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Did Your Parents Ever Hug You And Or Tell You They Loved You?

Did your parents ever hug you and or tell you they loved you?   132 votes

  1. 1. Did your parents ever hug you and or tell you they loved you?

    • I was hugged but never told I was loved much.
      6
    • I was told I was loved but never hugged or touched much.
      19
    • I was never told I was loved NOR hugged much.
      55
    • I was both told I was loved AND hugged
      50
    • Other or don't want to say.
      2

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80 posts in this topic

Posted · Report post  

Yes, they do, but rarely. But I do not suffer from this because they do not need to tell me that they love me for me to know it. It shows through their everyday actions and their constant presence towards me. So I feel it everyday.

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I don't recall hugs or being told we were loved being a big part of my family's support system. These days I can't bring myself to say "I love you" to my own mom, and the best I get from her is "Lots of love to you" when we're on the phone. My father and I share a moderate handshake upon parting. That seems so impersonal, but at this point I'll take it. Therapy is helping me understand my parents problems as well as my own, so I don't resent it or hold it against them, it was just never part of our life growing up, but there was a great deal of neglect in general. I think that's part of the reason I'm afraid to have children of my own, that I've grown up with so much dysfunction that I wouldn't know how to raise a child.

(edit) To be fair, they let me know how much I'm appreciated now, but after seeing two suicide attempts from my sister and my own threats thereof years ago it makes me wonder if they were scared straight, so to speak...

Edited by MisterDavid
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Growing up, my household was very tense. My parents were very busy, when they were home I was often micromanaged and given little privacy. My parents expected a great deal from me, and I wasn't always capable of pleasing them.

My father hugged me and told me he loved me, but only after hitting me. He just wanted to prove to himself that he wasn't like HIS parents, and I didn't refuse because I was afraid of him. I have trouble with physical intimacy to this day. 

Touch is a very tricky thing. At 20, I've lived a sexless life, in part due to this aversion to touch. As soon as I became financially independent, I was quite content to limit contact with my father to a handshake.

Growing up this way left me bitter and cynical. I'm petrified of trusting someone intimately. I see other people enjoying the electricity of human touch, and I crave that experience, but I still feel what I felt then- degraded, powerless, worthless.

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Posted · Report post  

Only recently, my dad never hugs me or tells me he loves me, ever. I tell my mum I love her every single night and I get her to kiss my cheek. Or if I'm not at home she texts me good nights and tells me she loves me. Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

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My dad always loved me reluctantly. Like he hated me as I was, but loved me irrationally, and it bothered him that he couldn't just hate me and leave it at that. He was a huge disciplinarian. I got punished even when I didn't know what I'd done wrong. He didn't have much to do with raising me, or now that I think of it, my brother - really he did the Boy Scouts, but never went out of his way to spend time with us or anything. His main occupation in life was watching TV. He was, and is, incredibly childish and selfish in his way of thinking, like he got stunted at that toddler stage when you love your mom and dad and grandparents, but still think the whole world does and should revolve around you, that you should have complete control over everything and everyone and get everything you want. He never seemed to care or notice how what he did affected others. Like he'd slap me to the floor in the middle of a department store for yelling and then not understand why you were being so oversensitive about it. He loved making fun of people, including me. He only touched me when he hit me or was trying to make me uncomfortable for laughs, like rubbing his beard stubble over my face.

Many years ago I was going through my personal effects and found a Valentine's Day card that said "Love Daddy" inside, from when I was three, and even thinking of it now makes me cry a little.....he did love me, he just didn't know how, didn't like my personality because I wasn't like what he thought girls should be like, and I felt so bad that once he had openly written that he loved me and I'd disappointed him by being who I was and now he couldn't bring himself to say it anymore. Not until I was 28 years old and he had mellowed out and finally come to accept me as I was. Even now I think he struggles with it.

As far as I can remember, maybe sometimes my mom told me she was proud of me in front of other people, but I don't recall my achievements really amounting to very much. My dad never gave me any accolades. If I did something well, he'd just point out all the screw-ups I did along the way and remind me that I could've done better. What I did never seemed to matter much to them, at least to him. Some years ago my mother told me how awful she felt when I failed high school and dropped out, and I was quite frankly shocked. I had NO IDEA she cared. She never acted like it.

