Doug Holmes: Hugging – ugh!

November 23, 2012 

Hugging – ugh!

I recently had the opportunity to sit for awhile in a hospital lobby and observed the hugging phenomenon: women/women, man/women; no men/men.

Growing up in the ’40s and ’50s, I’m pretty sure there was very little hugging, other than maybe between adults and children. I wonder if these couples are reassuring themselves, or others, or maybe they’ve just found new love. At any rate, I’m pretty sure they don't do that around the house.

In the ’60s, maybe hippies hugged, but that’s about it. Then in the ’70s and ’80s, we were too concerned about mussing our expensive clothing to hug.

I was watching a documentary awhile back of a convention where they gave out stickers: “OK to Touch,” “OK to Hug,” etc. Maybe these people had issues, but you can tell when a person turns sideways that they really didn’t want to hug. A manly hug is said to be heart-to-heart, where you go to the right of the head of your target and end up with left sides pressing together. But men, in general, are known to have problems with intimacy, so maybe by the next millennium, we may become domesticated enough to get on the hugging bandwagon. Until then, how about a sticker?

Doug Holmes

Chapel Hill

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