Extra Virgin :: Intimacy Busters
In her book Every Woman’s Battle, Shannon Ethridge contrasts actions that boost intimacy in marriage with those that destroy it. I thought her list was fascinating and wanted to share part of it here ::
|Intimacy Busters||Intimacy Boosters|
|having sex as a means of closeness||having sex as a response to closeness|
|requiring intimacy from your spouse||inspiring intimacy with your spouse|
|expecting your needs to be served||serving each other’s needs|
|sarcastic or condescending talk||conversing respectfully as best friends|
|making unhealthy comparisons of your husband or yourself||accepting each other unconditionally|
|pestering him to change his ways or giving him the silent treatment||praying for and with each other consistently|
|expressing frustration that he’s “not doing it right”||discussing what brings you pleasure|
|considering sex a worldly act||considering sex an act of worship|
In particular, the first item on the list struck me as being an area that is often confusing. It’s so common and easy to think of sex as a way to get closer to a man (think of all the ways women do this!), while in actuality, this will crush the very intimacy that they are seeking to obtain. But I love how Ethridge encourages sex as a response to closeness. If you build intimacy on the solid foundation of friendship, mutual service and unconditional love, sex is a holy response to your joy found in such a relationship.
All too often, I find myself in the column on the left. I can defend my wants and needs with an almost savage diligence, and in turn drive away the very intimacy that I want and need so badly! I found this list enlightening and convicting, and highly recommend taking a look at the rest of the chapter (“Rebuilding Bridges”) in the book.
What about you? Do you think it’s easy for women to use sex as a means of closeness instead of a response to it? Were any of the intimacy busters surprising to you? Which of the intimacy boosters did you find particularly compelling?
(Photography by the Parsons)