When people desire to be in a relationship, they are not wanting or needing company or someone to do things with. Most people look for that perfect relationship because they want real, true intimacy in their life. But what is intimacy, really?
Intimacy is NOT the same thing as sex. You can have sex without intimacy.
Intimacy is TRUE and genuine closeness with another human being. It is a connection that is developed over time. While intimacy brings unparalleled joy into our lives, it can also feel incredibly frightening to some people. Because to be intimate means to open yourself up to another human being. It means showing up, flaws and all, and putting in the work.
Ultimately, intimacy is a wonderful byproduct of an emotional connection that has been built over time by two individuals who deeply love and respect each other.
What Does Fear of Intimacy Look Like?
While many people struggle with a fear of intimacy, not everyone knows the signs and symptoms, as they can be mistaken for other emotions.
People who fear intimacy often have low self-esteem and trust issues. They may experience episodes of anger from time to time and have a history of toxic relationships. Many avoid physical contact and are unable to easily share their feelings or express emotions.
How Therapy Can Help
There are a variety of reasons a person may experience fear of intimacy. From childhood trauma to low self-worth and fear of rejection, people from all walks of life, all ages, and all backgrounds have developed a fear of getting close to another person.
If you believe you have a fear of intimacy, sex therapy is a powerful tool that can help you work through any underlying causes. A therapist can help you identify the root of your trouble and help you weed it out. He or she can also help you heal from any past traumas so you can start to get close and connect with others.
The bottom line is, intimacy is a wonderful part of life. To miss out on it would be a tragic shame.
If you’d like to work with someone on your intimacy issues, please reach out to me. I can provide tools and techniques to help you develop a deeper connection with your partner and yourself.
Tatiana Scharr is a Registered Clinical Social Worker Intern who is passionate about the dignity and worth of the individual. She earned her master’s degree in social work from Columbia University and has been working with individuals with a wide variety of traumatic experiences. She’s currently a doctoral candidate in Clinical Sexology.
Tatiana has experience working with children, adolescents, adults and families in processing life changes and overcoming traumatic experiences. Tatiana’s therapeutic approach is simple and straightforward; she views therapy as a collaboration where the basic principles are mutual trust, positive regard and unconditional support.