If you’re a Disney fan (and seriously – who isn’t?) you’re probably a hopeless romantic. And while Disney may not reveal the whole story in their movies, we can often find valuable messages sprinkled throughout – messages that can help us create a stronger bond with our partner.
If you feel your marriage is lacking intimacy, here’s how to rebuild it using Disney’s wisdom.
“There’s no one I’d rather be than me.” – Wreck-It Ralph
Have you ever lost yourself in a relationship? Many women (and men!) experience this in their marriage. They try to be everything their partner wants them to be and lose themselves in the process. They love their partner so much that they forgot to love themselves. At the moment, you may not realize that true intimacy is impossible in the absence of appreciation – not only for your spouse, but also for yourself. If you don’t value yourself, how can you expect someone else to? Over time you may even start to resent your partner for making you feel as if you aren’t good enough. These feelings may ultimately lead to your demise.
But it isn’t your spouse who makes you feel inferior, it’s you. You’re afraid to be yourself because you think no one would love you for who you are. Do you really want to sacrifice your true self for your partner? After all, even if your current relationship fails, you still have to live with yourself for the rest of your life. If you allow your partner to see the real you, you can reach a level of intimacy far beyond your own imperfections.
“The very things that hold you down are going to lift you up.” – Dumbo
Eileen, who is now in her second marriage, met her current husband two years after her divorce. While she told him a thing or two about her previous relationship, she never told him the entire story. ”The trouble started two years before, when I told my first husband I was going to leave him,” she explains. ”At first, he seemed to agree with my decision. But as days went by he became increasingly aggressive and started threatening me. As soon as I had the chance, I moved as far away from him as I could, but the threats didn’t stop until 6 months later.
Getting into a new relationship wasn’t easy and opening up was even harder. Eventually, my current partner realized there was more to the story than I cared to admit. It was at this moment that I told him everything that had happened. By sharing my burden I was able to let go. But it also enabled me to connect with my new partner in a way I never thought possible. The thing that had held me down before was now helping me lift up the intimacy in my current marriage.”
Relationships are full of ups and downs. Things happen and you or your partner end up getting hurt. Take advantage of these situations to build intimacy in your marriage by using them to create a deeper connection with your spouse.
“Love is putting someone else’s needs before your own.” – Frozen
The true definition of love. Sometimes people are so absorbed by their problems and needs that it’s hard to see the needs of their spouse. If you’re facing intimacy problems in your partnership, it may very well be that you or your partner are fighting emotional, physical or mental issues that prevent them from opening up completely.
Unfortunately, many people are doing exactly the opposite of what they should be doing in such situations. They start pushing, thinking they can fix the issue by forcing someone to do what they want. This is not the best way to build a healthy relationship. Instead, be patient and understanding – know that your spouse will open up in time, even if it takes a little longer.
“All it takes is faith and trust.” – Peter Pan
It’s normal to have frustrations in your relationship. No one is perfect and neither is your partner. Rather than holding a grudge, learn how to talk about your issues and show your spouse you care and still have faith in your marriage. Find ways to show your appreciation – surprise them with breakfast in bed, write a romantic message on the bathroom mirror before they wake up in the morning or cook their favorite dinner. It’s the little things that count the most.
“Even miracles take a little time.” – Cinderella
Despite your best efforts, rebuilding the intimacy between two people takes time. Practice patience and understanding, and enjoy the process of getting to know your partner in new and surprising ways.
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.