Healthy Relationships

11 Toxic Signs There’s No Emotional Intimacy in Your Marriage

A marriage with no emotional intimacy is one of the most worldwide (and painful) marital complaints reported by couples:

It keeps you up at night, worrying well-nigh what’s wrong with your relationship and whether your marriage can last.

It leaves you feeling frustrated, disconnected, and alone.

But no matter how emotionally shredded you might finger right now, the good news is that you can rebuild connection in your relationship.

And take it plane deeper than you’ve overly experienced before.

In this blog, you’re going to learn:
  • What exactly a lack of emotional intimacy is
  • Why relationships lose emotional intimacy
  • 11 toxic signs that there’s no emotional intimacy in your marriage

What Is A Lack Of Emotional Intimacy?

Relationships that lack emotional intimacy are characterized by feelings of isolation, disconnection, and a lack of emotional safety. Plane though there’s time spent together, there’s no real emotional connection or understanding between you. And the effects of a lack of intimacy are serious.

Over time, a lack of emotional intimacy will grind a relationship down, and ultimately unravel it apart:

A study* by psychologists Gigy & Kelly from the California Divorce Mediation Project found that the dispersal of emotional connection in relationships is one of the leading causes of divorce.

And one of the leading causes of affairs.

couple experiencing a lack of emotional intimacy
So it’s unscratched to say that without emotional intimacy, a relationship can finger empty and ultimately, pointless.

Can a Marriage Survive Without Emotional Intimacy?

Most marriages will struggle to survive without emotional intimacy. Emotional connection is an essential ingredient in a healthy marriage, and a cadre reason couples enter relationships in the first place. You might be worldly-wise to tough it out for the kids or for financial reasons, but most couples desire increasingly than just grinding yonder the years together.

And when a marriage has the potential to be so much more, why would you settle?

Modern marriage asks a lot increasingly of us. It’s not the 1800s anymore – we want increasingly than just a user-friendly financial or political arrangement:

  • We want to finger close, connected, loved, and cherished.
  • We want to wilt a kick-ass team, sharing life’s vita and taking on the world together.
  • And we want our relationships to nurture and inspire us – to help us grow into our weightier selves and fulfil our highest potential.

It’s not unbearable then for a marriage to just survive. Now, increasingly than ever, we want our marriage to thrive.

And to do that, emotional intimacy is essential.

couple in relationship holding hands

Why Do Relationships Lose Emotional Intimacy?

Relationships lose emotional intimacy for simple reasons like rented schedules or difficulty finding quality time together. Or there can be increasingly emotionally-nuanced and ramified reasons, from a lack of emotional safety, fear of vulnerability, or underlying tensions in the relationship.

Here’s the thing – although most couples desire a deep sense of connection, emotional intimacy can moreover be scary. And there are plenty of things that can get in the way:

  • Unresolved hurts, conflicts, and resentments that make it finger unsafe to unshut up.
  • The vulnerability of stuff seen… Or the fear of stuff rejected, unlovable, or ‘not enough’.
  • Simply not knowing how to build emotional intimacy, and stuff scared to try something new.

older couple with no emotional intimacy
Unfortunately, some of our most sincere attempts to create emotional intimacy often go haywire and create plane increasingly distance, simply considering we don’t have the right tools for connection.

But maintaining or rebuilding emotional intimacy is a skill – and like any skill, it’s something that can be learned.

We’ll get to the how in a moment. But first, let’s take a closer squint at the effects of a lack of intimacy in a relationship.

11 Signs There’s No Emotional Intimacy In Your Relationship

couple distancing themselves

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #1:

You’re Distancing Yourself

As emotional intimacy in a relationship begins to fade, it’s worldwide to withdraw and emotionally uncouple as a coping strategy. Emotional disconnection is a painful experience, so it makes sense that you’d want to take steps to protect yourself.

But this emotional detachment only creates increasingly distance, and the downward screw of disconnection continues.

man in relationship feeling lonely

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #2:

You Finger Lonely

It’s one of the most painful experiences you can have in a marriage – to spend so much time with your partner, and yet still finger alone:

To sleep in the same bed, eat meals at the dinner table, to share a life with them, and yet finger like you don’t know them. Or that they don’t truly see the real you.

Feeling lonely, misunderstood, or afar from your partner, plane when you’re living under the same roof, is a well-spoken sign there’s a serious lack of emotional connection in your relationship.

couple feeling no emotional intimacy and showing no affection

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #3:

You’re Less Affectionate

A relationship without emotional intimacy can quickly wilt a relationship without affection.

When there’s loftiness between you, reaching out for physical unhealthfulness – whether it’s holding hands, cuddling, or kissing – can finger vulnerable or scary.

And if a lack of emotional connection has started to stupefy your sex life, physical unhealthfulness can be misread as an unwanted struggle to initiate sex, which creates plane increasingly strain and tension.

couple losing empathy

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #4:

You’re Having Less Sex

Whether you’re in a sexless marriage or a low-sex relationship, a lack of emotional intimacy is a commonly-overlooked cause.

