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Are You a Hugger?

My family was never one for hugging it was one of those awkward signs of affection. It’s not that we didn’t love each other it’s just that we never hugged. In an odd way, the only people in my life that I hug is my children, my husband, and the odd farewell hug to my much-loved Mother.

It was the other day I faced two well-meaning hugging scenarios which I returned with awkward grace.  The first  was an acquaintance I hadn’t seen for a while dove into greet me with a hug. I mustered the best I could – I was frazzled, I went spastic, jumped away, recovered with a smile,  moving forward with the conversation.

My husband was in the distance chuckling at the  scenario. As I walked towards him “I know! She hugged me!”

He chuckled again…

The next day I met my cousin whom I haven’t seen for over fifteen years. He was a young sappy sprout who has decided to travel across the country to discover his freedom and find  himself. We chatted over breakfast, got the scoop on the whole family, and listened to his future dreams.

As I dropped him off to his next destination he dove in to give me a farewell hug. I dove away! The best I could muster was a punch in the arm, “Go get them slugger! I hope you enjoy the rest of your trip!”

So I ask are you a hugger? Do you return the hug? Or do you find it an invasion of your personal space?

Categories: creative writing fun funny Greetings Hugging Humor my life NaBloPoMo Personal Space random thoughts return

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Darcie

Darcie Cameron is a RYT 200 who believes Yoga is a gift that is accessible to everyone with proper modifications, a patient smile and just taking the time to breathe. One of the greatest presents you will ever unwrap is when you connect your mind, body and spirit in perfect sync with your own breath. Connect with Darcie on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/darciecameronlovesyoga

554 replies

    1. I am a hugger and so is all of my family. I guess it’s the way you were brought up as to whether you feel comfortable doing it or not . If it’s not a hug from family or a good friend it should be a quick hug.

  1. I’m a hugger! But I don’t tend to hug people who I consider acquaintances rather than friends, so I can understand why it may have been awkward to hug your estranged cousin – I would find that a bit odd, too. But I do appreciate it when someone gives a warm, well-meaning hug. It’s nice!
    I have to say though, as a ‘hugger’ I hate coming across a friend who just doesn’t like to hug – you can feel their awkwardness and it makes the whole thing feel much less friendly! My sister hates hugging so she’s never very good at receiving my affections 😛

    1. I agree with you, you can definitely tell when there is the “awkwardness”… I, personally, am an introvert and like my personal space but I also love a good hug from a friend or significant other (only from the opposite sex though). Guys do the shoulder bump which is better than a handshake imo. I think it’s odd to hug family members regularly unless you are going somewhere for an extended stay or are visiting. I think all in all people should understand that you can’t just jump in and hug anyone and everyone like you’ve been friends forever, you’ve gotta judge the situation.

  2. This might sound a bit pissy, but for the most part, i only hug those people in my life who “deserve” it. Hugging just anybody makes me feel quite uncomfortable.

    Which i suppose is odd, considering how touchy-feely i can be to those who are “deserving”…

  3. I’m kind of a born-again hugger 🙂 We’re not really touchy-feely people in my family, either, but I have a growing group of long-time friends and dear acquaintances that are great for a good squeeze. It’s kinda therapeutic, really!
    Have you ever read Douglas Coupland’s J-Pod? There’s a hilarious chapter on the development of The Hug Machine for nerds who averse to human contact (a concept that came up again in Big Bang Theory last season!). You’re not alone, my friend 😉

    1. Hugging if done for loving and altruistic reasons is very therapeutic. I agree! But I know some people are hypersensitive to touch and may not find it enjoyable. Also you wouldn’t want some lech of an uncle hugging on you if they have wrong intentions. Or if someone is sick with a virus. But the average person I know is usually a good friend and I genuinely love them, so I hug them! Sorry, I am a hugger! lol I agree with DesiValentine

    1. I co-sign here Hilary. I have a thing about my personal space, and hugging folk I am not familiar with or not in my hug cipher.. It is an energy matter too.

      I don’t think you are off Belle, you are simply, well, You.

  4. I’m a hugger for sure — if it’s FEMALE close family or my kids. Men tend to get hurt. — I used to work in a machine shop and then in telecom and there were some really sleezy guys who would give me sideways hugs just to cop a feel… so… I’m really picky about the men I let touch me today. People probably think I’m weird. No, not probably… they just flat out do when it comes to that. Even my GYN thinks I’m high strung. LOL

    Funniest incidental hug story though — I was at opening chapel for my boys grade school and as we were leaving the pastor grabbed me to hug me. UHM.. that poor man. I was studying Tai Chi and Shaolin at the time and in a blink of an eye I’d circled my arms, came up through the middle, broke the hug, and pushed him away. His wife thinks that is hilarious because “my gosh he hugs everybody and he needs to learn not to just grab people.” — he learned. 🙂 We’re friends now, and I will hug him today — but you really have to earn that right with me too. Great post.

    1. Oh gosh I am the same!
      I will hug any female, kiddies or family member that comes my way. But men I steer clear of, I have just got sick of the side boob touch. Some have perfected it to a brush past so you are wondering whether you imagined it. I just dont go there anymore to save my anger, any offence and to preserve everyone’s dignity.
      I live in France now and there is ALOT of cheek kissing which I do to everyone. And sometimes people do freak out from hugs. I have actually had to learn distancing my self with people. Which has been hard. I wrote about that here http://inbetweencountries.wordpress.com/2011/11/09/loosing-my-zing-and-the-human-touch/
      Otherwise on a happier not I ask for hugs now. I saw a friends mum and asked her for a hug. She felt so much like my mum I burst into tears. But I got a hug!

  5. My parents were not into hugging, but I’m inclined to hug, and with marriage, with children, hugs became part of life. Particularly post transition I hug, but I recognise others may not. If one doesn’t know, is always good to ask before proceeding.

    I had a very intense dream a year or two after my dad died of him trying to hug me. He never had in life.

    1. A Beautiful dream! It must of been nice to feel the warmth 🙂

      My parents were not big huggers. My Mom’s special way of making up after a big fight was always with feeding me desserts or take – out 🙂

  6. Yes, definitely, I like a hug from the people I know and love. Strangers, not so much. When someone is hurting, giving them a gentle, “I don’t know what to say but I’m sorry you’re hurting” hug is one of the best ways I know to tell that person you are “with” them. I can understand why others don’t feel that way though.

    Nancy

  7. I hate it when people I don’t know well go for the hug. Also don’t like it when business acquaintances do it. Particularly if they are Canadian and try the Euro kiss kiss.

  8. My family doesn’t really hug either, except my brother Andrew and I hug when we get to see each other about twice a year. He gives me bear hugs. 🙂 I hug all my friends hello and goodbye pretty much, and even people I’ve just met that day I usually give them a hug at the end of it if they’re a friend of a friend. I mostly hug people around my same age, though I’ve been tempted to want to hug some of the older people in my toastmasters group after some of my speeches. 🙂 I had to restrain, haha. So I suppose that makes me a hugger. 😉

  9. Hugs – you bet. Although my family wasn’t that affection physically, we all hug now. It’s so much more meaningful after the death of my mother that we stay connected every way we can. My father has always liked to kiss – blech! So did his mom, double blech! It’s ironic because I have no problem planting one on my best friend’s cheek (and receiving in return). Paging Dr. Freud…

    1. Chuckles! I wonder what would Freud would say? Speaking of which I wonder how comfy was his couch. I probably would be hypnotized and fall into a very deep sleep thus avoiding studying my emotions and feelings from childhood :O

  10. Ha. I used to be a classic Irish Catholic puncher-in-response-to-huggers. Then after spending some time in the hot sunny south, I learned the politeness necessary to endure a forced hug and respond with a sweet smile. I don’t slug huggers anymore- but I still find it shocking when someone greets me with one with no warning. -kate

  11. Awkward hugs (and the huggers who give them) are the WORST. My least favorite version is the “chest dive.” I’m 6 feet tall, so I find that many people almost burrow into my chest as I stand there, stiff and alarmed!

