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Kissing Your Kids on the Lips

Mommy Dearest: Grandparents Kiss Kids on the Lips!

Mommy Dearest –

My husband grew up in a very affectionate family where hugs and kisses were never spared on the children. When my kids were babies and toddlers, I thought nothing of my in-laws giving their grandchildren kisses – be it on the cheek, forehead or lips. But now that the kids are 5 and 8, I'm beginning to get a bit uncomfortable with the lip pecks. Though I have yet to discuss it with them, I don't think they love it either since they are always wiping them off and making fun of their grandfather for doing it. Is it appropriate for me to put an end to this practice? And if so, can it be done without offending the grandparents?

– Kiss and Tell Mommy

To see Mommy Dearest's response,


Dear Kiss and Tell Mommy –

How wonderful for your husband and children to grow up in such an affectionate family. That isn't always the case! Seventy-one percent of LilSugar readers see nothing wrong with planting a kiss on their kids' lips, but if it makes you and your tots uncomfortable, that's another story. I would first ask your tykes how they feel about it. If they would prefer not to be kissed on the lips, I'd sit down with your in-laws and explain that the kids are growing up and are embarrassed by the actions. In all likelihood, the grandparents won't want to risk upsetting anyone and the practice will stop!

– Mommy Dearest

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Source: Flickr User christyscherrer

Join The Conversation
LeiraElle LeiraElle 7 years
Its cute when the kids are young. I vaguely recall doing so with my grandparents, but its fuzzy... thus not traumatizing. But by age 8, I think its a great idea to watch the kids' reaction before making a judgement. If they don't mind, why should you? That said, every culture (and every family) is different, and you just have to go with it as long as the kids don't mind.
nicmic113 nicmic113 7 years
ask the husband to tell them, afterall, theyre his aprents and it may be less awkward coming from their son.
Kellijuana Kellijuana 7 years
Personally, I was not a fan of lip kissing as a child. I have clear memories of eeeeewwww when my grandparents or even mom would kiss my lips. But I love my lil baby's duck lip kisses and so far he does too. :) I dread the day when he is too old to be bothered with hugs and kisses. I agree with rain2rainbows. It is way too easy to lead a child even when you aren't conscious of it. If they get the hint that you think it is icky, they will agree and it might even confuse them about how to feel about the grandparents. Shame is an easy emotion for kids and you don't want them to feel ashamed of loving their grandparents which could develop if they like the kisses but think you don't. If comfort levels are all you are worried about, try a more general approach. Let them know that they can always tell you if something makes them uncomfortable or embarrassed regardless of the source; parents, grandparents, siblings, friends (without bringing up kissing or any other specific situation directly) and that you will work it out with them without making it a big deal so that no extra unease is piled on top. Try to find an opportunity when something else has made them feel awkward to bring the conversation up so it's not a sudden and confusing topic. Good luck! In-law tension would not be fun! But you gotta look out for your kids ^_^
TammyO TammyO 7 years
My husband is from Europe and he always said before that when he has kids it will never be mouth kissing which he just find weird...flash forward to our kids lives and they are constantly getting mouth kisses by both of us. And they are just quick pecks. They are still very young and so adorable to us that we can't help it! And the kids don't find it weird either. I think you have to go with what the kid finds comfortable. If your kids don't want mouth kisses then they shouldn't have to give them at all to their grandparents.
lickety-split lickety-split 7 years
We had this issue with my parents I finally said something like "it so sweet that you don't mind kissing them, what with all the germies and gross things kids put in their mouths". Came to a grinding hault: immediately.
amber512 amber512 7 years
My husband and I do mouth kisses with our nieces and nephews. Although, when the older two got a bit bigger (they are now 4 and 6) we slowly shifted to cheek kisses. The twins are 9 months old and we still do it with them.
MonkiChriz MonkiChriz 7 years
Ew, gross! Totally agree with skigurl. Grandparents are just spreading germs and traumatizing the kids.
Studio16 Studio16 7 years
I actually wouldn't say anything to the grandparents, because then you'll just look weird and overprotective to them. (Even though you're not, but they'll likely see you as that anyway.) You should just tell the kids to turn their heads to the side when giving kisses.
skigurl skigurl 7 years
Akk, I am not a fan of lip kisses except for two people in a relationship. I would do as lilsugar suggests and ask the children, then ask the grandparents to stop it.
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