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Why do the huggers always win?
169

GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 04:02

I don't like hugging outside of my immediate family and in certain circumstances like grief. It feels forced and unnatural to me.
So why do I end up having to give out hugs like they are candy? People I don't know well, forcing themselves into my personal space and trying to create an intimacy that isn't there?
Can't the huggers ask consent?
Do people actually like hugging or do most people just do it because it is expected? I think it's a female socialisation thing and we should cut that crap, DH doesn't get strong armed into forced hugs nearly as much as me.

Yabu- hugging is great and everyone should do it.
Yanbu- everyone should cut it out and I only hug because it's expected.

And no, I do not need a hug.

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

FictionalCharacter · 06/08/2022 04:21

Just don’t let them force themselves on you like that. When they come in for the hug with their arms out, put your hand in front of you and say “I don’t do hugs”. If they persist say “please stop”. They may not like it at first but they’ll get used to it.

I didn’t vote because there’s a middle ground. I don’t mind a hug usually but I don’t think think everyone should go around doing it, especially when some people just don’t like it.

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 04:36

I suppose it pisses me off that they force that awkwardness of me saying no.
Huggers should be able to read the signs. I send out clear non verbal don't hug me signs, but they still launch themselves at me after receiving those signs. That puts the awkwardness on me and means I have to make a big deal out of not wanting a hug. And people who don't like hugging often have high anxiety about social stuff and getting things wrong.
As the huggers are claiming this position of greater social confidence I think it's up to them to lead the way and listen to signs.
Its a bit at odds with our other rules of consent. And twice in my life a hug has been used as the gateway to touch me inappropriately where if I reported it to the police it would be a crime.

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CharlotteCollinsneeLucas · 06/08/2022 04:52

Sorry to hear your experiences. I generally don't like hugging, and agree with you that it's up to the socially comfortable to read the signs! I find on the whole that they do, with me, so I'm sorry your experience has been different.

My uncle doesn't do hugging and he gets physically well back. Leaves the room of necessary, and always seems to be carrying a newspaper to open at the critical moment!

I once had to back away with my hands up from one determined person. Yes, it seems unfair that the onus is on us to say no; then again I think it feels awkward for the hugger to miss one person out.

I think I would've been happier when shaking hands was more standard!

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TheOriginalEmu · 06/08/2022 05:02

GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 04:36

I suppose it pisses me off that they force that awkwardness of me saying no.
Huggers should be able to read the signs. I send out clear non verbal don't hug me signs, but they still launch themselves at me after receiving those signs. That puts the awkwardness on me and means I have to make a big deal out of not wanting a hug. And people who don't like hugging often have high anxiety about social stuff and getting things wrong.
As the huggers are claiming this position of greater social confidence I think it's up to them to lead the way and listen to signs.
Its a bit at odds with our other rules of consent. And twice in my life a hug has been used as the gateway to touch me inappropriately where if I reported it to the police it would be a crime.

this stood out to me, ‘I send clear non-verbal cues’…do you? Are you sure? Because if multiple people don’t get it, then maybe you aren’t as clear as you think. I’m not a hugger and I can’t remember the last time one was forced on me.

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5zeds · 06/08/2022 05:04

I never hug people if I don’t want to (which is most people). It’s never been an issue.

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FictionalCharacter · 06/08/2022 05:20

I agree that the huggers should read the signs, but plenty of people aren’t able to, and some think you don’t really mean it if you protest. The ones who launch themselves at you like a missile are the most unlikely to have that bit of sensitivity. So those of us who don’t want it do have to be firmer than we’d like.
Make sure you don’t smile when you decline - some people mistake this as just pretending to say no.

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 05:22

Signals I close stepping back, not making eye contact at the crucial moment, crossing arms, giving a verbal final goodbye without sending out hugging signals. I can see countless other tiny tells in other people that people regulary just ride roughshod over. When trying to teach my children about consent I've had people literally strongarm my screaming toddlers into hugs when they are being very vocal about their needs.
When I was younger a lot of men did it and then used it as an excuse to cop a feel or.kiss my neck(in front of people, in public) but thankfully it's mostly women who ignore my boundaries now.
There are a great many people who do respect my boundaries too, so if they can read them, why can't those claiming to be socially tuned in?

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 05:26

To be fair, I'm not very assertive and know this is a flaw and this did lead to me being taken advantage of by a man.
But I that's all the more reason I think those imposing physical consent should take on the burden on consent. Some people lack the power, confidence or communication skills to say no.
And, as with my toddlers, when they say no, people ignore them anyway and then once again I have to be the bad guy for re-enforcing consent.

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doobydoobydooooo · 06/08/2022 05:30

My family are Italian but since the pandemic we've gone from lots of face kissing to just hugs. Thank god cos I hate kissing everyone

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Snog · 06/08/2022 05:33

It's the kissing I dislike

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5zeds · 06/08/2022 05:37

To be fair, I'm not very assertive and know this is a flaw and this did lead to me being taken advantage of by a man. no what lead to you being assaulted was not something you did it’s was something someone did to you. You are not responsible for being assaulted by a predator I think you possibly are minimising their aggression by taking on some of the responsibility. You are allowed not to want to be pressed against anyone else’s body. You don’t need a reason beyond not wanting to. I’m sorry you’ve run into so many jerks.

