Disclaimer: Most of this post is aimed at women; for you men reading this, apply what is needed as necessary. The end result is the same. Whoo hoo (but no guarantees). This is a blog, not a psychiatrist’s office (although it was my major in college; does that count?). I am not a doctor. I just play one on this blog.
So how do people go from this:
It’s simple, really. They have forgotten the person they fell in love with. They’ve lost their focus. It’s somehow, somewhere been taken off their loved one and put somewhere else.
It used to be SO easy. Why? Well, we were madly, passionately in love with that person. They were all we thought about. We were very willing to pursue them and overlook anything not perceived as “perfect” about them. We couldn’t WAIT to talk to them. We always wanted to look our best for them, to do what they liked to do, and to play! But after time, our words and attitudes, actions and thought processes, history and time, and life getting in the way, all affect our intimacy.
We stopped pursuing.
— stopped communicating.
— stopped really listening.
— stopped treating one another with honor and respect.
— stopped thinking he’s all-that.
— stopped thinking she’s the girl of his dreams.
— stopped spending quality time together.
— stopped trusting one another, especially with our hearts.
— stopped looking as good as the way we did when we first married
— stopped putting each other first place.
We allowed life to get in the way, in between us.
We became roommates because we lost intimacy and focus.
We allowed many other things – people, children, work, fun, hobbies, blogging, or anything – to come before the other person.
We stopped thinking and treating the other person as valuable and precious – special.
We started thinking, “Well, I’ve got them so I don’t have to do anything to keep them.”
He thinks “She never listens to me.”
She thinks “He never talks to me anymore.”
We started thinking, “Ehh, it’s JUST the wife, the old ball and chain, she doesn’t count.”
— started thinking, “Oh, my husband; WHY can’t he be as wonderful and romantic as so-in-so?”
— started thinking, “He sure doesn’t look like that football player I fell in love with”
— or “I know she’s had our children, but is that girl I married even in there anymore? And does she even see ME?”
We started thinking, “Who IS this person I’m married to?”
I think of intimacy when I think of those beginning courtship days when you couldn’t wait to see one another, do nice things for one another, thought about each other ALL the time, and holding hands? Well, oi vey, was it not amazing that first time he took your hand and kissed your palm? Made THAT eye contact with you? Or touched the side of your face with his palm? (Big hint here, guys.)
It engages the five physical senses – see, hear, touch, smell, taste. And, as my Alpha Hubby always says, love is an action verb – it is not passive. Love acts. Love does. And yes, actions do speak louder than words but words are very important, too. Especially those three little ones, “I love you.” SAY them.
And speaking of words – there are two words Alpha Hubby and I work very hard NOT to say to one another, “always” and “never” in a negative way. In sentences, they sound something like this: “You ALWAYS do that to me (fail me, forget that, blow it)” or “You NEVER do this right (remembered offenses).” This is a BIG one, boys and girls. Work HARD on getting this out of your lives.
Over the next few days, I am going to list some things that may help with intimacy. I am not the expert – far from it = but I’m living with one (smile). Over the past few years, I have done a lot of research for a few books and articles, interviewed couples, and even asked my own hubby questions about intimacy and why people lose it.
Today we will deal with this: Find something that blesses them that you don’t get any benefit from. When we first married, Alpha Hubby decided he wanted to do something for me that he got absolutely nothing out of it (wasn’t even thinking “brownie points!”). He just wanted to give. If he did it to gain something, it isn’t a real act of giving. So what did he do? He made my coffee for me every morning. Why is that an act of giving? He hates coffee.
He likes some movies I’m not wild about or that we’ve seen 2,765 times (Ice Age 3 anyone?). I will sit with him and read (although he doesn’t seem to realize I pay more attention to him than the book). It isn’t that we are both watching the television. It is that we are sharing the time together, being together in the same room, and yes, I do put my book down. Why, I do too, you big whiney baby.
Ahem. Pardon me. So today, think of something you can do for your mate that is an act of giving, of unconditional love. Remember something they like and pick it up for them. Is it flowers? Wal*Mart sells them for $5.00. Is it a specific candle scent? Pick up one for them. Pick up that phone and tell them, “You know what. I just had to tell you that I love you. Very much.”
Write “I love you” on their bathroom mirror. Add that lipstick kiss! Do they take the trash out? Surprise them and have it already done. Pick up that card and tuck it somewhere where they will find it. Send or take them flowers. Rub lotion on their feet, legs, arms, back. If they like it, play a board game together. Watch a chick flick (or… OLD BLACK AND WHITE MOVIE, HINT HINT) with them. Write a letter detailing all you love about them, then mail it to them. Watch cowboy, war, shoot ’em up, action adventure flick, John Wayne movie with them. We’ll deal with this later this week, but TOUCH – non-sexually. The touch on the arm; the aforementioned palm kiss. The neck rub. Find something to do that will bless them.
That’s intimacy because you are thinking only about them and focusing only on them. Truly, that IS what intimacy is all about – focusing on them. If I have primed the pump of your thinking, you should be able to think about them, remember what they like, and start doing little things to surprise them, focus on them, love on them.
Here is a link compliments of Charisse over at Life Gone Awry: 10 Romantic Things to Do to Increase Intimacy.
Portions of this post are excerpts from “The Tango Element: The Passionate Marriage and Keeping it That Way” by Nan C. Loyd. (Unpublished book; work-in-progress). This is copyrighted material © 2009 may not be copied or used without author’s express written permission.