My niece way of expressing her love, is through hugs & kisses – lots of it sometimes I run away from it. Touch, hugs, and kisses – we don’t grow up with that. Maybe briefly when we were a kid, but I don’t remember it.

Call it tough love, it doesn’t mean that we did not receive love at all. Love was expressed differently, through kind , loving , encouraging words. Through cooking , treating us to nice dinner or going on holiday, or simply spending time with each other.

Thats the kind of love i knew and raised with, values and all. 

Perhaps one significant memory that I remember was when i was hospitalized for an operation and somehow in vulnerable state where i wanted to hug every member of my family who visited me at the hospital. I was 14 years old and it was my first major operation as a teenager , so I was really afraid of being left alone at the hospital as everyone leaves me alone. Though my mom, sometimes my sister takes turn to accompany you, but there’s this time when you have to be alone.

So, Abi pulls me asideand said that i must not get used to touch, hugs and all, because he worries that i might not be able to let go, when the time comes. Eventually, i stopped. 

Anyway, growing up, I never feel the need to express or show love through hugs or any form of touch. Instead i used to run away from being hugged or kissed by anyone , even if they are just a hello kind of hug which last like 3 seconds. 

When i met a few friends who is such a hugger and all, i get anxious, and wanted to run away from being hugged.   Slowly some of them manage to hug me and makes me feel comfor  enough to receive hugs though not too often. 

In a way, hugs is like a form of trust and expression of someones love or care about you. Though for people like me, its hard to receive one, when you are not the one who gives hug. Also, it helps if people would tell someone , like a heads up, that they be giving out hug as it will help you be more mentally prepared to receive one. 

Still, it does makes me slightly sad and surprised when my niece asked me,  why i dont like her, this is probably because  every time she tries to hug or kiss me, i try to avoid it. Only because i am not comfortable of receiving too much of it. So, i  explained to her that its not that I don’t like her so that she doesn’t feel like bad about herself. Then, later try to play and spend some time with her. 

I hope one day she will understand that just because you don’t give out hugs and kisses doesn’t make someone cold, some people express their love differently. Still, i super admire people who can easily hug it out and express their love through touch.  I don’t know about my future children, you probably will be getting tough love from me lol! Im a work in progress, so please don’t expect me to change overnight. 

There is this thing called , ‘haphephobia’ okay!


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