What is physical intimacy? It is the expression of one’s intimate feelings by means of an act or a reaction. Similarly, physical intimacy in marriage is when married partners convey their sentiments and feelings towards each other through physical action or response.
However, physical intimacy in marriage can be influenced by a varied number of issues, which in turn affects the stability of that marriage.
Physical intimacy issues in marriage are one of the most common concerns for couples, particularly couples who have been married for some time and feel that the “spark” is going out of their relationship.
It is natural to want to fix physical intimacy issues in marriage—but there are some things to consider when such issues do occur during the course of your marriage.
The following are some important factors that you need to take into consideration when you are experiencing physical intimacy problems in your marriage.
There are many different reasons why your partner might not be comfortable with physical intimacy, or at least certain acts of physical intimacy. It’s important to understand why physical intimacy problems are occurring before you can actually address them.
For example, if your partner was abused in the past and now has trouble expressing feelings physically, they may want to see a professional who knows how to help people who have been abused.
Here are some prominent reasons that lead to physical intimacy issues in marriage.
Dislike for public display of affection
One common reason for avoidance of particular types of physical intimacy is the reluctance to engage in certain behaviors in public.
In fact, it is very common for people to feel uncomfortable with grand gestures of intimacy in public situations, such as kissing or cuddling in front of other people. In some cultures and families, public intimacy is actually considered rude.
You or your partner might feel judged for displaying affection in public. This in turn would make either of you very uncomfortable and cause physical intimacy issues in the marriage.
Another reason for avoidance of physical intimacy is an incident in the past which makes the partner reluctant to engage in certain intimate behaviors. Attacks, abuse, or other incidents in their life may have caused your partner to view intimacy in a different light than you do.
Physical abuse or neglect and even the loss of a loved one could have nudged your partner to build a fear of physical intimacy.
Lack of time and effort
Another common, though unfortunate, reason for a lack of intimacy is a growing distance between partners. This can be especially common for partners who have been married for many years.
Revamping your sex life takes some effort and when couples are too reluctant to try, their marriage soon starts to wither away. Not making enough time for your spouse or not putting enough effort to spark up your love life could very well be the end of your marriage.
Not everyone has the same expectations when it comes to physical intimacy in a relationship. You may feel that couples should kiss in public to demonstrate affection, while your partner feels that kisses are best kept in private; likewise, you may want to constantly cuddle when you’re sitting on the couch, while your partner would rather have some space.
You need to talk with your partner about their personal expectations for physical closeness in the relationship. Setting and establishing healthy boundaries for personal closeness is important to maintain intimacy in a marriage. Once you are on the same page, you can work on perhaps compromising or accepting that your partner’s preferences are different than yours.
Lack of confidence
Feeling hesitant, embarrassed, self-conscious, and even the lack of confidence contributes in a major way towards physical intimacy issues in marriage.
Both men and women might feel too self-conscious about their body or their ability to perform sexually or living up to their partner’s expectations. Fear of being rejected or not being liked by one’s own spouse can be very detrimental to a person’s life.
You or your partner might feel hesitant in initiating a physically intimate action. This could again be due to their lack of knowledge of confidence in their ability to please their partner physically.
Overcoming the issues
In order for any problems in a marriage to be addressed or resolved, both partners must be committed to working on the issues—they must also agree that there are issues to fix in the first place!
Even the smallest of gestures can help you resolve the physical intimacy issues in marriage. Overcoming physical intimacy issues in marriage starts with couples acknowledging the presence of such issues.
Here are some ways on which you and your spouse can possibly resolve intimacy issues in marriage.
– Communicate. If you or your partner is uncomfortable with PDA then first discuss it with your partner. Resolving any issue related to intimacy starts with you discussing it with your spouse. Communication is key to a healthy marriage.
Don’t push your partner to be brave or get upset with them. Be patient, listen to them, seek professional help if that is what you think might help. The idea is to allow your spouse space and time to grow out of their fear towards PDA.
– If you or your spouse have been affected by some childhood trauma that has led you to feel insecure or reluctant when exhibiting physical intimacy in your marriage, then coming to terms with your fear and moving on might take more time and help. Again, be sure that you and your partner give each other the chance to communicate.
Childhood traumas take time to heal. Try to help your partner to relax through meditation, yoga, or some other form of exercise. Also, seek professional guidance to help you cope with this issue.
Likewise, if a lack of confidence seems to hinder the growth of your physically intimate relationship in the marriage then speak out. There is no issue that’s too big to be resolved by words. Knowing what your spouse feels about themselves can help you help them gain their confidence.
Ignoring the signs of intimacy issues in marriage only causes them to become even more prominent and if you are the only one fighting to resolve underlying physical intimacy issues in relationships, you may be fighting a losing battle that you can’t win.