    Fun post…

  12. The friends I’ve made in the last 5-6 years have taught me to become more of a hugger, which I think does help bring you closer to people. It’s not uncommon among my group of friends to be introduced to someone and instead of shaking their hand, you hug them (although more common is hugging someone when you’re saying goodbye, even if you just met them). It felt awkward to me for awhile, but it’s really grown me.

  13. Not a hugger. Once, years ago, a business “colleague” came up behind me and slipped his arm around my waist in a most inappropriate way. I whipped my head around to see who it was, and he said “Were you looking to see who was hugging you?” Without a thought, I replied “I was looking to see if I needed to call my lawyer!” He never tried a sneak hug again. I’m a fairly tall woman, and hugging tiny little people – which is just about everyone else – just feels too wierd (unless it’s a good long squeeze from my favorite niece!).

  14. I’m a big hugger with family and friends, but not so much with people I don’t know as well. I do come from a family of huggers though. With me, it always depends on the situation – someone I meet for the first time at a party will not necessarily get a hug hello, but if we chat over the evening and I get to know her, she will likely leave with one. I’ve also been told that I’m a good hugger, and have been asked for a hug by strangers.

  15. Hugging is a habit you can get into and so easily fall out of. I reckon it’s probably good for us all – personal space invasion or no. The human contact of a hug is probably basic to humankind – not only for fisking for weapons! 🙂 Thanks for setting me off thinking about this

  16. After years of doing anything to avoid giving people hugs or giving awkward hugs from the side I am now finally able to give a decent hug. I still don’t enjoy it unless it is someone I care about though!

  17. It depends on who I’m hugging…or being hugged by. Friends and family are fine, but if you’re just walking down a corridor and some strange person practically jumps on you then it can be a little unnerving…

  18. Not a hugger. I have big time personal space issues. Unlike you, I don’t dive away, I just stand there with this “Touch me and die” look on my face. It’s very off putting, yet extremely effective. I must say, I will hug my children and husband to death if they’d let me though.

      1. Not likely. It seems I’ve been a Sherlock Holmes in disguise as a Dr. Watson for most of my life, and Sherlock doesn’t want to go back into the shell. 🙂

      2. I should qualify that by saying that I don’t mind hugging family. But basically, if we don’t have some DNA in common, then no.

  19. I am a hugger. I am not sure if it is nature or nurture. But growing up I really had no choice . . . my family are huggers and my church was full of huggers. Hugs are pretty nice too. So, yes, my name is Southern Girl and I am a hugger.

    Great blog.

  20. One more selective hugger here! There is nothing worse than a “false” hug. You are not that close but the person wants to hug you to mark some kind of closeness that is just not there. *Shiver…

      1. I am a hugger from a huggie family. My husband is from a less huggie family. Big family events always contain many awkward moments as my hug a lots try to hug the hug me nots!! Much an all as I love a hug – never offend me with a falsie…ugh.

  21. I’m super sensitive and pick up vibes from others so I’m not a hugger. And I wish people would ask me first if they can hug me without assuming that I don’t mind. I do mind. I don’t like carrying other people’s energy with me all day.

  22. Am a huger wanna be. Am starting out slow, you know hugging trees, a dog; things that basically can’t run away. My ‘best of friend’ is huger. On-line she hugs and hugs and hugs, never letting go. I tell her am more into ‘hug-less hugs’ of the food kind. A ‘hug-less hug’ is , “here’s a apple pie, I baked it special for you’.

    First time dropping here. I will be sure to drop in again.

  23. I would consider myself a reformed non-hugger. I am beginning to become more of a hugger, which is a language my non-verbal communication used to not speak,It can definitely be a bit weird now with people that I haven’t hugged. In my new found hugging freedom, I forget that me and that person do not have a hug relationship which can result in some pretty awkward moments.

    For the most part, I only hug people I know well In my opinion, if I don’t know your first name, last name and birthday, we don’t need to embrace. It makes a warm gesture feel too much like an invasion of privacy.

    I also have read many articles that encourage the power of touch – kisses, hugs, etc, – apparently it’s beneficial to life and health… which is an encouragement for me to extend myself (literally) outside of my comfort zone to give and receive more hugs. Plus,I think it’s nice to be closer to loved ones! 🙂

  24. I’m definitely a hugger and married into a hugging family. I try to respect non-huggers though and I’m not one to hug a complete stranger. But if you’re a good friend, beloved family member, or someone I really care about, watch out! 🙂 A hug can brighten my day like nothing else!

  25. I find so much comfort in hugs, especially when they come from someone I really care about. I’m big on affection, and I feel like I need it in order to survive. I usually won’t be the first to initiate a hug, though, just because I understand that some people really don’t like it. One of the best feelings in the world is getting a hug from one of your favorite people; you can actually feel the love. So good.

  26. I’m definitely a hugger, but with people who I’m close to. It feels weird when someone I don’t know so well goes in for a hug, but with family and close friends, I’m all for hugs! 🙂

  27. I think it depends on situation. I’m a hugger to those I know well and feel close to. I find it awkward when people I’ve just met or don’t know very well try to hug me.

  28. I’m a hugger, big time, but I don’t hug people I meet for the first time, usually. That’s wierd to ME. I don’t get in other people’s personal space if I don’t know them. I read their cues. If I feel they’re going to hug me, or I have an unusually close connection with them, then I might, but i love hugging people close to me.

  29. I find it easier to hug friends than family, it’s odd really. I wasn’t bought up in a “hugging household” and I think it signals either a really serious moment or a sad situation in our house if hugs are passed around. Whereas with friends, it’s always been something as a greeting, light-hearted, not really meaning anything too grave!

    I love a good hug though, really do. They’re medication.

  30. I used to avoid those particular friends in the halls in high school because they were “huggers.”
    There are appropriate times to hug. After not seeing your best friend for a year, saying goodbye to someone, comforting someone, etc.
    Meeting your friends for lunch or a chat in the hallway like you do everyday? No.

    *cringe*

  31. I’m a hugger. I guess like most of the people who claim to be “huggers,” I am a conditional hugger. I don’t hug EVERYONE. There are some people I avoid hugging! Maybe I’m not such a hugger after all…

  32. Great post. I was thinking about this subject just today, because I require lots of personal space but my son is super touchy feely and always hanging on me. It’s okay now because he’s seven, but I hear from other touchy people that they still like to sit in their moms’ laps in their 20s, 30s…. so I guess I have that to look forward to. In communications class in college the teacher told us that it bothers people who like closeness just as much that someone wants them to stay back as it bothers people like me when they don’t keep their distance, but I don’t see how that’s possible. Anyway, great to see the word getting out there that you might not want to grab and hug everyone you know, cause they might get the heebie jeebies. Takes all kinds.

  33. im definetly a hugger but i am funny about people touching me particularly really lighlty on the top of my arm im not sure why it just makes me react badly so i completly understand why some people wouldnt want to be hugged

  34. I never was a hugger – even hated hugs from my family, growing up.
    The odd thing was, I basically learned to hug on the internet – at one message board that I consider my online home, there was a lot of *hugging* going on… first time I volunarily hugged someone IRL, I was thinking, “well, if this were online, I’d be writing “*hugs*” now”…
    I still don’t hug often, but I feel much less awkward about returning hugs. And the people from that message board? When I meet them (about once a year), of course I hug them!

  35. Definitely an immediate-family-only hugger. Anyone outside of my husband, kids and their families gets the stink-eye from me. Who goes in for the big squeeze without permission? Especially in the workplace! What has become of this world when co-workers think they can hug each other willy-nilly?? “Oh, we finished a big project. Let’s hug.” “Gosh, glad that misunderstanding was cleared up. Let’s hug.” Eeeesh!

