There's an old story about the famous 19th century New Orleans madam, Lulu White, who ran a very successful upper-class bordello.
Lulu herself was quite an accomplished "lady of the evening". Nothing her clients wanted was off-limits. But she did have one rule for herself. She refused, absolutely refused, to allow any client to kiss her on the lips. That, she stated, was personal. Any man who tried it was physically escorted from the property by Lulu's well-muscled, 6' 5" bodyguard.
I think Lulu White had a valid point; lip kissing is personal and you should have a choice in whether you want to be kissed or not.
Now I am not a prude, God knows, nor am I a woman who doesn't enjoy a sexy, steamy kiss. I love kissing! But I draw the line at being kissed on the lips by men I have just met, or those who know my family members and feel that it's okay to plant one on me in greetings or good-byes, or "friends of friends of friends of friends". It's a personal thing for me and I think it should be respected. You may be the nicest guy in the world, my friend may totally adore you, you may have known one of my family members for years but please, don't automatically assume that I want your lips pressed to mine!
In social situations I have been kissed on the lips by men with full, not-so-clean beards, unknown men to whom I have just been introduced at a function, an acquaintance's new boyfriend, and my own guy's colleagues. Weddings are the worst because it is assumed that lip-locking is okay even if you don't know the other person at all. It's "friendly".
Over the last few years I have gotten very good at "head turning". If I sense that a man is zeroing in my lips in a "hi or 'bye there", I can turn my head at the last minute so that his lips hit my cheek instead of his intended target.
Unfortunately, there are times when I misjudge a man's intention and get the lips on lips surprise. And that annoys me to no end.
I have discussed this problem with friends and family; some feel the same way I do, others think I'm making a big deal out of nothing. But I stand my ground on this point. They're my lips and I think I should be the one who has the final say over whose lips touch them.
A good example is a colleague's fiancé whom I met only briefly. At a dinner party a few months later this same guy walks over to where I'm standing, licks his lips and greets me with a lip lock that was way too personal for my tastes.
My colleague laughed at my surprise and said, "That's just the way he is. He likes to kiss pretty women. Take it as a compliment."
I took it as inappropriate.
Now there are men whom I kiss on the lips besides my own established partner and they include close male friends, and colleagues whom I have known for quite a while. But that's it. If anyone feels I'm being anti-social or unfriendly, that's their problem. Do I have to carry a card that states, "Please don't kiss me on the lips unless you're invited to do so?" Come on now!
I find kissing to be sensuous, sexy, hot, erotic, orgasmic, etc. but only if I'm with the person by whom I want to be kissed. In its own way, kissing is like sex; it is certainly a prelude and part of the foreplay to the art of sex. There are people with whom you want to make love and those you would rather not even shake hands. That says it all.
Whether someone wants to be kissed on the lips or not should be a personal choice. A person's lips are not public property. Wait for an invitation. Don't trespass!
© 2012 copyright Kristen Houghton all rights reserved.
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Books by Kristen Houghton:
No Woman Diets Alone - There's Always a Man Behind Her Eating a Doughnut
And Then I'll Be Happy! Stop Sabotaging Your Happiness and Put Your Own Life First
Remember, Hetty? (A Short Story)
Her NEW book, Nourishing Thoughts: The Little Book of Sayings for a Healthy, Happy Life launched May 30, 2012...get your ebook copy today!