Author Archive

Five Reasons Why Being Perfect Kills Emotional Intimacy

December 19th, 2014 No Comments

TIPS ON THE FEAR OF EMOTIONAL INTIMACY AND HOW TO MANAGE IT

 

perfection with border

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you trying to be the 'perfect partner'?

Do you have an image of what that should be and attempt to emulate it all the time?

If so, you are depriving you and your partner of the the connection and closeness that could be the cornerstone on which your relationship is founded.

When you are busy and engrossed with implementing your idea of the perfect partner, you are focused on an ideal and not on the reality of your relationship.

 

Trying to be the perfect partner kills emotional intimacy in 5 ways:

 

Book Now You Want Me Now You Dont - fear of intimacy

  • You are not available to be with your partner emotionally since you are focused on and attending to a fantasy relationship in your head.

 

  • You create a chasm between you and your partner because you don't get to know what they want, need or desire from you and the relationship.

 

  • You treat the relationship as a business arrangement where you have to prove your worth by your actions, making any emotional connection impossible.

 

  • You look for approval for your 'perfect' thoughts and deeds, turning the relationship into one where validation rather than emotional intimacy is the prime objective.

 

  • You rob the relationship of equality by trying to be perfect and therefore superior – that ensures that emotional intimacy is dead in the water.


Three things you can do to get out of that perfection mode and have a real relationship:


 

Book 'Now You Want Me, Now You Don't! Fear of Intimacy"

You can be more grounded in reality when you bend and stretch with your partner, so you are in synch.


Book, 'Now You Want Me, Now You Don't.'

You can be available for your partner to just listen and comfort without trying to fix them

 

 

 

 

Book, 'Now You Want Me, Now You Don't! Fear of Intimacy

You can check in with each other regularly so that you are emotionally connected

 

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.

 You might also like:

Your rule about love can make you feel unloved

Rules about the roles that partners should play stops relationships from getting to first base

Enjoying intimacy like you did in the early days

 

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



Four Ways Clutter Keeps You Safe From Emotional Intimacy!

December 5th, 2014 No Comments


TIPS ON THE FEAR OF EMOTIONAL INTIMACY AND HOW TO MANAGE IT

west los angeles counseling for couples

Is your house filled with clutter?

Are you unable to throw anything out?

Do you get frantic when you can't find something amid the clutter, resolve to tidy up, but lose the will to do it when the time comes?

Then you are probably afraid of letting go of past relationship memorabilia.

It's as if the objects that you hang onto are the ties that keep special relationships alive inside you.

It may look like clutter to the naked eye, and others may see nothing but junk, but to you it's an intrinsic part of your life, without which you would feel empty and lost.

Therapy for problems with grief and emotional intimacy

1. This is called complex grief. If you haven't accepted the loss emotionally, then the objects that belonged to the person take on that person's place in your life, even if the objects themselves are not important. Getting rid of those objects would be like forcing you to grieve something that is too difficult and would destabilize you.

Complex grief doesn't get better on it's own. Professional help to open the gate for grief to speak, while you are being supported through your immense sense of loss, is vital.

BUT WHAT IF YOU AREN'T LOCKED UP IN GRIEF?

If you have had an unresolved relationship in the past, where things ended badly, you may carry some guilt about your part in that. You may feel that you abandoned a friend or loved one, or that you used someone who was kind to you. Maybe you wish you had valued someone more, or not rejected their love and availability so casually.

therapy for guilt based fear of emotional intimacy

2. Clutter and hoarding often appeases guilt about a relationship that you felt badly about.

Perhaps you have regrets about the way you judged or treated the person with whom the objects are associated. It's a way that you can make amends, rather than kill off that connection entirely.

 

LOCKED UP IN GRIEF OR BEING CONSUMED WITH GUILT PREVENT YOU FROM BEING AVAILABLE FOR EMOTIONAL INTIMACY

Clutter and hoarding are highly effective ways of preventing emotional intimacy with partners and spouses. 

The focus of attention is the clutter that your partner complains about, that you feel bad about, and that comes between you. Your partner wants you to be available without any 'junk'. Your partner wants a clean and free connection with you. But because your are either filled with grief or guilt you have no room for closeness and intimacy. The clutter is a concrete symbol of the clutter inside you, depriving you of warmth, love, acceptance and love.

