More E-Mails or Bulletin Board Postings

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Our son Steven has been a thumb sucker since he was born. I have even heard tales of babies sucking their thumb in the womb. He is 24 now and still sucks his thumb. We tried many things when he was little to get him to quite but nothing worked so we just gave up. The funniest was, we tried putting jalapeno pepper juice on his thumb but he decided he liked it and started putting it on everything, pizza, burgers, eggs, what ever... Sincerely, Thumb sucker's Mom

I found your site and wanted to tell you that it was quite a releif to me. I'm male, 32 and have Tsed since age 2. I use a blankie (named Boodge). It has greatly effected my thumb with a callus and it seems to be quite more aged than the other. My teeth remain in great condition, although I have caps on the top and this may have been needed due to acids from tsing. Regardless, the act makes me more tranquil and is more sedative than any drug or drink I've tried. (I've tried a few). Anyway, the point is to tell you that I'm grateful for your site. You helped at least one guy realize that he's not alone. That is quite a gift. Thank you.

From Ruth:

I'll answer the question, if I lost one thumb in an injury, would I suck the other.

The answer for me is probably not. Putting my right thumb in my mouth feels so familiar, like I am coming home or something. But in my mouth, my left thumb might as well be someone else's thumb. I don't think I could ever get used to it.

I am one who likes to suck my thumb and twirl my hair. It's no use to me doing one without the other. But once, in the third grade, I got The Single Worst Haircut in the History of Hair. It was short like a boys, and high on my forehead. I looked dreadful. Even worse, it was so short that I was barely able to get a piece between my fingers, much less twirl it. I was so upset about my ugly hair, I wanted nothing more than to go home and suck my thumb. But hair twiriling is part of the experience. I tried thumbsucking alone, but it wasn't as satisfying. The more my regular mode of calming down failed me, the more frustrated I got. And the more frustrated I got, the more I wanted my thumb and my hair. As I'm sure you can imagine, third grade wasn't my best year. But at least my mother never took me to get my hair cut against my will again.

Hi I love your site...when I found it I spent the remainder of the evening reading every bit of it :) Im a 20 yr old female and Ive been sucking my thumb since the day I was born. I seen that you had a picture section and was wondering if you wanted a few more to add to your collection. Let me know :)

Name: LilBit

Subject: So Happy to Find You (epic length)


I know you must have heard this before goes..."Oh my god, I'M NOT THE ONLY ONE!!!" I remember doing a search on a search engine a couple years ago and came up only with XXX sites, and thought, well that proves it...I am the only 30 y.o. thumbsucker in the world.

Fast forward to today--how liberating to know there are others out there!

I am a lifelong--although I had a ten-year abstinence. My mother says I was born with deep red circles around both thumbs. I had sucked in utero, and apparently had no problem finding my thumb as a newborn. I had the infamous bite where only my eye-teeth met, and I could stick my tongue all the way out through my clenched teeth. Try eating a cob of corn like that!! My parents took me to an orthodontist, and he fitted me with a headgear and something called a "chin cap" that pushed my jaw closed. I had to wear it 24/7. I can't believe what I must have looked like hitting puberty, wearing that headgear, and thick glasses all at the same time. I don't think I ever recovered the ridicule. Fortunately, I went to a relatively small school, and only had the same bullies to deal with.

My parents did try to break my habit for me at this point. They would come in my room many times at night to see if I was sucking. As a result, I learned to sleep in a slightly awakened state, so that if I heard them come in, I could remove my thumb and pretend to be sleeping. This went on for years. The result of this was that I didn't sleep soundly ever again. It took a round of drugs a few years ago to induce "delta-wave" sleep, and teach my body to allow itself to sleep deeply. Delta-wave sleep is where you sleep so hard somebody has to basically shake you a little to wake you up. This is the sleep that repairs torn muscles. Without it, you suffer symptoms of fibromyalgia, and can sleep ten hours and feel like you just went to sleep...which is how I found out what was going on. I still sleep lightly, but I don't ache anymore, and I feel rested when I wake. Anyway, back to my history (just wanted to include it in case anyone else has "mysterious symptoms" like I did).

In seventh grade I got braces, rubber bands, the whole bit. I wore them for two years, and my teeth looked really good when I got them off. However, I TSed through the whole thing (rubber bands and all...that takes STRENGTH, and HURTS your thumb!). When they took the braces off, they gave me an experimental retainer. It looked like a mouthguard, and the idea was probably like the new invisalign braces. However, it only had three little holes to breathe through, so I couldn't breathe, and felt very claustrophobic. Consequently, I didn't wear it--and guess what happens to teeth after they have been shifted, not retained, and the person continues to thumbsuck? That's right, folks, they end up WORSE than before. My parents, disgusted at spending $6,000 on this fiasco were angry...not at the orthodontist, whom I personally think took them for a ride...but at me.

