Etiquette

Fiancé hates hugs, help!

Hello! As I continue to prep for my upcoming April wedding, I was devising a plan to have an aunt read an announcement at the conclusion of the ceremony giving instructions for the receiving line. I was reminded of how much my fiancé HATES giving and receiving hugs - if it’s not myself or his mother, it makes him really uncomfortable. In fact, running into an old friend and receiving a hug can ruin his night. He just feels awkward, uncomfortable, and self conscious. Would it be possible, to put somewhere in that announcement that while the bride would be happy to give you a hug in the recieving line, the groom would appreciate a handshake. I was hoping to phrase it in a way that’s stern but still humorous. Any tips or advice are appreciated! 

Answers

  • I'm on the fence here.   Can you spread this via word of mouth but have your FI offer handshakes to those who want to greet him? 

    Personally I think writing anything down about this can come off as possibly stand-offish.   But is there a possible compromise here?  What does your FI do in a business situation where a handshake is considered the proper protocol? 
    ahoywedding
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    I wouldn't put anything in writing, but I can understand not wanting hugs.

    I would also do table visits. And if I were your FI, I would offer my hand to people as I greet them. If someone starts to pull him into an unwanted hug, I would stand firm and shake hands firmly and say, "It's nice to see/meet you. Thank you for coming" without moving into the hug. If someone is persistent, I'd say, "Thanks. I really must speak to [name of next person] now. I hope you enjoy the reception."
    ahoywedding
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    edited February 26
    If hugs are a problem, don't do a receiving line. Or suck it up and realize that your closest family and friends are going to want to hug you on the biggest day of your life. 

    Do table visits instead, where you can stand next to the table and most people will just chat without coming over to you. 

    But really, there are going to be TONS of hugs going around at the wedding, no matter what you do. If y'all had wanted to avoid hugs, you should have planned a private wedding with only people who know about his social issue.
    Unfortunately, telling the OP that she should have planned a private wedding is unlikely to be helpful at this point. Even a private wedding probably would not have accomplished no one attempting to hug the FI. It would probably also leave out too many people whose presence matters to both of the couple and their families. 

    People hug at weddings. I think hug attempts are something you just need to accept and be prepared for at a wedding. You (generic) don't have to allow yourself to be hugged, but you do need to be ready to deal with it.


    SoonToBeSmith0512
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston
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    Hello! As I continue to prep for my upcoming April wedding, I was devising a plan to have an aunt read an announcement at the conclusion of the ceremony giving instructions for the receiving line. I was reminded of how much my fiancé HATES giving and receiving hugs - if it’s not myself or his mother, it makes him really uncomfortable. In fact, running into an old friend and receiving a hug can ruin his night. He just feels awkward, uncomfortable, and self conscious. Would it be possible, to put somewhere in that announcement that while the bride would be happy to give you a hug in the recieving line, the groom would appreciate a handshake. I was hoping to phrase it in a way that’s stern but still humorous. Any tips or advice are appreciated! 
    How does he normally handle situations when someone attempts to hug him?  



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    MairePoppySP29MissKittyDanger
  • Ditto the table visit suggestion.  H doesn’t hate hugs but he’d rather give a handshake/wave plus head nod/fist bump most people, depending on the situation.  I’m very affectionate so I did hug people that stood up to hug at our table visits, but H got away with standing towards the dance floor end of each table and shaking hands with those closest to him/saying thank you to everyone at once.  He hugged a few people but waayy fewer than at a receiving line. You def can’t say anything about hugging (without sounding rude/strange). 
    ernursejshort+sassyOliveOilsMom
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    Jen4948 said:
    If hugs are a problem, don't do a receiving line. Or suck it up and realize that your closest family and friends are going to want to hug you on the biggest day of your life. 

    Do table visits instead, where you can stand next to the table and most people will just chat without coming over to you. 

    But really, there are going to be TONS of hugs going around at the wedding, no matter what you do. If y'all had wanted to avoid hugs, you should have planned a private wedding with only people who know about his social issue.
    Unfortunately, telling the OP that she should have planned a private wedding is unlikely to be helpful at this point. Even a private wedding probably would not have accomplished no one attempting to hug the FI. It would probably also leave out too many people whose presence matters to both of the couple and their families. 

