Man and woman intimacy

How Men and Women Experience Intimacy Differently

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Spending quality time with a romantic partner involves feelings of closeness. Yet distance might be relative, as it is possible for a couple to be “alone together.” But how is intimacy experienced? And do men and women experience it differently? Research sheds some light on romantic partner perceptions.

Connected and Content

E. Constant et al. (2016) sought to measure the different personal assessments of intimacy experienced by men and women.[i] They began by acknowledging the centrality of intimacy within close relationships, as well as recognized gender differences in its definition and experience. They recognize a research-based definition of intimacy as “the emotional component of love” which relates particularly to “feelings of closeness, bondedness, and connectedness” (citing Sternberg, 1986). They note that intimacy is vital for well-being and human functioning, as well as individual adjustment and need fulfillment. It is additionally interpersonal by nature, including both self-disclosure and responsiveness.

Regarding gender differences, in their research, Constant et al. found women as more inclined to communication, affection, and emotional closeness, and men are more inclined to share activities or engage in joint leisure time, in addition to placing significant value on the sexuality component of a romantic relationship. Another gender difference included the finding that women listen more and are more understanding of the needs of their partners.

Response and Reciprocity

Prior research by Will Mosier examined the extent to which intimacy promoted relational health.[ii] He defined intimacy as the “quality of being close, self-disclosing, and affectionate with another person,” noting that within an intimate relationship, both parties are mutually responsive even when physically separated. Mosier also notes that intimacy can exist both with and without sexuality, and is never adequately defined by sexual expression only. Indeed, he notes that mutual affection is not the same as intimacy, and that true intimacy is not easily attainable, and for many couples, takes an extended period of time.

Mosier notes that intimacy between partners involves experiencing shared internal awareness, respect for personal character, and sincere responsiveness. It includes a mutual openness to sharing personal experiences, emotional closeness, empathy, and trust. It must be reciprocal and requires mutual consent; a relationship in which only one partner desires intimacy is not intimate.

Mosier notes that intimacy is enhanced through mutual understanding, as well as the ability to perceive one’s own feelings, because people who have a hard time being close to themselves, also struggle with their ability to be close to others.

Conflict, Comfort, and Consistency

Couples who fight are not necessarily doomed to lose intimacy. It all depends on the manner of communication and the strength of the partnership. Toxic dynamics that disrupt intimacy include deceit and manipulation. Mosier notes that intimacy is not only compromised when partners engage in deceptive and manipulative behaviors, but also when they are incapable of honest self-disclosure. He notes that intimacy is also decreased when one party feels compelled to constantly monitor the relationship, which inhibits partner self-direction.

Regarding conflict, Mosier notes that partners who cannot handle disagreement are less likely to develop intimacy, although interpersonal conflict is sustainable within a relationship of consistent affirmation, patience, and unconditional positive regard.

Putting it all together, takeaways from intimacy research include the value of reciprocal affection and unconditional acceptance, knowing oneself as well as one’s partner, and appreciating how men and women contribute differently to building an intimate relationship that includes healthy levels of romance and respect.

Facebook image: Just Life/Shutterstock

Why Intimacy Is Different for Men and Women?

Men and women are just about complete opposites. This includes the area of sex. While men are usually visual beings, women tend to be emotional beings, which causes some difficulty in the bedroom at times. In this article, we’re going to look at how most men and women are hardwired for intimacy. In other words, we’ll try to solve the question – Why intimacy is different for men and women.

4 basic needs for men for intimacy

Most men, not all, have about four basic truths when it comes to intimacy. If you can better understand those needs, chances are you will have a better handle on men and intimacy and how to please your husband!

1. Visual nature

So, what does intimacy mean to a man?

I think it’s safe to say that men are very visual creatures by nature. What I mean by that is men are hardwired to take in all they see—especially seductive sights. So naturally, when it comes to sex, they enjoy taking action.

Social researcher Shaunti Feldhahn, the bestselling author of the book Through a Man’s Eyes: Helping Women Understand the Visual Nature of Men, talks about ways for wives to help their husbands honor their marriage by keeping their eyes focused on their wives. One great way of doing this is by filling up their visual files! For example, keep the lights on during sex.

2. Physical needs

Another reason why intimacy is different for men and women is because of the differences in needs. While women definitely have physical needs, men tend to have higher physical needs than most women. The reason for this is that men are genetically different than women. Men truly crave sexual intimacy.

