When you walk into a room of Latinos, you know you’re in for a lot of hugging and kissing. But walking into a room of non-Latinos brings up an anxiety like no other…
Growing up in a Latino family meant I knew what a “proper” greeting was…
a kiss on the cheek is a normal greeting for friends and family in the Spanish and Latino culture 😩 y'all need stop being so extra
— let (@crypticImj) May 28, 2016
It wasn’t extra. For us, it’s totally normal.
A kiss, a hug, and… maybe another kiss.
Repeat and repeat.
And god forbid I ever forgot to say bye to someone.
This is the cardinal Latinx sin.
After all those years of training, I thought I had it all down…
That’s what mami said!
Until I started meeting a lot of non-Latinxs who weren’t used to all that affection.
sometimes I have problems greeting friends who arent latino like if I cant kiss u on the cheek then what do I do?do we hug should i wave idk
— jayla (@mandabaela) October 21, 2013
Existential crisis begins.
When I met my first gringa roommate, she waved hello and quickly looked away…
I was left hanging even trying to attempt a handshake.
Nothing to see here, y’all.
When I moved away, my new friends and coworkers included many non-Latinxs who often only offered a nod hello.
— Violeta (@VioletYorlo) November 4, 2016
I get it. We’re not all used to all this smothering.
In this struggle, I did learn a new technique popular amongst non-Latinxs: The Irish Goodbye.
People actually left a party without saying goodbye to every person in the room!? HOW?
So I applied this every time I had to say goodbye, you know to avoid awkwardness, but my family was NOT having it.
They have a radar for this sort of thing.
After a few years of dancing around awkward hugs, handshakes, kisses and goodbyes, I decided to embrace it.
Many us Latinos have become experts at reading what’s comfortable for every person.
I became the person that always announces “I’m coming in!”
Come here, just bring it in.
That doesn’t always make it less awkward.
I know hugs and kisses can be a very foreign idea to some.
…But it was a positive if you wanted to say hello to a new cutie in the room.
The best part of being in a Latino family: you get to kiss cute strangers on the cheek because that's how you say hello and goodbye. 😉
— Karla ⛵ (@KarlaMilicich) August 2, 2017
I can’t help it! It’s good manners!