1. Parenting
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Do You Still Give Hugs to Your Teen?

By November 19, 2009

Follow me on:

And does your teen still let you hug them? I went to hug my 13 year old today in the grocery store because she was sad about losing a basketball game and she looked like she needed it. She backed away and looked up and down the aisle, making sure no one was there before she let me hug her.

Do you think I should have told her about the cameras stores use to keep shoplifters at bay? lol

So, fess up! Do you have to sneak in a hug or two with your teen or do they let you hug them any old time? And how important do you think hugs are?

Share on the your stories, advice and opinions in the comments area.

December 2, 2008 at 2:04 pm
(1) Molly says:

That is so funny an so real. My 14 year old was always a cuddler but now he gets so embarrassed if I touch even his arm in public.

I’m ok with that. I’ve learned that if I don’t make a big deal about it, he’ll come over to me (when we’re home) and curl up under my arm. I can never be sure if this means he wants to talk — often he’ll pull away if I get too demanding about wanting to talk.

December 2, 2008 at 4:35 pm
(2) ParentingHelp says:

Most teens don’t want their parents to hug them in public or around their friends. Some teens don’t want you to hug them even at home. Don’t push them and embarrass them. Maybe a hand on the shoulder is all they want at this time.

December 3, 2008 at 8:27 am
(3) Hetty says:

I have a 15 year old and she love to be hugged all the time,anywhere.Sometimes I have to say enough.Thank you for the space.

December 3, 2008 at 8:48 am
(4) Debs says:

I haven’t got to this stage with my 12 yo daughter yet, she is still happy to be in public and walk arm in arm, hand in hand and hug. My older boys (19 and 18) stopped letting me touch them in public when they were about 10/11 but now niether of them bother who sees them give mum a hug, i think they converted back to public hugs when they were around 15/16 and never stopped! i am so grateful to them for that!! :)

December 3, 2008 at 9:16 am
(5) nana says:

This is so true!!My 13 year old avoids even walking next to me or his dad in public!! So imagine what a hug would do to him!! He doesn’t mind it at all if he was at home..The problem is that there are always issues we are struggling with, and he is always driving me up the wall that I’m finding it really hard to hug him!!

December 3, 2008 at 9:39 am
(6) FrustratedDad says:

I confess I’ve been unable to hug my son for 5 years. He leaves me so frustrated and disappointed, it’s hard to bring myself to hug him. I can only hope things change.

December 3, 2008 at 9:40 am
(7) Deb says:

Funny you should be talking about that right now. I have just noticed in the the last 6 months or so that our daughter (14) does not seek out our affection much at all anymore. She doesn’t even ask us to tuck her in at night which always involved a hug and a kiss. Now I don’t even know when she turns out her light to sleep since she also likes to have her bedroom door shut for privacy and because she blasts her music so loud. Last night I made a point of going up to say good night and telling her that I miss our nighttime routine. Not much response from her, but at least I planted the seed. I miss our closeness. They do come around though. I also have a daughter who is 28 and she is turning into my friend now. So is our son (25).

December 3, 2008 at 9:59 am
(8) Rit says:

My 19 year old son hasn’t let me hug him, not even “ruffle his hair,” since he was about 9 or 10 years old. All this time, I’ve been thinking that I must have done something wrong in the “bonding” area with him since he was an infant – (Oh! the GUILT we put on ourselves!) – since my 25 year old daughter has ALWAYS been “touchy, feely, huggy, kisses on the lips, etc.!” It makes me feel better to know that perhaps I’m not alone in this area! LOL! Thanks for posting about this — I had never seen it discussed before, and am grateful to know that perhaps my son doesn’t totally NOT LIKE me, after all! LOL!

December 3, 2008 at 10:03 am
(9) Susan says:

My son (14) occasionally hugs me in front of his close friends but I never approach him around his friends. When we are home, he still gives hugs and kisses but when he pulls away, I will try not to take it personally or stop trying to hug him. I think most kids go through the stages of pulling away from their parents. Its our job never to stop being there or trying to be affectionate.

December 3, 2008 at 10:21 am
(10) Jody says:

This story sounds so familiar. My 16 yr old son will let me hug him, but then he’ll say “That’s enough love now Mom”. My 8 yr old is getting the same way too. If you try to hug them in front of friends ITS TABOO!!!

