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Repost - Intimacy in healthy relationship

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beach posted 12/17/2012 23:27 PM

Source "Don't call it Love" by Patrick Carns.

Six capacities are needed for intimacy to exist: Initiative, presense, completion, vulnerability, nurturing, and honesty.

Initiative :

Healthy intimacy - Calls; reach out; risks expression of care; invites others to share activities or problems; express wants and needs; takes responsibility to maintain relationship

Dysfunctional intimacy - Passive; seeks isolation; victim stance (it happens to me); belief in abandonment; seductive to avoid admitting needs or wants. Relies on others to maintain relationship.

Presense :

Healthy intimacy - Emotionally available to others; Listens and attends to others; explicit about reactions; spends time with others; notices what happens with others; accepts attention of others.

Dysfunctional intimacy - Emotionally constricted; shame makes distant and removed; deflects attention as undeserved; fails to notice what happens to others; distracted and nonattentive; evasiveness leaves others wondering who person really is.

Completion :

Healthy intimacy - Builds trust by finishing things; finalizes arrangements with others; acknowledges care and outreach so transactions are finished; works for closure on problems; responsive to other's needs and wants; express appreciation for completed efforts.

Dysfunctional intimacy - Overextention and loose ends provide sense of undependability; closure avoided; issues and problems put off and unresolved; unresponsive to other's needs and wants so they ended up feeling unheard; seldom acknowledges contribution or efforts of others, so they wonder if they had any impact; evasive about responsibilities.

Vulnerability :

Healthy intimacy - Shares process of thinking and feeling; talks about dilemmas; involves others in discussions; allows feedback; reveals self not shared with others; fears and sense of inadequacy available to others.

dysfunctional intimacy - Thinks things through in private; feelings unshared so no one knows decision process; internal dialogues unshared, but relied upon; appears fearless and unshakable because feelings of inadequacy are disguised.

Nurturing :

Healthy intimacy - Cares for others; makes caring statements; empathizes with other's pain; supportive; encouraging; offers suggestions; affirms value of others; does things to help others when it does not diminish them in any way; touches others.

Dysfunctional intimacy - Withdraws from others when they are in need; criticizes their efforts and judges their motives; dismisses or talks others out of intense feelings; removed and untoucheable ; fails to help when needed.

Honesty :

Healthy intimacy - Claims positive and negative feelings; clear about priorities and values; specific about disagreements; provides feedback when asked; admits flaws and mistakes; isfully known to intimates.

dysfunctional intimacy - Significant feelings remain unshared or acknowledged; preference not expressed; vague and manipulative about disagreements; hides flaws and covers mistakes; no one has total truth; relies on third parties to communicate.

Teach8 posted 12/18/2012 16:47 PM

Beach...this is wonderful. Thank you for sharing this.

thankyou1981 posted 12/18/2012 18:14 PM

Thanks for posting this (I think!).

I can see pieces of myself in pretty much all of the dysfunctional sides there.

On the positive side, I know I can keep working to replace dysfunctional behaviours with healthy ones. Thanks!

beach posted 12/18/2012 23:05 PM

Teach, Thankyou, Glad it helped.

This was eye opener for me, too.

scream posted 12/19/2012 16:47 PM

Thanks for posting this. I am Teach8's WS. I relate to so much of this post. I'm sure she saw me in it when she read. Thanks again it is good see it laid out this way.

inconnu posted 12/20/2012 10:37 AM

thanks for reposting this. I first read it when I was going through false R, and it really helped me see my marriage for what it was - not healthy for either me or now-ex.

surviving28years posted 12/20/2012 15:35 PM

Great post...sadly I see my H pre my A in the dysfunctional side. During my A I see myself in the dysfunctional side but was on the healthy side pre A. Interesting thoughts.

BaxtersBFF posted 1/20/2013 08:14 AM

and another...

sosorry5454rl posted 1/20/2013 13:10 PM

Wow what a great post. .. this was quite helpful to read. .. scary but helpful. Thank you

knightsbff posted 1/21/2013 07:23 AM

Thank you.

This one rates printing so I can revisit often.

BaxtersBFF posted 4/7/2013 08:29 AM


pizzalover posted 4/7/2013 09:21 AM

Thanks for sharing this.

heforgotme posted 4/7/2013 09:55 AM

Thanks beach. Printing this out.....

cheerless posted 4/7/2013 10:45 AM

This is great. Thank you for posting.

pizzalover posted 4/7/2013 11:36 AM


AFrayedKnot posted 7/19/2013 11:15 AM


JustDesserts posted 7/19/2013 12:52 PM

A great post. Encouraging: seeing so much of my betrayed wife's core self in the healthy category, and actually much of my healthy self there, too.

Discouraging: knowing how my damaged, lying, cheating self acted out on the dysfunctional side of the tracks. Discouraging in a "wow, pathetic, dude" way.

And scary in a "you really couldn't or wouldn't see yourself as you were?" way...punctuating the grandiose and delusional nature of my "addictive affair".

And, finally, with regard to my xAP...the dysfunctional side is spot 'effing on. Discouraging, again, in how I willingly blinded myself to a core flaw (just one of many) in her wiring.

Really good stuff.

AFrayedKnot posted 9/4/2013 10:03 AM


TxsT posted 9/4/2013 18:47 PM

This is a wonderful mirror for all of us to use......not just WS. Us BS's need to be aware of our actions and reactions as well.


bionicgal posted 9/5/2013 09:12 AM

I am a BS and see plenty of myself in here as well. Shared it with WS -- thanks!

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