The New Intimacy


Real Intimacy, Not Just Hearts and Flowers

The season of high romance is here! Yet, Valentine's Day may be the most dangerous day of the year for love and romance.

Since people receive no formal training or preparation for how to date effectively or how to create passionate long-lasting marriages, all too often the full burden of our desire for love and romance falls on Valentine's Day -- with Cupid, The Florist and The Candy Maker trying to fill the bill. Then, when fantasies of perfect romance, perfect gifts, perfect love-making collide with reality -- love loses out to broken dreams and broken hearts.

Can you take the danger out of Valentine's Day? YES!!! Because it's the way you treat their differences that either makes or breaks love!

Typically the differences are blamed for relationship failure. But, in reality they are the only true way to experience deep intimacy and real romance.

Last year Sandy waited all year for her boyfriend's flowers to show up at her office. When she left for home empty-handed she felt totally betrayed. "How could he be so insensitive, so selfish," she cried to herself driving home. She vowed to break it off, to never speak with him again.

Yet, as she drove into her driveway she saw a vase of gorgeous flowers with a note attached waiting in front of her garage. "How stupid he is! Didn't he know I'd rather have them delivered to my office where I can show them off! He is such a moron!" Filled with righteous rage, she spent the evening fighting with the man she claimed to love simply because he was different from her fantasy of who he "should be."

This kind of tragedy can be prevented when we follow two of love's simple secrets:

  • Learn to receive the love that comes to you
  • Use simple curiosity about the differences, especially when they disappoint you!

Receiving and Curiosity -- the most powerful aphrodisiacs for Valentine's Day (and all through the year)!

When we open our hearts to receive what is actually given to us we stay in reality, not smitten with a fantasy the other person can never live up to. Yes, we may be disappointed, but that can be an opening to deeper intimacy, to learning more about who your partner is. And then you can teach one another more about how you would like to celebrate Valentine's Day and other special times in the future. You are active in the creation of your special romance, not a victim of your secret expectations.

This year make sure you are available for the love you want. Be generous in your giving, and, more importantly, stay open to be loved in ways you've never considered. Be open to real love and romance -- and it's only available through your differences.

© 2006, The New Intimacy

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Intimacy is spelled "in to me you see". - Stan Dale

I have always made a distinction between my friends and my confidants. I enjoy the conversation of the former; from the latter I hide nothing. - Edith Piaf


Husband and wife psychology team, Judith Sherven and Jim Sniechowski, are the bestselling authors of "The New Intimacy" and "Opening to Love 365 Days a Year." Their latest book is Be Loved for Who You Really Are: How the differences between men and women can be turned into the source of the very best romance you'll ever know. They provide corporate trainings on breaking through resistance to success and relationship workshops about The Magic of Differences--romance based on respect and value for each other's unique ways. As guest experts they've been on over 600 television and radio shows including Oprah, The O'Reilly Factor, 48 Hours, Canada AM, and The View. Visit their website at

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