My junior year of high school, I was an exchange student to Denmark. To my surprise, one day in school I got called to the "school dentist." That's right; just like a school nurse, only they do your teeth. That's socialized medicine for you! It was just about Christmas-time, and I was due to leave in June. The dentist said he'd be happy to try braces again, but that he didn't think that they could move my teeth much by the time I had to leave. A second chance! And for FREE! The peer pressure from high school had REALLY gotten to me. I had contacts now, and was pretty popular--but wasn't getting any dates, and I was sure it was from my overbite. I was DETERMINED to fix my bite. For two months I wore something out of the Inquisition called a "palate spreader." It was a spider-like plate that was in the top of my mouth to push my cross-bite out. It made it impossible to talk, it cut my tongue every time my tongue made contact with it, and it hurt like something you can't say on a bulletin board. There was NO WAY in any shape or form that I could get my thumb in my mouth. It was just an impossibility. I think I cried that night, and didn't sleep at all.

For the next couple days, I felt uncomfortable in bed because I didn't know what to do with my arm--it felt like I had an extra appendage. I finally (after about a week) found a position where I could sleep. When the dentist said wear this small rubber band in back, and this large rubber band in front, I would wear TWO small rubber bands. I would go to sleep crying from the pain, but I was DETERMINED. I was ready for a retainer in four months. The dentist was so shocked I think he was thinking of writing it up in some journal or something. I think I tried putting my thumb in my mouth once, but it didn't feel right, so I didn't try it again.

Through college, I abstained--but after college, in the big bad world, I did begin to overeat. Fast forward through marriage, etc., to four years ago. My husband was on the road consulting three months at a time, and I was "abandoned" in a new city with no friends or family. Not to mention that I'm from a tiny rural town, and the city seemed BIG and unfriendly. Work was awful--everyone was quitting but me...I started seeing a therapist to see why I was so unhappy, tired, and miserable. (see above about being tired)

One day, it just seemed too much. I sat on the couch in the dark and put my thumb in my mouth. It felt weird, but then I felt all the tension leave my head, and I felt like someone had just given me a drug. I relaxed, and I realized "This is it, this is what I have been missing. This is what is missing in my life, my comforting myself." Then I thought--what about the damage to my teeth? And I thought, hell, I'm a professional, I can afford braces again if I want, and if I closed my teeth in four months, I can do it again. I went to my therapist the next time and boldly announced that I had found a way to make myself feel better, and felt empowered because of it. I expected her to approve of this bold new me. The "so what? I deserve it" me. She didn't agree--so in my empowerment...I fired her--and I've been sucking since.

Now my husband was coming back home more frequently. What to do? I ended up telling him how much better it made me feel, and said that either I had to continue therapy (at $60 an hour) --or I could suck my thumb. Dollars talk to him, and he has not had any problem with it. He knows I had an unhappy childhood, and I think he figures it is not bad compensation. I generally only suck when I'm alone--but now that I'm a stay-at-home mother, that is pretty frequently. I will say that I believe I am a much more passive sucker now than in my previous life as a sucker. I am uncomfortable if my thumb gets "pickled" and my jaw will ache if I do it for too long. I have noticed my bite has changed. I have a cross-bite again, and my front teeth--while they still meet-- are opening slightly.

When my first baby was born, I was determined that she WOULD NOT suck her thumb. I immediately plugged a pacifier in her mouth. My thought was if she does feel the need to suck when she is older, at least there is as much resisting pressure from the plate of the pacifier, and maybe her teeth won't be as bad as mine were. She takes the pacifier a lot (she is now 2-1/2), but does not seem to have the sucking needs that I did.

Now, my son, who was born three months ago, seems to show the same traits I did. In the sonograms his hands were up around his mouth, and he tried from birth to get his hands in his mouth. Last week he finally did, and I don't think his thumb has been out, except to eat, since. I tried the pacifiers with him, just like I did with my daughter, and he won't accept them at all. He just spits them out. My heart, tearing, I covered his hands with socks so that he couldn't get his thumb in...hoping that he would "forget" his new learned habit. After he almost chewed through a sock, I conceded, and have let him suck his thumb. I believe firmly now, that it is an innate need. I believe it is genetic (my mother and two aunts both sucked until they were teenagers), and can be a trait from birth. I know that just because he sucks now doesn't mean he won't quit like 99% of the population has--I just wanted to try to save him the heartache if he doesn't.

