Physical closeness and affection can be a good thing. And it’s a healthy sign in communities. You can’t use that as a criteria now since we are in a pandemic, but if we ever get back to normal…
So I was happy one day when I showed a neighbor my new attic. I thought this would be my forever home so I made the attic my own sanctuary. Even all in pink to try to get some privacy from my boys (didn’t work – ended up I also made the best shower so they appeared but I did keep them away from the toilet as much as possible. If you have sons, you know why this is an issue).
She was so thankful I gave her the tour that she left by giving me a big hug. I felt like we were close. And we were. I spent many hours on her porch talking to her and her family members. But the minute she heard a hard truth, she said she didn’t want to talk to me anymore. She never even seem to hear that others had said the same thing and wanted to, or did, take similar actions. All the blame was put on me. Blame, shunning, are signs of an unhealthy community.
So, huggers may be deceiving. If you have seen the movie Toy Story 3, we first meet Lot so Huggin Bear and he says “I’m a hugger.” Later you learn he is in charge of a repressive regime in the daycare center. Just like cohousing start out with the best intentions, if you don’t do your best to learn to be healthy, you could become a dysfunctional group where everyone wants to escape.