It has been on my mind of late.
I have come to realise, admittedly quite late on in my life, that I feel ambiguous about it.
On one hand, I crave it. I want nothing more than to be truly, deeply intimate with my partner.
The other side of me struggles to achieve it.
The other side fears it.
The other side hides from it.
I am not sure I have ever been truly, truly intimate with him. Or anyone, for that matter.
Of course I can love. I am capable of incredible, consuming love. Lay down my life love.
Of course I have fallen in love. And I have stayed in love for years.
Of course I enjoy sex.
But it is SEX. I cannot even bring myself to utter the words making love, (much to the OH amusement).
I even flinch as I type them.
One of my guilty pleasure has always been The Pina Colada Song, Escape, but for THAT line, I sing, “Yes I like doing it at midnight…” Always makes him laugh.
The sad thing is I would love to be able to “ML”, but I don’t think I do…
I have sex. I fuck. I ride. It’s a physical thing. If I want to show love, I will make a delicious meal or write a loving note.
Am I a robot?
I know nothing about fear of intimacy so I did what any self-respecting person does in these modern times.
I googled it.
This is what I found…
How do you feel when you are sad, a little depressed, in need of some comforting and reassurance? Are you able to let yourself be dependent and to receive some nurturing? Is this balanced in your relationship, or is one partner the ‘strong one’ who never needs to show any vulnerability? If so, is this really how you want things to be in your relationship?
Aha! I am no good at asking for help or being nurtured. I like to help and to nurture. Being on the other side of that equation is uncomfortable for me. Years ago, during a therapy session I was asked if I was any good at asking for help. I was stumped. I went home and asked the OH who laughed and laughed. He said I never, ever asked for help. I never showed vulnurablity.
How do you feel about yourself? – when you’ve taken a bit of a knock and are feeling small and ‘put down’, or when you’ve achieved something that makes you feel good about yourself.
I think I could safely claim to have one of the lowest levels of self esteem possible, and am sure the OH would second that one.
How do you feel about sex? – what you like and don’t like in your love-making, and about how your sexual relationship could be made more enjoyable for you.
Ew! They used the “ML” phrase! Cringe… sex is brilliant, I love to fuck, who doesn’t? But the “ML” thing? Skin is crawling…
Do you really know what your partner thinks and feels, or do you have to guess and ‘mind-read?’ Are you able to be open with your partner, or do you feel that your partner would not be able to accept some of your feelings?
I feel dreadfully uncomfortable having deep and meaningful conversations and, add to that, the fact the OH leans towards the strong silent type and no doubt, you can guess the answer to this one.
Guess I’m screwed…
I also found this…
7 SIGNS YOU SUFFER FEAR OF INTIMACY
- You never sit still.
Are you one of those people who is always busy, your life full to the maximum? If you do have down time, do you immediately think of what you can do to fill it? Behind a fear of intimacy is a fear of facing up to yourself and what you perceive (erroneously) as your weaknesses. An intimacy phobic person fears others getting close because they would then see these apparent ‘flaws’, which can be feelings of sadness, anger, and grief. But if you are constantly busy all the time you can avoid such feelings so effectively you can deny that you have them at all, and you have the perfect excuse to not have time for other people who are trying to get close enough they might see what you are trying to hide.
I do like to be busy. At the weekends the OH longs to lie around doing nothing and I simply cannot bear this! Constant debate as to be productive, (me), or relax, (him).
- You are known as someone who is very positive.
People who fear intimacy prefer to come across as someone who never gets upset and is always strong and in a ‘good’ state of mind. It’s actually a way to avoid deep connection. The truth about human nature is that we don’t bond over strength but weakness. Sure, we can bump chests and high five over group wins, but we only really form long lasting bonds when we see each other vulnerable.
I have only recently become able to allow people to catch a glimpse of the woman who doesn’t always cope well with everything. It was a challenge but I am glad I did it.
- You are the strong one others turn to.
