't we warm up by the fireplace" moment that turns into boom-chicka-wow-wow by morning. But does it always have to go from one to the other?

Dig deep, people. We're getting touchy feely today. Okay, we're not but we are going to discuss touching, hugging and squeezing... in a non-cocoa stirring kind of way. The question was posed to me - is there such a thing as platonic cuddling between adults? 

Sometimes I'm a cuddler, sometimes I need my space but that's with the current s/o. We can sit on top of each other and watch a movie and it just means we're sitting watching a movie. Sir Naps-A-Lot is perfectly fine to cuddle up and get a snore on, no strings attached. However, there was one guy I was seeing who basically said, "If we're close to horizontal and you're touching me, I expect it to lead somewhere." Alright then. Good to know.

Outside of s/o's I can't really see myself hugged up on some guy that I wasn't a) related to or b) attracted to. But that's me now.

I remember back in my post-college days, my roommate and I had a group of male friends we hung out with regularly. We traveled, we partied, we grilled at the lake, we crashed at each other's houses. There was a lot of cuddle time and sleeping in same beds with no cocoa happening. I don't know if the guys thought something would go down at some point but the roomie and I weren't even thinking about it. Never occurred to us, never happened.

Then again, we were 23. At this point in life, I can think of only one male friend that I would be all huddled up with and not think anything of it. He's one of my best friends from high school. I think when you've known someone for 20+ years and it's never been about romance, you're pretty much staying in the Friend Zone. Maybe not, his wife has been giving me the side-eye for years. 

I guess this goes back to that age old "can men and women really just be friends" question. Does cuddle time always have to lead to cocoa time? If you are hugged up on somebody, are you sending the "do me" signals without meaning to? Is there a certain age past which you just need to keep your distance unless you are looking for more? Ladies? Gents? Please discuss...