Men tend to treat outward signs of affection shown towards other men, especially in public, as a violation of the terms and conditions assigned to “manhood.” It’s easy to be labeled “soft” or “weird” when you learn how to be more vulnerable, and lean into the parts of you that only come out during Golden Girls reruns. The masculine default tends to be to neglect the trauma from the past, and to sweep all of the things that are affecting stability and mental health under the rug. What’s needed most is honesty about what you want and need. And sometimes that’s as simple as love and brotherhood from your crew. That may come in the form hugs (or reruns of the Chappelle Show).
It’s okay to be a hugger. Let folks know it beforehand. It’s okay to feel things, to be honest about some of the stuff that goes bump in the night in your world. And that physical touch from anyone, but especially from a person you love, can be a game changer. What intrigues us about some men’s aversion to embracing their bros, is as newborns, skin-to-skin contact is immediately needed and insanely important. Why would we think certain behaviors that were needed as children are no longer warranted as adults?
We’re here to say hug ya’ bros. Tell them you love them, let them know you care, ask them what’s going on and check-in. Not only can we manifest our thoughts, but we can also manifest the love and compassion we desire and crave, through touch. Oh, and Cambodian breast milk.