Unwanted Contact

I have spoken before about my distaste for men hugging each other (other than family).  Even Doc Russia, who despite his fearsome appearance is a hugger, only gets a brief one-armer from me, and even that only because he is one of my closest friends.  Maybe I’m a closet Brit:

In today’s touchy-feely society, it may seem like everyone is hugging and planting kisses on each other.
But people are still only comfortable with a formal introductory handshake with a study finding British reserve is alive and well when meeting people for the first time.
A demonstrative hug or continental double kiss is unlikely to go down well, as we are really only comfortable with strangers touching just our hands.
Researchers asked people to mark, on a computer, the parts of their body, front and back, that those in their lives were allowed to touch.
British people had no problem with close relatives and friends touching their face or upper torso when giving them a hug, but did not want strangers to do the same.

No kidding.  This is where, despite my French surname, I part ways with my heritage.  Men doing the kissy-cheeks thing?  Fuck that.

It amazes me that in a time when we seem to be drifting apart from each other, that this unwarranted intimacy is becoming more popular — or maybe the first is the cause of the second, I dunno.

I only hug women, and only women whom I’ve known for a long time or who are intimates (e.g. are themselves close friends, or are married to same), and there is considerable  overlap between the two groups.

But men?  Nu-uh… it just feels wrong.  Some amateur/professional psychologists — once again, overlap — are doubtless going to ascribe this trait to either latent homosexuality or [gasp!] homophobia, but at the best of times I don’t care what other people think of me (and psycho-weenies least of all).  Hugging men feels strange, and I don’t like strange.

A good, firm handshake is all we men need.  Leave the huggy-kissy bullshit to the Frogs and fags [yes, again some overlap].   Hell, I’d even feel uncomfortable giving a hug to Carol Vorderman, and y’all know what I think of her.


Of course I’d hug her;  but only if she asked me to.  I have standards.


  1. Same here and I’m sure it’s my German/Swiss genetics. Hell, I’ve only told my Dad I loved him a handful of times in my adult life. The last time was at a family wedding in the eighties. I had gone full circle of teenage rebellion to the realization he had been right all along about most things. He was my hero again at that time. We drink heavily at family events and I said “I love you, Dad.” He replied “I love you too and give my your car keys. You’re not driving in that condition.”

  2. I’m with you 100% Kim.

    Strangers get a handshake. Close male acquaintances/friends/family members get a handshake, perhaps with the left-hand-on-elbow half-hug (and I can count the number of men who rate that without taking my shoes off.

    I grew up in an area that’s largely Italian (Staten Island, NYC), so seeing men kiss their male relatives on the lips is a common sight, thanks but no thanks.

  3. We Germans are the same. Anyone — male or female — who tries that with me should make sure first that their health insurance is paid up.

  4. No one touches my ass ever, cept my wife now and then. If our son ever tried that shit he’d get soundly back handed for acting like a little bitch. But he would never do that. I trained him better. Plus, I don’t hang with people that might be capable of all that hugging nonsense. I keep my circle small and tight.

    As for all them people doing all that faux hugging? They are not to be trusted at all. They are practicing insincere virtue signally because of their shallow nature. Frankly, I don’t think I even know anybody like that. Like I said, small and tight.

  5. Men who are not relatives don’t hug me, a firm handshake and when necessary a left hand on the upper arm and a 45 degree turn to the right fends them off. Same with women who are not my wife who like to hug, the 45 degree right turn gives them a left shoulder and from me a light right hand pat on their left shoulder, none of that rubbing bellies or bumping breasties stuff.

    Going back 30 years or so there was a lot of that men getting in touch with their inner feelings and shit like that and some church groups and educational places encouraged men to hug each other and maybe go out in the woods and get naked and pound on drums or something. My reaction to those full body man hugs was to give a right hand stiff arm hand shake, grab their hand and shove them away while smiling and saying good to see you and then rapid turning away because you don’t have to put up with being invaded but in many cases you don’t want to say, “Back off asshole before you lose some teeth.” Just firmly shove back and smile.

  6. Another German here (1st generation on my father’s side). I am actually fairly huggy with the wife and kids, even my parents a bit (fairly similar to both my parents sides of the family).

    I absolutely will not hug anyone male or female who is not family. I absolutely will not kiss anyone who is male no matter who excepting my sons when they were babies or I guess grand babies when that comes. I really do not understand why anyone would want to do that.

  7. The hugging between men is something I mostly just endure for the sake of being polite. I’m deeply introverted so I don’t tend to trust my comfort level as an accurate barometer of what is socially expected. There are a couple men in my close circle who are huggers and so I just go with it lest they get the wrong impression that we are not as close of friends as they think.

    As far as hugging women goes, only if she steps in for a hug and even then I’m usually tensed up to the point of being unable to hide my profound discomfort.

    With my family, my sisters and mother in law get hugs when they show they want one. My dad, brothers, and male in-laws get handshakes with the occasional hug if they show they want one. My kids are an exception though though for different reasons.

    With strangers though, a firm handshake is really all I think is appropriate.

    What I genuinely don’t understand though is this apparent need for physical affection from those you aren’t intimate with. Yes, a man should crave physical affection from his wife but to what end is the point of physical affection with others, especially other women? The need for a hug from even a close friend just doesn’t occur to me. A handshake suffices. Doesn’t make me homophobic if I don’t regularly invite other men into my personal space for physical contact. Doesn’t make me a prude if I don’t regularly invite other women into my personal space for physical contact either. At worst, it just makes me stand-offish.

    Then again, a lot of this is the cost of being an introvert in an extrovert’s world.

  8. “… I don’t care what other people think of me…”
    You need to see the segment of Tucker Carlson Tonight that ran this week of his interview with Adam Carolla in his race-car/hobby-shop garage where Adam eviscerates the PC movement with the simple statement “I don’t care what they think about me.”

  9. I’m OK with it in extraordinary circumstances, for example in combat your squad mate went above and beyond and saves everyone’s ass, First responders that did the same in some disaster, or the teammate that scored the winning goal that won you the championship, and the like, but in everyday events hell no.

Comments are closed.