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Hug Me Not: Hug Me Anyway, Please!

Updated: Sep 7, 2022

Hugs for hire! No, seriously I’m ready to give them at no additional charge!

I reign from a long hug-less regime. Nod your head *here* if you can relate. Growing up administering hugs was not the way of life. Nor was saying, “I love you” daily. I was shown an abundant amount of love, but it was not spewed from the mouth of my parents like running water from a leaky faucet. A “no touch” policy was normal for us growing up. When people would hug, I thought it was weird in fact. It made me cringe just to watch my friends at school engage in hugs. In hindsight, I was the weird one, but that is beside the point now 30 years later. In my early twenties, if someone tried to hug me, I’d damn near push them down reprimanding them on the way. If they happened to get their arms around me, I’d tense up, causing me to feel unsafe

and attacked. Hol up’, I already know what you’re thinking. Let me stop you before you give me that churchy side eye view. What kind of sick reaction is that? Who raised you? The hug-less regime, we went through this. (Insert eye roll here) Newsflash, we reciprocate what we experience, especially if we do not make a conscious decision to correct it. First, you must acknowledge that there is a problem. I rest on the latter; I had no problem. All these huggers were my problem.

Hug Me, Mommy!

There is no sadder feeling than your children begging for hugs. If I did not get hugs, how can I now give them hugs. It then dawned on me that MOMMY NEEDED WORK! Ashamed to admit, it took me a long time to hug my children, willingly. My non hugging regime ran deep. They would force me to hug them, while me swinging at them like a pissed off batter from the Chicago Cubs. (Go Cubs!) My children finally banned together to pin me down and hug me. During my struggling, something happened, it revealed to me how ridiculous this was. Of all the things I could be struggling with, hugs from the two humans I birthed should not be one of them. Also, with my son being so much LARGERthan me, it helped to me concede.

Present day, I secretly crave hugs, but I do not make the first move! I’m not far removed. The other person usually leans in first. I’m not repulsed by it anymore; I understand the importance of hugs - NOW!

We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs for maintenance We need 12 hugs for growth.” - Virginia Statir, Author, Psychotherapist

Basically, we need hugs to have a better human experience. 10-4! FYI, children need 17 hugs a day! For all my non hugging parents, let’s get to hugging those lads, NOW! God forbid they grow into swinging their arms for defense instead of extending them for warm hugs. But they might have a future in the professional baseball league. We must cease each opportunity by the horns.

Four Reasons We Should Hug!

A 20-second hug can change the direction of your day because of oxytocin! I’d be remiss not to talk about oxytocin. One produces the other. Hugs = Oxytocin.

Oxytocin, the love drug. The original love drug. The natural love drug. The one you were born with. This drug caused your mom’s uterus to contract in the aide of birthing you. (Some women giving birth were administrated oxytocin.) The drug that does not require you to go outside of yourself (in most cases) to buy, steal, barter, to experience. One 20-second hug can usher in this wonderful hormone created by God.

1. Hugs Relive Stress! When the oxytocin hormone is released, you feel calm, safe, warm, and fuzzy inside. Cortisol, the stress hormone, is produced when we are stressed, often we do not know we are stressed. But fear not, oxytocin combats cortisol, dissipating stress.

2. Hugs Make You Happier! What better feeling is there than a genuine hug from a loved one or a friend after a hard day or just because it’s a new day? Not many things. Hugs change your mood for the better. Oxytocin is our friend.

3. Hugs Deepen Relationships! When in doubt, hug it out. How many times have you heard as a kid to hug your sibling, cousin, or friend after an argument? Hugs help make relationship bonds stronger. Hugs inadvertently causes relationship to be closer. Children need the bond from parents and loved ones. Adults need physical touch, ie. hugs to combat the feeling of loneliness, making one feel safe, feel valued, and loved deeply.

4. Hugs Help Keep Us Healthy! Our immune system is much better when we’re hugging on folks. Hugs help your heart, can lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation in the body and contributes to our emotional stability.

“Pelt your loved ones with hugs daily, as often as you can, more than you may care to, and certainly more than they ask for.” – INC Writes

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