Chantal and Rene, all loved up.

Hugs are so important for our well-being and happiness. It is said that we need about 12 hugs a day to thrive.

My mother always hugged me. Heart to heart, she called it.

If there’s one thing this family does well, it is hugging. When my 17-year-old daughter went to London on a school trip recently, she phoned and said she was feeling ‘hug deprived’. (For the record, she was also missing fresh fruit and vegetables. Happy mummy dance!) I understood what she meant.

I miss having my university girl to hug, too. I long to wrap my arms around her and breathe her in. We’ll be seeing her next month, when she turns 19.




My little girl, all grown up now and at university.


My husband and I often pause in our day to hug, whether it’s at home or in the supermarket queue. It’s instinctual, natural and feels fabulous. Human skin has a deep need for loving touch.

I suppose I didn’t realise just how tactile we were, as a family, until a personal trainer at the gym called out ‘stop petting’ several times. He was joking, of course, as we weren’t doing that. We do, however, lean in and listen closely as the other speaks. Our interactions are emotionally intimate. We readily touch each other’s shoulder or back, or peck each other on the cheek. Eye contact is a given. These, like hugging, are the actions of bonded relationships.

I adore the fact that my daughter will readily ask for a hug, even in public. I hope that never changes.

A hug is intimate. Our arms open wide, and when we embrace another, we are heart to heart. Risky? Yes. Intimate? Yes. Worth it? You betcha!