Intimacy is a process of discovery with another,” writes Joel B. Bennett in Time and Intimacy: A New Science of Personal Relationships. Over time, though, without continued attentiveness,
These are among the times people feel closest. “When we share our thoughts at the end of the day,” one woman said, “when we’re lucky enough to be able to do that, it feels very intimate.”
One woman shared instances where she and her partner feel closest, including when they have a productive talk about something upon which they disagree.
When we’re new to one another, whatever we learn is unexpected, resulting in intense emotion. Gradually over time, we become more predictable to one another. But there's a positive side to this predictability,
According to Sternberg, our interactions in close relationships tend to go along in well-worn grooves, called scripts. Most emotion is the result of some interruption of the script. Keep doing the same old thing,
When the marriage of Susan Tyler Hitchcock and her husband was stagnating, they made a family project of a year-long sailing trip in the Caribbean. As soon as they made the commitment and began planning the extensive journey,
What if you are part of a mismatched couple, where you crave a deeper level of communicative openness than your partner ever will? Comfort levels with verbal sharing typically do increase with practice in an emotionally safe context, so continue to work at becoming a non-judgmental listener.
People vary as to how much intimacy they require to avoid loneliness, and how much they can tolerate before feeling saturated. Those with stronger needs will work harder to ensure intimate contact with their partners,
The free-and-easy talker can learn to recognize and give credit to a partner’s preferred modes of expression. Some individuals equate communication with intimacy—in one study,
Only a third of the divorced men in the sample above said that they didn’t find the emotional intimacy they wanted. What some of them missed, though, was their wives being there for them "in much fuller ways
They wanted concrete demonstrations of intimacy, such as being kissed or asked how they are at the end of the day, and being greeted with open arms at the door. As long as the less articulate demonstrate their love in their own ways, they deserve credit for their thoughtful behavior, as well as extra patience and understanding on the part of the talk-deprived.