by Kyle Beard on Friday, November 28th, 2014
The American culture represents an over-sexualized people. The emphasis placed upon physical attraction and sexual pleasure by the media influences all Americans at some level. We are bombarded with sitcoms and movies, polarizing relationships between the sexualized one-night stand and the emotionally-present, plutonic friend. Too often we foster relationships to have either emotional or physical intimacy. The recent arrival of the term ‘emotional affair’ shows the presence and influence of this dichotomy in our culture.
True intimacy, however, is multi-dimensional. Physical, emotional, spiritual, and intellectual intimacy exists, while the list can continue. Creating a relationship solely around one component belittles the true potential of intimacy, experiencing a remnant of the possible. This remnant is like seeing the world through only one color, the image exists but lacking the luster and beauty seen only through the spectrum.
True intimacy occurs when we connect to people through a range of intimacy. Connecting through sharing one’s thoughts and emotions, a slightly longer hug expressing affection, or listening to one’s spouse talk about their day without offering thoughts or advice, all these examples show intimacy in different ways. Yet they all share an important aspect, connecting with another person that fosters intimacy. This holiday season, try connecting to your spouse, friend, or family member in new way, perhaps in ways you never thought about before. The task may be challenging at first, but the rewards are simple, a breadth of connection and intimacy possibly beyond what you thought possible.