  36. I’m kind of a tweener. When you grow up without the hugs, its not as easy to acquire the comfort with them. Cuddling with someone I love is one thing, but It kind of freaks me out a little when people I’m not close with get too huggy. Worse than the discomfort is if they are wearing something scented that lingers on me afterward. Huggers should also be aware that some people have very real aphehobia, and an unsolicited hug can be traumatic.

  37. Over the years I have embraced hugging. However, with that being said if I have not seen someone in a while or just a casual encounter with someone I know I would rather have them ask than just dive right in and invade my personal space. I have a harder time with someone touching my shoulder and leaving their hand for longer than acceptable – that to me feels like a total invasion of my personal space.

  38. I love hugs!! Something about a hug makes you appreciate life and share love with others. To me, it doesnt matter if your a close friend or aquintance, as love as you have a loving spirit deep within Im HUGGING away!! 🙂

  39. Honey, I will take all the hugs and kisses I can get! Something I have observed by residing in the Europe’s Dreilandereck(Germany, France, Switzerland)…The French kiss three, sometimes four pecks or motioned pecks on both cheeks…(if acquainted), if newly acquainted, still four pecks on both cheeks…if unacquainted, a handshake…. Germans(if acquainted, two pecks, sometimes a hug…if newly acquainted, a rocketed out hand shake… The Swiss, two pecks, (if acquainted), if unacquainted, or newly acquainted, a stiff handshake… The Italians(South Italy), a bear hug and peck (if acquainted)…If unacquainted, a greeting CIAO BELLA!!!

    On a more spiritual note, I attended a Bible Study class in Switzerland this morning. One lady was in serious emotional pain. Without thinking, I rose from my chair, embraced her head with my palm and sang to her a gospel song..In turn, other women in the room stroked her…with an embrace, a hug, an understanding touch..Magic….

  40. As I’ve found words sometime interfer with communication, I prefer the language of the body. I just trust it more somehow. But that’s just me. I wouldn’t throw my arms around someone who didn’t feel similarly. Interestingly, I just saw a great Ted Talk on hugging, and how it releases the bonding hormone oxytocin, the same one mother’s are full of when they’re breastfeeding their babies and the same one responsibible for people falling in love. Have you all heard of Temple Grandin? She’s an autistic woman, and has been credited for developing a squeezing machine for cattle before they are slaughtered, apparently hugging the cows makes their meat taste better. Odd ?

  41. If people are listening to the situation, they will know. This came up in a conversation two days ago for me – isn’t it amazing how there is this invisible energy force that tells us who we can hug and who cannot. However, it does improve your health if you touch more people on a regular basis. Sometimes if one doesn’t have it, one can be prone to neuroses.

  42. I wish my family were the hugging type! But I hug with a style. You know it’s not manly in africa to hug or display emtions in public! But among a selected group of my friends we hug as a clique-thing, no display emotions or affections

  43. I am a hugger. It is a warm act. I love easily, too. I hug family and friends. Even the reluctant succcumb to my hugging magnetism.

    Diving out! Wow that is seriously touch phobic.

    Get your hug on girl

  44. It’s so funny how I happened to see your post today on hugging. The past couple days, I have been contemplating on whether or not I should become a hugger. Like yours, my family has never been touchy feely and I was in for a surprise when my best friend from high school turned out to be the biggest hugger I’ve ever met! It’s nice to get a hug, it’s nice to return a hug, but I’m still uncertain about initiating it just because I feel like the other person would be uncomfortable.
    I envy those people who have that warm and fuzzy kind of feel in the way they do things and can hug people with such ease!
    Thank you for your post!

  45. I am a major hugger, as is one of my children. When my children were small the two older ones were huggers, but the youngest took after my husband. They both see hugging as a sensory attack. It is very hard for me when she is hurting from a job or emotional loss, not to hug her, but I know she will back away in fear. So I tell her I am hugging her with words, which helps. And then I go find my cats, who love to be hugged to get my fix 😉

  46. I’m definitely a hugger but sadly my family isn’t so it bugs them when i do it 😛 oh well we can’t always get everything that we want!

  47. I don’t think you’ve been hugged properly.

    Hugs are beneficial to all involved when sincere and given with warmth.

    How about about air kisses to either cheeks from girls in posh jumpers where they grab your arms pulling and pushing you at the same time in perfect cognitive dissonance.

    Hugs not drugs sister.

    XXX…and one appropriate OXO

  48. I appear to be the opposite to you. My direct family (mother and father) don’t do hugs and never have done. Instead of carrying on as they did though and adopting this no hug attitude, I have somehow turned into a bit of a, what I like to call, hug monster.

    I am likely your worst nightmare. One of those people who will not let go until you give me a proper hug and don’t just pat me lightly on the back.

    I understand why some people don’t like hugs, the whole personal bubble thing, but I just can’t get enough of them.

  49. I was not born into a huggy family, so I used to be awkward. In general I am a receiver – not a giver of hugs. I have learned to accept hugs – but for a good hug back I need to know you some….

  50. I consider myself an active hugger. However, I dont hug just anyone, only those I can comfortably embrace for longer than .02 seconds.

  51. I’m not a big hugger. I prefer not to, but I will reciprocate when friends hug me. I have a few friends who’ve come out and said, “I’m not a hugger.” I’m always relieved. We promise not to hug each other – ever. And then laugh about it. Our friendship is perfectly find without hugs.

  52. I was raised in a family that never hugged or even said “I love you,” so I wasn’t comfortable with it most of my life. I am getting better and am now a ‘selective’ hugger…kids, grandkids, siblings (finally), some cousins and a few selective ‘specials.’
    It’s easier as you get older…maybe because I realize life is too short to not let those we care about know it…even, as mentioned above, if it’s just for .02 seconds.
    🙂

  53. It depends. Some people I care for so deeply that I have to hug them. I want to, can’t help it, need to. Others I get that urge, but am uncomfortable around them so I don’t. I think I am naturally, selectively, affectionate . . . If that makes any sense at all. But i do love a good hug. :0)

  54. Definitely a hugger, I hug everyone, especially those I know arent really into hugging, I think people have a big issues with personal space, which i compltely respect! I wouldnt hug someone I felt would genuinely not enjoy it or despise me for it, but hugging makes people feel good…more or less.. im one of those people you see holding a sign that says FREE HUGS 🙂 greats post!

  55. I have hugged or been hugged all my life. It comes natural to me, and I am not a Baptist. That has nothing to do with this, I know, but sometimes we think everything is right some places, and difficult other places. My church is small, and we are growing. We have a part of the service where everyone greets everyone. We used to have ten people, now we have 25 on a good day. I am from the South, and this is how I was raised. If you don’t hug, they think you are mad, or something is terrribly wrong with you.
    I am not a direct person, but there are people who are in the South. I am a minister’s wife, and I love everyone. That is how I deal with life which in my opinion is very short. When I get to heaven, I plan to slide on the golden streets, and hug all the angels and the saints, and the people that are there. I plan to love everyone, and you know, what was evil won’t be there, so we will all get along. A hug will be normal. RSC3

  56. Hugging is an intimate act. It’s bringing your body into close contact with mine. Basically, if you’re not going to come through for me in ways that really matter, please don’t hug me. I had a very hard time a few years ago, and some of the people who had hugged me a zillion times were not particularly kind or helpful. So what was all the hugging about? It’s OK not to be on my side, but don’t give the message that you care if you don’t. Indiscriminate hugging reminds me of a cheesy game show on TV.

