Opening Up to Intimacy
Intimacy. Terrifying for so many. I’ve never understood the fear myself, but then opening up emotionally for me is as natural as breathing. I’m still learning that not everyone can open up so easily. Some people can’t open up at all.
What about getting close to someone is so scary? Is it fear of abandonment or rejection? Fear of losing oneself? What do you think?
Fear of abandonment & rejection I understand, no doubt. I’m an incredibly intense and passionate woman, and I do feel that in a new relationship especially I need to dial it back some. I’m a bit more reserved going in, especially in the wake of my recent heartbreak. I have deep seated abandonment issues, and I’m always afraid that it’s just around the corner. Well, not always, just at the beginning of a new relationship. After 12 years, I know my husband is not going to just leave me one day. I know he will always be there for me, and even if something happens that breaches the trust we share, he will be there to work it out. I know that with the same certainty that I know the sun will rise again tomorrow. It’s wonderful to feel so secure and protected in a loving relationship.
But we didn’t get there overnight.
With new relationships, especially primary but even secondary, you’re still feeling each other out. Perhaps trying to protect your heart until you gain some confidence in you & your beloved as a couple. Here is the tricky part: repress & protect too much, and the other party will think you’re aloof or disinterested. Share too much too soon and the other party will think you’re needy. It is a tricky time.
I have a tendency to take chances with new relationships and give too much of myself up front, which can result in an unbalanced relationship/attachment and ultimately heartbreak. Not good. However, if my beloved takes a step towards intimacy, I meet them eagerly. And then some.
New relationships are scary, especially when they’re under complicated circumstances, but it is essential to be open with each other. Be honest. Trust that they’ll take care of your heart, but keep your eyes open for signs of abuse, imbalance, and fear. Be ready to back off a little if necessary or just walk away (in cases of abusive behavior).
But as long as you’re moving forward at relatively the same pace, open up! Show your lover who you are. Let them in. And encourage them to do the same. You must build trust and create a safe space to do so. Share your fears. Share your dreams. Nothing brings people closer together faster than sharing dreams & fears. We all have the same basic fears. Acknowledging that, and having it validated, is profound. But even if you don’t understand or don’t share a particular fear/issue/dream, don’t judge. There is no room for judgment here. You might have different views of the world, religion, philosophy, morals, music, whatever; but that isn’t as important as mutual respect and consideration, especially for a secondary relationship. For a primary, it might be necessary to share a basic philosophy on life and spirituality, depending on the individuals involved, of course.
As I’ve said before, love should be embraced in whatever form it manifests. It’s precious and too rare. We all need to feel love and to feel loved. Don’t be afraid of it. It’s beautiful.
Come on in, boys. The water is fine.
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~ by omgrey on June 1, 2011.
Posted in Romance & Relationships
Tags: author, broken heart, healing, heartbroken, honesty, love, non-monogamy, o.m. grey, olivia grey, open, open marriage, polyamory, postaweek2011, relationship advice, relationships, romance, sex