This article was published on March 30th, 2016
Gay men easily confuse sex with intimacy. You can have sex with a completely random hook-up, not even knowing each others name; it’s just sex. But when it comes to intimacy, it’s a completely different experience. Gay men try to lead a life of casual sex and freedom, strongly defending their lifestyle, but most men long to feel loved, not lonely.
The gay community struggles with feelings of isolation and loneliness. Growing up and fears of coming out, loneliness, and rejection, can leave deep emotional and psychological wounds, making relationships difficult.
Intimacy is the ability for two people to share feelings with each other, in the moment, without fear of rejection or criticism. It’s a two-way dialogue and understanding. It’s based on emotions, feelings, and trust. In an intimate relationship, open communication is important.
Gay culture is filled with negative messages, vulnerability, and shame. Intimacy and closeness with another man is seen as a weakness. Relationships are strong when couples can be close and do things together, yet still be independent and separate. These relationships grow stronger when they identify as a couple and are both recognized and accepted by others.
Gay couples can work together to build a strong relationship by healing insecurities, confronting fears, and by being willing to show vulnerabilities. Together, couples that are intimate can help reduce self-esteem issues, self-deprecation, depression, and anxiety. This leads to successful, loving, long-term relationships.
Sex doesn’t have to be intimate. And being intimate doesn’t have to include sex. But when they are together, it can be incredibly powerful!