    Give me a handshake or a friendly nod and greeting, look me in the eye, smile! I’m very friendly, actually, just find it distasteful to be hugged by someone I don’t know well, or whom I know but am not close with, because people are all different and it’s hard to know how to read it. While I appreciate the sentiment — yes, it can be a cold world, let’s warm it up a bit — there are other ways to be kind without being intrusive. It just seems like fake intimacy to me, even if well intentioned.

  57. If you are my girlfriend or family member – YES I will hug you. Sometimes I get this burst of love or emotion towards a friend and hug them tightly without their participation. But no one complains about it. If it’s a friends boyfriend, and it’s sometimes I don’t know well I dislike the invasion of my space VERY MUCH.

    Lol if that makes sense?

  58. I feel ya! Try hugging and kissing on the cheek. Most of my family from Mexico are really used to this display of affection. I am getting used to it. We are simply not used to it. But whenever we visit in Mexico. We get ready for it. I hope you get used to it. And not pull away. I mean, yeah it’s weird. But, your family may not see it that way.

  59. I hate being hugged by people who don not form immediate family. Even then I don’t like it. I don’t slug family i do slug others.
    The only ones who get way hugging me are my daughters.

  60. I am definitely a hugger. I remember when I was in high school I hugged people all the time! Back in those days we called people like me hug whores. LOL. But I’m also a good reader of people and can usually tell when people don’t really like to be touched or hug. Most of the time I only hug people if I haven’t seen them in a very long time, or if I’m very close to them. I have even gotten random hugs from people and felt weird about it because as much as I like hugs, I do not like being touched by strange people.

  61. i am a total hugger. i especially love hugs from the people i’m closest with. i love finding a new friend who likes to hug (and physical contact…ie, hand-holding). i’m big on the hugs. cute post. i can totally appreciate those who aren’t into hugging though too.

  62. I am definitely a hugger. I love physical contact (nothing sexual mind, haha) in general, and it’s often a way for my friends to ground me to earth when I get too excited! I can understand that some people are the complete opposite though; a friend of mine hates physical contact (ie. hugs), but through our friendship we’ve gotten closer and so now she’s willing to do the small things like letting me hold her hand or play with her fingers…

    Great post!

    🙂

    uponatlas.

  63. I am a hugger with people I am really, really close to. Very good friends. My boyfriend. My child. Other family…you know, the ones I admit to being related to. Otherwise, I try to put off a very strong “Please don’t touch me” aura. I seem to have about a 70% success rate. Apparently, stiffening like a weirdo when people put their arms around you is not a strong enough hint that you’re not comfortable.

  64. I saw your blog on “Freshly-Pressed” and thought I’d stop by. To answer your question (even though you have so many answers) I am a huger, but I am not one of those awkward/annoying people who hugs EVERYONE I know! So I guess I’m not a big “Huger” but I do enjoy hugs. 🙂 Ha ha. I enjoyed the Scooby Doo pic as well. (You’ve gotta love a good Shaggy and Scooby pictuer!) Anyway, have a great weekend. God Bless.

    Jenny~

  65. I loathe hugs. If I come into a room with a known hugger, I always try to put a piece of furniture between the hugger and myself. That way, if they reach out for a hug, I can reach out with a handshake.

    Based on all the comments here qualifying that no one wants to hug someone who’s smelly and gross, maybe I should start showering less frequently.

  66. Hugger, but only with people I know well. Alas, I moved from a part of the country where hugging is typically the A-hug (shoulder to shoulder, tap the back, feet far apart from each other’s), Washington, D.C., to Kissing Central, Long Island, where meeting my boyfriend’s friends for the first time resulted in not only hugs, but kisses! Long Islanders are very kissie. I miss the South.

  67. I’m definitely not a hugger. I make a few awkward exceptions for blood relatives and very close friends, but physical contact with others generally freaks me out. I need my personal space!

  68. I’m a hugger of people I know and like, of people who are comfortable with me, but I’m not a hugger of total strangers – that often creeps me out!

    Curious, this post, as it’s something like what I’d wanted to write about myself recently… and didn’t!

  69. Definitely a hugger. Weirdly, if I like a guy, I’m iffy to hug him… I don’t want to be seen as overly affectionate. I guess … people really do treat the ones they like differently.

  70. I’m a hugger, and I hug so much that my little 4 year old started hugging strangers who are nice to her as a ‘thank you’.

    We had a little chat about that though and she’s putting in a lot of effort restraining herself from hugging strangers. It’s hilarious watching her trying to exercise control! 😀

  71. Oh man I am SUCH a hugger! In my world a hug is free and it can make someone’s day. You never know when someone really just needs a kind embrace. That being said, I realize I may be the only one in a hug duo who feels this way and I’ve definitely found myself in awkward hug situations but I don’t let it bother me… I love a good hug!

  72. We have never seen our parents hug or kiss one another. But they had 6 children! They are more traditional Chinese parents where affection just wasn’t shown.

    Hugging was with babies and very small children. Then it stops.

    So I had to get used to hugging occasionally….starting in my late 20’s. Ah yes, a repressed bunch that we can be.

    Fortunately my partner comes from a family that hugs abit more.

    Now it is hugging with family and close friends. After all I see them once a yr. or even less being in a different part of Canada.

  73. I can so relate to this! I like hugs, but I tend to panic about where my arms should go. The worst is when short friends think both of their arms should go up high – as if I am going to pick them up or something. BUT I had a friend tell me the other day that she took a personality test a few years ago, and the results told her that not everyone loves hugging. She was shocked to learn this information.

  74. I could hug my kids all day if they’d let me. (that’s a big IF. 2 teenagers)
    But when it comes to other people, even my own immediate family…. Stay out of my bubble, people!!
    I definitely see where you’re coming from..

  75. I am definitely a hugger! i am slightly infamous for it, even – not in a bad way (like I don’t terrorise people who don’t like hugs, haha), I dunno, apparently I am very good at hugs. I didn’t even really think about such a thing until I read this, and now I’m pondering it moreso.

  76. I’m with you… Hugging is a huge, awkward invasion of my space that I care to avoid whenever possible. Even when I leave from visiting my dad (also not a hugger) it is always an over-the-shoulder back pat half hug. The only two people who receive a real person hug from me are the boyfriend and my mom (who unfortunately is a cling on and don’t let go hugger). The dogs also receive their fair share of hugs.

  77. I am definitely a hugger. I could hug, hug, hug all the time. I read that you need to hug for 6 seconds to make a deep connection. I remember the first hug my disabled son gave me, when he was 7. He just turned 18. That first hug changed the direction of my entire life. I quite my career and decided to suck up every hug he would ever give me for as long as he was willing to give it. I hug strangers, hug friends, hug acquaintences, hug enemies, hug loved ones. I love giving a hug to someone who so needs it, but won’t ask. I love ‘huggling’ on the couch with my husband. I love being wrapped up in a hug with my husband’s arms, knowing no other place in the world is as safe as this one. I have 2 step-sons, and they weren’t brought up huggers and kills me. I asked one once, “could I hug you?” and his reply was “that would be awkward”. Not too long ago, that very step-son was leaving his home for 4 months to work in a remote area of the Yukon and he hugged me. OHHHHweeeee what a feeling that hug was. I thought he was going to break my ribs, but I wasn’t saying a word.
    I love hugs!!!!! The giving of them and the receiving of them.

  78. I totally get what you’re saying. For me, it depends on the person, really. If it’s a total stranger… or someone with a sinus infection… then no, I’m not a hugger. If it’s Brad Paisley or Johnny Depp, then I’m definitely a hugger. 😉

  79. I grew up in a hugging family and my best friend in a non-hugging family. We both knew our families loved us unconditionally.

    We now hug after YEARS of half-hugging with her arms creating a shield in front of her body for her comfort. I’m much more aware of other’s comfort levels since we’ve been friends.

    Great post!

