Why does my partner avoid intimacy? 

Why is your partner avoiding intimacy? This is a rather serious question if it’s been affecting your relationship for a while now. Intimacy is when a person is able to connect with you on an emotional and physical level. Most often when there is an absence of intimacy it leads to trouble in the relationship. 

In this article we will be understanding why your partner avoids intimacy, how you can speak to them about the same and what maybe the possible solutions for this as well. 

Here are the topics that we will be covering:

  • Why does my partner avoid intimacy? 
  • How can I speak to them about this? 
  • What is the solution? 

Why does my partner avoid intimacy? 

Your partner probably avoids intimacy for the following reasons:

  • They have experienced abuse
  • They have abandonment issues 
  • They have trust issues
  • They have anxiety 

They have experienced abuse

One of the reasons why your partner is avoiding intimacy could be because they’ve experienced abuse in the past. This can be in a past relationship or from childhood as well. If your partner is avoiding being physically intimate with you, then there could be a form of physical abuse from the past. 

What you need to understand here is that there isn’t just one type of physical abuse. Physical abuse is more like an umbrella term for different forms. Your partner could have been in a relationship where their ex would hurt them. Or force them to get intimate and perform sexual favours. 

They might have also been emotionally manipulated into staying in the relationship. This could really damage an individual’s confidence levels and understanding of themselves. Other than this it can also cause them to be doubtful of people in the future. 

If they experienced abuse in childhood be it abuse that injured them or sexual abuse, it could result in deeper trauma. This requires a professional to speak and help them out with. It takes time and a lot of patience to help them push through this situation. 

In such situations it can be extremely difficult to understand what your partner is going through. You can initiate a conversation to understand what the issue is, if they have been through abuse and that’s what’s stopping them. But beyond this point you would have to be careful. The reason being that there is alot to read and inform yourself about when you approach someone who has been through trauma. It isn’t a normal conversation and you’d have to keep yourself informed about trauma in general, and how it affects the psyche of an individual. 

After this has been done, you can look into supporting your partner through therapy. Let them know that it is completely okay to seek help, and that you’d be there to support them throughout this journey. 

They have abandonment issues 

If your partner has come from a childhood where they’ve been abandoned by their parents, this can also be another reason. 

Mostly because when this happens it affects the child by telling them that if they love someone they’re gonna leave. 

An individual might grow up trying to protect themselves from any situations that make them feel the same way. In order to protect themselves, they could just keep a safe distance from people. They might be only a level to which they let anyone into their personal space. 

This usually is the case once that child who has been abandoned by a parent or both, grows up. When they don’t have anyone around them to guide them, or help them navigate their feelings, it could result in a lot of suppression. 

Abandonment is painful for a child and also confusing. It can be complex for them , they could have so many questions, and if they aren’t answered properly it will affect the emotional growth of a child. They might grow up to have a poor self-image. They might manifest guilt, they might accuse themselves of being the reason why they were abandoned. 

They have trust issues 

Having a traumatic relationship can really break your hopes for a new relationship. It can be difficult to overcome the memories of a traumatic relationship while being in a completely new relationship. 

It’s completely up to you to make your partner feel safe. The one thing that a traumatic relationship lacks is the feeling of safety, and assurance. Especially if they have managed to attach their own self worth to these relationships in the past, it could have caused them even more pain. 

It is natural for them to have experienced emotions on a deeper level if they were emotionally attached to their ex. Where they felt as though they weren’t good enough and so on. In such a case they might never want to connect with anyone else so deeply that it affects them. 

They have anxiety

They probably have anxiety about a bunch of things. It can be for the future of the relationship, about you as a partner, about themselves , or even just general anxiety that makes them over-think any particular situation. 

This can thus affect the way they connect with you in the relationship. They might feel all the right emotions and still get confused because they’re anxious about something. It could cause them to overthink and they decide that it’s better to just not go further if this is the result. 

How can I speak to them about this? 

We can all face intimacy issues in a relationship. This usually happens when there are issues that haven’t been addressed and spoken about in the relationship.  Keeping our emotions to ourselves causes us to feel closed and cut off from our partners. In order to feel a really emotional connection there has to be a natural and organic flow of conversation between both individuals. If that doesn’t exist then it can be harmful for the relationship. 

Most of the time this is because of pent up emotions, anger, frustration and so on. Make it a point to speak about how you’re feeling regarding your intimacy, and try to find the source of these problems. 

After understanding the above reasons, it is up to you and your partner to arrive at the same page and fix your intimacy issues. 

You need to understand the fact that conversation plays a big role in intimacy. 

  • It helps in setting important boundaries.
  • It helps in having a respectful relationship. 
  • It also helps in improving the quality of your sexual life. 
  • The excitement in your sexual life will always be there when you both communicate your needs. 

Along with this a conversation is all it takes to take the whole thing moving. You need to speak to understand where your partner is at and what can help them move further. If this isn’t done, it can turn into a rather big issue in future. All your partner needs to know is that you are there at the end of the day to support them with whatever they’re going through. This can give them the confidence to open up to you. 


In the end if your partner has been avoiding intimacy it is best to speak to them instead of jumping to conclusions. 

When we do jump to conclusions we end up assuming the worst instead of finding out what’s true and what isn’t. Give your partner the support they need to open up to you. 

If you have any questions or queries please drop them in the comment section below. 

FAQs- my partner avoids intimacy

What does it mean if a partner doesn’t want to be intimate with you? 

If a partner doesn’t want to be intimate with you then it can mean that they have a lower sex drive, they have some kind of sexual truama from the past or that they’re stressed. 

Why would a man avoid intimacy? 

A man could avoid intimacy because , due to childhood trauma, abuse or abandonment issues as well. 

Can a relationship survive without emotional intimacy? 

No s relationship might not be able to survive for long-term without emotional intimacy. 

What is intimacy for a man? 

Intimacy for a man is when he deeply knows someone while he also is pretty self-actualized and knows himself well too. 

What does lack of intimacy do to a person?

Lack of intimacy usually leads partners to hide their emotions from each other and thus can create a block in the relationship.



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