The Dangers of Intimacy



Some of the dangers of intimacy include the fear of disclosure of all our faults to others we care about, the fear of getting dumped because others know us too well, the fear of attack upon ourselves by others using what we have disclosed to them, the fear of loosing control that intimacy brings, the fear of loosing individuality because one is consumed by another and the fear of intimacy itself because one is put in touch with one's innermost emotions. Ultimately though, I believe that experiencing intimacy is a good thing - it challenges the boundaries of Self and opens our minds up to fresh ideas, greater personal growth and new ways of thinking, feeling and behaving.

Paradoxically, gay men may seek out intimacy and connection with others but also fear the rejection it may bring at the same time. According to Hatfiled and Sprecher in their list of the dangers of intimacy (above) supposedly less of the inner self is revealed in casual sexual encounters than in longer relationships but I do not believe this to be the case. I believe that different codes of communication are present in casual sexual encounters, communications that I would characterise as being no less intimate, no less revealing (in different ways) than those intimacies revealed in a longer term relationship, perhaps even more so.





According to John Meade, injecting drug use project worker at The Victorian AIDS Council/Gay Mens Health Centre in Melbourne, Victoria, some men just like the feeling of an unclad dick up their arse but he says they may also desire a level of intimacy (whether its physical intimacy, mental intimacy or both) at the same time as they are having unsafe sex. This can lead gay men into an addictive search for this kind of pleasure (physical/mental sexual intimacy), a form of 'compulsive sexual behaviour', a topic I will discuss in greater detail on the next page.