Have you ever been asked if you are in an intimate relationship with someone and you stood there trying to understand: What is an intimate relationship?
Intimacy is defined in various ways depending on the relationship you have with the other person. If we talk about intimacy in friendship, it will hold a different meaning than the one with regards to a romantic relationship.
The meaning that applies to all kinds of ties is “affection” or the presence of a close bond. In common terms, it is familiarity with a person.
When you know someone up-close enough to know their secrets or private interests, you are said to be intimate with that person. Mostly, this term is used when the relationship is private between two people who are fond of each other.
So if you want to understand what is an intimate relationship then you have to understand that intimacy has different levels and different types.
It is the most commonly known type of closeness between two people. When two people are attracted to each other and have a physical relationship, they are said to be intimate. But this level is quite superficial.
Intellectual intimacy: Intellectual intimacy occurs when the brains of two people have natural sync. When they talk, they connect through their ideas and their minds bring them together.
As a person grows, his or her ideas tend to grow with them. So, this type of intimacy is no doubt powerful but may not last long.
Emotional Intimacy: Emotional intimacy is when you are in love with someone or are emotionally attached. The involvement of emotions and a connection of the heart is involved in this type of intimacy.
People do not have to force themselves or choose to have this level of intimacy. It comes naturally and that is why it is the purest of all intimacies.
Now getting back to the main objective of this article, let us answer what is an intimate relationship? In simple terms, a relationship that has all levels of intimacies involved is called an intimate relationship.
It sounds utopian, however, it exists. To assess whether your relationship is intimate or not, see the following points. If these are present in your bond, then you and your partner are undoubtedly an intimate couple.
People often wonder why it is so important to be themselves. The answer to this is that when a change comes from within you, it is the best that can happen.
Everyone should look inside themselves and figure out who they are instead of changing themselves because of external reasons. You have a brain and a heart.
You know what is best for you and what is ethically correct. You know what your heart wants. So an intimate relationship is when two people can be what their heart or mind desires in each other’s presence.
If your partner wants to be an actor and is terrible at it, you should not go and preach him what to do. You should let him be what he wants to be. When he will try for himself, he will eventually know what’s best for him or maybe he will improve.
If you and your partner can be as weird as you want to in front of each other without the fear of being judged, then this is an intimate relationship.
Fights do happen when two people spend immense time together. Fights are meant to happen. They have their importance in strengthening a bond.
But you have to make sure that these harmless fights do not harm the respect you have for each other. Situations can get harsh and nasty but an element of respect should always be there.
What is an intimate relationship without respect? It is a mere pastime. To even call it intimate is wrong.
If both of you have respect for each other’s opinions, looks, likes and dislikes and virtually everything, only then do you have real intimacy.
Sometimes your partner may get stubborn about something you dislike. He or she wants to go somewhere or do something that is not of your liking or let’s say you despise it for some reason.
You should talk politely about it and if he or she is adamant, let it go. Do not abandon your partner for making choices you do not approve of.
Stay with him and try to make things easy. Sticking together is the key to a strong relationship. It is a sign of an everlasting intimate relationship. Stay close, stay strong!
Adequate Personal Space
People often wonder what an intimate relationship is when it comes to personal space. We are made to believe that when two people are a couple, they should stay as close as possible.
To make this happen, many people without realizing get clingy or overly gluey with their loved ones. This might put the other person off. Khalil Gibran once said, “Let there be spaces in your togetherness…
Love one another but make not a bond of love.” In simple terms, it is to say do not treat your relationship as some contract or a deal. Do not make strict rules of clinging together at all times.
Leave spaces for personal growth. Support one another, stay close to each other but do not suffocate your partner. Intimate couples are always there to help and support each other but at the same time, they undergo individual changes too.
You should feel comfortable in the presence of your partner. Without any second thought, you should be able to share the darkest and deepest of secrets about yourself.
What is an intimate relationship without the expression of things you do not tell everyone? Every person has deep-seated desires and thoughts and they do not share with all people around them.
An intimate person will not have to ask you about these. You will find yourself blurting out the absurd details about yourself before someone you feel deeply for.
The likes, dislikes, wishes, desires and everything comes out when one sits in a completely trustworthy and easy environment. This atmosphere only forms when there are people you are intimate with.
If you can share the silliest of details with your partner and he can share his secrets with you, then my friend, it is nothing less than an intimate bond.
