by Kyle Beard on Wednesday, September 25th, 2019
An intimate relationship is feeling like you are at home when you are with another person. There are only a few people in your life that you can have an intimate relationship with as it involves showing off your vulnerable side. An intimate relationship is about being your true self and loving each other unconditionally.
Physical intimacy is not all about sex, but about hugging, kissing, or not being afraid to touch your partner when you feel like getting closer. Touch can actually decrease cortisol which will calm you down. Physical intimacy may come before emotional intimacy or the other way around. Some feel they need to feel physically intimate before opening up with their partner or others feel they need to be emotionally connected before doing anything physical. Couples should first try to take things slow, such as trying hand-holding, kissing, or cuddling to see if you feel any romantic chemistry with those gestures.
Emotional intimacy is knowing, accepting, and loving your partner for who they are. When you know about your partner’s love for you, you would feel safe and comfortable opening up to them. Telling your partner about your feelings, desires, and dreams will help you both know each other better and will increase your chances of a long-term relationship. It may take time to develop an emotional connection to your partner, but it can be quite easy if you do not overthink it. Start spending time with your partner by talking about each other’s hopes and dreams. Emotional intimacy requires being open and honest with each other instead of being accusatory or judgmental.
Intellectual intimacy is allowing you and your partner to be in agreement with major life decisions and raising kids with similar values. This can mean being in agreement with your children having sex, doing drugs, curfews, healthy lifestyle choices, etc. This type of intimacy allows you to exchange knowledge and pick up a few qualities from each other. It will help both of you be stronger as a team and better people. You both trust each other’s intelligence and would never think to undermine it. You can develop this form of intimacy by talking in-depth about discussions, debates, or conversations of topics of interest. It can be discussions where the topics involve critical responses like politics, books, society, and what is happening in the world. In return, you can acknowledge your partner’s responses and ideas to better develop intellectual intimacy. Talking about these heavy topics can help you both develop mutual respect for each other.
Recreational intimacy is about doing things that you love with your partner. It could be if the two of you have a special place, play sports, explore new places, or prefer to take a walk on the beach. You can develop this intimacy by taking up a hobby together, playing sports, or taking a vacation. Even if the two of you want to get a gym membership or go on a hike to help motivate each other to stay fit. Your physical and mental health will get better and you both will have a lot of fun together.
Financial intimacy is when you and your partner are committed to a common cause in regards to money and choose to stick with it. This can occur when you both are honest with each other about your finances. If you both are willing to be honest about what you are spending on and how much you are spending, then you do not have to hide anything from each other. Once you talk about this, you can then talk about long-term goals like buying a house or your children’s college funds. You two can grow closer to each other if you are honest about these things. You can also be more intimate with each other by spending money on things that are important to both of you like, if you both believe in donating to the same cause or if there is a vacation you two are saving on.
Unconditional intimacy is loving each other no matter what your flaws are. You love each other’s strengths as well as weaknesses. You forgive and forget the mistakes that you both have made. You can still find annoyances with your partner, but it is about trying your best to work around them. For example, if your partner tends to be lazy when it comes to cleaning, you can let your partner know that you will help do half the chores that need to be done around the house and you would appreciate it if you can contribute to other chores like the dishes or the laundry. After some time, your partner will know that this is something important to you and will try to help you.
If you want to have a long-term relationship, intimacy is the most important element the two of you can have. Intimacy can mean anything to both of you as long as it brings you closer to each other than anyone you know. Without intimacy, it is like you are living with a stranger. Intimate relationships do take a lot of work, time, and commitment. By being comfortable communicating with each other on life’s deeper topics and making each other very happy, you are more than capable of making an intimate relationship work.
Located in Centennial, Colorado, Restoration Therapy works with patients who are struggling with addiction, intimacy disorders, and trauma who are seeking treatment. In order to offer patients a more holistic view on healthy sexuality, Restoration Therapy offers individualized and group therapy, workshops, psycho-educational classes, and more to restore the harm brought on by addiction and intimacy issues. For more information, please call us at (720) 446-6585 as we are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.