Finding all of you is the ultimate in this experience. I feel EVEN MORE empowered now that I know that I am not alone, and that I am not imagining the benefits. I hope I haven't taken too much liberty by posting all this--but it has been a wonderful experience to write it all out.

Yours in thumbsucking,


i don't know how i got brave enough to start sucking in front of [my husband]. i still feel self conscious. usually it is a situation where we are laying in bed watching tv and i might lay my head on his shoulder and suck my thumb. or if we are laying there hugging. sometimes if i sit in his lap and put my head on his chest i suck. i guess i know he can see me but i am not really watching him look at me. if i am laying down sucking my thumb and he comes in the room, i don't yank it out. actually he started asking me to suck my thumb around him because he said it made him feel closer to me. sometimes he rubs my hair and face and lips around where my thumb is. it makes me feel close to him too. it only took me 25 years, so you don't need to be in a hurry! ha ha

Name: Lia

Subject: Do your teeth get sore?


Sometimes I notice that my top front teeth get sore from being pushed on all day. When I notice it I either stop for a little while or try to hold it more lightly, taking the pressure off my teeth. Anyone else? I just found this site today, too. It just occurred to me last night to do a search on tsing adults. I knew there must be others because some in my family do it. And someone way below on the boards asked if your elbows get tired from being bent. My answer: Yes...but I think it mostly happens if I can only suck on one, like if one is cut. Takes a prolonged period. I think it used to happen more when I was younger. *shrug* Nice to meet you all. =)

And one more thing, I read that ingesting nail polish can't hurt you. MAYBE if you drink a whole bottle at once, but not just from sucking...I used to worry about that a little. =) It was in my Parents magazine. Someone had asked if it could hurt their baby who had swallowed some.

I don't know if anyone's checking this far down the board anymore, but I wanted to add that when I wear nail polish, it only tastes bad for a few minutes...then I can't taste it anymore, even a long time later when I'm sucking again.

Also, when I cut one of my thumbs, it hurts when I suck, but I don't care, usually. I hate it when I can only suck on gets all clammy and unsatisfying, and I long for the other one again.

Hi, I just came across your site about adult thumbsuckers...I thought I was the only one. Im almost 22 and my parents think its a little strange that I still do this. To some extent so do I but I cant seem to stop. My parents have tried everything ..I was even in braces for it ..nothing stops it. My parents think its just one of those things I do to get back at them...they have no idea. Thank you for making me feel like Im not the only one. At least I have some comfort in that fact. Yours Truly, Christine

From Wende:

I never even dreamed that there were others out there much less wanting to talk about it!! I have sucked my fingers for 28 years. I happened to come across this website because I just wanted more info. on why I would still be sucking as an adult. I have been very depressed and unhappy with myself. Sucking on my fingers is the only time I feel secure and safe but it is ruining my teeth. Thank you all for showing me that I am not alone in this habbit and for your courage on sharing a subject that is such a secret for me.

I am overjoyed to find your site! I've looked on the internet several times and never found you until today. It was a relief to know that I am not the only one, and that it is so acceptable to so many. My father was an alcoholic, and my brother sucked his fingers. I was always put down when they "caught" me into high school and college. No one understood how I could continue to do this. I would walk around the house sometimes while sucking, because it feels so good. I have recently been thinking I should quit, and a lot of anxiety has arisen form theis prospect. I want to have children that aren't burdened with mom sucked her thumb, but no one talked about it because I was the only one to catch her. Recently I think it has led to problems with my neck and TMJ/tension headaches, due to the position I hold my head in, so I'm working on repositioning, as I can not seem to stop. Thanks

I am a 27 year old female thumb sucker/sheet-pillow case rubber. I just wanted to tell someone who could understand, because non-thumb suckers just dont konw how wonderfull it is. When I T.S. (thumb suck) it is so relaxing, my tounge flitters accross my thumb, my head clears and I become at peace: I feel hypnotised.

Oh, the thumb suckers thumb,

May be wrinkled and wet, and white as is the snow.

But the taste of the thumb,

is the greatest taste yet, As only us thumb suckers know. Shell Silverstine

[For the complete text of this and other poems, go to the Poetry Section.]

Does anyone else use a blanket or cloth to "twirl around" while they suck their thumb?

When I was a child I used the corner of my pillow slip and ripped it, rubbing the material back and forth...after many years I altered and refined my habit to include an old terry cloth robe belt. I tie it in knots and the knot fits right under my nose...I twist it and twirl it for hours sometimes....of course eventually that wears out too I need to buy an old robe at the Goodwill just so I can get the belt!