  80. well i love hugs though not i do know of many who aren’t fond of hugs. doving away is just a little awkward for me so i’ll just open my arms and hug them back. there are times where a hug seems really wierd… hahaha.. but what harm can a hug do between 2 people right?

  81. I am TOTALLY a hugger. I love personal physical contact, be it between me and my family or with complete strangers. Does that make me creepy, because I feel a little creepy saying it …? Not that I go hug random strangers, mind you, but if some drunk comes over and wants a hug, I’m in … Yeah that still sounds creepy. 🙂

  82. If I were to hug a Scooby, I’d totally do it!

    But, yeah, one of my good friends says I always give an awkward hug. And that’s true. I don’t find myself ever just hugging, y’now?!
    This same friend said, the awkwardness is an improvement. A few years ago, she said she felt like hugging a rock. 😐

    And I had to share this :

  83. I grew up in a relatively non-huggy family and married a man from huge family, all of whom hug and kiss upon greeting and leaving, and pretty much whenever the urge hits them. So do all of their friends, I did feel like an anti-social freak for awhile, but I’ve slowly become accustomed to hugging more. I’ll let most people hug me once, but if I get a weird vibe or they smell bad, forget it- they’ll get a handshake or a pat on the shoulder the next time.

  84. i LOVE to hug! i grew up in Hawaii and we hugged strangers we’ve just met. when i moved to SF for high school people thought i was strange. i don’t randomly hug people anymore, but when i do its a sign that person is a good friend. 😀

  85. I will hug good friends which I have not seen for awhile. Though I do have some friends that will hug even if you see them every day, I think this is nice. But like I said, I would normally just hug a good friend/family that I had not seen in a while.
    🙂

  86. Never been a fan of hugging, my family doesn’t do it, and we tend to touch each other to annoy each other. My fiance’s family is very much touchy-feely and huggers so I’ve had to get used to it. I’ve had those awkward situations where someone hugs you, and you are not prepared, or you don’t want to do it, and you can’t get out of it.

  87. Kids and animals, yes. With adults, it all depends. Apart from children, I have personal space issues. So if random people dive in for a huge, I do the awkward one arm side hug thing…..

  88. lol I’m a hugger. I like to scare non-huggers with hugs. The reaction is just how you described. The jump back look awkward one eye stare. I fricking love it.

    1. Coming from a latin country, I know exactly what you mean. I’m a BIG hugger myself and when traveling around I always end up invading people’s personal spaces. Most of the times I only realize a second after I just did it. A few times I do it intentionally, depending on the person. Where I grew up personal space is a sort of a public thing… : )

  89. This is a weird thing, because I used to hug EVERYONE. I was a dancer (the semi-professional, competitive kind, not the half-naked, spin-on-the-pole kind) for YEARS, and I just had NO sense of personal space.

    Everyone hugged. Everyone kissed on each other’s cheeks. Everyone slapped each other’s butts. It’s awkward for me to admit this, years later, but I’ve shared bras and clothes, and there are probably four girls I’ve showered with JUST BECAUSE we didn’t have time to all shower separately.

    Now, though, hugs creep me out in most cases. I hug my husband, his family, and my family…and some SUPER CLOSE friends. That’s it.

    …holy crap, I just admitted on the internet that I’ve showered with girls.

  90. Some psychologists believe that a hug could fill whatever void there is in a person’s emotions. Whenever I feel upset, I am so happy with what I have received or have done, or whenever I need to feel some unexplained emotions, a hug is the only thing that could do a lot of explaining. Babies known to be nourished by their parent’s hugs are somewhat attached to them compared to others who do not do as often. For me, hugs are essential whenever just to let the other person feel how much I feel about them or whatever I do.

  91. Hahaha. I’m definitely not a hugger. Well, partially. I would hug old friends who I haven’t met for some time, but I wouldn’t hug people who I met every day, especially people from the opposite sex. It’s really in my culture, especially in my country. Because if you hug people from the opposite sex, people would think you’re probably hitting on that person. When people suddenly hug me, I don’t hate it, but I kinda hope that it would always come with a warning because sometimes it would leave me… stunned and surprised, if not shocked.

  92. I am not a hugger in general. But I will hug my kids twenty times a day, maybe more if I can get away with it. But I don’t hug my husband but with him there are little touches on his shoulder or back that suffice. I will hug people close to me and those not so close in times of deep distress. I hugged my husband’s best friend when he broke down over his grandparents death because everyone was occupied with dinner and didn’t notice. So I took one for the team.

  93. I am definitely a hugger. In fact, I feel awkward when I don’t hug someone upon greeting them, unless it’s a professional meeting or I just don’t know the person. Perhaps it’s my latino background because everyone in my family and my husband’s family greets and says good bye this way. Even my latino collegues will sometimes greet me with a hug and kiss on the cheek! I once watched one of my non-latino colleagues get kissed on the cheek by another latino colleague while we were getting ready for a meeting. She was so flustered and it was so awkward for everyone else, I felt sorry for her.

  94. What a great idea! Your questions makes us actually think about hugging and if we really like it. I think hugging is great whenever it suits the situation and the people involved. What’s important about it is to know that we have the right to say “NO” if we don’t feel comfortable hugging someone.
    How often do we hug just because it is social or we don’t want to upset somebody else?
    Have a wonderful hugging day!

  95. Public display of affection (and that includes even the simple, casual hug!), isn’t common in this part of the world, I live in 🙂 and therefore when someone greets me with a hug, I freeze and as I manage to return it, I’am never too sure if I’am doing it the right way 🙂

  96. I was never a ‘hug’ person until the day I left for my hostel.. That deep embrace with my mom for a few minutes made me feel great. She must have felt the same. The next time I hugged was when I felt really unsafe to live in the place far away from home area where abductions and murders were frequent. I talked with my friend, n she hugged me and told me that everything was going to be fine. She made me feel safe. Ever since I hug my friends when one of us need it.. Hugging actually is a therapy, that cures ur ills but produce no bills 😀 hehe

  97. I just moved to another school as a freshman and the friends I made there likes to hug. I get awkward whenever someone would hug me, and they would always laugh at my face. I like getting hugged, but I never really did how to learn how to react whenever someone hugs me. Haha.
    http://issabelaespinoza.wordpress.com

  98. I so identify with this blog! I am not a hugger and never have been, but now have a group of friends who do hug to greet and part. They know I am awkward about it – and can tell if I have had a few drinks as I hug with greater gusto then – but I try and combat my reluctance as it really is quite nice!

    Also we do try and hug our kids, so they don;t have the same experience. My Dad visited recently and my 15 y/o surprised him by running the length of the hall to give him a huge hug before he left – it made my Dad’s day so hugging is definately a habit to be encouraged.

  99. Oh, I’m a hugger! I’ll hug everything. My dogs, my parents, my sisters, spiders, socks… carrots. Anything that’s got physical arm-wrappable space. I love hugs. I’ll be coming at you, arms flailing!

  100. I am a hugger If im friends with someone i hug em every time i get the chance to, i also hug people i just met to show them i like them and want to get to know them. Hugging is my frickin nature!!!

  101. As a teacher, I’ve been programmed to always side-hug and that has carried through to the hugging I do in my personal life. I am an exclusive side-hugger. And I’ll side-hug anybody. I’ll even side-hug at a funeral. Maybe I don’t really want to hug anybody, and this is the best compromise I can think of.

  102. I’m definitely a hugger – perhaps it is a New Zealand thing, as all my other Kiwi friends here in the UK are the same. On the other hand, I find the whole European ‘kiss on the cheek’ incredibly uncomfortable!

  103. I really only hug my (closest) family members now and then, when it’s my own initiative at least (and it usually isn’t). When a friend or someone close initiates a hug I will always accept it, though I understand your reaction, haha. I also feel quite awkward most of the time! I guess I’m a semi-hugger?

