Is this an intimate hug, or just a friendly one? Hugs are amazing because they allow you to show someone how much they mean to you, but they can also be misinterpreted.
Hugs are a universal expression of love and affection between loved ones and friends, lovers, and even strangers. But is a hug just a hug? Learn the Signs That a Hug Is More Romantic Than Casual.
I am sure you have had different hugs throughout your life. Having a hug with your granny is not the same as having a hug with your best friend. It’s not the same as giving an old friend a bear hug as it is to your sweetheart.
The distance between the two forms of embrace is enormous.
The reason you're wondering if this embrace is romantic
It’s possible that you’re under the impression that the person doing the hugging determines whether it’s friendly or romantic. It’s romantic when your partner embraces you and pleasant when your pals do the same. But things aren’t usually so cut and clear.
Some hugs from your significant other may not be romantic. After a long day, sometimes all you want is an affectionate embrace. And it could be romantic if a friend hugs you as they leave a party.
The question is, why do you care? Perhaps you’re concerned that your connection has plateaued at the friend level. You might be wondering if a friend is romantically interested in you. Is there someone at work you fear might have romantic intentions toward you, such as a coworker or even your boss?
These are reasonable concerns when comparing romantic hugs to friendship ones.
In that case, what distinguishing features do they share?
When comparing a romantic embrace and a casual one,
Not every hug is the same. They can have a deeper meaning. A hug may be the first step toward a kiss, but it can also be used to show sympathy or express sorrow. They can be greetings or farewells.
But, what features or signals are you getting a romantic hug vs. a friendly hug?
1. Friendly Hug
A hug between friends will typically be quite light on the touching. It stays away from being overly strict. Even though most hugs involve squeezing bodies together, the focus should be on the embrace when it’s meant to be friendly rather than on how physically near the two people are.
If you’re meeting someone for the first time, you might only brush shoulders, embrace on the side, or pat them on the back.
2. Romantic Hug
A romantic hug leaves a lasting impression. This hug is longer than the kind you may offer a buddy just before you sit down to lunch. An embrace better describes a romantic hug.
3. Friendly Hug
During a warm hug, you might pat the other person on the back. Consider the warmth and comfort of a hug shared between old college roommates after many years apart. With this embrace, you can rekindle a friendship or offer congratulations.
A warm welcome into the family may accompany a warm embrace from the father-in-law. It’s not overly dramatic, but it’s always full of affirmation and usually involves a slap on the back.
4. Romantic hug
In a romantic embrace, the two people hug each other very tightly and touch each other passionately. In this case, instead of patting them on the back, we’d be rubbing them. It’s possible that this kind of physical contact also lies beneath a platonic friendship. It’s common practice to bring your faces together in a passionate embrace.
Consider giving your significant other a big embrace. Most of your bodies are probably pressed up against each other right now. From your cheekbones to your waist, you are completely engulfed in touch. Unlike a normal embrace, only one shoulder or similar area actually makes contact.
5. Friendly Hug
Arms are crossed during a pleasant hug. This means that your right arm may go under their armpit while your left arm remains above. In contrast to the more intimate forms of physical affection, this hug is meant to be lighthearted and friendly.
The arms intertwining in an antagonistic fashion conveys a sense of friendship.
6. Romantic hug
Even if it is impossible to look at the other person’s face when hugging, making eye contact before or after the hug can spark romantic feelings. Keeping eye contact during a hug might turn it into a kiss, which is especially common in romantic situations.
7. Friendly Hug
A hug from the side is usually a kind gesture. The pulling in of a friend with one arm from the side is a sign of affection rather than romance. Think of all the group shots and family photos when everyone is holding hands or at least arms around each other’s shoulders.
8. Romantic hug
Love grows when two people embrace and caress one other. Similarly, touching someone’s head or arm might be a comforting gesture when they’re feeling down. This kind of touch is more likely romantic when it is given on the lower back or chest.
9. Friendly Hug
When you give someone a nice hug, you could contact shoulders or even face to face. However, you maintain a space between your waists and hips. In the vast majority of genuine embraces, these parts stay apart.
This refers to the private and sensitive parts of the body. Someone seeking a passionate embrace may hug you tightly and crush their entire body against you.
10. Romantic hug
Putting one’s arms around the other’s is one possible form of a romantic embrace. This means the individual receiving the embrace is essentially seized and has less agency than usual. Hugs typically involve the larger person squeezing the smaller one, with the smaller person tucked under, the larger person’s arms.
An imbalance of power like this can be threatening or tempting, neither of which are exactly friendly.
11. Friendly Hug
A hug between friends is always mutually agreed upon. When one party proposes a hug, the other must accept it. A friendly hug is more appropriate than a passionate one when there is a power imbalance in a couple’s relationship.
12. Romantic hug
The upper back, shoulders, and arms are off-limits in a passionate embrace. It’s customary to embrace close companions in such settings. If one of the people in the hug is shorter, the other person will likely put their arms around their partner’s face and neck, whereas if both people are of the same height, the embrace will likely center around the waist and lower back.
Now, these aren’t the only distinctions that can be made between a friendly hug and a romantic embrace. Indeed, there may be an infinite number of variations depending on the nature of the connection, the individual involved, and the circumstances at play.
13. Unlike friendly hugs, romantic ones have a distinct physical quality.
A friendly hug is different from a romantic one in many ways, and you may tell the difference even if you aren’t familiar with the indications above. Not simply the physical act of hugging separates these two embraces, but the emotions each evokes.
You might believe a hug will only be pleasant, but the reality is that it could spark love feelings. It’s also possible to end a date with an embrace, despite having no romantic feelings for the person you just hugged.
It’s probably just a nice hug if it makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. It could be a passionate embrace if you’re feeling excited or close. On the other hand, if you’re feeling violated, overpowered, or just plain uncomfortable, this is the wrong kind of embrace to respond with.
Anyone from a relative to a friend to a coworker to a boss can start this kind of hug. A hug like this indicates a more serious issue, an abuse of authority, and a disregard for your safety and comfort. The hug must end, and the displeasure must be voiced and reported.
The essential thing you should learn from this is that hugs are perfectly natural expressions of affection between individuals who care about each other in various ways, be they platonic, romantic, or even just friendly. When you are uncertain about your connection or another person’s feelings, it can help you have a firm grasp of the distinction between these terms.
Although this information is useful, the best approach to tell the difference between a romantic hug and a friendly hug is to focus on how you feel in the moment.