Kissing your kids on the lips? Do you do it? Or do you find it inappropriate? Do you stop at a certain age? Do you kiss your daughters but not your sons or vice versa? It’s a hot topic at the moment and, to be honest, I don’t feel like there is a right or a wrong answer. Every parent has their own opinion on things, some are all for full-on smooches whilst others have hearts encased in ice. I said what I said…
But for real, I’m a kiss on the lips, jump in the bath with my kids, walk around nude in front of them Mum and I don’t know how anyone else could not be. (Ok, maybe not the nudity part, I’m a part-time nudist by trade). But how does one resist the urge to smooch those little faces? I would nibble on Kobe’s cheeks and his arm rolls all day long if he’d let me. I am completely and utterly obsessed with my kids.
They drive me bonkers and have shaved decades off my life, thanks to stress but I think they are the most gorgeous human beings on Earth and I can’t help myself when they are around. I will kiss every inch of their face given the opportunity. But hey, that’s just me…
Rhian, on the other hand, won’t kiss our kids on the lips. He’s definitely not as affectionate as me, he’s more the playful (also a large kid himself) fun one!
It got me thinking about my childhood. My parents were extremely affectionate. My dad still tries to hold my hand whenever we are out together. My parents never had any doors closed and being naked was never a big deal. We obviously drew the line at eating dinner together all nude but if Mum was in the shower and I needed to ask her something, I would never hesitate to go in there.
I’m 35 and I would still walk in on my dad having a shower if I needed to have a conversation. That might put me in the minority but I think a lot of how I am as a mother is a reflection of how I was raised. We were always taught to be comfortable in our own skin, in our own bodies. That hugs fixed pretty much EVERYTHING and there was no such thing as too much affection. BUT — I don’t remember my parents ever kissing me on the lips.
I actually don’t remember much of my life before the age of five, only random bits like how I was terrified of getting the school bus in kindy and Mum used to bribe me with Milky Ways… important things like that. But I don’t have any recollection of mum or dad kissing me on the lips. They also never let me sleep in their bed because back in their day it was frowned upon, (I’m sure being made to run back to bed in the dark after having a nightmare was some form of neglect).
When I became a mum myself, my mum would always tell me to put Charli down after she had been fed and was asleep and yet I always chose to hold her and just listen to her breathing peacefully on my chest. She told me not to wear her so much and to leave her on the floor on her own more often. “Don’t spoil her, Amy”.
From what I have gathered from listening to my mum’s opinions on things (and this is entirely my own personal opinion based on my own mum), I think maybe their generation didn’t fully immerse themselves in what motherhood has to offer. They were incredible, loving parents but there was also a DOs and DONTs list and they all tried to stay out of the latter. Instead of listening to what their baby/kid needed they would do whatever they had been told was the right thing. So, if someone said kissing your two-year-old on the lips was not appropriate, no one would do it.
In today’s society, everyone does what they want. Parents parent the way they want to parent, in whichever style they see fit. They are supported in all avenues of life. You want to breastfeed ‘til your kid is three, here are some fab networks for you to connect with. You want to birth in your living room while your toddlers watch, here’s an amazing Doula who can help make every part magical. A baby that co-sleeps, here are some safe sleeping positions to ensure you both get a great night’s sleep.
The parents today are empowered. More so than before. We are encouraged to love and to love hard. To lean into motherhood, fully surrender and listen to our gut and intuition. To shower our kids with affection in whichever way we choose. For me and 90% of the mums that I know, that means kisses and not just on the cheeks or on their forehead. It’s big wet smooches on the lips, day in and day out, and, I for one, will not stop kissing my kids on the lips until they deem themselves too cool for me. (Which has already happened with Charli at the age of six).
Kobe, however, will walk up to me, hold my face in his hands, smooch me with the wettest lips and at least 90mls of dribble all over his face and tell me “I wuv you, Mum” at least 35 times a day. If loving these moments is wrong, then I don’t wanna be right.
And when the day comes and they start planting kisses on my cheek or refusing to hold my hand as I walk them into school, I will graciously accept that they are getting older and are now terrified of Mum planting one on their lips in front of their mates! It’ll be bittersweet but I’ll have had a few epic years of smooching every tiny inch of their beautiful faces (lips included).