Many couples make the unfortunate mistake of blaming low libidos. Which has them searching for answers in all the wrong places.

But if you’re not having as much sex as you’d like to – or if you find that the topic of sex keeps leading to arguments – emotional detachment can be a likely cause.

(If sex is a problem in your relationship and you want increasingly physical intimacy, trammels out our well-constructed how-to guide to reigniting your love life).

couple with no emotional intimacy don't know what to say to each other

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #5:

You Don’t Know What To Say

If you don’t have the skills to build intimacy in your relationship, it’s likely that your conversations have wilt unappetizing and lifeless. After so long together, it can finger like there’s nothing left to say.

But the same skills that build intimacy are the same skills that requite you new and heady things to talk about.

Who you are, the things you think, and the things you feel, are unchangingly changing. Which ways there’s unchangingly increasingly to share, explore, and discover well-nigh each other.

couple losing empathy

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #6:

You’ve Lost Empathy

You probably know that empathy – ‘the worthiness to understand and share the feelings of another’ – is important. But if you’re lacking emotional intimacy in your relationship, having empathy can be difficult:

How can you seek to understand each other if you finger emotionally distant? And if you finger like your partner doesn’t listen or show you empathy, it can be challenging to offer it in return.

As you lose empathy for each other, opening up and stuff vulnerable feels unsafe, leading to plane increasingly emotional withdrawal.

couple arguing

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #7:

You’re Arguing More

From the top things couples oppose well-nigh (sex, parenting, money, family, housework), to the seemingly trivial (like the right way to make a grilled cheese sandwich*), a lack of emotional connection puts you on whet and unchangingly ready to fight.

couple in relationship holding hands

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #8:

You Communicate With ‘Barbed Jokes’

You know the ones:

Those thinly-veiled attempts at ‘innocent humour’ that are unquestionably unspoken complaints or passive-aggressive attempts to get your point across, or transpiration each other’s behaviour.

When there’s no emotional intimacy in your marriage, it doesn’t finger unscratched to bring up concerns directly. So we try to use less uncontrived methods. (#protip: not stuff well-spoken makes things worse).

➜ RELATED: Be A Better Husband By Avoiding These 21 Worldwide Mistakes
couple not supporting each other

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #9:

You’re Walking On Eggshells

If you’re scared of saying the wrong thing or getting into an argument, then you’re likely walking on eggshells virtually each other.

But trying to unchangingly say the right thing and manage your partner’s moods is exhausting – and it’s a sign that the trust and intimacy in your relationship is dangerously low.

It ways you’re either fighting too much, or you don’t have an constructive strategy for having difficult conversations and turning conflict into connection. To uncork rebuilding emotional intimacy, the first step is letting go of responsibility for your partner’s emotions.

couple losing empathy

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #10:

You Don’t Support Each Other

When you have emotional intimacy, you finger like an unstoppable team. It’s the two of you, taking on the world together, and supporting each other to wilt your weightier selves.

But if the intimacy is gone, you don’t have the energy or the desire to champion each other. You’re increasingly like adversaries: score-keeping and trying to ‘win’ versus each other.

woman questioning her relationship

signs there’s no emotional intimacy #11:

You Question If You’re In The Right Relationship

Emotional connection is an essential human need and a cadre reason why we get into relationships. So if your emotional needs are not stuff met, it’s natural to doubt whether your relationship will make you happy in the long term.

You might find yourself fantasizing well-nigh other people, or thinking through the practicalities of a separation.

Although it’s natural to have moments of doubt in a marriage, if it’s a long-term pattern, it’s a sign that something needs to change.

what is emotional intimacy?
Rebuilding Intimacy In A Relationship

Well… That’s the pessimistic bit out of the way.

Now that you know some of the warning signs to squint out for, it’s time to focus on how to rebuild emotional intimacy.

In part two, you’ll learn 14 practical, evidence-based tools, techniques, habits, and mindsets that’ll help you create a deeply-connected relationship. Trammels it out here:

How To Build Emotional Intimacy

Or if sex is a problem in your relationship and you want increasingly physical intimacy, trammels out our well-constructed how-to guide to help you reignite your love life.

Or if you’re ready to take your relationship to the next level, these 11 conscious marriage goals will help get you there.

Sources & References
At Practical Intimacy we’re single-minded to keeping our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. We use only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles.

Borresen, Kelsey. (2016, January 15) 17 Truly Ridiculous Things Couples Have Unquestionably Fought About. Huffpost.

Brookes Kift, L. (2017, February 27) In Relationships, Not Arguing Ways You’re Not Communicating. The Gottman Institute.

Reece Stockhausen & Jodie Milton have made improving people’s lives and relationships both their passion, and their career. With over 25 years wits in the Personal Development industry, and 8 years coaching singles and couples, their no-BS translating has been featured in Cosmopolitan, Bustle, and HuffPost.

Book in for a complimentary online video undeniability to discover how their men's, women's, and couple's coaching programs can support you.