December 3, 2008 at 10:45 am
(11) never to old to hug! says:

As a mother of 16 year old twins I have a rule that you are never too old to hug your parents! My feeling is that teenagers don’t get enough physical contact and that is why some of them seek out non-age appropriate sexual activities. Everyone needs to be touched. It is a basic human need. I ask for a hug every night before bed. It is not a public event, but it is meaningful. They “put up” with me, but I know they appreciate it. Sometimes they even ask for a back rub…

I am also sure to model that behavior when I see my parents and they know that they are expected to hug their relatives as a greeting. It seems to be a cultural thing because my kids know what is expected and even though it is not “cool” I know they appreciate it and feel loved and supported.

December 3, 2008 at 11:45 am
(12) Marcelle says:

I have it both ways. I have 2 boys, 10 years between them. My oldest, 18, has always always hugged and kissed me anywhere anytime and allowed me the same. My youngest, 8, is a private hugger kisser. It hurts my feelings but I do try to respect their differences. I will give my kisses to a turned cheek and a grab and hug w/ fast release.

December 3, 2008 at 11:55 am
(13) Kris says:

I hug my 15 year old a lot. But, only at home. I know she loves me and she knows I love her, but there is a time and place.

December 3, 2008 at 12:09 pm
(14) Access and Resource Center says:

It is very important to hug your teen every now and again. The reason why I say this is because, they still need to know that you love them and that you want to show them that. My oldest son, allows me to hug him at least once a month.

December 3, 2008 at 12:14 pm
(15) Suzi says:

Nice to hear this discussed. My last child at home is a 13yo girl, still huggie and snugglie at home, not so much in public. It does seem to run hot and cold, dependant upon her moood or hormones, etc. We have to remember to let them know they are loved and their space is respected. Growing up is just a lot of work! (For both parents and kids!)

December 3, 2008 at 12:24 pm
(16) Da Ma says:

OMG! Hugs and kids! sort of like cats and dogs…lol… my experience is give them some space till high school then pour on the love in any way you can, where ever, whenever, however you think will get the message across!
“I love you, I care about you, I like the way you look, the way you think, the way you act, the who you are…(sometimes I don’t, but I always will love you)”.
In our house, my children and their friends know that I am the huggy mom…whenever I am introduced to a friend a hug is passed. Not just “a quick hug”…I wait for the hug to sink in…hugs with some of the kids are uncomfortable (doesn’t anyone touch these kids)…I wait till there is a measure of difference,(Some relax, just a tiny bit). Funny how after more and more hugs to those uncomfortable few they come to my house hugging me first! High School young adults are the neediest in my opinion….so much is expected of them, the expectations of themselves, the parents who struggle, the students who struggle……give them a minute….hug all the kids who come in your house….hug them everytime! You don’t even have to say anything, just hug them anyway….I promise, Your children will get used to it, their friends will get used to it, YOU will get used to it and ALL OF YOU will be better because of the HUG!

December 3, 2008 at 12:24 pm
(17) Rhona Page says:

YES! I only have 18 months left before they leave for college, so even though my son is 18 and huge, and my daughter is 16 and teensy, I make them both sit on my lap at the same time and tell them about when they were born; FOR THE ZILLIONTH TIME! :) I realized that it was VERY important for me to show my son, especially, the affection I used to show him, but stopped when it was ‘tabboo’……..NOW? I don’t care about tabboos; they’re going to hug and kiss me when I tell them too. Why? Cos I’m their Mommy and what Mommy says, well, nevermind that (cos it’s not true! :) but suffice to say; he doesn’t mind one bit! I say, “Let them go, but before you do, load them up with as much love and affection as possible!” It’ll do all 3 of us ALOT of good!

Rhona Page

December 3, 2008 at 12:38 pm
(18) TIGGER says:

I have 2 say that I am VERY lucky!!! So far my kids still let me have affection whether it is in public or not (son 14 & daughter 12). Also they don’t mind hanging with me still in public at the mall of just a store. I know it can change at anytime but I will enjoy it why I can!!! :)

Sometimes with my son I do just have 2 watch his mood cause sometimes he would rather b left alone. I respect his feelings & when he is in a better mood he will come give me a hug or lay down with me 2 watch tv.

December 3, 2008 at 2:01 pm
(19) Shawnery says:

My son has just turned 13. My husband and I have always made sure that we have hugged and kissed our kids whenever the mood hits – public or no. So far he hasnt had a problem with it. I can see the terror in his eyes every once in a while but in general he takes it in stride. I give him a hug and a kiss every morning before he gets out of the car and he gives back.