If you are the one others turn to, the conversation is always about someone else’s issues and needs. It’s a perfect diversion from anyone ever seeing your true vulnerability or ever asking about how you feel, which an intimacy phobic person hates. Someone asking how you feel at the wrong moment might make you ‘crack’ and expose yourself as just like them, i.e.,vulnerable.
Oh god! I am a dedicated agony aunt and have always attracted troubled people to me like moths to a flame.
- You appear perfectly put together. Always.
Is there anything more intimidating then perfection? The more perfect you appear externally, the less others can see that you are human and weak just like they are, and the less they will dare get close. Your perfectionism will make them feel ‘lesser than’ so why would they put themselves through the comparison? And let’s not forget how busy attempting to be perfect can keep you! Perfection is a part-time job at the very least, and as covered in number one, being busy is the best way to avoid intimacy.
I do like to come across well. Once during a training course a fellow student told me, several months in, that she had suspected I was a ‘stooge’ placed into the group by the trainers to spy on people, because I looked so confident and together.
- You are sure you know exactly what you want in a partner, you just haven’t found him/her yet.
Do you keep a ‘list’ of exactly what you want in a partner? Another form of perfection, the ‘ideal mate list’ is usually something that nobody can live up to, and is a convenient way to brush off connecting with others by claiming ‘I am sure of what I want and you just aren’t it.’
Of course as an intimacy phobic person, even if you did stumble across your ideal partner you wouldn’t choose them. Intimacy phobes are after one thing, and that is to avoid being hurt. So you will pick someone who is emotionally unavailable (already taken, not looking for love, still hung up on someone else) or someone who is codependent – wanting to find their happiness through another and therefore caught up in control and unable of proper, honest connection. Intimacy phobic people are in fact often called ‘counter dependent’ as they are the other ‘half’ of the codependency pattern, the aloof one to match the codependent’s voracious need.
I fall into the second point for this one, no list but frequently attracted to the wrong people.
- You are many different things to many different people.
This could be called ‘Marilyn Monroe syndrome’. Everyone who claimed they knew her well had a different take on who the ‘real’ Marilyn was – the girl next door, the siren, the secretly intelligent woman. If anything, the real truth was that she was lonely and felt that nobody knew her. In other words, she had issues with intimacy. When you are afraid of intimacy you don’t know how to be yourself around others. You are so used to hiding the bits you deem unacceptable and assume others could not love that you mould yourself to instead be what you think others want.
It’s again a way to evade being fully seen, and to avoid anyone ever getting close enough to hurt you. If someone falls for an image of you they want to see, how can you be hurt if they decide they don’t like the image? You can just laugh at them and claim ‘well you didn’t really know me anyway’.
I have always moulded myself for other people. Always. What do you want me to be? I’ll be it for you.
- You have very strong opinions.
If you have very strong opinions of others and become known for this, it scares others off trying to get too close, lest they become next in your line of fire.
Finally! I don’t judge other people, I have no right to.
So it seems I am a perfect candidate for Intimacy Phobe of the year…
Sadly, knowing this, although the realization is a first step, does not help me overcome it.
It seems to me that the fear of intimacy stems from feeling inadequate, less than, not good enough.
That in turn leads to fear of being left or rejected if one’s weakness/vulnerablities are shown.
Its easier to stay in control, present a perfect facade and avoid being hurt, than to show the dirty, messy broken parts of yourself and risk someone grimacing and turning away.
I guess this is something I am going to have to stay mindful of, do some soul searching, build that self esteem up and, god help me! open up some more… uh I feel exhausted at the very thought of it all.
However, I feel very much like I am missing out on something so the work may well be worth it.
One final thought… sharing this with you guys and gals is probably a definite first step on my road to overcoming fear of intimacy, don’t you think?
Just don’t ask me to say the ”ML” phrase.
I have finally plucked up the courage to publish my first bit of naughty fiction…
I am very nervous as to how it will be received.
I know that everyone finds different things enticing and I can’t expect everyone to like my style.
