Just like a relationship needs emotional intimacy, it also requires physical intimacy to remain strong and lasting. In fact, there’s a direct correlation between relationship satisfaction and the quality of a couple's physical relationship, and the longer a couple avoids physical intimacy, the more disconnected they can feel. In Part 1 of this series, I’ll be exploring the importance of physical intimacy for couples and how it contributes to improving the quality of a relationship.
Biological need: Similar to other urges, such as hunger, sleep, and food, sexual needs are also necessary and biological in nature. Successful fulfillment of human biological needs is vital for our survival. Apart from being used for procreation, sex is a fundamental psychological need that must be met in order for us to remain mentally healthy and stable. By fulfilling the biological need for sex in a couple, physical intimacy makes a relationship feel more satisfying and complete.
Psychological needs: Sex serves different psychological needs for men and women. For women, emotional intimacy is closely linked with physical intimacy, which makes them feel more comfortable, secure, and desired in their relationship. On the other hand, while men can more easily separate sex from love, physical intimacy is an ego booster for them and is directly linked to their self-esteem. Men need physical intimacy to make them feel a competent and successful sexual partner in a relationship.
Fueling passion: If love forms the bedrock of a relationship, its physical intimacy that fuels passion in a relationship. It adds spice to the relationship and helps strengthen the bond between a couple. A relationship that loses passion risks a slow death and physical intimacy plays a vital role in keeping the spark alive for a lasting relationship.
Expression of love: Couples require physical intimacy to express their love and affection towards each other. Even though emotions can be expressed verbally, couples also express their love through pleasurable physical intimacy and develop a deeper connection.
Emotional health: Physical intimacy is also associated with an emotionally healthy life. Sex causes increased production of several mood-altering hormones that are natural mood-boosters and stress relievers, and can reduce depression. That’s why physical intimacy in a relationship is important for the generation and maintenance of a couple’s overall emotional health and making them feel happy and content.
Physical health: Sexual activity increases the heart rate, breathing rate, and burns calories, making it a fun exercise and a good way to promote physical health. Given sex’s anti-aging and immune-boosting nature, physical intimacy in a relationship helps a couple stay fit and in good shape.
In Part 2 of this series, I’ll be discussing some effective ways in which you can improve physical intimacy in a relationship and increase the sense of connectedness with your partner.
If you'd like professional help in increasing physical intimacy for a more fulfilling relationship, contact Orly Gueron a Licensed marriage and family therapist and relationship specialist in Aventura, FL!