An intimate partner would not seem diverted when he is in your company. His entire focus and concentration will be directed towards you.
He will be interested to know more about you with every passing day. Every little detail about you would be like a piece of treasure.
If your loved one keeps thinking about other things or keeps talking about himself, know it is not a sign of intimacy. Both of you must involve yourselves in each other’s talk.
Intimate partners do not occupy their thoughts with other things at the time of conversation with each other. If you live together, then this might occur more often.
But in that case, see when it is your time, is your partner mentally present there too. If he is and if he listens with interest, it is a sign that you are in an intimate couple.
Acceptance of Vulnerabilities
Every human being is vulnerable with regards to some things. To err is human. Everyone has flaws and make mistakes.
Some people have anger issues, some are emotionally unstable, some are messy, some way too picky, some are cowardly, etc. Every person has his gifts and weaknesses.
Every person accepts the gifts of their partner with an open arm but fails to deal with the weaknesses. What happens in an intimate relationship? An intimate couple will not fail at this.
They will discover all the weaknesses in each other and then respect the difference of personality their partner possesses.
It is not possible to stay mad at someone you deeply care for. It is the most natural sign of intimacy. Every couple fights every now on then.
Both of them make mistakes that instigate little quarrels but never will you find a person who is immensely fond of you not forgive you. An intimate relationship is supposed to be healthy and happy.
Both these things come when people learn to move on from past mistakes. They fight, forgive and move on. Try to forgive your partner always.
The hearts are not hardened towards those who you sincerely like. You always find yourself forgiving that person, regardless of the mistakes they commit.
Expression of Compassion
Compassion comes out in the most unexpected forms too. Not every person is an extrovert. Those who find it hard to open themselves to others do not express their likeness so eagerly.
They take a lot of time to reach a stage when they feel they can express what they feel to the other person. When someone talks tenderly with you and says things full of warmth, the intimacy is increased.
Compassion is not always expressed through words. You can bring a flower or a little card for someone to show compassion.
The little actions of compassion can show that you feel affection for the other person. Sometimes a flower can speak more than words.
Notice the things done for you and then assess whether it is a sign of intimacy or not.
To know whether you are in an intimate relationship or not, do not miss out on the silences. See how both of you feel at the times of silence.
Is the silence disturbing? Or is it comfortable? We have a habit of filling the air with words. We do not see what we are talking about and many times it is plain gibberish but we go on.
Why does it happen? When people are nervous or anxious, they keep talking about the most random things. This should not be the case in an intimate relationship.
What is an intimate relationship with silences? Two people sharing an intimate bond will feel close and affectionate even in silence.
They can spend hours while being silent because just the presence of their loved one with them is sufficient for them. If the silence starts feeling companionable and you do not think it necessary to blabber, know the level of intimacy is deep.
Physical attraction and closeness cannot be just relegated to “superficial interests.” It is very natural to feel physically attracted to others.
Along with all the other signs of intimacy, this needs to be present. When you are revealing the deeper things about yourself, physical openness should be considered too.
But some people are insecure about the way they look. They think twice before they physically open themselves to others.
It is important to make the other person feel comfortable and easy to the extent that they do not worry about being judged.
No relationship can survive without trust but romantic relationships need trust more than any other bond. The reason is that all other ties are either through blood or through friendship.
Friends keep changing as you move from one stage to another. Your life is not affected by what your friends do in their leisure time.
Your friends can have other friends and intimate partners. But if the person you are seeing starts dating someone else, it matters a lot.
That is the thing about intimate relationships. You trust the other person so much that you do not have to worry about what he or she does in their free time without you.
To maintain an intimate bond, you must trust your partner and assure them by your actions that you are trustworthy too.
Now if someone asks you what is an intimate relationship? You know what to say. These signs are the fundamentals of a healthy intimate relationship.
If your couple has these, it means you are doing a great job at your relationship, if these signs are missing then you need to work things out or maybe wait a little more for them to happen. As an individual, see where you lack and work on it.
The best thing about healthy relationships is that when one person betters himself or herself, the other one naturally tries to reciprocate the same treatment. Do not worry if a few of the signs are not yet visible in your relationship.
Some bonds take years to get powerful and then they are unbreakable. So, don’t panic, do as much as you can for your partner and go with the flow.
So if there are these signs in your relationship then you don’t need the answer to what is an intimate relationship because you are in one yourself.
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