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The Thrill is Gone: 3 Quick Fixes for Intimacy

Ask Ms. Vicki

Intimacy can be defined as a close, familiar and usually affectionate or loving personal relationship with another person. In the initial stages of a relationship, couples report great intimacy, including stimulating conversations, much laughter, storytelling, holding hands and doing simple things like cuddling while watching a movie or a favorite sitcom.

Over time and in many situations a very short time the fire goes out and the thrill is gone -- leaving ZERO intimacy. This leaves many asking: What happened, how and why? Something that I like to do is to take advantage of every opportunity to give questionnaires, surveys and have casual conversations with people posing important questions. Questions like: If there is a lack of intimacy in your relationship, name three reasons why and name three ways to fix it. 

Interestingly, these are the top 3 reasons given for the lack of intimacy:

#3: My schedule is too busy, leaving no time for intimacy

#2: No Warm-up Exercises (foreplay) -- Most women said their partner wants to get to the point too quickly. However, men also said they want more spontaneity in their relationships too.

#1 Poor Hygiene (body odor or halitosis/bad breath)

Quick ways to increase the intimacy in your relationships would be to do the reverse of the top 3 reasons above: get yearly physicals, report any foul odors etc. to your primary care physician or other specialists and visit your dentist to determine the causes of halitosis, and finally…slow down and give it time to heat up!

Here's some additional Ms. Vicki "quick tips" to restore the intimacy in your relationship:

  1. Schedule a date night and take the time seriously. Don't find reasons to cancel the date. Your relationship is very important.
  2. Hold hands often, cuddle on the sofa while watching TV, come to bed earlier for extra pillow talk and lay quietly together (but close enough to listen to your partner's heart beat).
  3. If there is a wide relationship gap between you and your partner where the two of you are sleeping in separate rooms or contemplating a separation or divorce, consider marital counseling or couples therapy first.

Let me know what you think. Can you share other ways to improve the intimacy in a relationship?

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Contributor

Ms. Vicki is a native of Dallas, has been the Dear Abby for the military community since her column began in 2005. A licensed therapist and licensed clinical social worker, Ms. Vicki holds a Master of Science in social work and a Master of Arts in clinical psychology.

Ms. Vicki appears regularly on Military.com and in the Fort Campbell Courier. Her column has also appeared in the Washington (D.C.) Times and in the Heidelberg (Germany) Post Herald. She has been featured on CNN, CBS, ABC and NBC.

Looking for advice about your military life? Email Ms. Vicki here. Find Ms. Vicki on Facebook here.  Find Ms. Vicki on Twitter here.

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