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ticktickticktickBOOM · 06/08/2022 05:44

I only really like hugging my son or my partner. I could easily not hug anyone else ever.

Even worse though is continental kissing. I hate it. Once is way more than enough already, 2 ew, 4 oh my God please no!!

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 05:49

5zeds · 06/08/2022 05:37

To be fair, I'm not very assertive and know this is a flaw and this did lead to me being taken advantage of by a man. no what lead to you being assaulted was not something you did it’s was something someone did to you. You are not responsible for being assaulted by a predator I think you possibly are minimising their aggression by taking on some of the responsibility. You are allowed not to want to be pressed against anyone else’s body. You don’t need a reason beyond not wanting to. I’m sorry you’ve run into so many jerks.

Ah yes, but that contrasts with some of the general messages on this thread. People suggesting if others are crossing my boundaries it's because of a flaw in my behaviour or I need to do more.
I know hugs and unasked for sexual touching aren't considered the same, but in my case the lack of consent around one was used to start the other and once that had started I went into victim silent mode so couldn't not consent.

I just think it's a bit shitty we say consent is like tea and yet for hugs and kisses all those rules go out the window.

For the record, I did used to try and shake hands but that caused morn problems than it solved. Amongst them.people getting upset, making sexist comments, denouncing me as weird and the occasion hug handshake miscommunication penis bump.

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Mouldyfeet · 06/08/2022 05:52

People just laugh at the fact I rarely hug people, they know I’m not a hugger. You need some of my vibes.

my son has a jumper that states ‘ before you hug me, don’t’ 😂

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Akayak · 06/08/2022 05:55

I cringe every time I hear someone say “I’m a hugger” with a stupid grin on their face already lunging forward for a hug. I am in the US and it’s considered rude to stop someone mid hug in the south. I have to keep a safe distance away and think about my body language - crossed arms - to deter clients from trying to hug me in their way out.

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 05:55

I have a not dissimilar item of clothing that a serial hugger has commented is rude and I shouldn't wear as it sets a bad example to my children.
Despite knowing this about me she is one of the worst offenders. We've had conversations about it and yet she still priorities her own need to hug me over my comfort.
Selfish bitch.

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 05:58

. I am in the US and it’s considered rude to stop someone mid hug in the south.
Yes, it's the same in a lot of places and this is what I think people are missing. You can't stop someone hugging you it's seen as the height as rudeness.

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Questionaboutjoboffer · 06/08/2022 06:00

A neighbour / ex friend once made reference to the fact that I wasn’t very huggy with her or her annoying dh who sometimes used to deliberately take the piss and launch himself at me so I had to cower away and look weird - WTF.

For various reasons the lockdowns put an end to my friendship with them. Not sorry.

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Trivester · 06/08/2022 06:02

I’m going to disagree with you that awareness around consent is anywhere near as widespread or accepted as you’re assuming.

I think it’s changing, slowly, but still at the stage of being taught (eg to students) and percolating slowly through the media. Outside of MN I don’t know anyone who knows the cup of tea analogy.

I hate hugging - I feel out of sorts afterwards like some sort of extra-sensory conversation has been had that I can’t process. I adopted a sort of Japanese type bow during covid but the hugs have crept back in now. I even find myself launching them on occasion when I’m masking.

I’m really sorry you’ve been assaulted through hugs - me too. It’s grim.

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sammylady37 · 06/08/2022 06:06

I absolutely hate huggers, unless they’re close family or friends. I find them intrusive and overbearing. I used to politely grin and bear it but not any more, I find covid was the perfect excuse and I’ve kept it up so now I just step back, put up my hands as a deterrent and say ‘no, no hugs’. It has worked thus far.

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JuneJuly · 06/08/2022 06:08

Snog · 06/08/2022 05:33

It's the kissing I dislike

Username does NOT check out!

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GetYourSeasideArmsOffMe · 06/08/2022 06:08

Yes, I was hoping COVID would have changed the way we do things and put more emphasis on consent but I think if anything people are ignoring the signals.more because they missed out on physical contact in the pandemic. Sorry, their need for physical closeness doesn't trump mine. Go hug a tree.

I don't think using hugs as a gateway is uncommon for assault, after all people that are looking for boundaries to cross will look for weaknesses. All the more reason consent shouldn't be assumed.

I saw the cup.of tea analogy a lot during me.too on social media, so it is getting out there but not quick enough.

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maddy68 · 06/08/2022 06:11

Gosh I am a hugger I also live in a country where a hug and a double cheek kids is a normal greeting

I love it

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JasmineVioletRose · 06/08/2022 06:14

I mean, be glad you don't live in Spain or France op! 😘😘

I think it's weird not to hug sometimes. Covid was horrible. It's totally ruined my hug radar. I think it's sad not to hug friends & family.
I wouldn't hug strangers though.

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PineForestsAndSunshine · 06/08/2022 06:17

I also hate hugging, but I've always assumed I'm the odd one so I tolerate it. It's creeping back now after covid and I'm finding it difficult.

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