Withholding Love

You know how your spouse best receives love. You know exactly the actions to take to make them feel special. Your spouse also knows these things about you. The third characteristic of Intimacy Anorexia is withholding love. If you recall, the first two characteristics of IA covered in other blog posts were being too busy and blaming. Withholding love is when the person who has IA knows how their spouse wants to be loved but doesn’t give them love in that manner. It’s purposeful, and it stifles intimacy. It’s also extremely hurtful. Before you were married, you were able to connect and receive love. It’s what drew you to one another. You thought you would have a lifetime of feeling loved. You were connected. To not be loved in the way that they initially loved you and treated you before marriage feels deceitful.

When your spouse withholds love, it makes you feel really lonely. If you recall the definition of intimacy anorexia is the active withholding of emotional, spiritual, and sexual intimacy from your spouse. When your spouse is actively withholding love, they’re being purposeful in that action. It prevents closeness, which is the goal of a person who has IA. Whether they’re withholding compliments, praise, affection, or spending time with you, it all feels hurtful. Once you understand it’s an intentional action to maintain distance, you can get help from a counselor that specializes in intimacy anorexia. If you or your spouse have intimacy anorexia, you want to seek counseling. Your marriage can overcome with work. If you live in northern Colorado (Fort Collins, Windsor, Greeley, Loveland), contact Mending Hearts Counseling for an appointment.

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