Accepting Your Partner
In order to fully accept your partner when he or she reveals themselves to you, you need to be accepting of yourself. Judging yourself can lead to judging your partner, which creates an unsafe space for your partner to share themselves with you. If your partner is afraid of your judgment, then he or she will likely withhold information about themselves, which creates walls rather than intimacy.
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Intimacy flows naturally when each person takes responsibility for accepting and valuing themselves, so they can then accept and value their partner. When you do not accept and value yourself, you will then make your partner responsible for giving you the acceptance and valuing that you are not giving to yourself. This creates a problem, in that intimacy flows when you are sharing your love with your partner, rather than trying to get love. Intimacy is thwarted when one or both partners are trying to get love instead of share love.
In order to share love, you need to have love to share. You will have love to share when you are loving and valuing yourself — not when you are abandoning yourself. When you are abandoning yourself by judging yourself or by focusing in your head rather than your heart or by turning to addictions, you cut yourself off from your source of love, which creates an inner emptiness. When you try to connect with your partner from an empty place, your partner will feel a pull from you to give you the love you are not giving to yourself. Your partner might try to fill you or your partner might resist that responsibility, but in either case, loving feelings will not flow between you.
Intimacy flows when we are each open, kind, interested, supportive, and self-revealing with each other. It flows when we each feel safe to reveal our deepest fears and secrets and receive acceptance in return. In order to give this wonderful safe space to each, we each need to give it to ourselves as well. This is where our inner work comes in — the work we each need to do to learn to love, value and accept ourselves.
We feel intimate and connected with our partner when we know that we have each other's back — that we can each, at times, fall apart and receive warm, loving comfort and acceptance from each other. This is one of the greatest values of a loving relationship — to see and be seen, to hear and be heard, to understand and be understood, to give and receive love.
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Nothing in life ever comes close to the joy of sharing this kind of love with your beloved.