I have also had the same experience as Tigger. There are days that he seems a little into himself and I just let it go. I ask about his day, if im lucky, I might get a grunt and he goes to his room and shuts the door. But usually if I give him this time right after school, by dinner he comes around and will actually watch tv with his dad and I.

Of course, we have always told both our kids that we are going to be those parents. We warned them that we would embarrass them because we want everyone to know just how much we love them. Im sure that it will change but I am loving it while it lasts.

December 3, 2008 at 3:03 pm
(20) tammy says:

I have 4 teenage sons. My one 18 year old son and my 17 year old allow me to hug them and even hug me first any where and any time. But i have another 18 year old son and a 15 year old son that will allow me to hug them if no one elso is watching. They will all telll me that they love me though at any time. I think that the issue depends on the idividual child and the relationship that you have established with them.

December 3, 2008 at 9:10 pm
(21) Nee says:

My 13 and 15 yo stopped seeking out affection. However I make sure I give them a hug and kiss every morning as they leave for school. My daughter stands stiff but I know deep down it means a lot to her. My 15 yo son humors me and bends down for a kiss as he towers over me. At night even though they go up to bed without even saying goodnight. I always go up and give a kiss and say good night.Again I know they appreciate it. I agree that teenagers more than anyone need affection from their parents even though it is so hard to love them sometimes.

December 4, 2008 at 3:08 am
(22) Gina says:

I think its very important for you to hug your teen. My son has his arms out all the time. Okay…..so maybe because he wants money………lol…… but in all seriousness I really try to hug him as much as I can. When he goes to bed I even hug him and say to him sweet dreams. When he is around his friends I notice that he is a little embarrassed but I don’t care.

December 4, 2008 at 3:17 am
(23) Katina says:

I have 3 kids, an 18year old, a 16 year old and a 14 year old. The 2 oldest are always hanging on me when they are around, I have lovey, touchy, kissy, huggy kids. My youngest does the pulling away in public thing. I always tell him parents are suppose to embarrass their teenagers and he rolls his eyes. lol But anytime I ask for a hug and kiss at home he always gives one to me. I told him he never knows if he’ll see someone again, kids take for granted that their parents are always going to be around. They should show their affection every chance they get.

December 4, 2008 at 5:39 am
(24) deepa bhushan says:

I think hugs and kisses are very important to let the child know that he is still your child and can cling on to you for all his emotional needs.My son is shy in public but would always welcome ahug at home.Makes him feel secure.

December 4, 2008 at 9:26 am
(25) Tamara says:

My 16 yr old boy, still gives and receives hug very willingly. In front of buddies especially. They even come by to talk and give me a hug good bye. Believe me I know this may stop at anytime, so I cherish each one I get.

December 4, 2008 at 10:52 am
(26) Mom of two boys says:

I have two boys. One is 14 and the other is 11. Neither will let me hug them in public but both want hugs at home. My 14 year old will walk up to me and just hug me for no reason. He says, “I just needed a hug.” My 11 year old still needs some cuddle time while watching tv in the morning before school and says it messes up his whole day if he doesn’t get that. I guess I have two momma’s boys at home but independent kids when out. That is fine by me.

December 4, 2008 at 11:37 am
(27) Melissa says:

We have an 18-year-old boy and 13-year-old girl. Daughter still gets hugs and kisses every night at bed. Son gives me a hug every night before bed. In public though… hmm… they’re still pretty open to it. After a ballgame or concert, they both know that their grandparents are waiting to see them and there will be hugs and stuff. But, if I look around, they both have friends that have family hugging and congratulating them, so that helps. They have an aunt who’s been struggling with cancer for over 8 years now, so I think they both know how important family is and that you can’t take each other for granted. When any of our family is together, there are hugs and “I love you”‘s all around. Besides, they both know they’d better go with it… or I will embarrass them horribly (and so would their grandma!)

December 4, 2008 at 12:15 pm
(28) Mel says:

This makes me remember an episode of Home Improvement – the oldest boy was embarrassed because Tim had hugged him, or said I love you, in front of his friends.. and that made Tim mad and hurt. So they ended up coming up with a catch phrase (I think it was “How bout those Lions”)that meant “I love you” that they could say in front of anyone and only they knew what it really meant.

