Stepdad tells daughter no kissing her brothers on the lips, does it matter?

Tracy - posted on 07/01/2013 ( 3 moms have responded )

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Hi all, as I was kissing my daughter on the lips goodnight tonight, she told me that her stepdad told her that she wasn't allowed to kiss her brothers or him on the lips because it spreads germs. I told her I would talk to him about this and when I asked him he said he never kisses her or his own two sons aged 2 and 4 on the lips. I don't think i agree with this as I think that until the kids are old enough to say that they don't like it then I think it's an acceptable form or communication/ affection between our immediate family to show them our love for each other. I'm just wondering if it is his way of distancing himself from my daughter but in the meantime he is making her feel almost like she has some disease that means she can't be affectionate towards her family. I'm almost certain he does kiss the boys on the lips but he didn't want to get into an argument about it. What are everyone else's thoughts? I'm just interested if anyone else has this issue. Thanks

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I agree with Carol. I never saw parents kissing their kids on the lips until I married my husband and saw his family do it. I thought it was totally strange, but I tried it with my son once when he was about 14 months old. I was always looking for ways to bond with him, and my husband's family seems so close and bonded, so I thought "why not?", but it was just weird and I didn't like it so I never did it again. My husband did on occasion, but not any more (our kid is 8 now). He was never bothered that I didn't do it, and I was never bothered that he did.

I think perhaps he is just uncomfortable with it and made up the germ excuse because it is simple enough for a young child to grasp and allowed him to avoid more sensitive topics he might not be ready to tackle with her. Step parents are watched very carefully, and if he is not from a family who feels normal about this, he could be worried about what others would think of him.

Carol - posted on 07/01/2013

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My family never kissed on the lips - except for married couples. My husband's family apparently grew up kissing kids on the lips. I thought it was the weirdest thing. To be honest, I was a little uncomfortable about it at first, but it was always obvious that all of them who did it meant it just in normal kind of affection towards our kids. They stopped after a couple years old. I think each family is different.

If your new husband is like I used to be, it just takes time to adjust to the difference. Also take into consideration how it must feel to be a stepdad and all the connotations that can bring. I've been a stepmom and can tell you that every move feels as if you are watched by the "other" side's family and friends even in a good environment. It must be worse as a stepdad to a little girl. He might be afraid that she'll kiss him on the lips and people will assume the worst of him.

Amy - posted on 07/01/2013

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I would drop it but carefully observe him with his own sons to see if he does or does not and then have a follow up nonconfrontational conversation if he does.

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