If you fancy having a read pop over to http://mstsecretgarden.wordpress.com
If you have any feedback I’d be so happy to hear it…
However, be gentle with me!
First things first, I must proclaim that I am probably the only woman who has not read the infamous 50 Shades trilogy. I did read a few extracts, and I found the “Holy Cow!” declarations by the heroine to be possibly the least sexy language ever used to describe a grown woman’s reaction to an impressive erection.
However I must also admit that my interest in the film is borderline obsessive…
This is because of my mega-crush on the beautiful, Godlike creature that is Jamie Dornan.
*pause while I hyperventilate at the very thought of Him
Dornan first came to my attention in the excellent BBC drama The Fall, playing the sexiest goddamned serial killer you will ever see on screen. In addition to his dark brooding good looks, his portrayal of a loving family man who harbours a monstrous dark sideline in rape and murder was truly impressive. He managed to make the audience actually feel sympathy towards his Jekyll and Hyde character.
I found it a strange experience to be so strongly attracted to a man who, in real life, I would be terrified of.
If you have not seen this drama I strongly recommend you do a search for it on Netflix. You will not be disappointed and they are about to show the second season here soon.
I have since spent shameless hours trawling the Internet for news, articles and, of course, photos of my new love.
I have spent even more hours staring into space as I play out wonderfully filthy fantasies involving him and I.
And no I don’t think I can bring myself to share them with you here. (Although I am considering starting another blog as a place to unleash the darker, dirtier side of kittykat… stay tuned.)
I have followed him on Twitter.
I have learned that he played rugby in college and he has a golf handicap of 13.
I have followed him on Instagram.
I laughed out loud as I watched him on The Graham Norton Show, where he was delightfully funny and self-deprecating about his silly walk. Watch it and enjoy, it really is very funny.
I have discovered he can sing as well as act, and I have created a Spotify playlist for his band, Sons of Jim, which sadly, has been on hiatus since 2008.
I have actually tweeted him to tell him I enjoyed his music.
Yes, yes, yes, pathetic for a woman of my age!
But you know what? I don’t care!
This teenage-behaviour is not a new thing for me.
Which leads me on to…
I am sure I am not alone in having a List of people, (celebrities, to be fair), that I get to have a Free Pass with if I ever, (as if!), got the chance to be with them.
My long-suffering OH is begrudgingly tolerant of The List, which, I must add, is ever-changing and growing. So much so, that he can never be entirely sure who is on it at any one day.
Over the years it has included such objects of desire as…
To name but a few…
I have repeatedly asked the OH who he would like to add to a List for himself, but he firmly holds out that he has no desire to compile such an inventory. I have gone so far as to demand he have at least on Free Pass… he tells me nothing.
I think it is perfectly healthy for me to find other men attractive, and to enjoy the odd fantasy here and there, and I honestly would not have any problems with the OH doing the same. But I guess maybe we are all different and perhaps he tells the truth and simply does not harbour dark desires for other women. Seeing as I am perfectly ok with it, he has no reason to lie to me.
But returning to my latest Object of Desire, the divine Dornan, I do feel a slight bit peeved that, for the role of Christian Grey, they have striped him of all that makes him so masculine and sexy.
As I stated at the outset, I did not read the novels so I am completely ignorant of how the character was described in them, but it escapes me why the producers opted to remove Dornan’s beard and body hair.
Instead of the dark, brooding Dornan we saw in The Fall, the epitome of masculinity and menace, we have a hairless, sanitized version of the man as Grey.
I wonder why this decision was made?
NOT that it will deter me from going to the cinema, with a no-doubt unenthused OH, to watch the Object Of My Desire in glorious HD on the big screen.
Will they release a 3D version? Oh God, I need to breathe…
Maybe I should even rethink my decision not to read the novels. At least now I can read them and picture Dornan, my hairy bearded Dornan, as Grey.
I sense a while lot of new devilish fantasies on the way…
I’m off for a cold shower.