December 4, 2008 at 4:58 pm
(29) Janet says:

I have 3 children ages, 39 down to 18. I am and have always been an affectionate person. I hugged all my children whenever the mood stuck me to do so. Sometimes my 2nd and 3rd children, both boys, will pull away from me. When that happens, I know it’s time to pull myself away. But with the love I have for all 3 of my kids, I will always hug them whenever the mood strikes! :)

December 4, 2008 at 6:25 pm
(30) waldir says:

I have two kids and I still kiss and hug them all the time. I know I will have to understand that, one day,they will change and my kisses and hugs won´t be welcomed. Even so, I will be there for them.

December 4, 2008 at 6:44 pm
(31) janice says:

I hug my 15 year old everyday! I always hug him before we leave the house and before bed. in public once in awhile.
They need to be hugged and we as parents need to give that to them. Its okay if they back away sometimes but in the long run…our hugs are appreciated

December 4, 2008 at 7:14 pm
(32) Neva says:

TRUE! On my desk is a photo of my 16 yr old as a preschooler hanging off my neck with an amazing hug. Nowadays she allows the occasional embrace if we’re at home alone. But they still need the maternal hug!

December 4, 2008 at 7:59 pm
(33) Leshia says:

Please, please, please!!!! Hug your kids every single day and tell them that you love them!!! Let that be your nightly routine. Let them go to sleep feeling loved and good about themselves, even if you have been fighting. I have a seventeen year old son who hugs everyone. Every night before he goes to bed we do a devotional together and pray. I will continue this with him as long as he is under my roof. I have showered him with affection his whole life, as well as my family, and he is one of the most loving kids I have ever seen. Every human being needs physical touch, especially young children and teenagers. We need 7 hugs a day to be healthy. Each hug we receive raises our hemoglobin. And as one of the other parents had commented, so many teenagers that do not get any physical touch at all from their parents will seek to get it in inappropriate ways. We only have them for just a little while, they will soon be gone and we won’t be able to show them our love then! Shower them every single day! You will never regret it and they will always feel loved! My nephew, who is like a son to me, started to become embarrassed around age 13 for me to hug him in public. I would only get to see him on the weekends and the first time he pulled away we were at a baseball game and there were people everywhere. I just grabbed and hugged even harder when he tried to pull away and said I don’t care if you like it or not! I love you so much and I WILL hug you every time I see you! He turned very red but smiled and from then on it has been hugs and kisses and he is now 19 and very loving. Dr. Dobson says that our teenagers need our love and affection even more as they grow older because of all of the self-doubt that the media puts on them to be perfect. Make them feel loved everyday! If you don’t do it, who will?????? It may be awkward at first but I promise it will just become second nature if you do it every day!!!! God Bless!

August 21, 2011 at 4:33 am
(34) Maria says:

i am reallly sad,my mother never gives me hugs,i really wish if you were my mother,i would love to be hugged and told good things about me.Your son i really lucky to have you!May God bless you! :) I am sixteen.

December 4, 2008 at 8:45 pm
(35) carol at A Second Cup says:

I hug my teens and they hug back more or less.

December 5, 2008 at 1:20 am
(36) Another Child Gone says:

Another teenager in our community has taken their own life. No matter how frustated or dissapointed we may feel with our children, we must never give up on them!! ‘Hope’ is always good to hold on to, but hoping for change is not enough.

December 6, 2008 at 12:17 am
(37) Suzy says:

I was never really able to hug my son, as he was diagnosed with Autism when he was 3yo.. He not only disliked hugs he didn’t like to be be touched at all. Teachers at school had to learn the hard way when just trying to convey a message to my son, like “good job,” and he has/had the potential to have a meltdown right there and then. It’s a tricky thing – hugging an Autistic child. However, in some cases, I have heard of Autistic kids hugging their parents over-the-top style. Oh well, at least it’s a hug!

December 6, 2008 at 12:29 pm
(38) Theresa says:

This is such a tough subject! I absolutely treasure all the hugs I can get from my twins. They will be 13 in January. I have backed off on showing my affection per their request but it’s so HARD!! They always tell me, “we’re not babies anymore! don’t touch us!” How does a parent retrain themselves to show love differently? They even went so far as to tell me I love them “too much” – to which I thought I would fall over from shock. Occasionally or perhaps rarely is the more appropriate work, I will get a hug but it has to be for an extreme reason. I miss my kids. We live in the same house but it’s so different with them.