My mom told me she loved me, hugged me, kissed me, and I loved it. She held me sometimes when my dad was giving me a hard time, other times she backed off when he didn't want her to hold me. As I got older and had more mental problems she viewed me as more of a chore and backed off from affection. Now that I think about it, it's when I need them the most that my family treats me the worst. When I'm depressed and miserable and ready to die, I'm not a person in need of help, just a whiny pain in the ass. They don't know how to see me any other way. My family is very disfunctional in that sense. I see happy, healthy families at church, in which everyone loves and cares about each other, and do things for each other, and it just makes me die inside. Why didn't I get that?

Now I feel so depressed and anxious, and now that I've come across this topic it occurs to me that I haven't been touched, held, or told I was loved in a very long time. I still live with my parents since I can't afford to live on my own, but we never hug, kiss, or act affectionate. Pretty much all my parents do is lay down in front of the TV (one incident in my life that makes me laugh is when the power went out for a few days after a massive storm, and my parents literally went crazy with a lack of television. You would've thought we'd run out of food). I do get hugged at church and it makes me feel better, which I never noticed before. Maybe I should ask for hugs more often at home - my mom used to give me a kiss and say "I love you" every night, and I was doing alright then, but that hasn't been in a long time, and I wonder if it's because she hasn't done it lately that I feel so bad.

This topic has worked as a good talking therapy for me. I came across things in my life I never noticed until now. Thanks! Edited by The Sage Nabooru

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Posted · Report post  

Gosh sage, what a tough time you had in your childhood and are still having now. I relate to so much of what you say there

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Posted · Report post  

My mom was always very affectionate with me and my sisters.We say I love you all the time.My dad not so much.I love my dad but he has anger issues that he needs to deal with.He gets scary when he get`s angry.My little niece pointed out something to that I thought was interesting.She told me grandpa actually said I love you back to me.He`s affectionate with his grandkids I think he just has a difficult time saying those things.Some people do I guess.I never doubted my mom loving me.Sometimes I feel like my dad doesn`t like me very much.

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Posted · Report post  

my family was not a very "touchy" family.  as a result, hugs were rare.  I try to hug my wife a lot now to catch up!

Tessar likes this

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My family is of southeast Asian origin, so physical affection towards kids (once they were out of their toddler years) and I love yous were certainly not the cultural norm. However, I will have to give props to my dad for breaking that. The closest he got was saying "I love this kid" with a one-armed hug and brisk rubbing of upper arm, followed by a kiss on the forehead with a particular funny face. It was enough to convey the message to me and my sister.

My mother was certainly much much more reserved.

Edited by Talmida

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I think this is an interesting post. I would probably say that my hugs and 'i love you' moments were not often - but when I was in my early twenties I started making sure I hugged my parents every time I saw them - and usually said 'i love you' as well. 

 

This isn't something that we need to have as a regret - often our parents did something for us that SHOWED us they loved us. Often people who are awkward with their emotions communicate by doing this. My father does this by asking me how things are going - and then asking me again if I give him a nonsensical answer. This tells me he's concerned about me and cares about what is going on with me. 

 

A much bigger thing I wanted to point out is:

 

when was the last time you gave YOURSELF a 'hug' like a mental pat on the back - or even a literal hug (put your opposite hand on your shoulder (do it with both hands - see if it feels good).

when was the last time YOU told yourself that you loved you (I know it sounds odd - but when was the last time you even told yourself something like "I'm okay")

 

this isn't something that has to be 'too late' to begin - you can start right now . I originally felt goofy about this kind of thing - but I started practicing and now it makes me feel much better.

 

Cheers,

ST

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It's funny...sometimes my mother can be very loving and affectionate.  Sometimes she will hug me or pinch my cheeks (even at almost 30 years old).   I believe that she does love me very much.  I'm her only child. 

 

But when I was growing up, there were also many times when I did not feel loved.  Sometimes she tells me she loves me but as a kid, she wanted me to be more independent because I didn't have a father.   She often put her boyfriends above the needs of her only child.   When my stepfather came into the picture, I was about 13 or 14...there weren't as many hugs or "I love you's".    He was a very harsh, abusive man who really didn't believe in being kind to children. 

 

So my mother still hugged me and told me she loved me, but less frequently.  

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I think the problem with a lot parents who seem to have an inability to show meaningful displays of physical/emotional love/acceptance is that they themselves grew up with similar parents and similar lifestyles.  They never knew what it was like to be accepted or loved either.  Because of this, not only is it difficult for them to show their own affection for others, but it is difficult to feel that affection even from their own children.  Drastically long periods of this harken to narcissistic personalities and lifestyles and simply ignoring or discrediting anything else that may not be perfect or what they want.  This pattern of neglect/abuse merely passes on to the next generation in the cycle, whom learn their own lesson from their parents' actions and slightly alter it and pass it onto their kids.  It's hard to use logic and reason to explain a way to make the relationship more beneficial for everyone involved because they aren't operating on them.  They're still operating on the emotional neglect/trauma they suffered in their lives, and notions like empathy or sympathy drift off into mystical fantasy lands.
 
