What comes to your mind when you hear the term ‘intimacy’? We bet after reading this question, most of you must have related the term to sexual intimacy between partners. But ‘intimacy’ is not just about satisfying each other’s sexual needs in a relationship; it is also about connecting at the emotional level. This ability to know each other inside out is called ’emotional intimacy’, and we are going to help you get acquainted with it.
It’s the kind of intimacy that makes you feel good with your partner even when you two laze around doing nothing. Emotional connection in a marriage or a long-term relationship is vital if you want yours to be a healthy and fulfilling one. Without intimacy, how would you ever know what your partner means when they say, “Nothing, I’m fine”?
A relationship goes through types of intimacy in its life, which entails so much more than bonding in bed. Let’s figure out how to develop emotional intimacy in marriage, so you can be sure of just how strong your bond is.
What Is Emotional Intimacy?
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Emotional intimacy in marriage means that the couple can emotionally connect and feel safe with one another. Both of them get the opportunity to share not only their dreams but also their failures with each other. This kind of intimacy allows the relationship to become meaningful and helps it prosper appropriately.
It’s the intimacy that helps you decipher what “I’ll have anything for dinner, order what you want” means. Emotional connection in marriage or relationships is the thing that separates your relationship from the superficial ones. Once you two connect on a deeper level than just the bedroom, you can bet your top dollar that your relationship is stronger than most.
How to develop emotional intimacy in marriage is not rocket science. For some, it just occurs naturally when they’re talking to each other about childhood fears and things they are truly passionate about. For the excited new lovers, however, they’ll need to step out of the bedroom first.
However, to establish emotional intimacy in a relationship, three prerequisites are essential: trust in a relationship, openness and transparency. Without these, any couple cannot hope to have a happily ever after. To improve emotional intimacy in a marriage usually entails improving the three aspects we mentioned.
Can a marriage survive without emotional intimacy? The answer is no, which is why you need to figure out if the signs of emotional intimacy exist in your relationship or not.
Signs Of Emotional Intimacy In A Marriage
Before we get to how to develop emotional intimacy in marriage, we first need to figure out how to catch the signs of emotional intimacy in your relationship. Perhaps, it’s completely devoid of any intimacy, which will give you a better idea of what you’re up against. Or maybe all the signs point to yours having all the emotional intimacy in the world, and you just made up problems in your head.
Let us go through some of the symptoms of emotional intimacy so that you can get to know when your relationship is devoid of such intimacy and accordingly work on developing it again:
- You both give priority to one another’s needs and are always ready to lend a helping hand to each other
- The communication link between the two of you is so bright and sharp that there is no scope for misunderstandings
- Both of you respect each other’s time and space
- You both can accept each other entirely despite the flaws and never try to transform one another
- Your perspectives and principles about life become aligned with your partner’s views and principles
Unless a couple can relate to one another at a deeper level, they cannot hope to survive the test of time. Without emotional intimacy, true love cannot flourish in a relationship. A serious commitment to the marriage will be missing if there is no emotional intimacy. Plus, stable family life will not be able to develop. Therefore, the importance of emotional intimacy in a relationship should not be underestimated.
If the signs listed above have got you thinking your relationship lacks intimacy, the following tips should set you on your way while trying to figure out how to develop emotional intimacy in marriage.
10 Tips For Developing Emotional Intimacy In A Marriage
Are you feeling disconnected from your wife/husband? Do you feel lonely and unhappy despite being married to the person you love? Are you wondering what has happened to your marriage?
If your answer to these questions is yes, then, probably your wedding is going through the problem of lack of emotional intimacy. Here are ten tips that will help you develop a suitable level of emotional intimacy in your marriage:
1. How to develop emotional intimacy in marriage – understand the root cause
Before you take any action to work on your relationship’s intimacy levels, you must try to find the root cause behind the lack of emotional intimacy. Think hard as to when precisely the intimacy started vanishing. See whether your partner is at fault or you have done something wrong, because of which your relationship is facing such a problem. Is it some tragedy or grief that has caused a rift between you two? You need to figure where it started going off the tracks, and that too, fairly.
Do not play the blame game but assess the entire situation fairly so that you can find a solution conveniently. Once you can pinpoint the cause, you will be able to deal with this entire situation appropriately. No emotional intimacy in marriage will lead you down a rocky road. Before it becomes a problem you can’t ignore, try to nip it in the bud by finding the root cause.
2. Learn to express yourself in a better manner
Emotional connectivity in your relationship is only possible when you can clearly express yourself. So, to boost emotional intimacy, you first have to introspect and find out if you can share openly with your partner or not. If you find that you are unable to express yourself adequately, then working on it would be the right move.