December 7, 2008 at 11:05 am
(39) Jean M. says:

My beautiful daughter still ASKS for hugs, but of course, never in public. She’s 13, and is at that stage when it is hard to gauge when she’s approachable or not. I ALWAYS asks her first if I may hug her now, even in private. I have an impulsive nature, so it’s hard not to in public. Yet she still surprises me. If she’s feeling happy, she still grabs my hand while we’re walking the mall, or may even wrap her arm around my waist. When she’s not feeling well, she needs a LOT of touch. She was sick all summer with chronic ovarian cysts, and the pain got bad sometimes. It helped her a lot just to lie in bed with me holding her hand and stroking her hair. I know she will outgrow needing her “mommy” someday, but for now, I still bask in the glow of her unconditional love.

December 9, 2008 at 3:54 am
(40) Jeniffer N. says:

I believe it is important to hug my teens even though they shy away from it in public. I see the look of satisfaction on their faces when at home I hug them too, as my five year old is big on hugging and share lots of it around. I respect that they do not want to be hugged in public, as I used to be like that at their age.

December 10, 2008 at 8:32 am
(41) Christine says:

I still hug my daughters (now college-age) when I see them. As others have said, they don’t want to be seen hugging me in public– except when we say “good-bye” at airports and train stations. But they like being hugged! Teens can feel disconnected at times and this is a warm way of expressing love and staying connected.

I agree on the comments about fathers– my father still gives all of us (daughters, sons, and in-laws) a big hug when we see him– it feels great:)

December 10, 2008 at 9:13 am
(42) DeVera says:

I’m really very lucky. My 18 y/o daughter loves when I hug her. I consider parenting such a blessing. I truly honor this opportunity to love and guide her (and my 3 y/o son). I want her to know that I adore her. So, I make an effort to show her, no matter how busy I am.

December 10, 2008 at 12:00 pm
(43) Susan says:

I still hug my 14 yo son. Never in public! He wouldn’t have it, but I hug him at least every night before his bed time. It’s a quick hug, but hugs are so important. I wish my parents hugged me more often. His dad gives him hugs too.

December 23, 2008 at 5:05 am
(44) claire burton says:

my teenager lets me hug him but not in public its not cool lol

December 29, 2008 at 11:49 am
(45) Ann says:

I have a 13 year old son, who is horrified if I give him a hug anywhere in public or around his friends, however, he will give me “half-way” hugs at home and will tell me he loves me before he goes to bed each night.

December 31, 2008 at 8:22 am
(46) Amy says:

My 13 year old son will not let me near him in public and hates for me to even make an appearance around his friends. When I try to hug him at home he puts up arm blocks and rolls his eyes and says, “stop!” I gave him loads of affection up until he was almost 12, so hugging isn’t a new concept for him. He has a 10 year old little brother who is very free with the hugs. My 13 year old is attached to his phone and refuses to tell me who he is texting or talking to. Until we have reason to not trust him, I will respect his privacy. I find that I have to guilt him to get hugs, which is totally unhealthy. I don’t want to be the type of mother who controls her sons with guilt. Although it is a very effective tool that always seems to work- lol, but it can backfire later in life. Right now, my teen is very withdrawn, private and his body is doing all kinds of weird things. I read a book stating all of this is normal and that they come back around eventually. I also read it is important to respect their privacy, let them know how much you love them and also to respect their physical boundaries. I guess I didn’t want my mom hanging all over me when I was 13. With all the sexual changes going on at 13, it is probably uncomfortable around their mom to say the least. I still grab him and hug and kiss him, but I let go when the arm blocks go up. Thank goodness his brother still likes me.

November 19, 2009 at 7:44 am
(47) Theresa says:

Oddly, I have the opposite problem. My teen daughter is a hugger, a quality she didn’t get from me. In this stage of being who she wants to be, she is often hugging me, and I am being forced to change my habits into being a hugger so as not to appear rejecting her. I love that God can teach this old dog a new trick, even through a child.