I'll give you two very recent examples from my life:

I have to say hello to all of my family members first.  If I don't say it, they get very mad and will rant about it later, and I'll be labeled as selfish and inconsiderate.  It doesn't matter if they see me first or even if I don't realize they're there at the time.  The defense that they NEVER say it first to me has no effect/response.  If someone else walks in and doesn't say it, they'll greet them instead.  If I come in the room, and I said hello 5 times that day and decide not to say it, they won't say anything and will quietly stew until I'm gone.  It's ridiculous.
 
The second example is a lot more intense.  Recently my car got stuck in water (phone was dead).  I was abandoned by my friend and got lost and wandered around in the middle of nowhere in the cold and rain for about 5 hours.  I got sick.  When I was finally able to hitchike to a nearby gas station and found my three friends they drove me home.  When I got home, one of them ran out the car and started punching me, and they peeled away before I knew what happened.  Not one person ever asked me what happened or if I was okay.  Instead I was lectured and judged all night and the next morning.  It wasn't until my car was sucessfully towed out of the water and the kind soul who helped us explained that it wasn't the first time he towed someone out of there, that my dad let me off the hook as it being an honest mistake.  To make small talk I talked a little bit about what had happened to try and explain my case and cut through the silence before WW3 occured.  My dad even offered to let me borrow his minivan to go hang out with my friends.  The same friends who left me out in the middle of nowhere and who didn't come to get me and beat me up when I got home.  It was lost on him and my mom how I wouldn't want to hang out with these people anymore.  Fast forward a couple days and my mom is talking about how my dad got a bruise from the lawn mower handle while he was starting the mower.  I didn't say anything.  When my dad returned inside he told me about it himself, expecting some sort of deep sympathy.  It didn't do any bruising and left only a minor swelling on his cheek.  I merely said oh, that stings, I've done that before many times.  He wanted the deepest sympathy for this unjust and terrible pain he had suffered, but really he was just a kid wanting his booboo to be kissed.  And yet there was no sympathy for me at all or even any attempts to understand or talk to me about what had happened the moment I really wanted someone there to talk to about it and to comfort me.  It's so lopsided and backwards, it's hilarious! Edited by darkdaxter
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Posted (edited) · Report post  

I don'tever remember my parents ever saying "I love you."  Nope, I can't remember any time they ever did.  I do remember my mother touching me and it would make me feel like vomiting because she was so manipulative and soul-stalking.

 

DDaxter - it's hard to wrap my head around how cruel people are.  I hope you realize in your heart of hearts how awful "your friends"  are, and that you can do much better.  You father. . . oh well, I don't know.  Big baby. 

Edited by LeftRight
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I don'tever remember my parents ever saying "I love you."  Nope, I can't remember any time they ever did.  I do remember my mother touching me and it would make me feel like vomiting because she was so manipulative and soul-stalking.

 

DDaxter - it's hard to wrap my head around how cruel people are.  I hope you realize in your heart of hearts how awful "your friends"  are, and that you can do much better.  You father. . . oh well, I don't know.  Big baby. 

Definitely.  Hopefully it won't take too many years to find better friends.  Lol.  I think a lot of bad parents really are big babies.  At the very least most of the bad ones on this thread sound like little kids in adult bodies.  At least it gives me a lot to laugh at.  I've been watching a lot of standup recently, and I wonder if I'd make a decent comedian.  I bet a lot of us have stories that are just ridiculous and would get a lot of laughs from the right crowd.

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I am 32, i grew up with my uncle, aunt and cousins (my dad and my mom were seperated while i was 1, never lived with dad, mom disappeared) . I never got hugs from them and never got kissed, they never said "I love you" too. But mind you, I am Chinese, and maybe it is just part of the cultural difference. :)

Yeah, im Chinese to think it is a cultural difference! me and my family are all close to one another and we would all go out of our ways to make each another happy etc...... yet we dont really show affection to each other by 'hugs' or 'words' after a certain age (childhood). Think they may seem it to be a unnecessary as we know we 'love' each other. But due to this i think we can sometimes be a bit distant and awkward in certain situations( e.g saying goodbye etc.), thus people may find me 'cold'

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I've never been particularly close with my parents. Not really from a lack of trying on their part, but largely, I think because of our personalities. None of us are very "touchy-feely" and emotions are shielded, largely only visible in large outbursts of anger, or upsetment, when things came to a head. I don't particularly wish anything was different, with regards to my family. I don't feel I really would have appreciated a more hands-on parenting approach. I was given independence and the ability to make my own decisions, and they were there as less of authority figures, and more in a teaching/mentoring role, which meant they were there when I needed them, but were pretty unobtrusive when I didn't.