Therapy for fear of emotional intimacy

3. UNRELIABLE PEOPLE FROM YOUR PAST MAKE YOU TRUST MORE IN OBJECTS – CREATING A BARRIER TO EMOTIONAL INTIMACY

For many people, 'things' are more reliable and consistent than people, so clutter is their security blanket. Some people use alcohol or food to fill themselves up when they can't trust people, others use clutter. Yes, clutter will always be there for you, but look what you miss out on if you learn to connect, get close and filled with love. It won't always feel satisfying, but if you let it in, and push the clutter out, the chances are you will feel more loved than not. You can learn to manage your insecurity and stress in relationships with appropriate psychotherapy.

 

therapy for fear of emotional intimacy

 Clutter and hoarding is also a way of trying to hang onto an idyllic time in ones life before you became disillusioned.

4. What if you still fantasize about your carefree youth, the fun you had when school was out every summer, and the security you felt growing up with so many family members and friends around you?

Then you may be putting on a suit of armor to protect you from the current reality that feels uncomfortable and scary to you.

You may be pining for a world that no longer exists, by holding onto things from the past that have no relevance to your life right now. In trying to make time stop still in the hope that you can recapture it – you block opportunities to be in the here-and-now. You can't face reality and the responsibilities it brings, NOR THE DEEP DISAPPOINTMENT AND DISILLUSIONMENT THAT LIFE ISN'T AS IT ONCE WAS.

 

Find out more about the fear of intimacy in my book below.

 

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.

 You might also like:

How to Stop Hoarding as Your Intimacy Substitute

Perfectionism may be ruining your intimate relationships

Four Reasons Why Premarital Counseling Ensures That You Really Know the Person You Are Going to Marry

 

 

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



Two Ways to Enhance Emotional Intimacy By Sharing Anxieties

November 20th, 2014 No Comments

Tips on Conquering The Fear of Emotional Intimacy

improving emotional intimacy

Thirty-four-year-old Justine loved her job as an EMT service person with her local Fire Department. She enjoyed the excitement of rushing to save people in car accidents or from overdosing alone at home. But when it came time to go home and be a wife and mother, she got anxious and stressed.

Would her two year old daughter Tricia run to her or be upset that her mom had been away so long and cling to the nanny instead? Could she trust her thirty-seven-year-old husband Andre, a policeman to remember to bring home the pet food for their three dogs? Was he going to take the dogs for a walk tonight so she could have some quality time with Tricia?

 

Anticipating being let down by your partner creates anxiety and whips up a fear of emotional intimacy

Anxiety rose to overflowing proportions as Justine pulled up to the garage, waiting for door to open. Her head started pounding and her breath became shallow. Her eyes scanned the house to make sure everything was okay, while that voice in her head kept speaking about her fury and disappointment that Andre just didn’t seem to care about how stressed and overloaded she was. It was just liked she felt growing up as a young girl, coming home from school and finding her mother out, no food prepared and dogs that had messed inside because they hadn’t been walked during the day!

conquering the fear of emotional intimacy

As Andre got ready to switch his squad car for his own and head on home, his mind went to what he would be expected to do when he arrived. What would Tricia pick on to castigate him about tonight, and how could he communicate that he was doing a ton of things that she didn’t see? Feeling invisible in what he did, he was spotlighted for what he didn’t do, and nothing seemed to alter that pattern. That was how he used to feel on his way home from school as a young teen. Instead of complimenting him for his excellent school grades, he was lambasted by his overworked mother for not tidying his bedroom and clearing up the breakfast dishes earlier that day.

Filled with a mix of resentment and a need to defend what he expected would be an onslaught of accusations, Andre entered the house and went straight to pick up Tricia and give her a hug. Feeling ignored, Justine went ballistic. How could he put her in second place? She was his wife, yet she meant so little.

conquering the fear of emotional intimacy

Attempting to apologize and placate Justine didn’t help at all. She was incensed that no amount of repentance seemed to soften her tone. He was the embodiment of both her negligent parents and she wasn’t going to be convinced otherwise. Furious and scared that he wasn’t able to persuade his wife of his ‘goodness’, Andre took the dogs out, hoping she would feel his loss and welcome him back in a more contrite fashion.