November 19, 2009 at 7:46 am
(48) Francine says:

Just read a wonderful book called

Avoiding Shipwreck in Your Relationships by Cathy Corle

I really hurt our one daughter when she was maybe 13 yrs old by raising my voice too loudly and concentrating on her behaviour more than her person and I think she lost trust in me then and would hug guarded. I am learning that we need to get rid of our expectations and remember that we are all different with different gifts and likes and dislikes and we cannot expect our youth to be a clone of us. We need to love each other unconditionally and show that love by giving a lot of encouragment through out the day so that when you have to rebuke them for something it is taken a lot better. I think love in our words needs to come first and then the hugs will be received more readily. That is just what happened in our home. There is other good books too. Boundaries with Teens by Dr John Townsend

November 19, 2009 at 8:11 am
(49) Ana says:

Just as everyone has different personalities as adults, they do as teens. Some are more “cuddly” than others. I have 2 sons and one constantly hugs me at home (15) where the other I have to go over to him (17). In public there was a couple of years (12-14) where my youngest gave me signals in public what to display and what not to display. Hugs and touching were OUT!! I respected his wishes and now he’s almost 16 and does not care who’s around when he comes over to me. I think the best advice is to honor their feelings, show them in different ways how much you care for them, and the physical expression will come from them when they are ready.

November 19, 2009 at 8:28 am
(50) ruth says:

teens don’t want hugs in public. but they want them privately one way or other. so make those happen

November 19, 2009 at 8:36 am
(51) Terene says:

I have a 15 year old and for the most part I don’t force hugs on him because he is in that stage where as though he feels like he is not a baby anymore. I let him hug on me when he is ready because I don’t want to embarrass him. I was the type of parent that would visit him in his class and end my visit with a hug and a kiss in front of the class. However I do think that hugs are very important because it let’s anyone know that they are loved.

November 19, 2009 at 8:58 am
(52) Jennifer C says:

My 14 year old son has always been affectionate. He and I are best buddies. I hate the way the schools discourage ALL hugs-even in kindergarten. My son was confused by this when he was little. I understand the whole concept of hands off and all that, but c’mon-why am I made to feel like I am committing some sort of evil “no-no” for hugging my child!

November 19, 2009 at 9:15 am
(53) cynthia fletcher says:

I too have a son who around 12/13 yrs old decided there would be no touching so I respected his wishes. This did bother me at first, however I looked for ways to still be close. such as watching movies he would pick out when we are alone after school or playing cards with him etc. just spending alone time with him. Now he is 17 yrs old and every night at bedtime he will come into my room and lay by my side I will simply put my arm over his back or rub his back, and he’s returning to the loving and affectionate son I use to have. Yipeeeeeeeee.

November 19, 2009 at 9:20 am
(54) bianca says:

im a teen and my mom hugs me all the time and i must say i love it coz after a longday of school teachers working on your nerves its good feeling getting a hug from mom i wouldnt change hugging mom for anyone not evn my boyfriend.well thats just my opinion.

November 19, 2009 at 9:33 am
(55) Laura says:

It is important to hug teen agers no matter how much they say they dislike it, especially in public! My 17 year-old son, not only does he not like public expressions of affection, but he distances himself from me when we are out. I respect it when we are in public, but sneak a hug or two everyday at home. I always tell him that he has to live with it because that is what moms are for.

November 19, 2009 at 9:43 am
(56) Raquel says:

Huss are a MUST in our family. My teenager still gives hugs and kisses when she leaves. All her friends, guys and girls, come give me hugs too. I love it!

I try to make sure that no matter what mood we are in when we leave the house, we say good bye with hugs and kisses.

November 19, 2009 at 9:44 am
(57) Heather says:

Yes, my girls, 16 & 14, and I still hug several times a day and we still say “I love you” often through the day. I now have 2 step children, 6 & 4, and the hugs & “I love you’s” continue with them as well. I feel that the hugs & “I love you” can not ever be given or said enough, especially in this day & age.

November 19, 2009 at 10:00 am
(58) KC Mom says:

I’ve taken classes where the discussion of touch has been addressed as a form of health. We need so mnay hugs, handshakes, high fives to release the natural chemicals in our system that encourage us to be bonded to other humans. I think it varies from teen to teen, especially for gender of teen and gender of parent. In my home we are huggy enough, but less publicly affectionate.

November 19, 2009 at 10:41 am
(59) Marie says:

My 13 year old daughter hugs me all the time. I feel guilty that I push her away and have to stop and think before I do that. I remeber when I was young and just wanted a hug from my parents and didn’t get them. But I would have to say, I probably wouldn’t hug my daughter in the grocery store, even if I felt she did need one – save it for home.

