Valentine 8 Point Relationship Health Checklist

Valentine 8 Point Relationship Health Checklist

January 30th, 2015 Comments Off
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west los angeles relationship counseling

How can you use Valentine's Day to ensure that your relationship has healthy emotional intimacy that will still be there next year?

Giving chocolates, flowers, cards, wining and dining are rituals that don't have connection with the emotional health of your relationship.

All it does is pay lip service to the 'day' and make you feel you have done your duty!

If you really care about the emotional connection with your valentine partner, use this 8 point relationship checklist to take stock and boost the health of your liaison.

Fear of Emotional Intimacy


1. We are Curious:

How often are you curious about your partner's views, beliefs, needs, fears, doubts and intentions? Do you hunger to know what's going on inside or do you not have any interest or room?

The amount of curiosity you have is in direct proportion to making your partner feel that you want to know them, see and hear them and that you take time with it.

Watch this video to learn more about dealing with conflict using curiosity


2. We avoid making assumptions:

How often do you assume what your partner will say, do, not do, react, and respond to you and the situations in which you regularly get into?

The frequency of making assumptions and then having an expectation of how your partner will behave is the most contentious issue that embroils a couple and puts them into a cycle of resentment and conflict.


Now You Want Me Now You Don't. Fear Of Intimacy.

3. We speak our hurts, not blame:

It's natural to want to blame your partner for your hurts, but when you do you forget that it's a two-way street and that it's the dynamics between you that cause you to feel wounded. Putting all the responsibility for your hurt on your partner is denying your 'couplehood' and leads to defensive postures. On the other hand, if you recognize that your hurt came from unmet expectations, you can start to speak clearly about those wishes and help your partner understand how they let you down. Then things can shift to a place of mutual reflection and emotional intimacy.

4. We ask for what we want, not imagine it will be known:

So many of my clients tell me how deeply wounded they are when their partners don't 'know' what they want, and can't anticipate their needs. They don't want to have to speak about their needs, preferences or wishes, because that would take away the pleasure of having it magically known. They would rather suffer and complain than share! The relationship has no chance  of being mutually rewarding if one partner or the other shows nothing outwardly, and says nothing, merely giving the cold shoulder when they feel unattended to,

So a healthy love relationship includes openness about your needs, wants and desires – showing it in your body language and talking about it in words. Emotional intimacy is now possible.

A  rewarding  and satisfying relationship involves both partners educating one another about their needs and wishes on a regular basis. Then each one learns to tune in and anticipate. But it is an evolving process because needs change over time. Emotional intimacy has a safe place to develop and grow.

5. We acknowledge that we are both hurtful, and loving:

When you feel hurt, let down, ignored or dismissed by your partner, it's hard to feel anything for them but anger, hate and resentment. In that moment they are 'bad'; 'selfish' and ' insensitive.'

You want them to own up to hurting you, apologize and make amends.

Your partner feels the same way when they are on the receiving end of pain, and hurt. They ache and get sore too.

One of the most common problems that couples have is understanding that both are human, have feelings and hurt as much as you.

In a healthy, loving relationship partners will make room both parties to have feelings of fear, anger, pain, and unfulfilled needs. Emotional intimacy has a place to take roots and offer security to both parties.

Conquering the fear of intimacy

6. We are grateful for the love we get:

It can be disappointing when you don't get loved the way you want.

You may feel unloved if you are looking for specific signs of love from your partner.

You may not see or want to acknowledge that there are others ways to love, and that your partner is doing it their way!

Even if you don't feel like you are being loved, it's likely that there are a million ways your partner is showing love. Being grateful for their efforts, for doing their version of love is vital if you are to sustain the relationship.

Be observant and inclusive rather than narrow and exclusive. You will find treasure that will expand your vision of love, promoting emotional intimacy that lasts.


7. We mourn the loss of being loved the way we dreamed of:

When you entered your relationship you may have had dreams of being 'a queen,' 'being #1'; 'being taken care of financially'; "having a non-alcoholic partner' and many more. Your dreams may be dashed and you feel deprived and angry. You may try to make what you dreamed of happen, and keep trying before you give up. Your relationship becomes tense, full of punishment and revenge, making each other feel guilty and ashamed. The ONLY way to get past this is to mourn the loss of what you didn't get in the relationship, and what you didn't get as a child that you brought into the relationship. Then you have room for the relationship. You have a chance to create exactly what you need NOW, not what you are carrying over from your past.  Then the seeds of emotional intimacy sprout.




Recognizing the signs of fear of emotional intimacy

8. We forgive, and try to understand:

A healthy, vibrant and satisfying relationship will always have partners that put understanding one another on top of their priority list. They want to be understood by one another, not vilified, demonized and depersonalized. So EMPATHY is the name of the game. It doesn't mean that your hurt disappears, or that you excuse a behavior that you don't feel is acceptable. But you can tune into where they were coming from, sense their intentions, empathize and forgive. If there is no forgiveness you sever the relationship and end up insecure, angry, lonely and in permanent conflict. Understanding and forgiveness is the lifeblood of a healthy alive relationship where emotional intimacy gets anchored.

AUTHOR OF 'Now You Want Me, Now You Don't! Fear of Intimacy: ten ways to recognize it and ten ways to manage it in your relationships."


Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. 2015

 You might also like:

How to turn a volatile, conflictual marriage into a happy validating union

To forgive or not to forgive, that is the question?

Five ways to breach a misunderstanding with your partner


Disclaimer: this article is for informational and educative purposes only. Dr. Raymond is not responsible for any reactions you may have when reading the content or using the suggestions therein. Interacting with this material does not constitute a therapeutic relationship with Dr. Jeanette Raymond


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