My family has put up with it for years and have supplied me with terrycloth belts from their robes as well. My husband always helps me find what I call "my sucking pillow" when I misplace it and chews me out when I lose it. He says "you'd think you would be more careful with something you cherish so much!"....boy do I have some stories! Anyway are there others who use more than their thumbs? the way I'm a 50 year old interior designer..wouldn't my clients love this??ha ha ha!....

From Gretchen:

I adore this site! I knew of course that I couldn't be the only one out there with good "taste"! Cudos to all!! My thumb has been a daily routine for 25 yrs now (less about 2 yrs during the Regan Admin. when I thought I had "outgrown" it. HAH! suck on my friends!!!

This e-mail, though not from an adult thumb sucker, was so well written, with thoughts that can be expressed for any age group here, that I just had to include it at the site.

You have no idea what a relief it was to find your site. I'm 15 and I'm a thumbsucker. My dad sucked his thumb until he was 12 and my mom sucked her thumb until she was 16. I started sucking my thumb when I was very young. I took to a blanket because my mom had one up on the car window to block the sun and I started holding it when I was sucking my thumb. She soon started giving me used slips.

Only my family knows that I suck my thumb. As you can imagine, a kid in high school doesn't really want it getting out that she sucks her thumb. It's always been so natural for me to suck my thumb. I hardly ever think about it. I read, do homework, cook, clean, write, surf the net, and basically do everything with my thumb in my mouth and my slip in my hand. But I'm meticulous about keeping my thumb clean. When I'm cleaning or cooking, I'll use every other finger except for my thumb.

It's a source of comfort and it also gives me something to do with my hands. I'm hyperactive and when I have my slip, I can concentrate on rubbing that instead of fidgeting or some other annoying thing. I guess it's also a habit, and my parents never discouraged it. Most of my family is used to it now(except my Grandpa, and when he comes over, I put my slip away so not to bug him).

I had decided a while back to try to quit when I reached 16, like my mom. My mom quit because her dentist threatened to send her to a class to make her quit. But after reading your site, I'm having second thoughts about it. I doubt I'll ever become a "public thumbsucker", but now I'm not sure if I need to quite something so harmless just because society looks down upon it. Anyway, long email. I'd like to thank you for making the site. It has been great hearing about other people, even older than me, who still suck their thumb.

I have just found your page quite by accident, I was bored at work and did a bit of surfing! I have just celebrated my 40th birthday, I live in England and am happily married with a little girl of eight. I was so shocked to read some of your letters that people are ashamed and that they have been teased. I am being totally honest when I say I have never had a problem like that! I actually don't think it is a problem, the people who think that thumb suckers are odd are the one's with the problem.

What does it do for me? Well, I don't smoke, but if I get stressed or feeling a little blue, a quick suck of the right thumb just hits the spot. Sometimes I get this terrific urge out of the blue, i was driving my brothers van the other day, stuck in heavy traffic and thought "god i need to suck my thumb" the looks from other drivers was so funny, I just wave at them with the other available fingers and they smile. No-one really seems to be bothered with my habit. My daughter has got used to it. She has never sucked her thumb but does have a blanket.

I twiddle my hair with my left hand and mum always used to say, "Karens making a telephone call again". Everyone after all this time have got used to it. If you need to know any more just write to me! Does anyone like there like to suck their thumbs when they have just chopped onions or garlic? That to me is like having cream in my coffee!! lots of hugs to fellow thumb suckers xxx

I always thought I was the only person in the world who still sucked a thumb or fingers. I've been sucking my index and middle finger since I was a baby. I'm 26 now. I've been successful so far in hiding my habit from my husband, we've been married for 7 years now. I have tried to quit but I just can't seem to and I'm always afraid that he's going to discover me one day or night doing it. I'd be so embarrassed I would want to die I think. I cannot believe all the stories of people who suck their thumbs in public much less be open about it with people! Seems like everyone is pretty happy with their habit on here, is there anyone who is ashamed of this like I am?

Some responses to the above:

Based on the numerous emails and surveys coming in, I'd wager that he does know...and he's just waiting for you to share it if, and when, you are ready to. If so, he's probably very respectful of your feelings. And, again, based on what I've seen, he'll be very accepting too, after all, the shame you feel is most likely a learned response based on something you've been taught long ago, in a world having little to do with your current situation.

Our site here tries to render that shame into something positive and empowering. And, when you are ready, your sharing will be energizing as well, lifting a self imposed burden off of you and giving you and real sense of freedom to be yourself, at least with those who truly care and love you for who you are.


Believe me he already knows!!! You think in 7 years of marriage and " X" months of dating that he at some point would not wake up and admire his beautiful wife lying next to him (after a bathroom run or late night snack or a bad dream)?. HE KNOWS! He just hasn't said anything about it out of respect for your feelings. He realizes that it's not something to brag about so of course he's not going to ask about it. It would feel as though he's disrespecting/embarrassing you. Besides it's completely unnecessary. He loves YOU and that's all that matters.

