Although one can have the desire to be in an intimate relationship with someone, it doesn’t mean that this feels comfortable. In their mind this could be what they want and yet when it comes to making this a reality, it doesn’t feel right.

What feels right is for them to stay away from intimacy in general and should they happen to get into a relationship, then there will be the urge for it to end. And this urge could arise as soon as it has begun. So this is going to create conflict and self sabotage is going to take place.

The need to experience intimacy is not going to go away and so even though one can feel smothered by it; it doesn’t mean that they will just give up. Putting this need to one side and forgetting about it is unlikely; at least in the long term.

So although this can lead one getting into a relationship and then ending it shortly after or even avoiding intimacy all together, there are other options. And while these options won’t be the same, what they will do is create short term intimacy or give one a quick dose of it.

Modern Day Relating

Here, one could have what are often described as ‘casual relationships’. In some cases this could mean that one is just seeing another person; with their being no commitment or even the mention of it being a relationship. One might have a number of people in their life that they see, but that is about as far as it goes.

And a big part or the only part of these relationships is sex. What sex does, it allows one to experience closeness with another and even experience the illusion of love for a very short time. It won’t lead to deeper fulfilment or a real connection with someone; what it will do is allow one to feel close to another without feeling smothered or trapped by them.

These types of interactions allow one to stay at a distance that feels safe and doesn’t cause their deeper fears to arise. The challenge is that these types of relationships are never going to be truly fulfilling or allow one to feel like a whole human being.

The Other Side

Or one might avoid physical contact in general out of this fear being so strong. And through being out of touch with this fear, they might come to the conclusion that they are unlucky, a victim or have no control in this area of their life.

When what it comes down to is the fact that they have unconsciously built walls around themselves. And the mind will then create all kinds of stories as to why one doesn’t experience intimacy, but at a deeper level it is what feels safe.

The Short Term

To engage in casual relationships from time to time is not going to cause too many problems. One could have just ended one relationship and so they don’t want too much. However, if this way of relating is a way of life, the consequences are going to be different.

In today’s society, these ways of relating are often seen as normal and to be a reflection of how people have evolved. When in reality, what they often reveal is the human need to experience intimacy on one side and the tendency to avoid pain on the other.


The need to experience closeness with another is part of being human and yet what is not natural to being human is to feel fearful of getting close to another. If this was normal, then the whole human species may have died out many years ago.

So something is clearly not right here and while one can feel that this emotional experience is part of who they are, it is nothing more than a parasite. It has taken over one’s ability to responding to their real needs and wants and is causing them to act in ways that are not in their best interests.

The Experience

Here one is not going to just have a few thoughts that they are being smothered, it will be a whole body experience. And this could be a very primal experience and cause them to feel as though they are going to die.

To look at this logically, it is unlikely that one is going to die. But emotionally, this is how powerful his experience can be. So this is a serious challenge and not something that can be dismissed or even thought out of.


The biggest cause for these feelings will be what happened when one was a baby and a child. How emotionally in tune and aware their caregiver was during these moments will have been of the upmost importance.

During these formative years, one is completely dependent on their caregiver’s awareness of them. So it is vital that their caregiver is able to tune into how they are responding; this relates to when they have had enough contact and when they are in need of more.

If this caregiver was generally aware and in tune it would have been fine. But when this didn’t happen, one would have had no way of protecting themselves and would have felt: smothered, engulfed, overwhelmed, trapped and even have felt the need to die as a result. And at this age one was powerless and there was nothing that they could do about it.


As an adult, one has a choice in what takes place. However, what can create the illusion of having no choice is due to having these same feelings and emotions trapped in one’s body. So while one has physically grown, they can still feel the same emotionally.

One’s mind may have grown since then, but what hasn’t grown in the same way is their emotional body. So as soon as one gets close to another, they end up regressing back to these early experiences.

These feelings and emotions can be trapped all over one’s body. Their shoulders, chest and upper back can be where a lot of them are trapped. And then further down their body, just above their stomach, in what is often called the ego, is likely to be where the experience of death is held.


One will need to get in touch with these feelings and emotions and release them in order to be present and to realise that they have a choice as an adult. This will allow them to finally embrace intimacy without fearing that they will lose themselves. This can be done with the assistance of a therapist or a healer.

Author's Bio: 

Prolific writer, thought leader and coach, Oliver JR Cooper hails from the United Kingdom. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation; love, partnership, self-love, and inner awareness. With several hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behavior, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice. Current projects include "A Dialogue With The Heart" and "Communication Made Easy."

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