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Intimate conversations become the basis for "confidences" (secret knowledge) that bind people together.To sustain intimacy for any length of time requires well-developed emotional and interpersonal awareness.
Lacking the ability to differentiate oneself from the other is a form of symbiosis, a state that is different from intimacy, even if feelings of closeness are similar.This was clarified by Dalton (1959) who discusses how anthropologists and ethnographic researchers access "inside information" from within a particular cultural setting by establishing networks of intimates capable (and willing) to provide information unobtainable through formal channels.The adjective "intimate" indicates detailed knowledge of a thing or person.Distinguishing intimate (communal) relationships from strategic (exchange) relationships may also be a factor.Physical intimacy occurs in the latter but it is governed by a higher-order strategy, of which the other person may not be aware.In human relationships, the meaning and level of intimacy varies within and between relationships.
In anthropological research, intimacy is considered the product of a successful seduction, a process of rapport building that enables parties to confidently disclose previously hidden thoughts and feelings.
There are three types of love in a relationship: passionate love, companionate love, and sacrificial love.
Sacrificial love reflects the subsumption of the individual self will within a union and is said to be expressed within the Christian Godhead and towards humanity.
An intimate relationship is an interpersonal relationship that involves physical and/or emotional intimacy.
Physical intimacy is characterized by friendship, platonic love, romantic love, or sexual activity.
Genuine intimacy in human relationships requires dialogue, transparency, vulnerability, and reciprocity.