Kids Need 17 Hugs a Day

Research shows that children need 17 hugs a day.

At least that is what a needlepoint pillow that was given to me at my third baby’s shower said. It was a sweet thought that was thrown into the crib with the other bedding until baby’s arrival.

no one has ever received too many hugs - Kids Activities Blog

Research shows that children need 17 hugs a day.

Since the shower, that statement has run through my head thousands of times. It was something that I consciously put into practice in my home of three boys.

I am not a huggy person. Our household is a potpourri of sensory issues.

And 17 hugs is a lot!

But it is my  daily goal.

When the boys were little, reaching the goal was pretty easy. I grabbed the chance when I could and even on days that I failed…we still got quite a few hugs in!

Kids Need 17 Hugs a Day - Kids Activities Blog

As the boys have gotten older, it is more challenging. There is definitely no public hugging! That would be mortifying.

When I was regularly not making my goal of 17, I let them in on the secret.  Suddenly they were invested in the goal of 17.  Suddenly it became a competition to out-hug a brother.

Meanwhile, I am racking up the hugs.

Every once in a while, a grumpy boy will be hug-resistant. I will chase him around the house, and it will have us both giggling before it is over.

Even a half-hearted hug is better than no hug.

Our 17 hugs a day has become a part of our family tradition. It is the first thing that is done in the morning and the last thing done before bed.

Lately, I have been on a search for the source of this research. It doesn’t seem to exist. But who is going to refute it?  Who would dare say it isn’t true?

I have empirical evidence and children who feel cheated if they only receive 16 hugs today.

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