Intimacy: Beyond Sex
I am in deep reflection mode following a recent separation from my romantic partner. I have always previously struggled with codependency. I also have had an extreme fear of intimacy and abandonment. It’s a whole slew of strengths that I have that are being activated. Keep in mind as you are reading this that this is my truth, that does not mean it has to be yours. Take what resonates and leave the rest.
What if we changed our idea of what love is “supposed” to be?
I invite you to take some time to reflect on what love means to you. What does it mean to be loved? What would it look like if you were being fully loved?
Women have been trapped in this belief that we NEED a man. We don’t NEED a man, we need ALL of the men. We are interconnected.
Thousands of years ago, men were triggered by fear because women were completely expansive when they were receiving love from many partners (this doesn’t even have to mean just sex, just loving support). The men were intimidated by this freedom and flow, so they shut it down and tried to lock us all into marriage and seperation.
Side note, on many occasions, have caught myself subconsciously watering myself down to allow a man the opportunity to “fix” something that didn’t really need fixing. That’s insulting to both parties.
Thinking about being with someone for 20 years and going through a separation sounds like the most painful dish on the menu, but underneath the main course, there is something far worse.
Could you imagine being in a relationship that made you happy for 10 years, and miserable for the next ten years, and deciding to STAY because you were taught to “ride or die”?
So much of the content that we consume on a daily basis is a part of the mental programming that you are confined by. The songs that we listen to are so catchy that we don’t notice they are GLORIFYING toxicity and abuse 🙁 G-easy and Halsey always make me feel like getting in a relationship just to feel heartbreak. #Cray
We aren’t made to only receive love from one person. We are meant to receive love from ALL. Our universe is abundant.
Clarity on what “love” and “intimacy” actually means.
A dear soul brother asked me “what does it look like when you are being fully loved?”
In that moment, I realized love is coming to me at all times from so many different people, including the most important player, MYSELF. Love is something that you can turn on and off. It is a gift that you can give at any point, but you do not have to. You can feel it at any point, no matter where you are or who you are with.
For the first 24(ish) trips around the sun, I thought that “intimacy” meant “sex”. I was taught by stepfather that sex was love. That’s how you show people you love them, you have sex with them. (Shout out to you, Johnny!)
I am still working to shed some of that trauma and redefine what it means to love and be loved. I had a profound insight while I was driving (always while I am driving it seems).
My insight is this:
We can receive intimacy from our friends and family.
Whether we are in a romantic partnership or not, we still need love and connection. When we enter a relationship, it is imperative to have other connections in your life so that you are not completely dependent on receiving something from one source. That is a tragic block.
Most romantic love is (and should be) conditional. We can love someone without being with them, but we must have boundaries. It is much easier to share unconditional love with a best friend or a family member. That is why it is important to love your partner like you love your friends.
You have been taught that you need a partner and it’s not true. It is only your truth if you adopt it. You are a whole–ass person. You don’t need someone to complete you.
Loneliness is a mindset created by fear.
Something happened within this lifetime or a previous one that made you feel uncomfortable being alone. There was some guilt, shame, or feeling of unworthiness and now it is blocking you from living the best life available to you.
Being alone can be triggering.
It forces you to connect with yourself. It’s even worse if you are alone and desperately seeking connection online.
Loneliness is a spiritual gift like anything else.
It is a blessing in disguise.
If you are feeling lonely, the only thing that you can do is focus on that which you have control over. Energetically contribute to the love tank within your current relationships. Surrender to the moment and turn your attention to strengthening your spiritual connection. Listen for your spirit guides and see where you are intuitively guided.
If you are craving intimacy,
Try giving a family member a call and asking them about their day. Hold space for them and create a safe environment for healthy communication. Start building that trust and learning how to communicate effectively.
I was thinking about my brother who also recently went through a romantic separation. I thought “We don’t need partners when we have each other! I can get my intimacy from him and he can get his, from me!”
Obviously, there are other needs that are fulfilled within a romantic partnership that is considered to be inappropriate by most, so my brain immediately started in with the criticizing voice of no-reason.
“Whitney, you can’t get intimacy from your brother!!”
But that isn’t true. That is the conditioning. I receive an intimate, loving connection from my brother, my mother, my best friend, my best friend’s husband, my dog, etc.
Intimacy is when you allow someone to see you completely. It is being vulnerable enough to grab your friend’s hand and say “Everything is going to be alright.”
Intimacy is not just sex.
I am still working to re-frame the way I view love, but now I know that I will never return back to the Whitney that I once was.
She was angry and wanted to control every single move that her partner made because she was TERRIFIED that he might leave. Turns out; that doesn’t make people want to stay.
Get your fix from your family and friends.
Learn your love language and share it with your homies. It is safe to be vulnerable. When you hold that space, you will give others permission to do the same. If your “friends” don’t like your vulnerability, get new friends that are open to fulfilling your needs.
All humans have the desire to be touched, it’s not weird.
My love language is acts of service and physical touch. I recently told one of my dear friends my love languages and I have noticed small things that she does to fulfill those needs for me. Something as simple as moving my crazy hair for me when it’s jacked up.
It wasn’t a big deal, it was just my hair, but I felt like she heard me, and she was there for me. It means a lot when you can do these small things for your people. Touch your friends. Hug them longer than they expect. Take a deep breath and release it before you let them go.
We are being starved for attention because people are terrified of being vulnerable. No one can hurt you unless YOU give them permission. Step up to the plate and lead with love. Open the door for others because they are too scared to do it themselves.
What does intimacy mean to you? Has it changed since reading this? I would love to know what your thoughts are! Drop me a comment and let me know how you’re feeling and what your amazing brain is thinking <3
Update: Please stay up to date on the virus and create social distancing for the time being. This virus will end and we can go back to being intimate. In the mean time, you can still be intimate by holding space for others and listening deeply with compassion.
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