What’s in a Kiss?

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, what better subject to discuss than kissing?

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Kisses … I like kisses. Real or virtual, I am definitely a kissy kind of girl! Of course, they are not all the same and neither do they all have the same meaning. The ones you give your children are different to the ones you give your partner, which again are different to the ones you give your family and the ones to your friends. Then there are the virtual ones that you put on the end of a text or an email. All very different kisses with their own rules. Yes, kisses have rules.

The Virtual Kiss Rule

Putting a single kiss at the end of a text or e-mail can be seen as another way of signing off; a way of saying ‘bye, see you soon’ or ‘thanks very much’ or ‘best wishes’. It doesn’t actually mean you want to give that person a physical kiss but it is a sign of sincerity.  Sometimes, a text or email will warrant two kisses. To me, this means you are good friends with that person and are fond of them, usually close friends and family. It means more than just ‘best wishes’, it’s another way of saying ‘Take care, love from’.

X    X

The Rogue Kiss

Hands up those who have been guilty of popping a kiss at the end of a text or email to a work colleague … very embarrassing, especially if it’s your boss! Well, that’s the Virtual Rogue Kiss. The one you automatically pop on the end of a text or email to  a work colleague, the bank manager, a friend of your son, who you were only texting in the first place because your son had switched his phone off and wouldn’t return your calls and now his friend thinks you’re some sort of cougar, it’s on these sort of ones that you only notice this rogue kiss once you’ve hit the send button. (What do you mean, no? Surely, I’m not the only one to have done at least one of the above, oh, okay, ALL of the above at one time or another.)

So what of real kisses? Although I put kisses on my text messages, it doesn’t necessarily follow that I will give that person a real kiss when I see them (which is a relief to my son and his friends). Real kisses have their own etiquette.

The One Kiss, One Hug Rule

I kiss my family when I see them and this is also followed by a hug. One kiss, one hug but can be repeated several times. That’s my immediate family. My cousins, however, have a sub-rule, the Kiss Each Side of the Cheek Without Really Kissing Rule. Whilst acknowledging the fact we are related, it’s not so full on and has a rather more polite and formal air to it.

The Friendship Kiss

No need to kiss each other hello or goodbye, unless (a) you’ve not seen each other for a while (b) you won’t be seeing each other for a while or (c) one of you has needed a shoulder to cry on.  This is the ‘I’m thinking of you’ or ‘you know where I am’ kiss.

There is, of course, the kiss for your partner but that’s probably for a different post, possibly even a different blog! 😉


It seems to me that the whole kissing business, virtual or real, is a bit of a minefield. Negotiating how many kisses to put on a text or email is one thing but trying to work it out in real life can be just as bad. Even once you’ve decided on how many kisses, you still have another problem to overcome – which side to go for? Left or right first? It can all get very messy with the bobbing of heads from one side to another, before finally making a decision on which side to go for. Even then it can still go very wrong. You commit yourself to the left or right, only to realise, horrors of horrors, they have opted for the same way as you and it’s too late to divert  … ouch … you get a Glaswegian Kiss instead!

Am I the only one with kissing rules and regulations?

Sue  x