Is it wrong to kiss kids? This expert says “yes” 453

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Grandkids, and little people in general, can be irresistibly kissable, but a child psychologist has come out and said kissing them on the lips is wrong.

Dr Charlotte Reznick told The Sun newspaper that giving kids a peck on the lips is “too sexual” and can be confusing for children. She explained that the mouth is an erogenous zone, therefore a kiss on a child’s lips from a parent can be “stimulating”.

“If mummy kisses daddy on the mouth and vice versa, what does that mean, when I, a little girl or boy, kiss my parents on the mouth?” she said.

Sydney-based clinical psychologist Heather Irvine-Rundle told News Corp, the American psychologist’s statement was ridiculous.

“It’s an outrageous thing to say to parents. It absolutely does not take into account a special relationship that parents have with their children and the non-sexual nature from which that particular behaviour comes,” she told

“It’s not sexual at all and I think the fact that it’s something we’re happy to do in public means that there’s nothing sinister about it.”

Clinical psychologist Sally-Anne McCormack says, “There’s absolutely no way that kissing a young child on the lips is confusing for them in any way. That’s like saying breastfeeding is confusing.”

Did you – and do you – kiss your children on the lips? What about your grandchildren? Surely whether lip-smacking is acceptable depends on the family and how affectionate they are overall?

And is it different for men and women? Can Grandma kiss her grandson on the lips? Can Granddad kiss his granddaughter?


What do you make of this child psychologist’s statement? Do you think it’s okay for parents – and grandparents to kiss children on the lips? 


Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. When my grandies were babies, a bit dribbly and snotty, we either did noses or kisses on cheeks only. As they grew up, it was still ok to be cuddly, but the cheek or nose thing still stuck.

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  2. Yes of course…..isn’t it the intent & energy behind it that children respond too. Really guys, extreme to say the least, when does it end…..,…

  3. My family don’t like kissing on the lips, so I don’t. However I do believe it is good within the family – my brothers and our cousins still kiss on the lips. No, it is definitely not sexual in any way! To me cheek kissing is for friends. I think this is part of the modern fear of germs.

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