From Raymond

Hi everyone.Hope everybody had a good 4th of july.Have a question.Are there more people sucking their thumbs in their cars nowadays or is it that now that I am looking for it that I notice.Seen 3 in the last 2 weeks.2 tried to hide the fact when they came past me,1 did'nt seem to care.She was a passenger in a minivan sitting at a traffic light so there was no mistaking that she was indulging.Of course as a Truckdriver I probably get to see more anyway.And believe me i've seen all kinds of things that people do while going down the road.I myself hide my thumb action waiting for that quiet stretch of highway so I can do my thing.Thats all for now.Later.

My name is Nada I am 31 years old. I only found out about your site last night. I wanted to write you an e-mail instantly but I didn't want my husband to ask me what I was writing! I have been married for 9 years now and my husband only found out 2 years ago. I hid it all this time from him out of embarassement. I still can't suck my thumb infront of him. I am soooo embarassed. I feel very bad and silly about it. I suck my right thumb since I was a child. My mother at the age of around 5 years tried to stop me. She would wrap a cloth around my thumb. After that I didn't suck my thumb as often but at the age of around 12 I started intensively. After that incident with my mother I hid it away, nobody knew. I would go to the bathroom out of fear, and suck my thumb. I do it 2-4 hours during the day and all night. I always thought I was weird, after finding your site I was so relieved I AM NOT THE ONLY ONE. Thanks so much

Question: From J,

I've lived with my boyfriend for about 7 months............ and I found out about 4 months ago that he is a thumbsucker........ It really doesn't bother me... actually it makes me giggle ....... Of course he doesn't know that I've caught him sucking on his thumb...... He told me once that he sucked his thumb when he was a kid but never mentioned that he still does. About a month ago I noticed that he is making love to me and sucking his thumb....... Why is that? I'm just a little concern now because he has been doing it all the time. Of course he doesn't let me see him......... but I know, because I can hear him or I can feel it. Why is that?


Among adult thumb suckers (ATS), indulging during sex is very common, as it is during many situations in which a heightened state of emotion takes place. Thumb sucking (tsing) allows those so inclined to feel calm in situations were they are stressed. But during sex, tsing allows for better focus, increasing sensuous feelings. There are many other potential explanations and I'd suggest you ask him why he does it. The main problem is that, often, the non-ATS feels rejected when this occurs. Discuss your feelings with your mate and, once you understand his point of view, you should be able to be ok with it. If you are matter of fact and accepting as you appear to be, he'll be able to easily get passed the embarrassed state, unless he is already.

From Suzy,

I’m soon to be 34 and from the very beginning there were my fingers. My mom said that the first time she saw me I had my fingers in my mouth. I recently saw an ‘expert’ on thumbsucking saying that it took weeks for a newborn to find their fingers.....but that the process of finding them was integral to cognitive I found them from day 1. Does that mean I’m more cognizant? Doubt it...but it’s a nice thought.

It... this... has always been a part of me. All of you can has always been there...much like your soul. Sometimes you recognize it as a soul and other times you just know it as you. The same goes for the’s you, it’s me and though it’s not understood or accepted by a vocal few, it’s still basic, natural, and hurts no fact, it probably helps many of you be better people during the day-to-day stress. Imagine if everyone you worked with had some quirky coping mechanism that involved nothing but what is contained within drugs, no booze...just the comfort that God gave you by giving you a body.

I quit for 3 years because a boyfriend HATED the whole a weak time in our relationship I tried to make things better by offering my habit in exchange for commitment...ultimately it didn’t work, but in relating this story to Tee [Suzy's boyfriend] (the loves of my life: Tee and a T-shirt) he said “So basically he wanted you to change something that has been YOU your whole life?” What a guy.....

From anonymous female:

Hello there...well I have sucked my right thumb all my life, I am currently 39. I think it is so nice to run across men that do it also. I hope when I meet that guy, he can appreciate that I come with my thumbsucking. I use it to relax and releave stress. I have on occasion if really stressed, sucked my thumb on the way hope from work while driving.