Intimacy in an arranged marriage can often suffer because the partners don’t know how to express themselves to the other person. Only by initiating a conversation, understanding how your partner talks and learning to express yourself better will you understand how to develop emotional intimacy in marriage.
Understand your emotions in a better manner so that you can share them with your partner without a problem. Jot down how you feel in a diary or journal; that way, you will get better at expressing yourself.
3. Spend more valuable time with your partner
You cannot expect intimacy to develop in your relationship without spending time with your spouse. Until you give time to one another, sit down and talk to each other, do some everyday activities together, emotional intimacy will not reach an optimum level. It is the little things that you do every day that will help you bond again together in your marriage.
Thus, make sure you schedule your entire day in such a way that you both get time to have heart-to-heart conversations with each other. Try to pursue some new hobby or interest together to remind yourselves of your matching wavelengths. To improve emotional intimacy in marriage, you must spend time with your partner. How else will you find out that when they call you stupid and give you a coy smile, they’re actually telling you they love you?
4. Ensure that fights do not escalate uselessly
It is genuinely a crisis when your relationship is void of emotional intimacy. Due to the lack of this intimacy, you both will notice that useless arguments characterize your relationship. Sometimes you end up fighting for the same reasons, and they keep on increasing in frequency and subsequent hurt. So if you want to save your marriage, you have to ensure that fights between the two of you do not escalate unnecessarily.
For instance, avoid making any critical and rude remarks on your wife/husband and do not give the silent treatment to your better half. All of this will just cause more trouble. Instead, discuss any severe issues straightforwardly and try to find solutions together. This will deepen the trust and intimacy in the relationship.
5. Focus on physical intimacy to develop emotional intimacy in marriage
Working on emotional intimacy requires you to work on physical intimacy as well. Gestures such as being able to touch one another, cuddle and kiss should come naturally to you both, as a couple. If you both are not connected emotionally, you both might distance yourself physically too.
Therefore, you must make efforts to be close to your partner and become physically intimate with him/her. And there are non-sexual ways to feel connected as well. Do not shy away from kissing or holding your spouse’s hands. Try to be fun and exciting in bed. All this will go a long way in fostering not only physical intimacy in your relationship but also emotional intimacy.
6. Give each other the required personal space and time
Emotional disconnect characterizes a relationship when the couple is not able to respect each other’s own space and time. One of the partners might feel suffocated in the relationship and thus become emotionally distant from the other. To remedy such a situation, you have to set certain boundaries in your relationship.
Make sure that your spouse respects your limits and gives you enough ‘me-time’. Whenever you feel that your partner is interfering with your personal space, you must express your disappointment and encourage him/her to improve. In turn, you too must respect their need for personal space and time.
7. Become a better and more responsible person
If your relationship is suffering from a lack of emotional connectivity, it does not mean that you give up on your marriage and shun the responsibilities that accompany married life. Instead, you should become a better and more responsible person so that your partner can trust you again.
The development of emotional intimacy depends on the trust that you both have for each other. If you show your spouse that you are taking the relationship and your responsibilities seriously, then you can salvage your marriage from any damage.
8. Appreciate one another often
When there is no/less emotional intimacy in the relationship, it seems as if you are lonely and no one appreciates you. Perhaps your spouse might be feeling the same as well. Thus, what you can do is start understanding one another more often.
If your wife/husband does something, especially for you, then make an effort to say thank you. In this way, he/she will know that you are noticing his/her gestures and will never be hesitant to do anything for you. Once you start appreciating your spouse, you will reach a different level of emotional connectivity.
Related Reading: 15 Real Reasons Your Wife Avoids Intimacy
9. Listen to your partner
In the relationship, you might be taking care of your desire to vent out. But if you are not allowing your spouse to vent out and share his/her feelings with you, what is the use of such a relationship?
Remember, any partner in an emotionally distant relationship wants to be heard more and wants to get the reassurance that you are there for him/her no matter what. So that is precisely what you have to do. Listen to your significant other’s doubts and concerns. Make him/her believe that you are always there by his/her side.
10. A counselor will help you with how to develop emotional intimacy in marriage
If you’re unable to foster emotional intimacy in your marriage on your own, consider taking the help of a counselor or therapist, who can guide you suitably. A counselor/therapist is well-versed with how to develop emotional intimacy in marriages, so rest assured that you will be conducted in the best way.
If your partner is the emotionally distant one in the relationship, you can convince him/her to visit the counselor/therapist with you. A few sessions with the expert might help both of you come to terms with the whole situation and find an excellent solution to the problems.
Emotional intimacy in the relationship cannot be developed overnight. So you have to learn to be patient and remain committed to ensuring that you can restore the relationship to the previous intimacy level. All the very best, beautiful people!