HOUSTON – Somebody recently told me that a person can gain 10 minutes of life with every forehead kiss received. If that’s the case, let’s get to puckering up and live forever. Right?

But what do forehead kisses mean anyway? Let’s see here.

Smooching lips to a forehead don’t really seem like a sexual advance like a slobbering, tonsil-hockey-type mouth kiss would. No, it’s much more gentle, thoughtful and meaningful – as least, I think so.

Obviously, a forehead kiss from a mother to a child in a crib and on the verge of entering dreamland is easy to comprehend, but a kiss on the forehead from a love interest says something different. It implies the notion of a deep, non-sexual affection, respect and adoration – three key elements that contribute to intimacy.

  1. Affection, by definition, is a fond attachment, devotion.
  2. Aretha Franklin taught us about respect. A forehead kiss says “I care about you” without saying “only my sexual appetite for you is insatiable”. Show your love interest that other side of your desire separately.
  3. Adoration implies a deep love or esteem. The act of kissing is a physical connection between two people, but a kiss to the forehead could say, “I think the world of you.”

To me, the little, sometimes-unmentioned actions speak greater volumes than the louder, more obvious gestures. Whether it be a random Hallmark card, a little note strategically hidden in a jacket pocket or the effort to become friends with her yapping Chihuahau – the little things can be so much more meaningful, just like a forehead kiss.

The word kiss in Latin is osculum, which literally means “little mouth”. So squishing those lips together and putting your little mouth to his or her forehead could reveal just how you really feel without having to stumble over the words.

Then again, a forehead kiss might say: “I care about you, but I’m late for work.”

Omnia vincit amor. Haec scripsi Travie. Venerabilis es.