I'm nick. I've been a thumb sucker since day one. Even when I was in the Navy, of course I was very discreet. But I was caught a few times while sleeping, no big deal. I knew there had to be allot of thumb suckers but was surprised how many of us men were. Glad to find that out. I am not ashamed about it and don't really care who knows. I don't go around with my thumb in my mouth all the time but if I were to be found out so what. Thumb sucking is for me a personal thing. My close friends know and it doesn't bother them. I suck during peaceful moments. You know reading watching tv driving my car. Now that's when I get stares, I don't try to hide it. And of course when I go to sleep. But none of us TSers should be ashamed or feel any guilt over this most harmless and pleasurable trait. Glad I got this chance to talk to you all Bye Bye Nick

I want to say that watching my roommate feel so comfortable and relaxed in my home by feeling free to indulge himself in this comforting habit has made me feel much more relaxed in return. I'm so glad that he felt secure enough to share this with me, and I must say that it is a bit of a turn-on as well.

From Tara:

Seems to me that thumbsuckers are some of the nicest people out there! Thanks for your post and offer of support, I may take you up on that sometime All I can say is thank goodness for this site...otherwise i may i thought i was a freak for the rest of my life! LOL!

I'm new here, but I have to say that this page is the best thing to ever happen to thumbsuckers! I've been a thumbsucker all my life (22years) and for most of it I thought I was the only one who still did it at my age. I never knew of anyone else who did and was always embarrassed of it...i guess I still am. Anyway, its comforting knowing there are others and that I'm not some kind of freak. I was always taught it was bad. so, maybe now I can talk to other people and get over those feelings. thanks!

Why do people want others to ridicule them by exposing themselves on nation TV or even showing themselves over the Internet with their thumbs in there mouth. I have filled the survey already and question the thing. I too am a thumbsucker and have been since birth but I bet you will never see me or know who I am, just because others will be looking though this like me. Allowing the TV network to shot ones picture to the public is only looking for attention. Convince me wrong. Address me by Nicky.


Hi Nicky,

Though ridicule may occur, it's only a small percentage of the reaction obtained from exposure in the media. Most of the time the reaction is curiosity, interest, fascination. The result, from the standpoint of those participating in exposing themselves, is a reduction in shock value and an increase in awareness and, ultimately, acceptability.

The fact is that something that is shocking when first introduced is, often, accepted eventually; witness interracial coupling, gay coupling, long hair, rock and roll, etc. We must all thank the original pioneers who were willing to expose their humanness and individuality so that the road followed by others would be a lot smoother. Yes, exposing oneself to the networks may be only looking for attention, but that is what they want, so that others, those less knowledgeable, will learn from what they have seen. H

From Meredith:

Just writing to let you know that I do suck my thumb. I am 24 years old. When I was a girl, I sucked my thumb until I was older than most kids, and my parents tried different tricks to get me to stop. Eventually I did (at least the frequency of it), but seem to have regressed in the past few years - since a breakdown/depression in my life. I cannot remember how often I did it during adolescence and teenagehood, but I do not think I hardly did it at all. Somehow, I have just internalized the intense shame feelings that it brings on (only with the thought of others knowing), and really do it in secret. My mom has caught me though, and maybe another family member. If you have any particular questions, feel free to write them to me. Thanks - interesting site!

From Sasha,

Hi, I've finally decided to write after watching this site for ages. Anyway, my friend has the exact same thing, she doesn't suck her thumb anymore but she does have this comfort blanket that she sniffs to go to sleep. Because she pushes on the end of her nose, she is convinced that sniffing her blanket has made her nose tip up at the end! So, there you go, someone in England has the same nose as you!!

I've sucked my thumb since I was a fetus which caused an overbite. I have fixed braces at the mo. Which will be off soon. The orthodontist gave me a dummy which he said to grow attached to, instead of the thumb, while my braces are on to make the treatment quicker. The plan then is to throw the dummy away and not need the thumb anymore. However, I'm now addicted to both and a comfort that is attached to me and has been in permanent use for 18 years is hardly going to be made redundant.

The ortho. is fine though he reckons they wont move back, cos we have a deal : dummy at night, thumb during the day. Yep, I suck my thumb at college, in front of the tv, at friends houses anywhere and everywhere really. No ones bothered, it makes me, me! and if ever someone does have a problem with it then they know what they can do!! My 21 yr old brother is ok with it when I sleep and am ill/upset/PMTish but the rest of the time he trys to get me off of it, only cos he sucks his thumb at night still and is not allowed to at any other time cos mum goes into lecture mode about setting an example - yes I am the baby of the family and yes I get away with everything!!

Oh yeh, I also still have a blankie which he despises - yet if I'm upset he goes running for it, cos he hates seeing me cry.

From Bill

I just discovered this website this week when mindlessly web-surfing some key words "guitars", "fishing", "music" and other things that interest me. I was pleasantly surprised to find this site, began to understand its beginnings and reading your personal accounts/stories. Perhaps my real-life experiences with ATS might provide interest, while being helpful and supportive since "I am you", having been a baby thumbsucker, toddler thumbsucker, youth thumbsucker, teen thumbsucker, young adult thumbsucker, adult thumbsucker and senior thumbsucker.

