The Girl Scouts are telling parents not to force their daughters to give relatives hugs or kisses, and instead, offer a less personal kind of touching.
A post on the organization’s website tells parents quote, “She doesn’t owe anyone a hug. Not even at the holidays.”
The “hugs” addressed here are clearly of a non-sexual nature, but according to the Girl Scouts’ post, that can influence how girls set boundaries in the future. The idea is to let them decide how and when they want to show affection.
The post also reads, “Have you ever insisted, ‘Uncle just got here—go give him a big hug!’ or ‘Auntie gave you that nice toy, go give her a kiss,’ when you were worried your child might not offer affection on her own? If yes, you might want to reconsider the urge to do that in the future.”
Some on social media accused the Girl Scouts of blowing an innocent family interaction out of proportion, but others say the issue is a valid topic in parenting circles.