November 19, 2009 at 10:42 am
(60) Donna says:

Yes I have 15 yo twins . we still kiss them good noght and i drive them to school everyday, they still kliss me good bye…

fyi i have a older kid in college who is 19, when he is home he still kisses us good night, good bye ect…

November 19, 2009 at 10:53 am
(61) Rosalyn says:

It’s always important to give them a hug, even though they wouldn’t admit it, but they still need that closeness.

November 19, 2009 at 10:58 am
(62) Marilyn says:

My 13 year old daughter and I always give each other hugs but I have a feeling that she would’nt let me if we were in a mall and definitely not at school. It is just the teenage thing I guess.

November 19, 2009 at 11:57 am
(63) Deb says:

Just because they pull away doesn’t mean they don’t still need you. If they’re uncomfortable with physical affection for a while, find other ways to make sure they know you love them and support them. It’s so important that they know that you are unconditionally there for them no matter what!

November 19, 2009 at 2:53 pm
(64) Misty says:

Yes I do still hug my teenager…just in different way. Now instead of just going up to him any old place and giving him a big hug I either hold out my arms and ask if it is Ok I give him a hug, walk up to him put my arm or hand on his shoulder and give him a quick squeeze. Or I tell him that I need a hug…If we are at home there is really no need to hide it but in public well that is different. Teenagers are trying to find there own place in life. Alot of them want to appear tough and to get hugs from parents is a childish thing to some. So find a way to let them know you love them or even ask how they would like to hugged in public… a hand on shoulder quick squeeze, a arm around shoulder quick squeeze or a full chest to chest hug.

November 19, 2009 at 3:24 pm
(65) Joe Klemmer says:

I do. And he hates it if I do it in front of his friends or “in public.” But if it’s just us or only family is around he’s fine with it. He’s even been known to instigate one or two himself.

November 19, 2009 at 4:02 pm
(66) Angelica F. says:

Funny, I have 2 boys and my older one NEVER went through that stage. However my 12 yr old, won’t kiss me in front of the school, much less hug me in public. I believe it’s part of the independent stage and they’ll get over it. They love me and I know this because they always tell me, so I don’t worry about the small stuff. And if they ever feel like they need it, they come to me first, that’s the reward of being patient.

November 19, 2009 at 6:15 pm
(67) Wendy says:

My 15 and 16 year old sons will give me a quick hug at night but NOT in public. My 16 yr old daughter will still hug me anywhere! I have a “rule” that before he or she leaves the house, they have to give me a hug, handshake for high five. This works quite well and it is different every morning. I love my teenagers! They always keep me guessing.

November 19, 2009 at 10:52 pm
(68) Joshua says:

My 3 Sons Let Me Hug Them And They Always Give Me Hugs, Ever Since They Little, The 4 Of Us Are Even Closer Now Since My 8 Years Old little son kyle died so sudden and tracic! I Pray We Always Stay This Close, A Awesome Bond Between A DAD And HIS Sons

November 20, 2009 at 4:26 am
(69) Akintayo Titilola says:

I am a bit surprised that a lot of teens don’t like hugs from their parent openly.
My daughter is 16years old and her final year at secondary school, she not only love open displays of affetcion but she relises it so much so that sometimes i get tired of it.
maybe different strokes for different folkes.

November 20, 2009 at 10:15 am
(70) Donna says:

We had to have a meeting at our house that we will be hugging every morning and every night before bed, its a quick I love you and a hug. otherwise there would be no hugging going on at our house. They think its stupid, but now they move into and expect.

November 20, 2009 at 11:02 am
(71) Raji says:

My son is 15 yrs old and I always hug him, he never says anything, he hugs me every morning. He does not mind if I touch him in public or hold his hand, he is fine with it and so am I. Mom is always a Mom, whatever the age maybe. It is a feeling expressing that we are there at all times. He needs to know his parents are always there for him, it is creating a rapport.

November 22, 2009 at 12:31 am
(72) bella says:

I used to LOVE when my mom hugged me and I hugged her all the time…I am 13 now and everything is different. It’s not that I don’t love my mom, and I’m not embarrassed of her either, I just feel like I need my space. they just kind of hug me too much and ask too much questions. They have always done that though…Its just different now. somehow…

November 29, 2009 at 1:25 pm
(73) Indu says:

I don’t actually get what the big deal is. I’ve never found it embarassing getting hugs from my parents in public- and a year ago I was still a “teen”…..I think it’s nice.