  104. we weren’t a huggy family either with the exception of my grandmother who loved to snuggle you right into her arms, a wonderful feeling. I decided to pass this on to my daughter. public hugs with acquaintence’s are still awkward at best

  105. I’m more of a hugger with friends and family than I used to be, but I started realising recently that it might freak people out and it might seem a bit creepy, so I try to hold back if I’m not sure the other person is okay about it. Saying that, a couple of people I don’t very well know I’m a hugger and have asked me for a hug in the past. I’d never turn anyone away who asked for a hug.

  106. I do enjoy a good hug but i’m put off by that awkward moment when your going in for the hug and aren’t quite sure if you should hug under the arms, or over them; or both. Which side do you lean in. So many decisions to make in so little time.

  107. Very much like this post! I am definitely a non-hugger, but I am married to a Greek and I now live in Greece – and most Greeks are big-time huggers! Plus my poor daughter seems to have inheritied my non-cuddliness and it’s painful to watch her being squished by well-meaning relatives while she tries to squirm away!

  108. i love the post… made me smile and i do relate to it … affection was more verbal than sensual (hugs) … but i just grow out of it and ” embraced ” the hugging as great way and never invasion of personal space !!! 🙂

  109. So interesting. I’m not a hugger either. My daughter is though, so now we’ve made a joke of it and I always feign running away. One of my close friends whose daughter is not a hugger reprimanded me lightly saying that I had all the luck to have a teenager who wanted to hug!
    I moved to France two years ago from middle England and had to quickly get up to speed on the kissing cheeks bit. Unlike London where I feel the whole kiss thing is over done and false, real french ‘bises’ are low key, cheek only (no body contact) and so part of the establishment that they don’t invade personal space.
    So there’s the low down, in France you can be a non hugger but do the ‘bises’ without batting an eyelid and without any pseudo best buddies pretence.

  110. I’m absolutely a hugger, which is a bit weird because I have no patience for other kinds of physical greeting (pats, arm slugs, the strange kiss of friends, etc.). But hugs are definitely my forte–I’ve been known to have whole conversations with friends within a hug (but I’ve known those friends for years). I totally respect people who aren’t comfortable with that, as I’m aware of my own moments of “yeah okay personal space please.”

  111. I never used to be a hugger, i used to get really freaked out when people would hug. My family were the same, we weren’t really a hugging family but i am getting better at it now. I think you almost have to get yourself in the habit. What are you like with public affection? I get freaked out if like a boyfriend or anyone tries to hold my hand even. :S lol

  112. I’m a born-again hugger like Desi. Didn’t get into hugging until maybe age 30? My family did not used to be huggers, but slowly many of us have converted. I even hug students but ask permission first to avoid lawsuits.

    The other day I saw a friend from grad school for the first time in 8 years. I was so happy to see him tears sprang to my eyes, I ran towards him and he caught me in a huge hug that was wildly comforting. I promise it was completely platonic, but we had been so close and went through a bit of hellishness in grad school together and survived. I remember thinking “Wow, he’s a good hugger!” I’m getting teary just thinking about the hug.

    I highly recommend the hug for therapeutic value in this crazy world. And they are free!!!

  113. SO true, I love to hug my close friends and family when needed but it does get a little strange when people go in for a hug and either you’re not expecting it or you would rather not!
    Great post!!

  114. I’m definitely a hugger… and hugging is *definitely* not a ‘thing’ here in Portugal. A few amusing incidents occurred in my early days living here 😉 Hugs just seem so wholesome and down-to-earth… but I can get the aversion to hugs. I think that even hug-happy folks have a double standard for hug acceptability… If a creepy-looking guy comes in for a hug in the same context that, say, a grandma did, I’d feel differently in each instance. I feel like women can ‘get away’ with non-creepy hugs more easily than guys can…but I’m a woman, so I’m biased 🙂

    Do you think your aversion has more to do with your family dynamic while growing up, or with the regional culture in which you were raised, or is it more of a personal idiosyncrasy? I see that you wrote your family wasn’t very huggy when you were growing up, but I wonder what factors you think are the ‘keys’ in hug-happy vs. hug-averse folks 😉

  115. my family is a big time hugger! they’ll hug when your sad, happy, excited…except when we are bored we just sit their on the couch trying not to touch each other!

  116. hah, what a necessary conversation! I grew up in a dutch household, so we greet most people with not only hugs, but kisses! and 3 of them! And my girlfriends and I grew up hugging so I really didn’t know that other side of the coin until I met my partner’s family 2 years ago (! that’s 26 years of uninterrupted and un-deliberated hugging), and I met everyone without a hug. It felt like such an incomplete encounter for me and I even felt slightly unwelcome. But now, funny as it is, either I have converted them or they know that I am a hugger and thus concede, I get a hug every time 🙂

  117. I am a secret hugger…

    I love to give and receive hugs but I do know people who are not into hugging unless it is that of their other-halves or children. When we part ways after a meet I respect the non-huggers and never go forth for one as I would hate to ruin a good evening with awkwardness.

    The non-huggers do not know about my love of hugs as I have never gone in for one… like I said I am a secret hugger and always wait for that person to make the first move; once they have though, I will hug them for life 🙂

    Cuddle…? ha ha 😀

  118. DON’T TOUCH ME!…. Is the way I use to be. But now at the ripe old age of 59…I’m a hugger. Yes me who at the thought of hugging…I pretended something was in my eye or something.

    Well I have 6 children and a husband so how did I deal with hugging? I’m a do-er. I do stuff for people…it’s my way. Doing is love to me.

    So since I can’t do for any of you……

    XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO

    ((Hugs )) 🙂

  119. I see nothing wrong with hugs! They’re quite nice, I do believe.
    There are, however, a small list of people I wouldn’t hug:
    – Lecturers, professors, teachers, academics
    – Enemies (for obvious reasons)
    – People will the flu or contagious skin diseases
    – The Pope (for fear of the consequences!)

  120. I’ve got a friend just like that! he only shakes hands instead of hugging, i always have to remember never to go in for a hug or face the consequences of being pushed away awkwardly with a strange look of confusion

  121. I’m a hugger. I love affection. My daughter, however, I’m not sure what happened there. She was a hugger until she turned teen. Then it went down hill. I miss my hugs from her and hope that it comes back. I still have my little boy who loves to hug his mommy, thank God, and my husband as well. 🙂

  122. Hugs are the elixir of life! Hugging is beneficial to your health – proven. Hugs validate. They comfort and make “it” all better. I couldn’t live without my hugs (especially the bear hugs I get from my sisters, my husband and my kids).

  123. Did we grow up in the same family?! I didn’t hug people other than the occasional, awkward hug from my grandpa’s wife (she’s not my grandmother), during which my skin crawled and I felt as if it were all a bad dream or out-of-body experience. Then I went to college, and suddenly found myself surrounded by scads of crazy people who INSISTED on hugging me with every arrival or departure. This alien world I found myself in eventually raised my comfort level with hugging (and being touched in general), and I’ve become a frequent hugger. The caveat to this is – I don’t hug strangers. I have, however, had strangers hug me (awkward)… and I’ve hugged them back. I’ve nothing to lose if I get a “stranger hug” and just dive right in with gusto (though, I may feel a bit dirty afterwards).

    Really, it all comes down to body language. I maintain personal spatial boundaries, even around those whom I would like to hug, first checking body language; if they are “closed” (arms crossed, etc.) I refrain, if their stance is “open” and they look like they might enjoy a hug, I’ll ask or do the “arms held open for a hug invitation”. The variety of hug given varies from “full frontal” to some people only getting the “one arm squeeze”.

