Everywhere we look we can see it. Public displays of affection (PDA) have always been a part of our society when it comes to relationships.
It can be seen in the hallways at school, movie theaters, parties, restaurants, etc.
Personally, I have always been against people who take part in severe cases of PDA.
However, after doing some research I have found new insight into why people feel the need to play tonsil hockey in front of everyone else.
In an interesting article printed by the New York Times, PDA can be described as, “affection ranging from a handshake to a passionate kiss.” I am not sure if I agree with this. If I go in for a job interview and my future employer shakes my hand, I do not consider that PDA. I consider it common courtesy. If my future employer tried to kiss me, I think we would be crossing a line.
“They are normally private acts from which others are excluded,” said Charles T. Hill, an associate professor of psychology at Whittier College in California.
Psychologists have found that people can become uncomfortable around acts of PDA because it forces people to become an unwilling audience. I could not agree with this more.
What frustrates me about PDA is that sociologists and psychologists have this notion that if you find PDA uncomfortable, it is because you subconsciously wish you were in that situation and I do not feel that is always the case.
If a couple shares a brief peck to greet one another in public, I think that it is fine. I see nothing wrong with being proud of your relationship. It is the extreme cases that bother me.
I find it to be extremely uncomfortable and irritating when couples hang all over each other in public.
For example, when couples sit on the same side of the table at restaurants; I think that is completely ridiculous.
To bring this issue closer to home, I have even seen couples hanging all over each other in line for food at the CUB.
Again, be proud of your relationship, but when you are on top of each other in line I feel the need to take a few steps back to give you your public “intimate” space.
What really gets to me is that the majority of these couples probably just saw each other an hour before.
There is one form of PDA that I actually think should be accepted more and this is within the gay community.
Thewhig.com reported that gay men generally consider whether or not it is appropriate to display affection to their partners, and I think it is heartbreaking that the gay community feels it has to hide its relationships.
Personally, I still think the same limit of affection should apply whether you are straight or not. Unless you are close to me your relationship is none of my business.
Interestingly enough, thewhig.com also reported that heterosexual men are more likely to engage in PDA with other heterosexual men than gay men are. Call me cynical and maybe heartless, but I think the intimate aspects of your relationship should stay behind closed doors.
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