Thirst for Intimacy: Locating the Stumbling Block.

So, it has been a long time (yet again) since I last posted. This was supposed to be a weekly to biweekly occurrence, and I’ve been lucky for it to be monthly.

This next entry should be one that makes a ton of sense. I only say that because I shared the premise of what I am about to write about with a couple of pretty intelligent people, a guy and a girl, and both of them responded with, “Hey that’s very true.”

The lady of the two mentioned that I should even write a book. She didn’t really know that I want to be a writer. So, a book is coming at some point in my life. I promise you that (although not necessarily on this particular subject).

A major part of this conversation with these two people centered around relationships. So, I felt it appropriate to bequeath my observations of the topic and see what kind of response it received. I was, nevertheless, pleasantly surprised.

There is an old adage; men are from Mars, women from Venus. This is a pretty common saying (or at least used to be, haven’t heard it lately) that analogizes the extreme differences between men and women.

One of those major differences is the way in which men and women experience intimacy.

Watch television for any period of time (particularly episodic dramas) and you will quickly see a stereotype that has developed within our culture. Men are almost always portrayed as, not necessarily sex crazed, but TV makes sex out to be our main drive.

Women? Well, they’re stereotype shines within the woman always wants to talk. Whether it’s gossip, idle chat, or sweet talk, you can find women are often depicted as conversation hounds.

This cliché may be overplayed ad nauseam. The representations, however, are there for a reason, and there is much that needs to be understood about why they are there. Generally, these stereotypes are actually true. This does not mean that men are horny maniacs and women are emotional chatterboxes.

Women and men share one vital thing in common. This thread runs within every human being: a deep desire for intimacy. It is a deep thirst that we fight for and configure ways to quench. This thread, then, splits a little bit between the sexes, generating these stereotypes.

Men and women experience intimacy in different ways. At least, that’s what I’ve always heard. Women tend to be more satisfied with an emotional connection while men seek the physical. Certainly, men and women both experience intimacy in both aspects: emotional and physical. They are not gender specific needs. Rather, they are just the means by which each gender seeks to quench the thirst intimacy.

Go back to the stereotypes and we see the truth behind them. Essentially, women and men are not all that different. The truth behind the stigma simply demonstrates the means by which the two genders seek out intimacy: sex and conversation.

Some of the immediate implications stemming from this concept may help some of you with struggles you find yourself in outside of relationships.

Are you a lady who finds herself constantly spilling your guts? Every person you meet is a person with ears made for listening. Or possibly, you find a plethora of male friends, and each one of them is a viable candidate with whom you will release up your heart and soul. However, every time one of these people leaves, hangs up the phone, or signs offline, you still feel a little empty, not quite whole.

Are you a guy who every pretty girl you see is little more that sweet, sweet eye candy? Are your eyes capable reconnaissance tools useful for bringing in any and every possible babe you can find. It’s girl after girl after girl that your lust devours until those images disappear, and you still feel a little empty, not quite whole.

As a male, I can only attempt to imagine the struggles that women share. I do know the male struggle though, and I know that trying to satisfy a lustful appetite is impossible and entirely unfulfilling. From my experience, women will give themselves away emotionally in a search for intimacy just as men do so physically.

So, in the face of these things, if you can understand the reasons behind why you struggle with what you struggle with, it may help you overcome once you realize that your actions are a meagre attempt to satisfy a very deep need for intimacy. It is, of course, just a starting point. It’s easier said than done to kick old habits, but seeing them for what they are, little thimbles trying to outpour a sea, should provide some perspective. Succumbing to struggles leaves one feeling more empty that when you started.

Now, this premise also has great implications for our interactions within relationships as well. That is a topic for a later date (desirably very soon).

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One thought on “Thirst for Intimacy: Locating the Stumbling Block.

  1. haha, Brandon. I recently had a conversation about this with a group of guy and girl friends as well. We came to the conclusion that, although it is true that girls tend to want more emotionally and guys tend to want more physically, what the opposite sex looks at as “deep,” the other one might not. For example, a girl might be sharing something about her experience last week at work and the guy is thinking, “Why is she being so personal?” However, the girl doesn’t think of what she is sharing to be very personal at all, maybe a little more than sports or the weather, but if you were to ask her for personal, the girls in the group said that things could go a whole lot deeper than your current conversation. Guys tend to seem a little more protective of their emotions to girls (who are apparently like, “What in the world? Why does he beat around the bush about THAT? It’s not even personal!”). However, the opposite is generally true about girls. They are a little more protective of touch, even completely appropriate touch. Take a hug, for example. A guy might hug a girl with friendship intentions, and a girl is thinking, “Dude, you’re in my personal space!” Not necessarily bad, mind you (this can be purely friendly), but personal, nonetheless. The girls all claimed that it’s not like when all the guys are together and two friends walk up and slap each other on the back and don’t think a thing of it. You touch a girl and you’ve gone into a personal zone. You’d better be friends or she’s officially creeped out.

    In our conversation, we found it interesting that God would create relationships this way because it requires guys to trust girls with the more hidden part of them (emotions) and require girls to trust guys with the more hidden part of them (touch) in order to be in relationship on any level. Otherwise, guys and girls could enjoy relationship without trust. God, however,wants our relationships–friendly or romantic–to mirror our relationship with Him–full of trust and faithfulness.

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