3. Need for respect

Men have a total need for respect in their lives. When a man feels heard and respected, he is more apt to be physically intimate with his wife. But on the flip side, when a wife completely undermines her husband, chances are he will be more reluctant to go to bed with her. Where a man feels respected, that is where he tends to gravitate.

Respecting your husband doesn’t mean bowing down to everything that he says or does, it merely means not talking badly about him (to him or other people), telling him how much you appreciate him and not being a nag. Wives, if you can take small steps to make your husband feel more respected, you can be sure that he will be turned on.

4. Wife initiates sex

Through many conversations about various things that turn men on, the most common (aside from the three mentioned above) was when their wives would initiate intimacy. Such a simple thing, yet such a touchy thing, which we’ll get to in a minute. But really, men find marriage intimacy incredible when their women want them and let them know. 

The only tip here: initiate sex with your husband!

4 basic needs for women for intimacy

The funny and probably most frustrating thing is what intimacy means to a woman is pretty much the opposite of men’s needs. However, if you learn about women and intimacy and what they are, your wife will be more open to sex!      

1. Emotional beings

So, what does intimacy mean to a woman?

While men are visual, women tend to be more emotional. This means that women are not as turned on by sight alone, but women’s need for emotional intimacy can play a significant role. Yes, it is nice to have a good-looking husband, but that isn’t where women’s sexual nature rests. Women want to feel desired, loved, and taken care of. Being emotionally taken care of makes women feel more comfortable and open to the idea of sex.

If you make sure you are meeting your wife’s emotional needs, I bet that your sex life will flourish.

2. Language needs

I was reading an interesting article today about the fact that women have more neurological pathways in terms of language than men do. This explains why intimacy is different for men and women! Women love to talk. Women love to be heard. And a lot of the time, women love to listen.

Most men do not love to do those things. But, if you take the time to hear your wife (not fix her problems), it will only play well for you. If you want to go one step ahead, make sure you tell your wife how much you love and adore her consistently.

3. Need for love

Men need respect and women need love. There is a great book called Love and Respect. My husband and I have learned so much through reading this book. It has taught us better ways of communication in terms of me respecting him, him showing his love for me, and giving a glimpse of how & why intimacy is different for men and women.

When I feel well-loved, I want to make love with my husband. Husbands, take the time to be sure your wife is feeling loved in your marriage. Go out on a limb and ask her. If she is not feeling loved, change that.

4. Help with daily life

Lastly, because women usually have more of a “mental load” than men, it is a big deal when the man of the house steps in to help carry that load. For example, women tend to make lists in their minds of all the things that need to be done that day (and the next and the next!).

These lists make it difficult to turn off the chore chart and turn on the desired button. This is why I so often hear women say they are the most turned on when their men do the dishes or wash the clothes or whatever needs to be checked off their mental list.

To learn more about dividing household chores better, watch this video:

In conclusion

There is no exact reason why men and women have been created so differently. But the differences of why intimacy is different for men and women mentioned in this article can certainly make an impact on your intimate life. Now that you are a little more aware of these factors, you can easily use them to your advantage instead. With some selflessness and intention, your physical intimacy can be incredible as a couple!


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Close relationship. Sexologist about the main mistakes of men and women > Category Lifestyle in Samara

Healthy sexual relationships are the key to a happy family life. A lot depends on this area - mood, self-esteem, relationships with a partner and physical health. Sometimes men and women approach the issue of intimacy without really delving into this area from a psychological point of view. This can often lead to misconceptions that can lead to couple problems, breakups, or depression. We talked with sexologist Dmitry Sobolev about how to maintain interest in physical intimacy and what mistakes you should not make.

Attention to detail

Sex should always be approached with awareness. Therefore, the most common mistake, common for both men and women, is an inattentive attitude to the sexual sphere. This can manifest itself both during preparation and directly in the process of intimacy. Many couples put the sexual sphere somewhere at the end of their list of priorities, do not give it proper time. Perceive sex as if it's a "run in a hurry to dine." An inattentive attitude to what we eat, how we eat, in what quantity, and so on, leads to the fact that we only fill our stomach, but do not get full pleasure. What to say about the sexual sphere? With such an attitude, it inevitably becomes dull and does not bring joy.

Clear the mind

Nothing should interfere with rapprochement. This is especially true for unnecessary and obsessive thoughts. If two people who love each other want sex to give them the maximum, they must abstract this area from everything else, from all problems and everyday issues. During sex, you need to devote all your attention to the process. The hour of sexual intimacy should be the hour of sexual intimacy.

