How Affectionate Are You?

paper hearts hanging from clothespins
Image by congerdesign from Pixabay

Google offers this definition for affectionate: “readily feeling or showing fondness or tenderness.” Some people are more affectionate than others, and not everyone shows they care in the same ways. I thought it might be fun to chat about our own affectionateness tendencies.

I’m an affectionate little bean, particularly in writing. In person, I’m a hugger, but I don’t have much in-person social contact anymore. I didn’t really have much online contact in my pre-blogging days, but since I started blogging in 2017, the affectionate side of me has really come out to play. By far my most frequently used emojis are ❤️💕💖.

I’m more likely to be affectionate with females than males, mostly because I tend to assume that males are less comfortable with it than females. With close friends, though, gender doesn’t really make a difference. More generally, I’m not really sure how I gauge whether I think people are likely to be receptive or averse.

What you’ve been exposed to and what’s been modelled for you can make a big difference. Recently, my blogging friend Alana was writing about affection being hard because it wasn’t something she experienced in childhood. My mom isn’t an affectionate person in general, but she always was with me and my brother. So was my grandma, who was a major figure in my childhood. I don’t generally think about how I was treated as a child in terms of why I’m affectionate now, but I think I just automatically picked up what was modelled for me and chose to spread it more widely.

So, I guess I don’t have all that much to say, but I’m curious to hear from you. How affectionate are you, and does it come easily for you? How and with whom do you show affection?

62 thoughts on “How Affectionate Are You?”

  1. This is an interesting one! I feel a little dysphoric to how I grew up. My parents were pretty good models for affection with us kids and each other, but I find that I tend to not be very physically affectionate at all! With partners, sure, but not really with anybody else. I’ve always thought I had some kind of a sensory processing thing that went undiagnosed, but I’m not quite sure. Regardless, a nice hug never hurt anybody!

  2. I am not very affectionate. Mainly I just tolerate hugs and thankfully they don’t last long. I prefer not to be touched at all. I rarely initiate hugs. Maybe because I was hit more than hugged as a child??

  3. I’m a fairly affectionate person on the whole. I’ll often tell my closest friend I love her, and I’ll hug people frequently. Interestingly I find it harder to be affectionate with my parents. It feels awkward somehow. Not sure what that’s about! I loved when my boys were little and we hugged, kissed and snuggled all the time. Special memories ❤️

  4. We were affectionate until the last 6 years. Now, we’re super guarded. Cuddling can feel threatening 😞

    We like online because we interact when we want to. In real life, we try to hug every day and we live with huggers

    We don’t have many friends anymore. We always preferred friends who hug and say i love you

    1. My only in-person friend I haven’t actually seen in person for a couple of years now. I like having online friends and being able to tell them I love them.

      Love you! ❤️❤️❤️

  5. I’m quite a big hugger and always kiss and hug my friends hello/goodbye, frequent hugs with my partner and my kids. My dad is very affectionate – I’m more so with my mum now but had a long time when I wasn’t comfortable with physical contact with her and it’s only recently that we tell each other we love each other though with my kids that’s frequent – your affection comes through Ashley and is much appreciated! Sending you a hug! 😘😘

  6. I’m a big softie at heart, if someone isn’t afraid of my aloof outer shell. I like affection offline only from people I trust, but I don’t take it for granted. Online, I’m less inhibited, so I’m way more affectionate to varying degrees.

    Compared to offline, I’m a lot more openly affectionate to strangers, as they could become an internet friend, and I adore my internet friends. Partly because offline community where I live is difficult to find when multiply marginalised, and when I’m unable to work at not even middle age.

    Affection wasn’t modelled for me, so I’ve had to learn as an adult on my own.

    As I grew older, I never liked the forced hugs my very affectionless parents would demand. It was weird that they started such an empty snd rote gesture after a sermon in their church on how parents should bond with their kids/teens/young adults or you’d lose them. Really typical of them to coerce expressions of closeness, coerce gatherings etc, as though forcing people to go through the gestures would make genuine affection happen? Newsflash: It won’t.

    I like affectionate written words. Verbal affection is something I enjoy receiving but feel very awkward to give due to some personal baggage.

    Extra strange when they started lamenting that me and my siblings all aren’t close to each other. It’s a predictable consequence of plenty of unhealthy comparisons and plenty of favouritism.

      1. At pretty much every difficult time of my life once I discovered the dial-up internet as a mid teen, online friendships have kept me going despite SO much isolation ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

        (being surrounded by uncaring and/or abusive people is really isolating).

        I really value friends like you who don’t dismiss online friends as somehow “lesser” than offline friends.

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