 

While I can sympathize in some of the loneliness/lack of strong relationships that Locut0s has, I don't feel like getting a more close-knit family relationship would have solved anything. My main problems in this respect come in my severe introversion, and my inability to take social risks that hold the possibility of rejection. While I suppose a different family dynamic might have changed this a bit, I feel like a different social environment at an early age would have done more; As a result of moving when I was 4, and changing schools when I was 8, I never really got a "Best Friends since we were toddlers" thing with anyone, and going to school in NYC, meant school friendships were 3-4 years at most, since in all likelihood we'd be in different schools at the next juncture.

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My parents were physically and verbally affectionate with both me and my sister and each other...BUT...my parents divorced when I was 14 years old. I think that while it's very easy to accept and give love to people, I struggle accepting love from my husband. I think maybe because when my parents divorced I thought maybe all the affection I saw between them over the years had been fake and it has tainted marriage love for me. I don't know. Families can have such a weird dynamic that definitely shape who we are today.

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my mom did, does, will. Was a bit of a colourful life up until I got 15, so there wasn't much opportunity to get that emotional. Now she's alright, she's told me but pays more attention to my little sister, and hey, I'm cool with that, there is no reason I should feel left out, maybe somebody would, but that's entirely individual.

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I was hugged and told that I was loved, but I honestly didn't believe it because I was also slapped around a lot and yelled at and twice my father threatened to kill me in a fit of rage and once kicked me out of the house when I was 6 and let me stand outside the door crying while he was angry. I know it sounds horrible, but he's calmed down now and is really supportive of me. His change has been dramatic ever since he realized that I wasn't doing well at all. Another thing that generally made things worse is that my dad commanded a lot of fear, even from my mum, and so I didn't feel like she had my back when dad was angry. So yea, I never truly believed I was loved.

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Darkdaxter, your parents just don't get it, mine are the same. It's my mother who was always trying to get attention, I realised in the end that it's because my father denied her much comfort and attention. Over the years she has become more and more withdrawn & much of that is down to him. He is emotionally cold. He is terrified if he feels an emotion. I was their only girl (I had 4 brothers)many I am sure they couldn't contend with the fact that as a girl I was more emotional.

Don't forget this though DD, you have many, many friends here and we are warm and caring people who will not dump on others. Like everyone on this site you are part of a special community and that means you matter to me. I love this site and I love you all.
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I received so much love from my mum - she was always telling me she loved me and giving me hugs. I think she still does. None from my dad though - he was cold and unaffectionate and more critical than loving. He tries to tell me he loves me now I'm an adult but its always...awkward.

My family was also complicated when it became a stepfamily. Now I find it hard to be affectionate with people I'm not really close to. And if I'm not in the mood, a hug from the wrong person can turn into an argument lol. They say I'm cold. But I think I'm just selective.

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I was never hugged or told that I was loved by my parents. They were religous fundamentalists, who placed great emphasis on "training up a child in the way it should grow, so it would not depart from it".

 

They had strict mortal codes. My father, who tried preaching as a young man but gave it up to become a plumber, seemed a little bitter to me.  My mother was an excellent housekeeper, she also was a great cook and baker. Yet, I sometimes felt she was deeply unhappy.

 

I always told myself as a young child that when I got married I would always hug my children, let my them feel loved and tell them on a regular basis that I loved them.

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Posted · Report post  

My mother has never hugged me or told me she loves - she mostly ignored me my whole life . My fathers a bastard

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I was never hugged or told that I was loved by my parents. They were religous fundamentalists, who placed great emphasis on "training up a child in the way it should grow, so it would not depart from it".
 
They had strict mortal codes. My father, who tried preaching as a young man but gave it up to become a plumber, seemed a little bitter to me.  My mother was an excellent housekeeper, she also was a great cook and baker. Yet, I sometimes felt she was deeply unhappy.
 
I always told myself as a young child that when I got married I would always hug my children, let my them feel loved and tell them on a regular basis that I loved them.


Your experience sounds all too familiar to me, this is pretty much how it was in it family.......

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