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how to regain intimacy

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grains posted 4/29/2013 02:32 AM

hello SI,

I welcome any ideas, suggestions and advice on how to bring back intimacy in the relationship that is still healing from an infidelity. I know it takes time to be close again. I carry a lot of guilt and shame and am always worried about upsetting my BS. Yet I am not able to show her the affection that she wants. She tells me I never do enough to show her that I care for her. How did you approach this?

changedibr posted 4/29/2013 03:05 AM

That is the exact same problem I'm having. she tells me that I don't do anything to show her my love. And another big problem is we don't have intimate relations anymore and I don't know how to approach this. Of course I want to but Im so full of guilt that I find it too difficult to touch or kiss her. I know she's confused to. SHe's torn between wanting me and resenting me. We're just so messed up I don't know what to do or how to do it

BaxtersBFF posted 4/29/2013 06:44 AM

Both of you mention guilt as a reason that you canít bring yourself to show affection or intimacy. This might be the time to fake it until you make it. If you can force yourselves to get over your own guilt enough times, then it will become easier each time. Eventually it becomes a habit, but this can be a good habit if you are also continuing to work on healing yourselves.

I think the big thing is to not do anymore damage by letting your own issues (guilt) take away intimacy from your BSís. By continuing to do this, you are again making choices for yourselves that affect your BSís.

SandAway posted 4/29/2013 10:03 AM

Intimacy goes beyond sex. What does she enjoy?

A massage? - Give her one & light some candles. Amazon (click tab on right!) sells an amazing table (Sierra Comfort) for under $150 - don't forget the massage oil.

A bath? Enjoy one together and wash her hair - it's amazing!

Leave her little notes - write a message on the bathroom mirror with soap

Pick up some flowers or sushi

Take her out to dinner - just the two of you to a new place

Meet up at lunch and go shopping for something sexy (or new shoes!)

Plant a new garden together

[This message edited by SandAway at 10:04 AM, April 29th (Monday)]

silverhopes posted 4/29/2013 15:19 PM

Something that might help is to make a list or tell her everything about her that turns you on. Everything about her that you find attractive and love. It can help in that she knows you're there with HER, and also instead of focusing on your guilt it brings the focus back on intimacy with her.

manybrokenpieces posted 4/29/2013 21:40 PM

BS here. I agree: intimacy is more than sex. I assume you are aware of that and aren't just interested in sex otherwise I think you've missed the boat here.
But assuming you do, it was a real revelation for my WH and I to take the Love Languages assessment. You can take it free online- just search love languages by chapman. Just because you like something doesn't mean your spouse likes the same thing! For example, i like it when my husband puts away the laundry. It makes me feel that he is trying to make my day easier. It makes me feel thought of and important to him for him to take initiate in his own to do something for me. My Husband doesn't enjoy doing laundry but hr does it for me. On the flip side, my husband doesn't get affected by the same type of thing--me having his lunch packed for work doesn't make him feel loved, he doesn't register it like I do.
Find out what your BS needs to feel loved and do it CONSISTENTLY, throughout the day even if you feel no progress.
It is very difficult for your BS to want to acknowledge what you are doing right because their first thought is "he's only doing x because he feels bad about...". The natural inclination is to pull away because of the pain and insecurities they are now living with. Your job is to prove that you really are sincere and work to regain the foundation that trust is built on before you can rebuild trust.

Little things throughout the day go a long way. When was the last time you bothered to write her a love letter, send her a simple "thinking of you" text during the day, have the coffee or supper made, hold her hand or rub her shoulders(if she comfortable and with no expectation or anticipation of sexual overtures). These are the daily little things to do for her each and every day--even if you aren't feeling it. This is the way to rediscovering intimacy after trauma like you have inflicted.

grains posted 5/5/2013 17:17 PM

hello SI,

Thank you for your thoughtful suggestions. I am mindful that intimacy is not about sex. I discovered that it is about the loving touch and the loving words. My BS truly appreciates surprise hugs and also words of affirmation. I must show more of these. I also understand how my own guilt can stop me from showing intimacy. I also know that bringing home flowers and making potato salad puts my BS in a good space. We enjoy attending a dance class together every week too. There are indeed many things I can do to regain intimacy.

knightsbff posted 5/5/2013 18:35 PM

The guilt is a big problem, especially when my BH is doing something for me. To help me I try to put his feelings first.

For some reason it's easy for me to do things for him that I previously didn't often do whether it be sex acts or chores or just nice things like putting a loving post it on his bathroom mirror for him to find. When I put his feelings first I get something out of doing things for my BS. It makes me feel better about myself. This is probably childish but I don't understand the reason it makes me feel better about myself.

When my BH does something for me I can accept it and appreciate it because I know it makes him feel good. If I don't think of his feelings my guilt will still get me sometimes.

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