“It is an absolute human certainty that no one can know his own beauty or perceive a sense of his own worth until it has been reflected back to him in the mirror of another loving, caring human being.” John Joseph Powell
Today, most Americans no longer live as part of a large family or community that promotes a close network of people in which to confide and feel at home with. Technology, transportation, and demands on time have created an altered sense of community. Individuals may live closer together in proximity, but many are more distanced in their ability and opportunity to develop meaningful relationships. And that is a significant loss. The quality of our closest relationships is often what gives life the most significant meaning (Gordon, 2016).
Intimacy is based on a deep biological need. Even infants cannot grow and thrive without the physical and emotional closeness of another human being. Furthermore, that need for human intimacy never goes away.
It is important to know that intimacy is a process – not a thing. And it can take on several forms:
- Intimacy can be cognitive or intellectual where two people exchange thoughts, share ideas, and enjoy similarities and differences between their opinions.
- Intimacy can also be experiential where people get together to actively involve themselves with each other by being involved in mutual activities.
- Intimacy can also be emotional where two persons can comfortably share their feelings with each other or when they empathize with the feelings of the other person, really try to understand and try to be aware of the other person’s emotional side.
- And of course, intimacy can be sexual. This also includes a broad range of sensual expression with another.
Many compatible and satisfying intimate relationships can exist in any one of the four above listed areas or any combination of those areas (Types of Intimacy).
Intimacy flows out of a feeling of being wholly accepted just the way you are. Real intimacy makes us feel alive, as if someone finally took the time to peer into the depths of our soul and really see us there. At the heart of intimacy is empathy, understanding, and compassion.
Intimacy is best defined by experiencing and enjoying it for yourself!“The need for love and intimacy is a fundamental human need, as primal as the need for food, water, and air.“ Dean Ornish
Read more about it:
We invite you to follow inspiration and insight at InspiringLifeOver50.com – for those over 50 who continue to change the world and those who love them. We are Inspired – not Retired!
We encourage organizations to republish our content, free of charge. We make it available under the Creative Commons CC BY 4.0 license. Here’s what we ask: Please credit us as the original publisher, with a hyperlink to our site: InspiringLifeOver50.com Please preserve the hyperlinks in the story. Thanks!