Hugging activates the release of oxytocin, which activates the parasympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic nervous systems is responsible for rest and digest activities as well as the state of "tend and befriend" (tending to and befriending yourself, not running around tending to and befriending others). This state is the opposite of "fight, flight or freeze". As women, we need the parasympathetic nervous system to be “in charge”. It helps us calm down and feel safe.