my kid is a hugger
So this is kind of awkward, but Holden has turned into a real… hugger. I’m talking hugging every child she sees, sometimes so hard that she drags them to the ground. Not so much with adults, just with kids. And stuffed animals.
It’s a bit odd for me because, outside of interactions with Holdy, no one would describe me (or Holden’s dad) as overly affectionate. Certainly not huggers.
It’s to the point where going to Gymboree is slightly uncomfortable for me because I feel like I’m constantly pulling her off of other kids. Some kids hug back, but some are clearly not into it, or are even startled by it. The parents’ reactions also range from thinking it’s cute to seeming as uncomfortable with it as I am. I really don’t want her to be “that kid.”
I don’t want to discourage her loving nature, but I also want to teach her that other children need their personal space. I read some forums online that said I should teach her to ask permission first, or teach her to shake hands as a preferred method of introduction. I’m not sure how effective I’ll be teaching this concept to my 19-month-old (especially because I doubt other kids know how to shake hands, or how to respond when someone asks to hug them), but I’ve got to do something. Another suggestion I read has her saying, “Hi Baby!” to kids instead of hugging, which I kind of like.
Any other suggestions on dealing with an overly affectionate kid?