▣ Part 2. EXAMPLES OF HUGGING AND FEAR
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The section below called the art of hugging uses human physical contact as a metaphor for love using nine types of hugs to represent the possibilities of love.
Part 2: THE ART OF HUGGING
The information section that follows is called THE ART OF HUGGING. People have a basic understanding of the hug as human contact, but it can be so much more and it is a perfect metaphor for TRUST and turning individuals into a circle of protection.
I love hugging and I recognize that a person can communicate a great deal more than just being in physical contact. Sadly, some people find it difficult to even shake hands and cannot make body-contact at all with people even those they are close to - except to have sex; and sex with them often does not seem like hugging or spooning to their lover.
Most people never even stop to think about hugging from a scientific point of reference, but I do. These are the nine types that are most common; I will point out that some of them do overlap. It is also possible that someone starts hugging in a type 1 category, but grows to a type 5 level of trust, and eventually moves to the type 8 love relationships. These are offered as if they are independent types of hugs for your evaluation and to have you think about what hugs mean in your life.
TYPE 1 – Hug with Little Implication
It is easiest to describe this as the Actor hug. You see them on television all the time, a famous movie or television actor is greeted by an interviewer (e.g., Oprah, Ellen DeGeneres, Conan, etc.) and they hug and air-kiss. They do not necessarily know each other except for these television interviews; they may not even have to like each other, but they hug. Well, some common folk also hug – like the old Aunt you see once every three years that smells of stale cigarettes and cheap perfume. Or you hug someone you were friends with in high school, but haven’t seen for several years; you hug your cousin at the family reunion, but you hardly remember his name; etc. That is a Type 1 hug.
TYPE 2 – Hug between Friends
You know the person and you are friendly to the point you trust them, but they are married to another person you know. You make physical contact, but it involves a shoulder to shoulder hug with both of your bodies from the breast down not coming into contact.
TYPE 3 – Hug with Pats on the Back
This is a slight variation on the Type 2 hug. The person is a casual acquaintance, but you are hugging them because they have received some bad news – it can be a notice of a serious health condition; or it may be at a funeral involving the death of a loved one. You hug, shoulder to shoulder, but this time you pat the person on their back. Yes, PAT – generally three or four times. It is an act of condolence. You may continue to hug the person like this for months depending on the seriousness of their illness or their loss; but at some point in time the condolences start to come to closure and so does this type of hug.
TYPE 4 – Hug Sharing Condolences
This is generally limited to close friends with whom you have been through some tough times together. You embrace each other gently and sort of sigh like you are releasing pent up pressures; it is the kind of hug that you experience after one of you has been seriously crying and has no more tears left, but just has to let the pressure out of the cooker of your soul. The hug involves full body contact with each person pressing every inch of their body against the other’s like they need to hold each other up.
TYPE 5 – Hug Involving Trust Building
Embracing each other gently, you begin to sense the other person’s breathing and gradually try to synchronize your breathing with his or hers. Many people confuse this hug as an offer of sexual intimacy, but the intention is to establish TRUST and RAPPORT. This is not a hug that many Americans know how to offer and they don’t even offer it to their lover. Groups that must depend on each other can establish a bond very quickly using this methodology.
TYPE 6 – Hug Involving Lust
This hug everyone recognizes as it is based on physical attraction and pheromones. The most common scenario is that of two bodies pressed against each other from head to crouch as if they are trying to be one. It can lead to a one-night stand, but it can also last for as long as 18 months. If it is happening to someone you know in the short-term, you might find yourself thinking or saying, “Get a room” or “Take a cold-shower.” This one also happens after major disasters or other dangers situations, like being in a bank while it is being robbed; in such dramatic cases, people get pumped with adrenaline and then they are flooded with emotions that they feel compelled to channel. And sometimes they get their emotions stimulated for months and act it out; then they find themselves in a relationship with someone who looks like an adult, but has the maturity of a 13 year old juvenile delinquent.
TYPE 7 – Hug Demonstrating Possession
There is a hug in this time of involvement that an individual uses to show possession; the person is often jealous of anyone else’s attention or infringement on their territory – that is, even worse, their personal property. It may seem flattering at first, but it generally involves jealousy which is almost always destructive to a relationship. This type hugger often openly flirts with and hugs others. This hug often involves various forms of physical grabbing, such as, grabbing the butt, pinching various parts of the face and body, and putting their leg on top of their lover. This hug may involve bruises as it tends to be rough at times.
TYPE 8 – Hug Regarding Love
This can be a full body face-to-face hug or it can be a spoon. The public spoon is generally done sitting close together and then the intimate spoon obviously is done in private. The spoon is done with one partner’s back to the other partner’s front. The two people involved put out an aura of an emotional partnership and commitment. You don’t usually see this type of hug until the couple has been together for over 18 months as it does involve a level of trust and real intimacy. Newlyweds are still exploring, unless they’ve been living together for a long time.
TYPE 9 – Hug Involving Unconditional Love
This is hard to recognize because it involves so much more than physical contact; and the people involved put out an aura of peace and harmony. It can be between a married couple; or parents and children; or children and grandparents, etc. Unconditional love can be greater than family; for example, Mother Teresa and her hospital for lepers. Some signs of the couple that share unconditional love are ones that finish each other’s sentences; that walk next to each other when there is plenty of room to be separated; that eat off each other’s plates without asking, that touch softly when others are talking, that smile or even frown at the same time; and a lot more. In many ways, it is like they are living in mirror-rapport; not as monkeys, but as individuals with their own personalities and own likes and dislikes; but when they are together, they are really together.
Next week…Part 3. Hugging Exercises