Fear of Intimacy

Why Do So Many People Respond Negatively to Being Loved?

Love — kindness, affection, sensitive attunement, respect, companionship — is not only difficult to find, but is even more challenging for many people to accept and tolerate.  In my work with individuals and couples, I have observed countless examples of people reacting angrily when loving responses were directed toward them. One man felt a flash… Read more »

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Angry at Love

Most of us aspire to find love. It is unquestionably one of the most important goals of our lives. Because of this nearly universal truth, it isn’t always easy for people to grasp the fact that most of us are also angry at love. It is often the case that no matter how long we… Read more »

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Why You Should Be the One Who Loves More

There is always a lot going on between two people in a relationship. But very often, much of what goes wrong in a relationship has to do with what’s going on in our own minds. Most of us have a constant dialogue running in our heads, analyzing our relationship and informing us on how to… Read more »

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How to Fix a Relationship

“In desperate love, we always invent the characters of our partners, demanding they be what we need of them, and then feeling devastated when they refuse to perform the role we created in the first place.” ― Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love When it comes to our relationships, the expectation of a perfect union or… Read more »

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Three Ways We Make Communication Impossible

Strong communication is often said to be at the core of a solid relationship. But for communication to exist, these qualities must not. It’s sensible to imagine that when two people truly like each other, they’re willing to listen to each other’s struggles and stories, and respond with interest and compassion. But, very often, other… Read more »

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Why the Spark Fades in a Relationship

Countless couples complain of losing the “spark” in their relationship. Some chalk it up to evolved differences, a slow growing apart, or sheer familiarity. The wave of “deadness” that can submerge a relationship after the first thrilling months or years have caused many couples to lose hope, and even look elsewhere for the excitement of… Read more »

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5 Strategies for Dealing With Your Partner’s Fear of Intimacy

As a therapist, I often hear couples complain that whenever one partner tries to get close, the other pulls away. It’s a painful reality that love isn’t always as easy to give and receive as we’d like to think. Many people have developed defenses that make them intolerant of too much love, attention or affection…. Read more »

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Fear of Intimacy: Understanding Why People Fear Intimacy

What is Fear of Intimacy? Fear of intimacy is an often subconscious fear of closeness that frequently affects people’s personal relationships. This fear of physical and/or emotional intimacy tends to show up in people’s closest and most meaningful relationships. Where Does This Fear of Intimacy Come From? While there are times when we are aware… Read more »

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Can Love be Learned?

Anyone who has indulged in romantic comedies like When Harry Met Sally, As Good as it Gets, Moonstruck or pretty much anything starring Sandra Bullock knows the theme of opposites attracting and enemies becoming lovers. This theme has been around since the beginning of time; We see it in Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew and… Read more »

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It Is Immoral To Stop People From Loving You

Some of the most destructive behaviors, commonplace in relationships, are those that people act out in an attempt to ward off loving responses from their partner. In The Ethics of Interpersonal Relationships, I wrote about the dynamics underlying this phenomenon, explaining why we often punish the very person who appreciates and acknowledges us for our positive… Read more »

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