As they got ready for bed that night, Andre wanted to get close and feel welcomed back into Justine’s life. But she made sure to keep him out. She complained about the light on his night stand and the fact that she needed to be up at 5:00 am, telling him to use the guest room.

Three days later, Justine called Andre as she was driving home from a tough day at work. She had seen a woman bleed out on the road, unable to save her from a crushing vehicular hit and run. She wanted him to put his arms around her and comfort her, while she cried and wound down from the horror of what she had witnessed. But when she got home, Andre was cold and distant. He had prepared the dinner, this being his short working day, going through the motions of asking her stuff. Justine wished she could run away and find another person to comfort her, while simultaneously wanting to throw the dinner at Andre for not being what she needed at that moment.

conquering the fear of intimacy

Retaliation and punishment substitute for closeness and warmth

When Justine needs Andre he isn’t available, and when Andre needs Justine she isn’t available – impasse. Each one is longing to be wanted be close, but just at the moment it is most needed, the door gets slammed. Retaliation is the driving force, and the desire for emotional intimacy gets snuffed out.

This is a classic example of both partners being afraid of emotional intimacy. Despite their longing the fear trumps and they just keep shutting one and other out.

Fear of emotional intimacy

·        makes you put the walls up even if you deprive yourself of something you desire.

·        Makes you choose the safety of being shut in while keeping the other out.

·        Makes you feel strong because you are punishing your loved one

 

BUT  fear of emotional intimacy also

 ·        Keeps you isolated, alone and suspicious

·        Keeps you feeling martyred in your goodness, making your partner ‘bad.’

·        Keeps the old story going about your partner being mean and cold- reinforcing it in a way that leaves no room for trust, safety and connection.

·        Keeps you from knocking a hole in the wall and trying something new and rewarding.

conquering the fear of emotional intimacy

Breaking down the walls involve going down the bumpy road of relating hand-in-hand by:

1. Speak your fears of being ignored and let down. It doesn't have to be a criticism of your partner, but offering a window into the lens of fear through which you exist in the relationship.

Benefits: you and your partner will realize that you are both afraid of each others disapproval. Once you see that you are in the same boat, you can begin to dispel the anxieties and avoid that default place of anticipating the negative response.

2.  Tell your partner how you feel about your relationship when you are disappointed. For example, that you want to teach them a lesson, or that you want them to feel your pain. That stops the cycle of revenge and punishment because you can call each other out on it.

Benefits: you recover quicker from that place of hurt, and get wise to the ploys used by your partner to get you to come to you and beg for you to return to the relationship.

Listen to my interview with Dr. Gordon Atherley to get tips on how to break down those walls.

 

reader review of Now You Want Me, Now You Don't!

 

Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

 Read excerpts of the book here

 

 



Three Ways to Conquer Your Fear of Emotional Intimacy When Your Walls Go Up

October 25th, 2014 1 Comment

Conquering The Fear of Emotional Intimacy

fear of intimacy 1

 

Childhood scars build strong, safe and solid emotional walls to protect you from being hurt with lies, neglect, broken promises, name calling, put downs and rejection.

You had to take care of yourself somehow when you were little just to survive.

You did the best thing at the time, and made sure you would never feel needy and let that wall crumble.

It worked. You stayed safe but unconnected.

But now you want a romantic connection or maybe you have one that isn't working out too well.

The Walls are getting in the way of you making that connection and letting yourself be loved and cared for.

The child in you remembers only fear and a need to be safe.

So whenever the possibility of a relationship shows up, your child's memory wipes away everything else and tells you that you are in danger.

No matter the genuineness and gentleness of your romantic partner you see them as potential foxes dressed in sheeps clothing.

Emotional intimacy becomes a threat.

 

Now You Want Me, Now You Don't! Fear of Intimacy

Conquering the fear of emotional intimacy involves three basic steps

1. Building a window into your thick wall.

You can see through it, and your partner can see you. Sharing of experiences and watching each others reactions from the safety of your fortress through the window is safe while not shutting love and interest in you out.

Now You Want Me, Now You Don't! Fear of Intmacy

2. Opening that window and holding hands.

Feeling the touch and warmth of someone who cares establishes trust and builds safe bonds as the hormone oxytocin is released with skin to skin contact.

