The Different Types of Intimacy.

Sep 6, 2021

Intimacy can be exemplified in the daily things that you do with your partner. Intimacy is all around us, from snuggles in the evening watching Netflix to holding hands at the fairground. Of course, romantic relationships require a larger amount of intimacy than friendships do (unless you have those kinds of friendships!), which means there are different types of intimacy on different levels. Intimacy doesn’t always involve getting completely naked, as there are deeper branches of intimacy that we will explore. 

Not everyone needs physical and sexual intimacy to feel connected. By catering to each of the different types of intimacy, you ensure that your partner is fulfilled on every aspect of intimacy, therefore leading to the goal of more intimate sex

The different types of intimacy include emotional intimacy, intellectual intimacy, experiential intimacy, spiritual intimacy, and sexual intimacy, so stick around to learn more!

Emotional Intimacy

Being emotionally supportive of your partner is the key to a successful relationship. Emotional intimacy is a fundamental aspect of a fully functioning relationship. It allows you to be completely vulnerable, open, and connected with each other whilst confirming if you are compatible or not. 

Besides being a shoulder to cry on, a relationship needs to withstand a significant amount of emotional intelligence. We all know the famous “I’m fine” answer that women give when they are, in fact, not fine! It’s all about knowing your partner and knowing when they need your emotional support. This knowledge can only be obtained by working on emotional intimacy in your relationship.  

Knowing each other’s boundaries and what triggers our emotional state is also extremely important. We all know how to push our significant other’s buttons, but knowing when to stop is the deciding factor between a full-blown argument or a lover’s tiff. 

You understand what will upset your partner or what will make them happy when their feeling down is a basic layer of a relationship. However, by being intimate, you are able to share your most vulnerable stories or experiences with your partner. If a movie or song comes on that triggers an emotional memory or response from you, your friend or family member might not know about it. Your partner probably will, as you have probably spent cozy evenings watching a said movie together. 

It may seem trivial to some but having emotional awareness in your relationship is the backbone of a successful partnership. Intimacy means that you are willing to expose the most private angles of yourself whilst allowing your partner to do the same. 

types of intimacy - emotional intimacy

Intellectual Intimacy

Intellectual intimacy is connecting beyond the emotional level. When two people encourage and enhance each other’s minds, this means that the relationship has high scope for intellectual intimacy.

Being comfortable with communicating beliefs and viewpoints without worrying about potential conflict is a sign of good intellectual intimacy. Each person in the relationship must be able to freely communicate, talk and or express their feelings without hesitation. Making sure that these ideas and feelings are values is a branch of intellectual intimacy that should be encouraged. 

Having the freedom to think for yourself should be welcomed within a partnership, and instead of feeling pressured to agree, there should be a healthy amount of discussion and proactive communication in order to help each other grow as opposed to tearing each other down. You will feel connected with someone who cares for your independent thoughts and differences and allows you to share your voice. 

It is important to have healthy discussions and debates with your other half to encourage and promote intellectual intimacy. You have probably both come from different walks of life and share different opinions on the world around you, which is a great place to start. Disagreement isn’t a requirement, but having a stimulating conversation with your loved one can really help respect each other’s mindset and beliefs.  

Not only will you learn more about your partner, but you will also learn more about yourself. And vice versa, they will learn more about you- such as where you’ve come from, the things you know and hold close to yourself, and more about your sexual background. Intellectual intimacy greatly leads to more intimate sex, as you manifest the thoughts within your mind into reality.

Intellectual Intimacy

Experiential Intimacy

Creating memories together as a couple is one of the best things to happen when you’re in a relationship. Celebrating certain milestones or exploring the world together will create memories that only you two can draw upon. Catching a movie, going abroad, or tackling some DIY projects (how about a DIY gloryhole?!) together are all examples of experiential intimacy. 

Essentially, experiential intimacy is creating experiences together that you relish throughout time. 

Of course, having great sex is a shared experience that you can both recall, but shared experiences happen a lot more frequently than you think. Inside jokes, private memories, or pivotal shared milestones can intensify your connection with one another. 

Being in unison as part of a team together establishes a connection that others cannot replicate as they are not living it. Moving forward in life on the same, shared path is an example of experiential intimacy. 

Perhaps you’re planning to buy your first home, moving to a different country, or going skydiving together? These shared experiences will only bring you closer together as you have opened the gates to shared memories that you can talk about in the time to come. 

Our memories are closely linked to our senses. When smelling a certain smell like perfume or fresh cinema popcorn, we are transported back to a time or place where we can draw upon our memories. Recalling memories triggers involuntary sensory reactions which replicate the same energy. The next time you think about your last vacation together, you will be carried back to a memory that will ignite nostalgic feelings. And if sex has anything to do with these past memories, then you can be sure you’ll light that fire of desire inside when a trigger presents itself. 

Always work hard to implement forms of experiential intimacy together, and your relationship will flourish. 

experimental intimacy - type of intimacy

Spiritual Intimacy

Spiritual intimacy isn’t just about going to church together- but that’s totally cool if that’s what you do! It’s about connecting on a spiritual level which leads to closeness and intimacy. Gazing up at a magnificent cathedral on vacation is an example of a shared feeling of awe. Watching the sunset from a hilltop or taking in the scenery at the top of a mountain after a hike are also examples of a shared spiritual experience. 

Discussing philosophical questions and debating each other’s ideas can also bring you closer together. Conversing over ethical subjects or simply discussing opinions on the meaning of life can lead to a transcendent connection between two people that perpetuates a level of intimacy that is hard to reproduce. 

Spiritual intimacy can help build your deeper connection with another human being. Showing a side of vulnerability, openness, and willingness to debate helps to create a solid foundation of love and spiritual intimacy. 

When this leads to lovemaking, you are guaranteed to feel your spirits connected on a higher plane, and this leads to some of the most intimate sex ever known. 

Sexual Intimacy

We cannot talk about intimacy without talking about sex. The physical unification between two people represents a deep connection or attraction but is not synonymous with just penetrative sex. Taking the time to be intimate physically can have many benefits. The natural release of “happy hormones” during sex improves our mental health and overall wellbeing. 

However, spending time massaging, kissing, touching, and stroking can also increase your intimacy level. Hugging and sleeping close to each other (especially naked) are also elements of physical or sexual intimacy that are so important in a relationship. When speaking specifically of sex, try incorporating some of the best sex positions to build intimacy. 

It is important to note that there is no right or wrong way to experience these subheadings of intimacy. Each relationship is subjective, and everyone feels things in different ways. Incorporating any level of the above in your relationship is a step in the right direction towards becoming a certified power couple! Always make sure you have time for conversation, discussion, and, of course, consent. 


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