    People hug at weddings. I think hug attempts are something you just need to accept and be prepared for at a wedding. You (generic) don't have to allow yourself to be hugged, but you do need to be ready to deal with it.

    This is also for lurkers.

    I'm also with banana...a hug ruining your whole night goes WAY beyond disliking something. Dude needs therapy.
    True. But the whole wedding can't be based on his needs.
  • Yes - this is a good issue for working with a professional if a "one-arm pat-pat" (aka the professional boundary in a huggy touchy feely I don't want to risk getting sued environment hug) will literally ruin someone's night. 

    SNS - this one's for the pro's given what you've said OP because it's going to become an issue later on especially if you choose to have children where they will literally touch your FI to death (it's what kids do in the tactile years - though it's typically Moms that get "touched out"), or even you for that matter wanting simple affection.  And, you don't want your wedding night entirely ruined because he was overstimulated because Great Aunt Huggymonster insisted she grant him her well wishes hug known as immersion therapy.  I'm not saying "his boundaries are out of whack", those absolutely should be respected, it's the "it's going to ruin his day" for an event  that it's producing a reaction NOW at the THOUGHT of it, even though it hasn't happened yet.  That's where the tipping point is.
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    banana468short+sassysparklepants41southernbelle0915
  • MesmrEwe said:
    Yes - this is a good issue for working with a professional if a "one-arm pat-pat" (aka the professional boundary in a huggy touchy feely I don't want to risk getting sued environment hug) will literally ruin someone's night. 

    SNS - this one's for the pro's given what you've said OP because it's going to become an issue later on especially if you choose to have children where they will literally touch your FI to death (it's what kids do in the tactile years - though it's typically Moms that get "touched out"), or even you for that matter wanting simple affection.  And, you don't want your wedding night entirely ruined because he was overstimulated because Great Aunt Huggymonster insisted she grant him her well wishes hug known as immersion therapy.  I'm not saying "his boundaries are out of whack", those absolutely should be respected, it's the "it's going to ruin his day" for an event  that it's producing a reaction NOW at the THOUGHT of it, even though it hasn't happened yet.  That's where the tipping point is.
    That's pretty much where I am too.

    I have friends who don't like to be touched.   They just don't.   I respect that and we aren't touchy feely.   That said, when those friends were married there was a quick hug and that seemed to be OK.  There was a receiving line in their weddings where they made that work.

    Also ditto that kids just are affectionate.   So should you ever procreate understand that they do not understand personal space.   They will lay on you, put their faces up to yours and pick your noses.   They just do.  So if touching is evening - ruining then I really really recommend looking into ways to be able to deal with physical contact.


    MesmrEweahoyweddingsouthernbelle0915
  • Fair warning, table visits tend to get hugs doled out as well - mostly from older folks. They're a huggy generation.

    I'm thinking that your FI could stand partly behind you so there's a barrier. He can still shake hands, half hug {if he's ok with it} but not be close enough to be pulled in for a full hug.

    Is there a compromise he's willing to find on the hugging part? Even half hug?
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  • Table visits will reduce the hugs but will not eliminate them. I'm sorry, but it's just not realistic to expect to go your entire wedding day without getting hugged at some point. 

    I have to agree with PP's that your FI needs to go to therapy and/or learn some coping mechanisms to deal with hugging. If you are considering making an announcement like you suggested (which you should not do, by the way), then this goes beyond mere discomfort. Your FI cannot go the rest of his life allowing one hug to ruin his entire evening. This problem is not going to go away, and it'll only get worse if you two have kids. A lot of children are just naturally touchy-feely with their parents, and while they do need to be taught boundaries about that sort of thing, it's also not healthy for their father to always be annoyed when they hug him. 

    Your FI will probably never be a big fan of hugging (and that's okay, plenty of people aren't), but I definitely think he should get some help in getting a little more comfortable with it so it doesn't ruin otherwise happy occasions for him.
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    short+sassy
  • My H is not a fan of hugging (like I have to tell him when to give me a hug sometimes because it's just not his thing), but he tolerated it at the wedding. He definitely initiated handshakes rather than waiting for someone to come up to him, and we did a receiving line where I stood first to the guests, but I'm sure some hugs still snuck through our defenses. He survived. 
    short+sassyMissKittyDanger
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