I long to be shown affection, and showing it to others does not come naturally to me. Maybe that’s not strictly true; I don’t have to remind myself to hug my children, but I also wonder if I do it enough. When it comes to my family of origin, though – my parents and my brothers – I do need to make a conscious effort to show affection.
I am happy to have found, and become a part of, several communities of people who are aware of the effect of physical contact and hugging, and make an effort to embrace for long enough to the get the oxytocin flowing.
Sometimes, when I do get the affection I’ve been craving, it can feel like too much after awhile. The swinging of the pendulum, from one extreme to another, is a regular occurrence for me: lonely and craving hugs, to smothered and desiring space.