So yesterday my 17 y.o. son left home to go to uni and it was an emotional day but that’s a whole other blog. We dropped him to college and helped him unpack his room and my husband got all his computer stuff set up and we all had lunch together in the college dining room and then it was time to leave.
As we were hugging him good-bye I watched him and his father joke around and bump chests and generally laugh their way through their good-bye. And it was funny and my daughter and I laughed because they were such loons! But it got me thinking how difficult it is for a lot of men to hug and kiss hello and good-bye and I think that’s really sad. I know my own Dad and brothers found this a weird transition as they got older.
It’s easy when they’re babies and kids – when the adoration is pure and simple on both sides like in the pic of my hubby and our son. How much does that look on both their faces say “you are my world”?? But when they grow up and become adults and society puts such a stigma on male affection – well here in Australia anyway – it gets a lot trickier!
This is one of the reasons I love Europe – besides from the art, culture, amazing history, wine, cheese, pastry and gelato. I love to sit somewhere in a palazzo or a café and just watch how European men act around each other. I love how they openly and enthusiastically kiss and hug hello and good-bye. And there’s no awkwardness, no forced physicality, no cringing. No-one’s masculinity is threatened, it doesn’t seemed forced or clumsy or unnatural.
On the contrary it’s the easiness of it that makes it such a pleasure to watch.
I wish I saw it more here. Even American men seem more at ease with hugging then men in Australia do!
What about you guys? Wouldn’t you like to see that more too? To the Aussies, do you think I have it wrong? Do you think it’s changing – I know there’s a much easier affection between my husband and son then there was/is with my father and brothers. Am I right about American men? Are they more comfortable with hugging? How would they feel about the double-cheeked European kiss? I love watching that!