I suck my right thumb, finger over nose, and use my left hand finger nail to scratch (loudly sometimes) the satin edging on a blanket. The unsurpassed contentment, peace of mind and emotional fulfillment this provides me at bedtime is inexplicable...though, I'm sure, many of you can empathize with the serene, sublime feeling. I have never been into alcohol, drugs, etc...I believe because my thumbsucking provides me unsurpassed ability to cope with stress.

Perhaps my acceptance and greater enjoyment of my adult thumbsucking came about 14 years ago when a wonderful article on adult thumbsucking appeared in, of all places, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL. Written by a young writer/intern from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, the rather lengthy article appeared, as I recall, on the first page of the second section of the paper. It featured interviews with several ATS's and was objectively presented. The writer found it interesting that his own aunt was an ATS and, fascinated by the unusual topic, got permission from his editor to write about it. I was so impressed with the article that I wrote to the writer and -- after several months in forwarding transit to him -- he responded, thanking me for writing and explaining in more detail his fascination with the subject. The "bottom line" of the article was this: ads is far more common than realized...and, no, psychoanalysis is certainly not required nor needed. ATS is simply, like private nudity, something that IS...never needing apology, explanation, approval nor acceptance by others. It is totally harmless (save dental problems, perhaps) and, in many ways, supremely beneficial (improving the "quality of life" for the ATS by providing contentment, peacefulness, serenity, comfort and a sense of security otherwise missing in one's life. I concur 100%.

I have been an ATS in my world travels, at home, on business trips, camping trips, in the military, as Vice President of an advertising agency, as a Franciscan monk, as a homeless veteran, as a husband, as a Father of three sons, as a brother, son and uncle. I am the consummate adult thumb sucker. In a very real sense: I am you. I never felt the need to suck my thumb in public or even around the house with wife and children present. My joy simply comes at bedtime, after a shower, as I lie in bed ready for sleep with thumb and blanket is easy reach. Sleep always comes immediately from the contentment and superb relaxation my thumb and blanket provide. Never spent a sleepless night (even during traumatic personal tragedies or major business concerns). During four years active duty USAF, I slept in bunks in crowded barracks, thumb in mouth, facing the wall or head covered with a blanket with no discovery...though I did miss satin-edged blankets!). It was only two weeks after my marriage that I woke one morning to the vision of my wife sitting on the bed next to me simply watching me asleep sucking my thumb. I was really not embarrassed, per se, and , opening my eyes to look at her, wordlessly kept sucking my thumb. Thankfully, she made no derogatory comments but just reached out to put her hand on the hand I was sucking and held it there as I continued to suckle my thumb. Perhaps you can understand why I married this wonderful woman. (This 20-year monogamous marriage ended 20 years later when menopause changed her into a woman I never knew, but that's neither here nor there).

I now live alone in my own home with my three married adult sons within 2 hours drive, am professionally employed and continue to suck my thumb at bedtime. My sex life consists exclusively of solo masturbation, which I enjoy 5-6 times a week. I have never put a sexual connotation on my thumb sucking. Thumb sucking neither adds nor detracts from my sexual pleasure. I do miss being married, though. I do not "date" simply because (please don't take offense, ladies) I am very selective and have not found the woman I am looking for. I believe in love at first sight...and simply haven't seen her yet. I cannot "date" a woman just to have companionship or sex. I am comfortable in my aloneness as I await the arrival of "my woman." Frankly, my fantasy is to find an empathetic woman (of any age) who is not only a compatriot, but who also sucks her thumb (and who would enjoy sharing other oral and manual pleasures). Until that time, I am content with my life. I would change few things. I do greatly miss the comfort and warmth of sleeping with another warm, soft human being, don't get me wrong. But, as you know, all of life is a trade off. I will continue to wait...until death if necessary, for this "completeness".

I would certainly enjoy hearing from any of you who can learn from my wonderful experiences with thumbsucking and look forward to learning from you and your experiences. In the meantime, accept your wonderful gift of contentment that we call adult thumb sucking. I feel sorry for those men and women who otherwise must try to approach our thumbsucking contentment through alcohol, drugs, promiscuity, crime or violence.

Subject: A funny thing happened in St. Maarten...

