Victoria Beckham's daughter, Harper Seven, turned 5 years old on July 10. Beckham shared a picture on Instagram of her giving Harper a birthday kiss on the lips. It's a sweet moment that she captioned, "Happy Birthday baby girl. We all love you so much, X @davidbeckham @brooklynbeckham kisses from mummy X."
The photo has gone on to illicit more than 5,000 comments and reactions. The internet also has varying opinions on whether or not it's appropriate for a mother to kiss her child on the lips in general. A number of commenters felt the kiss was inappropriate. One commenter wrote, "I see something wrong because its her lips, and the kid is topless." Another said they thought it was "TOTALLY WRONG." Someone on Twitter left the comment below in response to Buzzfeed's coverage.
And even more commenters begun defending the fashion designer. One wrote "Beautiful photo showing the love between a mummy and her daughter. NOTHING wrong at all, in fact everything right..." and another shared a similar response saying "This is a sweet picture! Ignore the creepers who see something wrong!!!"
Some sites are even having professionals weigh in. BBC asked a social etiquette expert, Liz Brewer, what she thought about the kiss. Brewer's response was a bit surprising to read. "Normally with a member of your family you don't kiss on the lips unless it's your husband," she told the site. "With children, I wouldn't have thought it's a particularly good habit to get into but it's her child and she's at liberty to do what she thinks is best." She added — "I wouldn't say it sets a particularly good example." The Telegraph also published an op-ed on the photo. The writer, a mother of two, writes "Children are eminently kissable and for good reason. Positive touch, including cuddles, kisses, affectionate rough and tumble and other games is absolutely essential to healthy development. There’s heaps of evidence out there that touch is not just good for bonding, for young children it’s a biological need." I texted my own mother what she thought of it, since she raised two girls. I asked her to look up the photo and tell me if she thought it was appropriate.
"Yes," she responded, "but it's also a good way to spread germs." Such a mom response.