Pleasant atmosphere

Pleasure your partner through the environment. If there is an atmosphere of calm and positive attitude around a loved one, then the very pleasure of intimacy will increase. Many neglect the outer and inner attunement to intimacy. They cannot find time to prepare, to create conditions and interesting scenery. They don’t care to tune their thoughts and emotions to the upcoming intimacy. Therefore, during the process itself, thoughts are directed anywhere, but not where they need to be. In the head is not what you need, respectively, and there are no bright emotions from proximity.

Regularity and desire

Do not forget about your partner even on busy days of the working week. It can be difficult to pay attention to your soulmate, but it’s not worth it to completely “score” on intimacy. You can alternate relaxation and intimacy, learn about the well-being of a loved one and his desires. If sex is occasional, then the development of the sexual sphere can be forgotten. No business can be brought to a high quality if you treat it in this way, especially if you treat sex that way.

Talking about it

Communication is one of the most important aspects of bonding. So don't keep anything to yourself. Instead, don't be afraid to express your emotions, talk about your fantasies and preferences. A big mistake is not to discuss your sex with your partner or discuss it in a claims format. It is important to calmly, benevolently, in a comfortable environment to share your thoughts with each other. Say what you want, how you want it. Maybe even in some flirtatious way it is worth sharing wishes and implementing them.

Sex is not work

The desire for this can be perceived as a labor activity that requires the achievement of a fictitious indicator. A man in these conditions cannot simply enjoy, relax and completely surrender to the process. His thoughts are focused on one thing - how to show and prove what he is capable of. He needs to satisfy his partner. Only after that will he consider himself a hero, and sex - held. Such an attitude does not bring satisfaction, but, on the contrary, neuroticizes a man and scares a woman away. Because of such tension, the other half begins to get annoyed, look for flaws in himself or think that the partner is not suitable for her.

Let go of your fears

This is an important decision that can help not only men, but also women. If the latter most often can be ashamed of their body, then others excessively fix their attention on their own potency. Due to the fact that men are overly concentrated on their sexual virtues, psychological problems can arise. Anxiety and insecurity is the path to hectic movements, lack of rhythm and rapid intercourse. The end of sex is perceived as freedom and an opportunity to return to tranquility. This approach makes the process boring, inefficient, and even unattractive. Erection problems and the inability to give a woman full pleasure are the results of being in fear, which urgently needs to be got rid of.

More tenderness Some men are sure that sharpness and audacity are always needed in sex. They think that they are doing everything right, but from the outside it may look somehow ridiculous and cause rejection. You do not need to concentrate only on your feelings, forgetting about the needs of your partner. How does the loved one feel? What are you worried about? For many, these questions are a dark forest. Usually a woman needs more time for a full discharge. A caring man remembers this fact. He tries to prolong the pleasure. The rhythm of the movements helps with this. If they are slow, then no less pleasant. The right approach is the secret to the success of a happy sexuality for many years.

Oleg Dolgitsky

medical psychologist:

— Men, like women, in search of a sexual partner have a very specific ideal in their unconscious, with which they constantly correlate people around them. Lack of understanding of this fact often plays a cruel joke with people. Taking rash steps when choosing partners, people rush into the pool of relationships, and then, making sure that the partner does not match the image, they begin to sincerely hate him. This is especially true for women, who may even have a desire to destroy an object that turned out to be not who it claims to be. They don't just say - there is only one step from love to hate.

As for the lack of satisfaction, then it is necessary to identify the cause. Oddly enough, these can be exclusively physiological factors, but if they are excluded, then we are talking about the image of a partner and needs for sex. When the behavior of a partner in bed does not meet expectations, it can scare and repel. For each person, sex is associated with certain patterns that need to be identified in your partner. A striking example of this is a men's perfume that mimics the smell of engine oil. Many women like to feel it, as a huge number of men in Russia, for example, their fathers, had cars. Daughters, having matured, remember this smell, and they associate it with their parent.

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Julia Lanske world recognized by the American iDate Awards

Julia Lanske

October 28, 2019 16:06

When to enter into intimacy with a man?


Sex on the first date: the “Little Red Riding Hood effect”

Without exception, all men want sex on the first date, and there is no getting around it ... Most women think so, confirming what was said by personal experience. But is it really so? Of course, in life there are "inveterate machos" who begin to persuade women to have sex at the first meeting, without even having time to finish their dessert. However, most often, premature sexual activity of men is provoked ... by women themselves.

