David Beckham was on a safari in Tanzania with his family last week so, naturally, he snagged a bunch of photos of the trip to share with his 37.6 million Instagram followers. But one of the soccer star’s pictures stirred up a bit of controversy: a photo of him kissing his 5-year-old daughter on the lips. Hundreds of commenters shared their disapproval of the pic, captioned “Kiss for Daddy”, saying that David’s actions were inappropriate and that he’s not behaving like an appropriate father should.
“Geez, what is going on with humanity? One moment men don’t show affection now they are too affectionate,” posted one user. “Some things belong to a man and wife only…” wrote another. “On the lips? What has the world come to?” said another.
Parents kissing their children is a surprisingly divisive issue. Even the psychology community is split on the possible effects of parents kissing their children on the lips: some psychologists deem the act “too sexual” and confusing for kids, while others say it’s a perfectly normal, healthy action. But this isn’t limited to Britain alone. In the U.S., the act is often subject to the same scrutiny. Recently, actress Hillary Duff was subject to a barrage of angry comments when she shared a photo in which she was smooching her son at Disneyland.
As for the Beckham family, this isn’t the first time they’ve riled up their followers by showing their kids affection. Last summer, people were similarly outraged when Victoria Beckham shared a similar photo of her kissing her daughter Harper on the lips. Yet, while the negative commenters tend to get the most attention, David’s photo has also received a flood of support from others, receiving nearly two million likes and thousands of positive comments.