What is Intimacy?


Anat Ben-Shaul  
Works at A for Lifestyle
Attended University of Washington
Lives in Seattle, WA

Excerpts from: An interview with Aimee Heart.


What is intimacy?



Does sex increase intimacy?

Intimacy increases Sex! Sex, or intercourse is one way to express intimacy. Emotional intimacy does not automatically occur with sexual intimacy. People who are sexually involved may still be emotionally unable to feel intimately connected. They can still choose not to share their innermost thoughts and feelings with their sexual partner. In fact, people sometimes find it easier to be emotionally intimate with friends rather than with their sexual partner.


How about people who are happy to have sexual relationship without intimacy?

Sex without intimacy can be very fun and feel immediately gratifying, yet in the long run it might feel empty and unrewarding. A lack of intimacy is one of the most common reasons for relationship breakdown; it causes people to feel lonely in a relationship, even when they are having sex. Today men and women are socialized to relate to intimacy as sex. Too many men request sex as proof of love, and too many women give sex in hope of love. Many men do not have the language of emotions and intimacy. They are plagued by social expectations of performance, success, and achievement, and suppress their deepest desires. Many women may be well versed in the social language of feminism, romance, or porn, but they are unaware of their own personal embodied femininity, sensuality and intuition. Sexual intercourse is an exchange of energy. Even if it is meaningless sex we are affected by the other person’s energy, and we carry this energy with us, long after the sex is over. A one-night stand can be energetically charging, nourishing, and healing when it is done consciously with a person who carries the right energy.

In your opinion, what is the main factor that stands in the way of intimacy?

Unspoken expectations...


What kills intimacy?

Resentment. When a person resents his/her partner’s needs and feelings, feeding it with the different ongoing stories in his/her head. There are some cases of resentment that are more common than others. One example is having a new baby. Babies change everything in the relationship. After a child’s birth, many men feel pushed aside and neglected, while the woman shifts all her intimate focus to the baby. In this case I work with the masculine image I mentioned before. I tell men to imagine themselves as a tree that their wife and child evolve around it. The tree offers them fruits, protection, and shade. As they grow, they become three trees, their own forest. The connection between mother and child is sensual; there is no way to deny it...


How would you summarize your work?

My goal is to guide people into their bodies and out of their minds. Everything I do comes from the heart. I am here to create and hold the feeling of safety, support and love, so that my clients can experience and get in touch with their passion, purpose and aliveness, freeing them to express themselves intimately. My clear boundaries allow me to offer a safe space for authentic connection. I am not a replacement for an intimate partner or an addiction, just like a therapist is not a replacement for a best friend. I believe individuals and couples can benefit by exploring intimacy and connection. When people become aware of theirs and their partners’ energy and sensuality in a unique professional experiential way, they add to their intimate relationships whether they have issues or not.

Read more at... http://aforlifestyle.blogspot.ca

Gina Vivona