From John

Hey guys! I'm down in St. Maarten, in the Caribbean on liberty, where my ship stopped for a liberty port call, and wouldn't you know it, I met another TSer! Because I ended up giving this young lady this website address, and I assume she'll actually check this out, I'll pre-emptively say hi and welcome her now. Hi Dot! (To avoid confusion if you're reading this, I gave you my first name, John is my middle)

As it happened, there were about 15 of us in a group that was on a tour of a little island off St. Maarten, and one of them just happened to be a quite attractive girl in her mid-20s from New York. Well, I spotted her TSing more than a few times that day, much to my surprise and amusement. I ended up mentioning it to her, and admitting we shared a habit, which pretty much blew her away. We had a pretty cool conversation about the whole thing, in which she said she didn't think she had been doing it quite so much that day, and was surprised I had seen it at all. Which I suppose might lead to an interesting topic: how often do you suck and not even realize you're doing it?

Anyway, it made my day. What I couldn't believe is that none of the other guys I was hanging around with in the group noticed at all! (Yes, I asked if they noticed anything unusual going on in that department) So maybe we don't stick out like a, er, sore thumb after all... That's all for now...I'll be away until Sept. 1, so I'll talk to you all then! Take care...

From Ms. Sutton:

I use a pacifier to help reduce the wear and tear on my thumb and to give me the use of both hands for what I am doing. I've used a pacifier my whole life and my mother used to tell people I was "slow" which they took to mean as retarded. I have never overcome the worries of my problem in public. I do suck my thumb in public and on occasion as an adult use a pacifier. I have been asked to leave stores and restaurants. I have had panic attacks in public when I could not suck when needed. I would imagine my problem is more severe than most of your respondents.

Time: Mon, 22-Feb-1999

Hello my name is Jon I’m 23 and I live in upstate NY.

I have always sucked my thumb and still have the remains of my baby blanket although it is in tattered and sad shape. His name is kiki and I sleep with him every night.

My thumb sucking habit has been a source of great anxiety for me for years. Especially breaching the subject to a lover or girlfriend it can be very embarrassing and sometimes its kept a secret all together. I would love to find a girl that sucked her thumb so I wouldn't have to feel self conscious about it I have always joked that if thumb sucking was socially acceptable I would quit smoking.

I have come to accept the fact that I will probably always suck my thumb and am fine with it but it really sucks that this harmless, docile habit is so ridiculed. I am relieved to find this website and if anyone would like to share their thoughts you can email me at my AOL screen name

Happy sucking LOL. Sincere to point of absurdity.

I found similarities between myself and other stories posted on your site. It seems that many hi-powered people, who are strong and independent outwardly have some abandonment issues. That's certainly true of me. Most people who meet me think I have it together. I'm decisive and thoughtful. I'm very fortunate to have met my husband who doesn't mind that I suck my thumb around him. I have a 9 1/2 year old daughter who also doesn't mind. She never sucked her thumb but had a pacifier until she was 6 and I never took it away from her, she just naturally gave it up. For more than 1/2 my life I thought I was the only person on the planet who sucked her thumb. I also banged my head on the pillow at night for hours to get to sleep. I did give up banging my head so I wouldn't wreck my marriage and I don't really miss it that much. The church I belonged to "a cult" tried to get me to stop saying I'd go to hell if I didn't quit. I quit the church instead. Now sometimes I suck my thumb at work, in the truck, when I'm tired, when I need to relax or watching TV. I'm glad you have this site. I don't think I'll ever give up sucking my thumb--it's the one thing that I can ALWAYS rely on to make me feel better (especially without gaining weight). If I'm active I don't think about it. To my knowledge there is only one picture of me sucking my thumb and that was taken by an ex-boyfriend. The picture doesn't show much since the blanket blocks the view. Luckily he never confronted me about it or passed the picture on to his family who would have easily harassed me. Thanks again for having a place for me to write about this. Cale This is the greatest site! I just cannot believe how many others there are out there. It’s like this huge secret society! I don’t know about anyone else, but this site made me feel so much better about myself. If I hadn’t seen the EXTRA clip, I would have never known about it! Great job all the way around! My childhood was decidedly unpampered and sucking my thumb was a way of comforting myself then. Although I only do it when I’m alone, it’s now my way of coping with a society that’s far too unkind for fragile souls like mine. Signed, Thumbalina I am 17 years old, and I recently saw a special on thumb sucking on EXTRA. I, too, suck my thumb, and am constantly ridiculed by my boyfriend. He doesn't understand that I could stop if I wanted too, but I don't want to! It soothes me, and it is my method of falling asleep at night. I also prefer to use a blanket at night, but I can do without. My sister is 21, and she still sucks her thumb, and my other sister and brother are 10 and 7. They both still do it too. My stepfather forbids it to anyone but the youngest, and he even went so far as to throw away my security blanket that my mother made for me! I did stop for awhile when I was 13 but when I got mononucleosis later that year, I started doing it again. It's nice to know that there are others out there besides my siblings and I. Melani