Girl Scouts want you to avoid forcing hugs this holiday season

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(WJRT) - (11/20/17) - Girl Scouts of America is issuing a pre-holiday PSA that could spark some worthwhile conversation at your family gathering.

It's titled, "Reminder: She Doesn’t Owe Anyone a Hug. Not Even at the Holidays."

In the 5 paragraph message, they're suggesting you refrain from forcing your daughter to give hugs and kisses if she doesn't want to.

The organization's developmental psychologist says it sends the wrong idea about consent and physical affection.

Dr. Andrea Bastiani Archibald says, “...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. Plus, 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.”

Bottom line: You don't want her to think she owes someone.

Give your child the space to decide when and how to show affection.

There are many other ways to show appreciation, thankfulness, and love that don't require physical contact.

You can read the full PSA by the Girl Scouts by visiting the 'Related Links' section.

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