Intimacy is one of the foundations of a good, healthy and happy relationship. And whenever we say intimacy, the first thing you may think about is sex. But is intimacy only about sex? Intimacy has a definition that is inclusive of sex, but it is not just about sex. It is a lot more than that. First, let us try understanding what intimacy is. In general terms, intimacy is the togetherness or closeness between couples. Some synonyms used to further describe intimacy can be confidentiality, understanding, attachment, sex and affection. All of these are necessary to build a stronger relationship with your partner.
Sex and intimacy
Sex can be casual too and that doesn’t mean intimacy. It can have zero meaning, ties or attachments. It is a physical act with two people enjoying it for pleasure. Intimacy is at a much deeper level than sex. Physical relations can help intimacy, but true intimacy is possible with getting each other’s needs, emotions and wants. It can be easy to just have sex, but it isn’t as easy to be comfortable around another person, to share your desires and feelings. It is opening up yourself emotionally to a person who makes you vulnerable and we don’t feel safe enough with everyone for that.
Types of Intimacy
Emotional intimacy makes u feel closer to someone. It is one of the best ways to improve intimacy with your partner. A couple connects at an emotional level by sharing their secrets, aspirations, dreams, feelings and desires. With this method, you become vulnerable to each other and come closer. Emotional intimacy can nurture you. In order to build this, you need to spend time with each other – quality time. This could be done while performing chores together too. There is connection, trust and understanding with emotional intimacy. With age, sexual intimacy may take a backseat, but emotional intimacy will remain.
This is one of the most basic and crucial requirements to build a stronger relationship with your partner. It is a way of showing love and brings two people closer. Plus, there is a lot of pleasure in the act. A sex act can make you believe that you are special and important for your partner. There is submission, belonging, desperation and desire for your partner in physical intimacy. Physical intimacy has many forms – sex, body massage, hugs, kisses or holding hands. Without physical intimacy, a relationship might start losing its spark gradually.
In intellectual intimacy, you are free to share your thoughts and opinions freely even if they differ from your partner. In an intellectual connection, two people feel comfortable and safe to share their views without fear of any consequences. Politics, current affairs and child-rearing are topics on which there can be discussions without fearing any kind of retaliation or anger.
One of the best tips for a successful relationship is to build intimacy, particularly emotional intimacy. This is the crux of any relationship and helps you feel happier.
- Do meaningful things – Do meaningful things to make stronger connections. Date night is good, but it won’t make a difference if you just do it mechanically as a ritual. You dress up and sit in front of each other and eat. But emotional intimacy needs meaningful conversations. You need to focus on each other as people in a stress-free environment. This could involve taking a drive to get ice cream or gardening together.
- Be available – Be available for each other even if you have a thousand things to do. Ignoring each other or not having time to spend with each other is not a good sign.
- Compliments and Affirmations – Take time to express what you like about each other. Give compliments so that your partner understands that you love and cherish them.