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To not make my DC kiss and hug other children?

(19 Posts)
Notso Tue 30-Jun-15 12:53:18

Everytime we meet up with other children either friends or family it almost always ends up with an awkward kissing stand off between my 3 and 4 year old and the other child.
I've never made them kiss or hug anyone, I just encourage them to say or wave goodbye then if they want to kiss or hug it's up to them.
However there have been many 'jokey' comments about them rejecting or not loving the other child. I get the impression people think they are rude and I should be doing more to encourage them.
I don't want them to come across as rude but nor do I want them to think they have to kiss or hug if they don't want to.

LashesandLipstick Tue 30-Jun-15 13:00:50

what? Since when is it normal for children to hug and kiss?

DoJo Tue 30-Jun-15 13:06:18

My son is really tactile, and some of his friends love it, whereas others are less so. I always tell him that hugging is only ok if you both want one, and if someone doesn't then you can blow them a kiss if you really want to, but I don't think it's appropriate to force children into unwanted physical contact. I wouldn't kiss or hug someone I didn't want to, and I don't want to teach him that it's ok for people to guilt you into this kind of activity. I don't encourage mine to hug or kiss adults either - sometimes he does it spontaneously, sometimes I ask him if he wants to, but if he doesn't, that's always fine.

PenelopeChipShop Tue 30-Jun-15 13:20:12

I would never make mine hug or kiss, I of course encourage greeting and saying goodbye as that's only polite, but physical affection should be willingly bestowed, no matter how young the child. In fact I absolutely hate the fact that my MIL always demands hugs and kisses, especially in return for presents or treats, but don't know how to bring it up with her!

Uhplistrailer Tue 30-Jun-15 13:23:23

Nooo! Some of my friends do this, I hate it!

Fair enough if they both want a cuddle, but why make them?

Same goes with them making them kiss and cuddle every single adult in the room, regardless of how well the child knows them. Really odd!

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Tue 30-Jun-15 13:26:36

I don't do it either, I hate it. I don't make them kiss relatives either. My mum is always asking for kisses and cuddles and I grit my teeth, ready with an excuse of tiredness if child doesn't want to.

Why do people do this demanding kissing/cuddles crap? It's so controlling.

Denimwithdenim00 Tue 30-Jun-15 13:36:17

Gosh that's a bit odd op.

The first things I taught my kids about keeping safe is their bodies are theirs and noone touches them unless invited unless it's a doctor and in that case either me or dh will be there all of the time.

I would ignore such rubbish and empower your child.

Personally I wouldn't be able to point out to the other parents why you think your child has the right to bodily autonomy too and that by not explaining such to their children they are potentially making them vulnerable.

But I am like that. wink

BathshebaDarkstone Tue 30-Jun-15 13:40:04

I think it's important to teach them that they don't have to if they don't want to, and also ask other people if they want a hug or a kiss first. It sets them up to protect themselves against inappropriate touching if it ever happens.

BettyCatKitten Tue 30-Jun-15 13:47:51

My dc's will kiss their nanna's but no other family members, and I wouldn't force them too.

Notso Tue 30-Jun-15 13:53:18

Glad I'm not alone then. It happens so often I thought I was.
The last time really pissed me off as after several minutes of awkwardness the little girls Dad tricked DS into coming over then stepped back so his DD could pounce on him then they high fived and said "got him".
Everyone else thought it was hilarious except me and DS.

DoJo Tue 30-Jun-15 14:09:15

An adult colluding with a child to trick someone unto unwanted physical contact is actually really odd. I would not be happy if someone tried something like that with my son and I would be making sure that those involved were aware of my displeasure!

CrohnicallyAspie Tue 30-Jun-15 14:15:30

I don't make DD (2) gives hugs and kisses, I ask her if she'd like to (or the other person will ask 'can I have a kiss?') but if the answers no them we accept that and ask if she will high five/wave/blow a kiss instead.

Firstly, I don't like to hug and kiss many people. Secondly I worry that if we force her to hug and kiss against her will, or if she gives hugs in return for treats, she will be more vulnerable to being taking advantage of her when older. I don't just mean sexual abuse/assault, but manipulation in relationships (eg thinking that she owes a boy sexual contact because he bought her a gift).

Denimwithdenim00 Tue 30-Jun-15 14:19:48

Wow op that dads attitude is frankly wierd. I would have been very cross. How unpleasent.

redexpat Tue 30-Jun-15 14:27:36

I saw a really good article about this the other day. Hang on, will have a google ...

redexpat Tue 30-Jun-15 14:30:25


Notso Tue 30-Jun-15 15:19:26

Great article redexpat thanks for posting.

MrsTerryPratchett Tue 30-Jun-15 16:17:35

Another thing about consent and forced affection.

Malenky Tue 30-Jun-15 17:07:39

My nan and grandad used to drag me round to his sister's house every Christmas, and I always had to give my mum's hateful cousin and her equally hateful daughters a hug and kiss goodbye when I barely knew them and only saw them once a year. I HATED it. Please stick up for your child and don't force them into hugging or kissing people when they don't want to, especially other children as that can be even more uncomfortable and embarrassing!

TendonQueen Tue 30-Jun-15 17:14:37

It's counterproductive to force them to hug other kids, as if that'll get them to like it. I have seen people successfully develop an alternative, like a variant on a high five - for example, where you tap your knee first or touch your elbows or something. Teach your child that, then when these situations come up say 'we're not huggy people but we have a special high five.. do you know the special high five? You DON'T? Come on, DS, let's teach them'. Then it becomes about the intrigue of the new move, and him showing it to them, not him being out of step for not hugging.

Oh and that dad was in the wrong, and I'd have told him I didn't like my son being made fun of like that.

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