Girl Scouts warns parents: Daughters don't owe hugs to anyone during holidays

'She doesn’t owe anyone a hug. Not even at the holidays'

With the holiday season right around the corner, the Girl Scouts of the USA is issuing a reminder to parents of girls: “She doesn’t owe anyone a hug,” according to a press release on the topic.

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Young girls might “get the wrong idea about consent and physical affection” if they’re told to hug someone, instead of doing so out of her own volition, the release states.

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“The notion of consent may seem very grown-up and like something that doesn’t pertain to children,” said Girl Scouts’ developmental psychologist Andrea Bastiani Archibald, “but the lessons girls learn when they’re young about setting physical boundaries and expecting them to be respected last a lifetime, and can influence how she feels about herself and her body as she gets older.”

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Archibald added that pushing girls into hugging people they don’t want to can impact their feelings toward themselves and their bodies.

 (Photo by Steve Jennings/Getty Images for Girl Scouts of the USA)

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“Plus,” the release states, “sadly, we know that some adults prey on children, and teaching your daughter about consent early on can help her understand her rights, know when lines are being crossed, and when to go to you for help.”

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