E-mails sweeter with kisses?

30 Jan

A British friend recently remarked that my text messages are so stark and blunt because I never end them with a kiss (or “x” in the text messaging world).

She’s absolutely right. Though I don’t have any objections to people signing off with a “x” when they speak to me, the custom of signing off texts, e-mails, and to some extent Facebook messages to your friends and family in this way is still something that I can’t wrap my head around.

Signing off with a kiss in Canada would probably only be used in e-mails to your Grandmother, a best friend (only between girls), or a text message to a potential new partner (aka. Dear Michael, I had a great time on our date last night x). Even a potential partner situation might be overstepping the mark.

After my friend made the comment, I googled signing off with a x and discovered loads of fellow foreigners flabbergasted by the British use of “x”.

“I am just curious about something I have noticed British friends doing,” said one girl on a Lonely Planet travel forum. “In e-mails they often sign off with x’s and here in the US, this type of thing is reserved for just partners and parents. It’s a pretty personal and affectionate thing to do that we don’t do for friends usually”.

Advice came to the girl in the form of people telling her to basically put an “x” into every message to everyone, no matter whom she is e-mailing.

Another Brit told her she uses them for everything or she actually feels rude. But then when she was in Indonesia and her friends there were asking her why she always uses them.

I’m curious how such a personal expression of warmth became so accepted and encouraged by all, but I couldn’t find much on the history.

If you can enlighten me, please do because otherwise I’m sticking with signing off with my name.

Maiya

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One Response to “E-mails sweeter with kisses?”

  1. Vanessa Pagé February 4, 2012 at 3:53 am #

    Ack! The only time I have written x or xoxo in a text is when my bf was saying “I love you” and I wasn’t ready to say it back so I stuck in an xoxo to make him feel less unloved. I would be freaked out a bit if *anyone* wrote an x in a text

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