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Intimacy Issues and How to Resolve Them

June 16, 2009

intimacyIt is not uncommon for couples to have intimacy issues from time to time, and for some they may be of a concern even early on in a relationship. Learning how to resolve intimacy problems can help you and your partner experience a new level of closeness that you may have never thought possible.

Intimacy is a term that is often used loosely and to different people means different things. Many people mistake it for being only the physical aspect of the relationship, though it equally includes the importance of emotional closeness as well. While most couples in a sexless marriage are those most likely to be aware of their intimacy issues, they can happen to anyone in any circumstances.

It’s not easy to know what causes it to be difficult to establish or continue closeness with our partners. It can be a variety of factors, from simply being too busy to make each other a priority, to having deep harbored feelings of resentment toward one another.

In order to resolve problems with intimacy, you must first strengthen the emotional and spiritual connection between you and your partner. Passion is not going to spring out of nowhere if you feel like the person you are with is a stranger or have bottled up feelings of anger. Once you have the emotion and spiritual connection established you can then move on to repairing the physical side of your relationship.

Here are some ways you can improve the emotional connection between you and your partner:

Talk to Each Other: This may seem like an obvious one, but many partners don’t find the time to talk to each other about things that are beyond the day to day scope of living together. Discussing things such as beliefs, emotions, and feelings can all help. There’s a great ebook called 1000 Questions for Couples that will get you talking to each other again with tons of ideas as well as a few special bonuses. Our article on Conversation Starters may also get you started in the right direction.

Get Away: Sometimes taking a much needed break or going on a marriage retreat can be enough to help restore intimacy. A change of surroundings can make a huge difference, so don’t be afraid to plan a romantic getaway and see if that helps you reconnect with one another.

Understand Yourself and Your Beliefs: Sometimes finding a deeper emotional connection needs to begin with yourself. If you’ve neglected your spiritual self, there’s a chance your relationship is neglected as well. Everyone has their own individual beliefs when it comes to spirituality, but I’m a big fan of the things author Deepak Chopra has written about. His book The Path to Love: Spiritual Strategies for Healing is one that may be of benefit of you if you’re looking for something bigger than religion.

Learn How to Disagree: It’s natural to not agree with everything your partner says or does 100% of the time. Learning argue effectively can make a huge difference between disagreeing and arguing with one another.

Be More Giving: When in a relationship for a long time, we tend to stop thinking of our partner’s needs and focus only on our own. This can cause a lot of distance and strain on a relationship, which is why it’s important that both you and your partner give to each other equally. The more you give to your partner, it is likely the more you will receive.

How to Improve Physical Intimacy

After you’ve worked on improving your emotional and spiritual closeness, the next thing to do is work on your physical closeness. Here are some ideas to help you break through walls that may be built between you:

Be Spontaneous: If you’ve fallen into routine or have lost that “when we first magic”, being more spontaneous can help. Kiss your partner for no reason at all when they least expect it is one small example of something that would be very easy to do.

Hold Hands: Holding hands is a great way to reconnect with your partner and increases the emotional physical bond between the two of you. It doesn’t matter if you’re taking a walk, laying in bed, or just sitting together watching TV. It’s another easy little way to improve intimacy.

Massage: The power of a good massage can speak volumes. Take a couples massage class together, or simply spend some time massaging each other. Physical touch, without it being necessarily sexual, is a great way to improve intimacy.

While doing these things will likely help with improving the closeness between you and your partner, don’t be afraid to ask for help if they don’t. Not every couple is able to reconnect easily on their own, especially if problems such as communication issues or if other situations have added stress to the relationship. Attending a marriage seminar or marriage counseling together may be an excellent option if nothing else seems to work. Our article on help for a sexless marriage may also give you some added insight.

Do you have any ideas or thoughts for improving and resolving intimacy issues? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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