5 Ways to Avoid Emotional Intimacy in Your Marriage
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Everyone desires to be in a relationship where their partner loves and cherishes them just as much as they do.
Marriage is not only about physical intimacy but emotional intimacy as well, where both spouse love, trust, and support each other.
What is emotional intimacy?
Emotional intimacy refers to the level of comfort and closeness that both partners feel with each other. Although very important, emotional intimacy issues often exist in many marriages. In fact, a couple can remain married for several years without being emotionally intimate.
The lack of emotional intimacy in any marriage can cause the relationship to suffer and even lead to disastrous results.
To understand more about emotional intimacy in relationships, watch this video:
Why is emotional intimacy important?
Emotional intimacy is important because it creates a sense of security in your life. It helps you become yourself completely and feel like you are loved for who you are without the risk of losing the relationship or marriage you are in.
If you have no emotional intimacy in marriage, it may be important to understand the effect it has on your relationship.
Without emotional intimacy, a relationship can struggle in various ways. Communication and trust in a relationship can be challenged when emotional intimacy does not exist.
To understand more about the value of emotional intimacy in marriages, read this article.
What causes a lack of emotional intimacy in marriage?
There are various reasons that can cause a lack of emotional intimacy in marriage. These include:
Stress is one of the leading causes of physical and mental distress in individuals and even marriages. It can have an adverse effect on your emotional intimacy as well.
Pressure from work, child care, family, and other factors can reduce the time you have with your partner, make you irritable, affect your communication, and thereby reduce emotional intimacy.
Related Reading: 15 Ways to Handle Stress in Marriage
2. Resentment in marriage
Another reason why you may lack emotional intimacy in marriage is because of resentment.
When there are unresolved fights, and unmet needs in relationships or marriage, it can lead to building resentment. When you are full of resentment towards your partner, you end up becoming physically and emotionally distant.
Related Reading: 10 Causes for Resentment in Marriage & How to Deal With Them
If you feel unheard or rejected by your partner, it is likely to affect your emotional intimacy in your marriage. When you constantly feel rejected by your partner, you are unable to communicate well with them.
When you feel unheard, you are less likely to express your feelings which will obviously affect emotional intimacy.
4. Stuck in the past
Maybe your marriage has been through its share of ups and downs already. In that case, emotional intimacy can suffer if both or one of the partners are stuck in the past. If you both are not over what happened in the past, you can not feel emotional intimacy with your partner.
5. Your own issues
Another reason why you may lack emotional intimacy in your marriage is because of your own issues. Poor self-esteem, self-worth, anxiety, depression, or personality disorders such as narcissism can be a hindrance to emotional intimacy in your marriage.
5 ways to avoid emotional intimacy issues in your marriage
Lack of intimacy in marriage can have an adverse effect on it.
Many of the emotional intimacy issues in marriages are due to the lack of trust, feelings of being unsafe, or due to some kind of trauma that one of them may have experienced in the past.
It is important to restore emotional intimacy in a relationship and some of the ways to do so are mentioned down below.
1. Try to spend more time with each other
Spending quality time is the key to increasing emotional intimacy between you and your partner.
In this fast-paced world, most of us are too occupied with matters of our own such as work, household chores, childcare, and other similar tasks, that by the end of the day, we are too exhausted to spend some time with our spouse.
It is important that couples spend at least an hour or so together, without the children or any other distractions, and enjoy each other’s company.
This can be something as simple as doing the dishes together or maybe even planning date nights once a week to be able to connect emotionally.
Related Reading: 11 Ways to Spend Some Quality Time With Your Partner
2. Develop a healthy balance between self and couple time
Although the couple needs to be close, too much closeness can actually be bad.
A healthy marriage is one that carries interdependent partners that are two different people, have lives of their own and carry a passion for things that they enjoy for themselves and not what their partner likes.
Too much togetherness may cause the partners to feel suffocated, and having a personal space is essential. It is important that each of the spouses engage in separate self-care activities but, at the end of the day, unite as a secure couple that invests in their marriage.
3. Put away all electronics
When spending time together or talking, the couple must provide each other with their undivided attention.
Therefore, they must keep aside all kinds of interruptions and distractions, especially their media devices such as mobile phones, laptops, tablets, etc.
If either of the spouses is engrossed in electronics while the other is talking, they may feel unheard or unimportant.
Maintain eye contact and make sure that your partner knows that you value what they have to share.
4. Communicate effectively
One of the best ways for any couple to avoid emotional intimacy issues in their marriage is to be able to communicate and have long, meaningful conversations.
Put aside the regular ‘How was your day?’ and instead, opt for deeper talks. Talk about likes and dislikes, the question about things you would want to know about your partner. All of this will help develop an understanding and a stronger bond between the two of you.
Moreover, it is important that couples are always honest with each other. They need to be able to share and talk about anything and everything without any second thoughts.
No matter how hard a topic is, one should share their concerns with their spouse and accept their mistake instead of making up excuses or blaming it on the other.
