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Transforming Intimacy: Rethinking Expectations on Intimacy

"Intimacy dysfunction is often a reflection of unmet emotional needs. It is through understanding and addressing these needs that true healing can take place”

~Esther Perel

It's important to stress that intimacy is more than just physical. While physical intimacy is an integral aspect of a relationship, intimacy can also be emotional, intellectual, and spiritual. It's important to recognise and cultivate all forms of intimacy in a relationship.

Intimacy is defined as a close and personal connection between two people that involves emotional, physical, intellectual, and/or spiritual closeness.

It is a feeling of deep familiarity, trust, and vulnerability that allows individuals to share their innermost thoughts, feelings, and desires with another person.

Intimacy can take many forms, including physical touch, emotional support, intellectual stimulation, and spiritual connection.

It is an essential component of healthy relationships and can bring a sense of fulfillment, joy, and meaning to our lives.

Growing up, most of us were not encouraged to talk about intimacy, much less voice our intimacy needs. There was a lot of shame and secrecy surrounding anything intimate or sexual. Because of this, many of us struggle in this area of our romantic relationship.

Here are 8 key points to help you create a fulfilling intimate relationship

1. Communication is key: In order to build intimacy, it's important to communicate openly and honestly with your partner. This means being vulnerable and sharing your thoughts and feelings, even if they are difficult to express.

2. Trust and respect: Intimacy requires trust and respect between partners. It's important to prioritise the needs and boundaries of both partners in order to create a safe and healthy environment for intimacy to thrive.

3. Consensual and respectful: Intimacy should always be consensual and respectful. It's important to prioritise the needs and boundaries of both partners in order to create a safe and healthy environment for intimacy to thrive.

4. Rethinking gender roles: Traditional gender roles can limit intimacy by creating expectations around who should initiate physical contact or emotional conversations. By challenging these roles, we can create more space for intimacy to flourish.

5. Embracing diversity: Intimacy can look different for different people and cultures. By embracing diversity and being open to new experiences, we can expand our understanding of intimacy and create more meaningful connections.

6. Letting go of expectations: Sometimes our expectations around intimacy can get in the way of actually experiencing it. By letting go of these expectations and being present in the moment, we can create more authentic and fulfilling connections with others.

7. Quality over quantity: Intimacy is not about the frequency of physical contact, but rather the quality of the connection between partners. It's important to prioritise meaningful and authentic connections over superficial or forced intimacy.

8. Self-love and self-care: Intimacy starts with ourselves. By practicing self-love and self-care, we can build a stronger sense of self and create more meaningful connections with others.

Intimacy can look different for different people and relationships. It's important to recognise and respect the unique needs and desires of each partner in order to create a fulfilling and satisfying intimate connection.

It's also important to note that Intimacy will change over time. It can evolve and change over the course of a relationship. I suggest that we stay open to new experiences and communicate with your partner about your changing needs and desires.

Finally, it's essential to remember that intimacy is a personal and complex experience, and everyone's journey will look different.

Setting boundaries in intimate relationships is a required skill, you can join the self-paced Boundaries course: How to Say No Without Apolog and learn how to set and reinforce your boundaries.

Lots of hugs until next time.

Faith xoxo

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