    Since the hugging immersion in college, my family has somehow acquired the “Hug Bug” like a rampant viral infection. Suddenly everyone became “chummy” and hugs abound. To tell the truth – this freaks me out a bit after the first twenty years being virtually hug-free. Now, instead of the make-my-skin-crawl awkward hugs from JUST my grandpa’s wife once every year or two, I get them from my dad, too. I’m not comfortable with that… but I’ll live with it.

  124. My entire family is a bunch of sappy huggers, and as a teacher, I am very careful about “sharing the love.” So while I try to be conscious of my invading peoples’ space, I also want them to know that I do care about them. I don’t believe in the “man hug.” That is just a facade for guys who are insecure.

  125. My family is not the one to do hugging too…its just like what you’ve said, its not that we don’t love each other, we just don’t hug (except for my kid brother he just loooove hugging). But i do hugs with my my besties, i don’t know how or when i pick the habit, but whenever we meet we hug. I think hugging is ok but not just with anybody… ;D

  126. Haha! That’s funny! It’s probably so funny because hugs are usually awkward for me too, although I admit my family is no stranger to hugging. Though, awkward, like Nike, I usually just do it. It’s not that I don’t like affection, it’s just that I prefer to show it in other ways, like through words, gestures, etc. But, I liked the old punch to the should you did with your cousin. That was creative and quick on the feet thinking, I must say. I enjoyed your post. Congratulations on being freshly pressed!

  127. I am definitely a hugger, never giving it any thought. I hope and think I only hug people who want to reciprocate, I haven’t noticed any weird hugging episodes, so I’m assuming I only hug people whom it’s appropriate to hug in my life …interesting perspective though, it made me think about it and wonder now. Perhaps I’ll notice and make sure I don’t hug inappropriately Ha, ha!.

  128. I am a hugger. I hug everyone, everywhere and all the time. It drives my family crazy. I have gotten in trouble many times for my ‘excessive’ hugging, but I cannot seem to stop. Is hugging an addiction? If so, I am addicted.

  129. I find it really difficult too!

    Even if I do hug somebody, it just doesn’t feel like its an intense emotion, which is what a hug should be…maybe its just because I’m not used to it. 😛

  130. I definitely a hugger. Other people in my family are not. But I find that when people don’t hug, their missing out or have missed out on something. Not that they are not great human beings, gifted, and are loved or are in love. They can be all of the above, but they’ve put up a barrier – just out of habit or for self preservation.

  131. I love hugs and don’t trust people who either don’t hug, or they give you that dead body hug, where all they can muster is their hand on your back and a slight lean-in. Its the equivalent of the limp fish handshake. Not cool.

    If I were to go in to hug you, and you “dove back” as you said, I would be extremely offended, especially if you were family. That would be my last interaction with you.

  132. I too am not a hugger, very bad for me since everyone around me wants to hug….

    I try and send out signals to make people aware that I do not want a hug, but either they are not tuned in or simply don’t care about my special gift of sending those signals…..:)

  133. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed! I’d give you a hug, but..well…you know. I’m totally a hugger, having learned the hard way that sometimes it might be the last chance you have to hug someone. That’s always applied to family and friends, and every so often to acquaintances who, whether verbally or by body language, indicate that they just need a good ol’ sincere hug.

  134. So I haven’t never considered myself a hugger to folks outside my immediate circle of friends and family. However, when it comes to people inside that circle, I don’t have a problem with it.

    That is until one day my mom announced to me that I am a super awkward hugger, even to my family. I was totally caught off guard as I did not think that was the case.

    Thankfully she followed it up by saying that my fiance was just as umcomfortable to hug. Must be why we don’t notice it when we hug each other!

  135. I’ll admit it…I’m a hugger!!! I tend to hug all of my friends, and most don’t mind at all. I have come across a few who are awkward about it, so I just pull back and don’t do it again. Although I must admit that it does hurt my feelings when they pull back, even though I understand that not everyone comes from families that hug. Your post helped me understand that more!!! Thank you.

    http://indiraadams.wordpress.com
    http://handreachedout.wordpress.com

  136. I’m a sometimes hugger. After initiating a few awkward hugs, I now just kinda wait for the other person. Especially with me being a man, I can’t just go grabbing and hugging folks (female) that aren’t aren’t ready for it.

  137. I’m a hugger and a kisser! Watch out! #kissingbandit Hugs and kisses are important for your overall well being. There is magic in it, try to accept it from others and know there’s no wrong way. Some cultures think a hug is more intimate than a kiss.

  138. I am Italian, so just from that people thinks that I like to hug and be hugged. But in reality for me a hug is something quite “intimate” so I feel comfortable just to hug my family and my partner .

    I do remember the weirdest period of my life, when I was living in Southern Spain, and when you are introduced to someone there they don’t shake your hand, they simply hug and kiss you on your cheeks… really…the first 2/3 months have been quite…strange…strangers kissing and hugging me all the time 🙂

  139. I have only very recently realised that a hug actually can mean a lot. And ever since this feeling has occurred to me, I feel like hugging all the people I value, love and admire, on all possible occasions. I am getting sentimental about it while I write this!

    🙂

  140. I’m TERRIFIED of hugs. I sort of understand the theory behind hugs, but can’t really apply it. It’s a bit like communism in that respect. I think a lot of this is because I’m British, and we’re all far too emotionally repressed to do something as dramatic as hugging.

  141. I’m a hugger! It just comes naturally to me I suppose…meeting the lover for coffee starts out with a warm hug,seeing my favorite cousin after 3 days begins and ends with a hug…the list goes on.
    -Lily Hex

  142. YES-YES-YES!! I am a born hugger!! I have some of the hugginess people in my family!!! We love to hugg….if I reach for you and you reach back……..IT’S ON!!! GROUP HUGGGGG!!

  143. What a great post! The weird thing is, I used to be more of a hugger – but am less so now. I agree with so many other comments that it is such an ‘it depends’ scenario. I used to think that if someone wanted to hug me, then it was rude not to accept – but typically those people are personal space invading people. I feel bad for anyone who’s felt I invaded their personal space with a hug, but I do pick up on awkwardness cues, and that has helped me be less of a hugger over the years. I’ve recently let go of this person in my life who likes to hug frequently, and it felt so awkward, and soon felt icky. I suppose I should have said, ‘please don’t hug me, or attempt to hug so much’, but then I’m a rude bitch – so it’s easier to just stop hanging out with them. Maybe that makes me worse, but I feel a whole lot better! 😉

    Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

    1. Thank you! It’s easier to go with an awkward hug or a slug to the arm then ever say please don’t hug me. I think that might be a hard to say to the person diving in for the hug. I would never want to hurt anyone’s feelings especially a hug bugs. I think they are very sensitive about it all 😉

  144. Same is the case with me..some people are not very good at expressing their affection and that’s why they take a step back when someone comes forward to hug..even I feel shy and avoid eye contact with the person when he/she hugs me or shows profound affection in some way. But that doesn’t mean we don’t care.. ain’t it.. 🙂

  145. Most people would consider me a hugger because I often hug my parents, siblings, nieces, and nephew. I am not that way with most people though.
    Growing up in a rather large family (that is for the most part huggers), I am usually okay with people hugging me and hug them back. As long as I at least know them a little bit. However, I’m not really the type who will walk up and hug someone else unless I’ve known them very well for a long time. Totally understand the awkwardness… been there too many times. Even huggers have to draw the line somewhere.

    1. Thank you for taking the time to read my post and comment! I love your project it must be a fantastic way to connect with so many people! I i wish I was brave as you! I’m sending you one very big awkward virtual *HUG* 🙂

  146. I am not a hugger, I like my space, & I feel very awkward when someone who is not my close family comes in for a hug. I’m like a deer in headlights.

  147. My family and I are not huggers. I used to be awkward when it comes to being hugged and returning a hug. I would sometimes focus on a movie scene that has people hugging in it and see how they go about it.