January 11, 2010 at 12:14 pm
(74) Rated Teen 4Eva Pink says:

well I am a teen and my mother died when I was 7 and I am adopted so I dont know my real parents and my adoptive parents as I said died,and now I live with my granny so well what I guess I am trying to say is if you dont hug your children please do because do I would do anything except die to hug my mommy and daddy again!! THANK YOU♥

February 21, 2010 at 7:25 am
(75) Damaged says:

I see alot of comments from the parents but not too much from the teenagers point of view. Since there are not many places that even talk about this I would like to give my opinion from a teenagers view. All I can say is that if your son or daughter acts in the slightest way that they are uncomfortabe, THEN STOP! My mother always wanted to hug and kiss (on the lips) and say I love you. She could not get enough. When I was young it was ok. But in my teens my opinion didn’t count. When I pulled away or make any obvious signs of not wanting to be affectionate, I would get some sort of guilt trip put on me. Being young I did not really know how to deal with this. My anger grew as my affection bank was empty and she was still taking withdrawls. One day she stood in front of the mirror with a handgun up against the side of her head, so that I would see her when I came out of the bathroom. At some point, I don’t remember if it was before this incident or after, I finally snapped and told her that I don’t want to hug, kiss, or tell her that I love her any more! What is the point of being or acting affectionate if you are torturing the other person? She finally kicked me out a few years later. I was very upset about this but now I realize it was the best thing. Our relationship was destroyed because she could get her selfish emotional needs met. I am not her husband or her boyfriend and my opinion does matter. I am almost 40 years old now and I think it is sad how things have turned out. It has been almost 20 years now since I last talked her. I no longer want my mother in my life because I will not let her extract any more affection from me, or guilt trip me ever again! In closing I would like to say that I think it is great that parents love their kids, but if you ignore their feelings, and you just selfishly try to meet your own black hole of emotions, you might just push your damaged child right out of your life!

April 20, 2010 at 1:23 pm
(76) parkmom says:

It’s a great trip!!! I appreciate everyone’s responses!

Although we have always been super affectionate with him, my 13 year old son is not the most huggy kid with two exceptions: until about 2 years ago, he wanted us to lie in bed to read to him at night. To this day he is very affectionate with friends – putting arms around them, etc. With us, we say we love him every day and give hugs as often as possible, except sometimes when he’s in a group of friends. If he gets hugs at home, no need to embarrass him in public! I remember being like that and after my uncomfortable years passed, I was always very affectionate with my parents in public. A hand on the shoulder or arm is enough, along with a proud look, smile, or “I love ya!” But even then, his resistance is just for show.

January 19, 2012 at 10:51 pm
(77) huggy gurl says:

I really wish my mom would cuddle with me and such im very emotional n need hugs and cuddles but are often pushed away my Memaw and i used to hug and cuddle 24/7 public or not but shes dead i miss her so much i used to lay in bed n cuddle w her everynight my mom lets me sleep w her but if i barely move she screams at me): and im pushed away if i try cuddling usually )’:
i sometimes get hugs and cuddles off friends oddly my guy friends are the cuddliest
two neighbors i work for n who r like grandparents hug me alot which i love but the man cuz of dimentia ha
s kinda done very sexually violating things to me which made me uncuddly for a short time but im back cuddly again some of my guy friends try to kiss me on the lips but i dont want them to because i want my first kiss to be special im almost 16 btw
I wish i had hugged and cuddled my Papa more when he was alive )= i feel so guilty for not wanting to and write now im scratching my arms till i bleed n crying wishing i could have a hug from my Papa )’:

February 15, 2012 at 4:57 am
(78) mariana says:

Why do children don’t want to be kiss or PDA by their parents ?

May 13, 2012 at 10:42 pm
(79) Nicole says:

20 year old daughter here! In college and fully willing to hug/say I love you/and hold hands with Mom in public. She raised me into the woman I am today and I’m happy with how I turned out so why should I be ashamed of ever thanking her? Brother (22) is a little more reluctant. I think that it’s just a guy thing.

May 14, 2012 at 6:00 am
(80) Denise Guide to Parenting Teens says:

:) I bet you’re mom is proud!

Leave a Comment

Line and paragraph breaks are automatic. Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title="">, <b>, <i>, <strike>

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.