Over the years, I have developed a reputation among my acquaintances for not being a touchy-feely, hugging sort of person. Unintentionally acquired... but accurate.
Not one, but two of the people I work with (virtually) on a regular basis tagged me on Facebook this morning, linking to this article from the Huffington Post on how horrible a holiday National Hug Day actually was.
For all you huggy types out there, here's something to keep in mind: not everyone likes hugs from people they barely know. Or even hugs from people that they DO know.
So here's the perspective of a non-hugger, INTJ: If you like to hug, but you don't know how the other person feels about it, let them make the first move.
- If they come with an outstretched hand - respect that.
- If they come in for a side hug, don't grab them in a bear hug.
- And just because we aren't ready to "hug it out" with you, doesn't mean that we're cold or stand-offish. It doesn't mean we don't love you or even like you... we are just more reserved in our outward affection. I like to think there's room for both.
I've been called out by clients, friends, and "I only know you on Facebook" people for lying about not hugging when they see a photo of the Hubs and I in an embrace. I shouldn't really have to point this out, but I'll go ahead and state the obvious: we're married. I hug my parents. If I haven't seen a sibling in a long time, I'll give them a hug. If I just saw them last week... we usually keep it to a "hey, how YOU doin'" pat on the knee or shoulder.
Finally, even in my own little "hug-free" world, I still believe there is a time and a place for hugs.
- When someone is celebrating a major life event
- When someone is mourning a loss
- When the relationship has developed into something deeper than, "I saw your breakfast photo on Facebook and I feel like I know you."
A friendly handshake to all on this snowy Friday.