    But nothing beats being hugged by people whom you love and love you back, especially when you are in your bleakest moment. You will never know when you will need one.

  148. Hugging my boss before and after my performance review would have seemed crazy until I took a work assignment in Chilé. At first it was a little awkward, but it gradually became natural.

    Now that I’m back in the States I’ve slowly returned to my non-hugging ways, but sometimes I miss living in a hugging culture.

    1. It must have been a wonderful experience to work in Chile and immerse yourself in their culture. I think I would find it awkward to be hugging everyone! However, I wonder if it is just practice and hugging out of your comfort zone that makes it all the better?

  149. Belle, I am definitely a hugger! After all, it’s been medically proven to be beneficial to us, emotionally, mentally and physically. I make sure I get as many hugs from whomever is around, and yes, Roxy’s hugs count too! 🙂 Congrats on being freshly pressed, my friend!

  150. Some in my family do and some don’t.

    I have childhood memories of having to hug various aunt’s and cousins at parties and family gatherings so I do not like it. “Give your aunt (insert name of family member here) a hug and say hello.” I would give her a halfhearted hug while hoping it would end as quickly as possible and thinking to myself “I really don’t know who this person is, she looks like she is about 900 years old and smells like old person.” So I think that is why I usually do not hug. But if I know the person and the moment seems appropriate, i.e. I have not seen the person in a long time and the body language seems to allow it, I will hug. But usually, I will not.

    Although if hug just happens I will not shy away.

    Unless she smells of Jean Nate and cold cream.

  151. I am a hugger, in fact I love to give a BIG embrace. It’s a little awkward because I am also a cheek kisser, so often I go for a cheek kiss and a full embrace hug I have found that this is really not the best combo. I am not awkward but I have gotten some really strange responses!

  152. Hm, I don’t know if I would classify myself as a hugger or not… I like to be hugged and will return one with enthusiasm, but I am far to socially awkward to feel at all comfortable with initiating, unless it is with someone I know VERY well. But there is every type…

  153. I’ve found that with other guys I’m more of a fist bumper, its easier that a handshake. At my age there are 20 different ways to shake a guy’s hand. Fist bumping is simple and universal.

    Females tend to open their arms to me to hug before the goodbye is even said. I guess it makes sense but I’m not one to offer a hug up.

  154. This is so funny! This post is exactly what my boyfriend does. I, myself, hug only when I feel that I’m comfortable enough with the person to do so. My boyfriend isn’t. Which makes his hugs with me feel incredibly special. Thanks for sharing!

  155. I think touch in important. When I see those that find themselves alone, such as the aged … I see in them the need for a smile or small affection or human touch. I felt alone growing up, and that is why touch is so important to me. I however am aware that my need can cause me to be overzellus. I have learned to read others, wait for their lead or simply ask for their want or consent. Share if you can.

  156. Depends on the person and the situation, but in general, no! I find it just plain weird hugging different people that you either don’t know or don’t know very well, just not right I’m tellin ya.

    1. Btw… If you find hugs ackward, I’ve got one for you… I went to my girlfriend’s employee appreciation dinner a few weeks ago and some lady that she worked with walked up to us, I thought she was coming in for a hug and then it happened…. She kissed me! Right on the lips. I was so shocked I didn’t know what to say or do!!!! Talk about ackward!!!!

  157. For me, it always depends on the person…For example, there’s a friend I’ve had for ages, and I refuse to give him a hug.
    This is the south, so it’s as common as saying “Hello”, and he’s coldly rejected whenever he asks for one.
    However, there’s another friend I have whom I go out of my way to hug.

    Some people just don’t deserve my signals of affection. 😀

  158. I avoid hugs at just about all costs. I don’t like it. At ALL. When I went to university, it was SUPER weird every time my parents dropped me off or picked me up from the airport. There was this Oh-GOD-now-we-have-to-hug thing between us. I blame my parents. They weren’t affectionate enough or something. I’m weirded out by people who feel the need to stick their arms out at me as they approach, just because we haven’t seen each other in a while. *shivers* Don’t do it, people! Just… Don’t. It’s WEIRD. See this here? *draws invisible box around self with index finger* This is my space. You stay out there. K, thanks, bye. 🙂

  159. I guess I’m not much of a hugger. But when I gathered together a drill with a mile of extension cord and a cordless pocket driver, a level, a stud finder, a half dozen styles of fasteners including no-drill-needed, so called “self-tapping” screws, tape measure, two ladders, and the curtain rod still fell down under the weight of my wife’s favorite bamboo curtains (in front of her)–I needed a hug…which I got.

    Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

    Jim Amos, MD
    The Practical Psychosomaticist

  160. i’m not a hugger, but my husband’s family is. after almost 7 years, i still find it awkward to hug them. i’m also not big on hugging close friends, let alone acquaintances, but i do it anyway, quickly.

  161. I am very much a hugger. It just brightens up my day as well as the other person on the receiving end. Too much negativity in our world, we need something to lighten up with.

  162. I am NOT a big hugger, but i will give one to my mom and even my mother in-law but every time i get together with my wife’s extended family or my brothers in-laws they love to give hugs and even kisses and i always try to be busy so i can avoid all the hugs and kisses but they usually force themselves on me and i hate it.

    the worst part is i will be seeing them again in just about 48 hours, i can feel the dread already.

    1. I was freshly pressed and the response has been over-whelming! I never knew so many people had their opinions on hugging 🙂 I am the same Tilly! A firm handshake is a nice fresh start to getting to know that special somebody.

      1. Much better, isn’t it? People are intimate too quickly and regret it even quicker.

        Congrats on being FPed. I hope it brought you lots of new followers 🙂

  163. I definitely only hug my boyfriend. Whenever someone else tries to hug me, it makes my skin crawl. It always turns into this awkward thing where we are bumping into each other or either I or the other person goes into close or something totally uncalled for and unnecessary.

    My dad is a hugger! Which can get pretty annoying. I usually either do the ass out hug that I am made fun of by my family constantly or the accordion arm thing where I am literally pushed myself off of him but he doesn’t care he squeezes tighter. I guess because he’s my dad and that is what they do.

    Great Post!

    1. It is what they do 🙂 I have learned a lot but hugs in the past week the 0.02 rule, the side hug, the categorized hug, the selective hug, and now the accordion hug. It really is nice to know I’m not the only one who has an aversion to hugs at times!

  164. Flicked back through some Freshly Pressed blogs, and like the title of your post…

    I’m definately a hugger, and have no hesitations about hugging someone I hardly know. BUT, ‘cus there’s a but here, I’m also kind of nervous about diving in to hug someone who is a pathological NON-hugger, because the awkwardness in their squirms and the either uncomfortable silence or desperate chattering that follows is just as horrifying for me, the hugger, as I imagine it is for them, the non-hugger.
    So unless the person on the other end is someone I know and that I am on a “hugging basis” with, I never initiate the hug.
    If they don’t go for it, neither will I – but if they do (almost regardless of who they are, if I know them or not) I’ll dive right in there!

  165. I am a total hugger. In fact when I left home for the first time for studies, I missed Mom’s hugs on every occasion. So much so, that whenever I’d come back from home during some vacation or something, I would try to remember if I had hugged Mom, just like you try to recall if you have packed everything.

    Hugs totally mean a lot to me!

  166. I am a hugger. In fact, I say that “I’m lap-dog friendly”! That said, I do try to judge the people in a situation before I get up all in their face, tho. My best bud really isn’t a hugger but just like I hold myself back when it comes to hugging her, she tries to meet me almost half-way! lol

  167. I had never thought of myself as a hugger until several years ago when a great aunt told me I didn’t know how to hug. I still have the picture of us kind of hugging with our bodies so far apart – it really is comical! But I think that over time, the more one hugs, they easier it is. Now I love to give hugs to my friends!

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