Related Reading: 5 Steps to Effective Communication With Your Spouse
5. Have fun in each other’s company
There are many ways for a couple wanting to have some fun. All it needs is that both of them are willing to engage in them and enjoy them equally.
One of the best ways is to go on an adventurous trip together, try out new experiences such as hiking and skiing and make unforgettable memories!
Couples can also have fun within the comforts of their home, such as cooking a lavish meal together or reading a good book together. It could be anything as long as both of you are enjoying each other’s presence.
This is a great way to strengthen the relationship and retain the spark of your marriage.
10 tips for developing emotional intimacy in a marriage
Improving emotional intimacy in your marriage is vital. Emotional intimacy is the basis for a lot of emotions like security and happiness in marriage. Emotional intimacy is required for a healthy and happy marriage.
Here are some tips for developing emotional intimacy in a marriage.
1. Include adventure
How to overcome intimacy issues?
One of the ways to bond better and remember the spark in your relationship is to include adventure in it. Doing something unusual or new can help you find ways to develop emotional intimacy in your marriage.
Related Reading: 70 Adventurous Date Ideas For Couples
2. Use nostalgia
Maybe when you started dating or got married, you had great emotional intimacy but it faded away because of responsibilities and stress.
All it needs is a little rekindling. In that case, use nostalgia to your advantage. Sit and reminisce about those times, and you will find yourself closer to your partner in many ways.
3. Physical touch
Intimacy is more than just sex or even talking deeply about your feelings. Little acts of affection and love, such as holding hands, hugging, kissing, etc. can have a positive impact on your emotional intimacy in the marriage.
4. Stay connected
Connecting with people in this age is easier than ever. Drop your spouse a text saying you miss them or are thinking about them when you are at work. Little things like this can go a long way in improving your emotional intimacy.
Related Reading: 10 Ways to Make Memories & Stay Connected This Holiday Season
5. Appreciate each other
When you have been married for too long, you can end up taking everything your partner does for you for granted. However, this can end up making them feel unappreciated or even unloved.
Ensure that you show them that they are appreciated and everything they do for you is seen and heard. It can mean a lot to them and also improve their emotional intimacy.
6. Date nights are a must
Date nights, at least once a week, should be a part of your marriage, irrespective of how long have the two of you been married for.
This helps you disconnect from the world, connect with your partner, and spend some quality time with them.
7. Be vulnerable
Unfortunately, there is no shortcut when it comes to emotional intimacy. To build emotional intimacy with your partner, the way is through vulnerability. People can find it difficult to be vulnerable with someone, especially if they have felt rejected or dejected in the past.
However, vulnerability is indispensable to emotional intimacy in a marriage.
Related Reading: 15 Things That Happen When a Man Is Vulnerable With a Woman
8. Fulfill your emotional needs
One of the biggest mistakes we make is trying to fulfill all our emotional needs from our partner, marriage, or emotional relationship.
However, you must have a life beyond your relationship. Build a strong support system with a network of friends and family. Some of your emotional needs in a relationship can be fulfilled by other people. This can help you be better in your relationship and build emotional intimacy with your partner.
9. Support your partner
One of the expectations people have from marriage is being supported. Even when the world turns against them, make sure you support your partner, even at their lowest. Being there for each other can help you both build better emotional intimacy.
10. Work on physical intimacy
Physical and emotional intimacy are not independent of each other. When you are physically vulnerable and comfortable with your partner, you are likely to feel emotionally connected to them as well.
If your physical intimacy has suffered in your marriage, work on rebuilding intimacy in marriage in order to improve your emotional intimacy.
Related Reading: 15 Essential Tips to Improve Physical Intimacy In a Marriage
More questions on emotional intimacy issues in marriage
Here are some frequently asked questions about emotional intimacy issues in marriage.
Why is emotional intimacy in marriage so hard?
Emotional intimacy in marriage can feel harder than it is. It could be because the emotional intimacy quotient in the marriage has suffered due to factors such as stress, child care, care of the elderly, work, or other factors.
These issues can make it difficult to build emotional intimacy in the marriage or keep up with it.
Is online therapy effective for those living with intimacy issues?
If your marriage is suffering, especially due to emotional intimacy issues, there may be things you need to work on individually and as a couple.
In that case, seeking help from a professional therapist in the form of marriage counseling or therapy can help.
Can a marriage survive without emotional intimacy?
When emotional intimacy starts to fade away initially, it may not be challenging for a marriage to survive because it can still make do with the residual emotional intimacy.
However, as time progresses, for a marriage to survive and be healthy, the couple may need to work on their emotional intimacy issues.
While marriage can survive without emotional intimacy, the health of the relationship may be questionable.
Marriage is all about love, trust, and unconditional support. A couple can have a happy, successful marriage as long as they are both physically and emotionally intimate. Being able to share and express your feelings is a blessing and one of the best ways to keep a marriage healthy.
Partners who fail to have mutual understanding and trust often lead their relationship towards death.
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