This is called the Little Red Riding Hood effect. Like the plot of the famous fairy tale by Charles Perrault, women rush into the dark forest in sexy red dresses, as if not suspecting that dangerous gray wolves are waiting for them in the thicket. Women's provocations can begin to "take root" even in correspondence - when a girl, without realizing it, hints at a man about sex:

- "you know, we broke up with the former a long time ago, I haven't felt strong male hugs for a year";

- “you have such a beautiful, embossed figure - you just want to touch”;

- "what a pity that we did not know each other before, but we will definitely catch up."

Yuliya Lanske

Photo: materials of the press services

A woman can casually turn in similar phrases on the first date, just flirting, trying not to look like a hypocrite and wanting to please a man. However, men are used to taking everything literally, so they perceive languid glances and sipping cocktails through a straw as direct calls for sexual intimacy. Later, the "deceived" woman will complain to her best friend that "he never called back" and "all men are the same." But after all, playful behavior culminating in sex on the first date turns a woman into a won trophy. Without having time to delve into her inner world, he, with a high degree of probability, will not want a new meeting - the superficial goal has been achieved, the box has been ticked, and it's time to move on.

At the same time, Little Red Riding Hood's refusal to have sex on the first date can lead communication to a dead end.

“After all, she hinted at this all evening, but in the end she was offended and indignant.”

What to do in this situation? How to hint to a man that you like him without becoming a sexual object for him? First of all, you should stop accumulating your thoughts about the sexual topic. After all, as you know, thoughts are material. If a woman is very worried about when, how and on what date intimacy with a man should happen, she subconsciously “turns on” his sexual behavior.

What is the right way to avoid the topic of sex on the first date and stop subconsciously hinting to a man that sex is exactly what you met today for? First of all, relax and put your thoughts in order, try to switch them to what you really want from life. Think about happy marriages, picnics, travel, pleasant romantic surprises... Yes, just about who you want to become and how you see your future life. The male reaction will not keep you waiting - he will also “turn on” to you, but in a completely different sense - deeper and more serious.

Relax and put your thoughts in order, try to switch them to what you really want from life


which a man alludes to sex, even if you did not bring him to this topic. This behavior does not mean that you should immediately turn around and slam the door. Learn to “switch” a man using working techniques:

1. Let's get into humor.

2. We start an intellectual conversation.

3. Building boundaries.

Leaving for humor

Humor and wit will help you quickly switch a man off the topic of sex so that he will literally forget that a minute ago he was “gazing at” your decollete. Try to keep your jokes upbeat and original. Before meeting a man, prepare a few witty anecdotes in advance that you can screw on a first date if necessary.

Starting an intellectual conversation

If you notice that a man keeps hinting at sex, take the conversation to an intellectual level. Topics in which your chosen one is oriented will work especially well. Talk to programmers about matrices and codes, talk to surgeons about innovative surgeries and the latest advances in medicine. It is important that you have at least a little knowledge of the subject of the conversation, so before the first date I recommend that you study intellectual topics that may be of interest to your companion. If at some point you have nothing to say, ask him a question about the subject of the conversation. An intelligent conversation will quickly and unobtrusively switch a man, allowing you to get away from the sensitive topic of sex.

Building boundaries

By nature, men are conquerors. They always want to get the "forbidden fruit" that seems out of reach. Setting boundaries properly means that you are not vetoing the topic of sex, but are not yet ready to talk about it, let alone engage in it. If on the first date a man tries to have an intimate conversation, look down in embarrassment and retort: ​​“This is a very interesting topic, and I would talk about it with you ... date on the eighth.”

Timidity, innuendo and mystery “turn on” a man from a quarter of a turn. A slight intrigue will arouse interest in him, and he will still wait for the eighth date. At the same time, he will be able to get to know you enough to realize that he is interested in you not only in the sexual principle.

When is it possible?


When is it possible?

If the first sex happens too early, the man realizes that there is nothing more to conquer and leaves…

If the moment of the first sex is too long, the man can be "overexposed" in anticipation, after which he will also disappear...

So when does it come - the very right moment? In the matter of the first intimacy, it is important that for a man it is long-awaited. Imagine a juicy steak - in order to get it, a man must wait for it to be ready. It is the moment of waiting, and not the process of eating the dish itself, that is most sweet for him. Your first sex should be that longed-for steak that a man waits with bated breath. “When preparing a dish”, follow the main rules:

Don't overdo it. Excessive expectation of intimacy for months, or even years, often causes fatigue in a man, and he simply leaves without waiting for the “main course”.

Let's hope. A man must understand that in the end he will receive his “reward”.

Be the best for him. Every day open up to a man from a new side, thereby causing admiration and awe.

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