Fear of Intimacy versus Commitment
Fear of intimacy is different than fear of commitment. You can be married and not know your partner emotionally, intellectually, or spiritually. In fact, loneliness in marriage is more difficult than being lonely as a single person or widow. Marital loneliness springs from fear of intimacy in one or both partners. What causes this phobia and what can be done to prevent or stop it?
Too many times we only hear the term "fear of intimacy" in relation to someone not being as warm and fuzzy to someone else when it's time to get busy. Those that actually suffer from this issue understand that it's so much more than "not wanting to have sex". According to Dr. Richard Nicastro psychologist and relationship coach, some people have a desire for intimacy but, experience a "strong negative physical reaction to deeper levels of connection".
The cause can be many things. From neglect or abuse in your childhood to gender stereotypes. It's no surprise that our culture has very well defined rules when it comes to how men and women should behave in relation to one another. What happens when your feeling don't match those that you go with your gender? We hear all the time how men are the strong non-emotional types. Does that mean that if you are very emotional you're less than a man?
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Imagine how that must make a man in that position feel. Or a woman that's been told that sex is dirty and nasty throughout her childhood. It's hard to imagine trying to put those words and the associations behind you when you become an adult and jump right in with reckless abandon. So, what can be done to first recognize the signs and then address the problem?
It's often easier to tell what something is NOT. Before assuming that you or someone you care for has a fear of intimacy, it's critical to rule out they possibility that there is a lack of attraction between the parties involved. People change, situations change and most certainly our taste and desires change too. It is possible to be in love with someone and not be physically attracted to them.
If there is physical attraction but it ends when it should be getting started, than perhaps it's time to ask yourself or them a few important questions. Like what are your expectations? What do you think of when it's time to get intimate? Are you holding on to certain stereotypes of what a man or woman is suppose to or NOT suppose to do?
There are some things that we do not and can not learn from reading it in a book or magazine. We must live through it and experience it for ourselves. Even if we've seen our parents doing things a certain way, sometimes we must learn that their way is not our way. Then starts the process of finding our own way to get things done.
This is Leticia and overcoming a fear of anything first begins with the understanding of the source of the fear. The realization that it's the "fear" and not the situation that is truly keeping us from moving forward and letting go. Once we are able to do that, we will be one step closer to seeing the objects of our desires in a whole new way. Not to mention how we'll begin to see ourselves and trust in our own abilities to love and be loved by another person .
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