Hidden Secrets His Hug Reveals
The way your guy holds you close is tightly tied to his feelings for you. Use our tips to unlock the meaning behind his embrace.
The Sneak Attack
He comes up behind you and puts his arms around your chest.
Even if he hasn't said the words yet, a guy who grabs you like this is in love. He's blanketing your body with his, your feet are intertwined, you're leaning into him.… There's a real sense of oneness here. "By covering your back, he's conveying that he wants to shelter you," says body-language expert Patti Wood, author of Success Signals . "He's also flexing his masculinity — this displays his strength and dominance."
The one exception is if your man almost always hugs you from the back. "That might mean he craves a closer connection but thinks you're unavailable," says Christopher Blazina, PhD, author of The Secret Lives of Men . "He avoids hugging face-to-face because he's worried you're not into him."
He gently strokes your back while holding you.
This affectionate gesture signifies that your guy cares deeply about you. "The back is a very vulnerable part of the body," Wood says. "You can't see your back, so being touched there can be startling." Softly rubbing you on such an exposed zone shows that he wants to nurture and protect you. But don't be surprised if his tender caresses soon turn into heavy petting. "Because rubbing has a sexual rhythm, this type of touch can turn him on," Blazina notes.
It's also possible that your man is upset and needs comforting (even if he doesn't verbally fess up to feeling sad). "Having one's back caressed is a soothing touch that people often instinctively crave when they're down," says Janine Driver, president of the Body Language Institute. "A man might rub your back because, unconsciously, that's what he's desiring." If you think he seems a bit off, give him plenty of TLC and ask him if everything's okay.
He thumps your upper back during an embrace.
Okay, this hug is loaded. Let's start with the worst-case scenario: He's not into you. "This is how men hug their buddies; it's not romantic at all," Blazina says. "When a guy frequently embraces you like this, it means the relationship's not growing." For example, say your man or crush gives you this half-assed hug when you're out at a bar. He might be doing it to show other people that he is not fully committed to you and is still on the market. Should he dole out The Pat when you're alone, he is probably not feeling a spark anymore or is mad at you.
Wait — don't freak out yet! According to Blazina, if The Pat only happens once in a while, rather than on a regular basis, it's not a red flag. And there are a few other reasons behind it: (1) If he thumps you when you're about to do something scary, such as give a wedding speech, that's a gesture of encouragement (like the way coaches pat players on the back). (2) If you're in public, it could simply mean he isn't into PDA and wants to keep things casual. (3) If your man is preoccupied — on his iPhone, watching TV — don't take it personally. His mind is temporarily elsewhere.
The Waist Wrap
He encircles your lower back with his hands and pulls you tightly toward him.
Hubba hubba! The dude wants you. "A pelvis-to-pelvis embrace shows he'd like to merge with you sexually," Wood says. The farther down your body his hands travel, the more fired up he is.
There's one last thing to take note of: Does he touch his head to yours? "Then he wants to merge his thoughts with yours as well," Wood adds. Translation: If it's a new relationship, you're more than a fling to him. If you've been together for a while, he's ready to get more emotionally and mentally intimate… after you hit the sack, that is.
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The sneak attack and the rub I agree with but I'm not so sure about the others.
I hugged my sister in-law and realized I was patting her butt. I have no subconscious desire for her. I was just patting and her butt was in the way. lol. At least she didn't say anything. Life could have been a bitch.
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- Go camping
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