How can I achieve a greater level of intimacy in my relationship?

Intimacy does not happen by magic. It must be built up over time. This takes some people longer than others. Often the harder you work at intimacy, the more valuable and rewarding it is. The following are some steps that may help.

  • Be positive about what you have in your relationship and let your partner know what you value about him/her and about the relationship. Put it into words, don't assume they already know. Everybody likes to be told that they are appreciated and loved.
  • Create opportunities for intimacy. Make times when you can be alone together in a situation where you can focus on each other and on your relationship. The harder it is to do this because of the children, work or other commitments, the more important it is that you do it! Try to plan a regular evening, day or weekend for the two of you to be alone.
  • Practise making "I" statements about how you feel. This avoids putting your partner on the spot, and may help him or her do the same. For example "I feel hurt you didn't ask me before you decided" instead of "Why didn't you ask me first?"
  • After an argument look at the deeper feeling behind the anger, hurt, anxiety, or your ¬†sense of being let down. Talk to your partner about these feelings and ask about their feelings.

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