 

Now You Want Me Now You Don't! Fear of Intimacy

 

3. Making a door together that allows you to welcome your lover in, but also allows you to throw them out when you get full, or anxious.

Doing something together that lets you keep control while still establishing a connection is a wonderful way of growing your sense of safety and trust. The joint act of taking care of you helps you separate the trauma of childhood scars from the reality of the love you have available now.

 

You won't feel safe and carefree all the time. But you are getting there slowly and with the help of someone you have chosen to connect with.

 

copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. 2014

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 relationship.

You May Also Like:

How to make sure your date turns into a positive healthy, intimate relationship.

Expressing hurt saves relationships while repressed anger causes relationship breakups.

How to communicate that you really care



Now You Want Me, Now You Don’t! Excerpt -Introduction

July 22nd, 2014 No Comments
 Fear of Intimacy: Ten ways to recognize it and ten ways to manage it in your relationship.
Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. 2014
 

"I couldn't put the book down! It was such a good read. Dr.Raymond is such an insightful therapist." Dr. Michelle Cohen, LA Talk Radio host of "On the Couch with Dr. Michelle."


"I enjoyed your book very much. I learned a lot about the challenges of emotional intimacy!" Sandy Weiner, host of LastFirstDate radio show!

 
Introduction
“For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith, but the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.” – T. S. Eliot
 
As a psychologist and psychotherapist, I’ve found that the commonly held notion that “the only thing men want is sex” and “the only thing women want is affection and Read More


Now You Want Me, Now You Don’t! Excerpt -Chapter 5 – Sign One

July 22nd, 2014 No Comments
Fear of Intimacy: Ten ways to recognize it and ten ways to manage it in your relationship.
 

"I couldn't put the book down! It was such a good read. Dr.Raymond is such an insightful therapist." Dr. Michelle Cohen, LA Talk Radio host of "On the Couch with Dr. Michelle."


"I enjoyed your book very much. I learned a lot about the challenges of emotional intimacy!" Sandy Weiner, host of LastFirstDate radio show!

 

 
Excerpt from Chapter 5: Fear of Intimacy Sign One –Getting Busy
Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. 2014
 
(middle of therapy session)
 
“I try to be affectionate and caring when I see how overloaded she is, but she pushes me aside,” he said with quivering lips.
 
“When Christy grabs you in bed, it’s as if she’s only interested in taking care of her needs, not yours!” Read More


Now You Want Me, Now You Don’t, Excerpt from Chapter 20 – SIGN SIX

July 22nd, 2014 No Comments
Fear of Intimacy: Ten ways to recognize it and ten ways to manage it in your relationship.
 
 

"I couldn't put the book down! It was such a good read. Dr.Raymond is such an insightful therapist." Dr. Michelle Cohen, LA Talk Radio host of "On the Couch with Dr. Michelle."


"I enjoyed your book very much. I learned a lot about the challenges of emotional intimacy!" Sandy Weiner, host of LastFirstDate radio show!

 
Excerpt from Chapter 20: Fear of Intimacy Sign six –Not being able to take compliments
 
Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. 2014
 
(Middle of a therapy session)
“Do you remember the thrill you felt when you first saw her?”
“Yes, it hit me like a ton of bricks – l was drawn to her like a magnet!” he said in surprise. Read More


Now You Want Me, Now You Dont! Excerpt -Chapter 26 – SIGN EIGHT

July 21st, 2014 No Comments
Fear of Intimacy: Ten ways to recognize it and ten ways to manage it in your relationship.
 

"I couldn't put the book down! It was such a good read. Dr.Raymond is such an insightful therapist." Dr. Michelle Cohen, LA Talk Radio host of "On the Couch with Dr. Michelle."


"I enjoyed your book very much. I learned a lot about the challenges of emotional intimacy!" Sandy Weiner, host of LastFirstDate radio show!

 
Excerpt from Chapter 26: Fear of Intimacy Sign eight –getting heartburn when your partner misses you
Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D. 2014
 
 
(middle of therapy session)
“It sounds like you doubted Christy’s commitment to you and Joe.”
“I went back and forth. When she cuddled me the night before she left I was over the moon. But then when she let go of me so suddenly I was decimated. It was like she gave me a life-line and pulled it back just as I was about to use it.”
“What does that bring up for you?” Read More