I came across this. I have not been doing this but I will from now on. I do think it is important. I remember teaching one of my kids to do this when someone at school reacted to being hugged by my child.
Chileans always hug. It happens constantly. Everyone hugs everyone. Sister missionaries only hug the girls and women, of course. There is always a hug goodbye for everyone in the room (or for sister missionaries, for every girl or woman in the room).
Now I am not in Chile. I am in the U.S.A. I need to remember to ask permission. It is a good way for kids to know that they get to give or not give permission. This will help prevent kids from being groomed by sexual predators by using physical touch.
I am very compassionate, but I need to first feel compassion and then ask the person if he or she would like a hug. On a personal self-note, I must not hug someone if I feel uncomfortable with it. I must say that I do not want a hug, and move away. I must stand up for myself.
So must you. If you feel uncomfortable with any physical touch, you must stand up for yourself and tell them you do not like it. If you feel comfortable with it but it it is inappropriate, then you should still tell them to stop. If your conscience pricks you or your gut instinct says it is not good, listen to that instinct or conscience. Trust that feeling and say no.
Always Ask Permission to Give Someone a Hug