Improve intimacy by understanding each other's point of view
Both Genders have their own general opinions about what sex means. Understanding what your spouse thinks sex means enlightens ours minds to how the other feels and what they are trying to express. Listen to your spouse. Empathize with what they understand and work together to have a more fulfilling relationship.
I'm not sure if it was in the evening or afternoon, but one day my husband and I were watching television and the classic game show Family Feud was on. It's always fun to see what the "top 10" answers are to the host's questions. So, we stopped flipping through channels and watched for a bit. The host asked one of the teams a question like this: "Out of 100 men polled, what is the number one activity men desire to do most?" Of course, the number one answer was sex. The other nine that followed were sports and other recreational activities that are popular with men. Then, on the flip side, the other team was asked, "Out of 100 women polled, what is the number one activity women desire to do most?" The number one answer was shopping. I'm not sure the answer "sex" even made it onto the top ten list. Most of the answers were geared towards fun indulgences, interpersonal communications, or hobbies. Both teams seemed a little surprised by this, especially the men. However, in thinking of the different communication tactics of men and women, maybe it isn't all that surprising after all.
Most men need physical touch, or physical closeness to open up and be able to share generally taboo things like "feelings." For most husbands, physical closeness equals love and support. It's a release of stress and when that stress is released from their thoughts, they can begin to talk intimately and share many of the same feelings women have. On the contrary, all a woman needs is a little cuddle, a nice compliment, or a warm bubble bath to open up a gateway of thoughts and feelings waiting to be shared. This ability to readily open up is a talent that should be celebrated. Imagine if women were like men on this matter. There would probably be very little communicating going on about anything unless it were preceded by sex. Likewise, the communication tactics of most men should not be so scoffed at either. Their ability to hold in their emotions or thoughts on many subjects gives them a much more calming influence on others, helps them handle high-pressure work situations, and makes them more likely to listen to us women who do have that greater need to share.
When we recognize and understand these idiosyncrasies, men and women, especially husbands and wives, can truly begin to approach each other's needs in a more loving, self-less manner. For instance, I know my husband is like most men in his ability to share feelings and release stress. This is something I came to understand even more fully after a few years of marriage. I am in turn like most women. All I need is a smile from my husband or sense of attractiveness and I'm ready to communicate anything. A warm bath after the kids have gone to bed always helps too.
However, having one conversation on the subject of communication and intimacy between spouses is not going to take you through the rest of your lives as a couple. Like most things that really matter, it takes a lot of work to develop good communication. Some days more work and some days less work, but nonetheless, it is work definitely worth doing. It is at the core of every marriage and must be constantly addressed and attended to or it fizzes out. Without nourishment, communication will collapse and selfish desires on both sides will take over.
We all need attention and to have our needs met, both sexual and non-sexual in a marriage. A wonderful balance is achieved when both partners are constantly attending to the needs of the other. Some weeks my husband needs more attention and doting upon and I give him that attention as a loving service to him. Some weeks it is I who needs the attention and he gives me that too, because it is a loving service to me.
Our marriage is not perfect, but every day we try hard to make it so. Real marriage intimacy does not come easy, but it is definitely worth having. Take time to understand the differences between men and women, husbands and wives, and there you will find the knowledge on how to truly be of loving service to each other.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kari is an investor, entrepreneur, and writer. Her most recent venture is the popular Sweetly You Bath and Body company. To learn more about Kari or to read other articles written by her, go to Sweetly You Articles