Nice Girl Syndrome: Of Forced Hugs & Boundary Setting

In You Can Insist Upon & Apology, But You Shouldn’t Insist Upon A Hug, Deanna & AAG agree that setting physical boundaries is important — even when it hurts another’s feelings to be rebuffed:

My absolute terror of being thought rude or of hurting someone’s feelings was one reason I found it so difficult to ward off unwanted contact, both sexual and otherwise, well into adulthood.


  1. I really hate when friends tell their kids to give me a kiss or a hug, and the kids say no, and then the parents try to make them do it anyhow!

    I always so no, it’s okay – they don’t have to…..we need to stop the whole thing on “having” to hug and kiss someone.

  2. I agree completely.

    I tell you, if you teach children better now, not only will less people suffer from “good girl” (or boy) complexes (doing what they don’t want to for fear of hurting someone’s feelings), but more people will have to learn to deal with rejection — and life is full of rejection.

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