The 10 Rejections of Intimacy



We embrace the trappings of intimacy because we know this is what you expect when our relationship commences. You want to touch us; you want to be touched. You want to gaze into one another’s eyes and revel in what you see there. The tenderness of the kiss, the tingling sensation that arises from the briefest of brushing touches and the safety and security of a hand being held.

We endure all of this in order to maintain the illusion of our perfect love and to provide you with that which you have been conditioned to expect as denoting love, affection and passion. Such intimacy repeatedly hints at a place we would rather not go but the necessity of your seduction means that we focus on the task in hand and dispel those occasional thoughts of what that intimacy means and signifies.

Those considerations are banished as we press on with our crusade and complete our quest. Once our tendrils are wrapped around you, our fangs sunk deep into your emotional jugular and the fuel flows, then the provision of such intimacy can finally and thankfully be turned to a better application, namely conveying rejection to you and in turn bring about despondency, humiliation and confusion.

Whilst we prefer words to do our work, these rejections work marvellously well because of the effect that they have on you and the economy of effort that comes with them. Provision takes effort. Denial comes easily. Here are ten rejections of intimacy.

  1. No eye contact

I don’t want to mirror you any longer but I don’t want you seeing the lurking darkness in my eyes, not just yet. Instead I will settle for evading looking at you, creating the sensation that I cannot bear to look upon you, which is rather accurate because now you are reminding me too much of what I despise and I would rather look elsewhere.

  1. Kissing the top of your head

We know you want to be kissed on the mouth but that isn’t going to happen. Not today and not for a while until I decide I can stomach doing so in order to get something from you that I want. I will kiss you on the head, tilting your head down, making you lower yourself in front of me as I place the patronising light kiss on the top of your head. You are a child to me, someone who knows no better and has to be guided by me. You are bowing, showing fealty through this gesture for I am your ruler and your liege.

  1. Shuddering if you touch us

You cannot place boundaries for me. I go where I want. You however have no entitlement to me. You require my permission and especially so when it means violating my space. If you catch me unawares and touch me, no matter how lightly, I will give a violent shudder as if have been touched by something unpleasant so you are left in no doubt as to what I think about you.

  1. Turning our back on you in bed

This is done as soon as we climb into bed on the occasion we have deigned to provide you with our presence or not banished you from the bedroom with a well-timed bout of aggression. You have your hopes raised of sexual union or at least the heart-warming pleasantry of cuddling up together. Instead you receive a glacial wall that is our back and if you think this is an invitation to “spoon” with us you will be sharply elbowed or back heeled away from us.

  1. Avoiding taking your hand

Once upon a time we always took your hand as we walked along the road, through a museum or around the shops, making you feel loved and showing the world that we were together. There was a time when we wanted everyone to know that you were ours. No longer. We will ignore the proffered hand, driving our own into our pockets or shaking off your hand if you happen to grab ours. You don’t decide to show others we are together; don’t you realise that one of my new prospects might see?

  1. Awkward Evasion

You try to place an arm around us and we suddenly jump up as if we have sat on a tack. You attempt to hug us and we move around you like a rugby player evading a tackle, often contorting ourselves into a move which would be more often seen in a gymnastics contortion. Our desire to wriggle away, duck under, escape and move apart suggests that your very touch might burn us. The exaggerated movement can leave you in no doubt that this was deliberate.

  1. One-sided hug

You have taken us by surprise and launched a hug at us, be it from the front, sides or rear. You will not have it reciprocated. There will be no return gesture, no warming and intimate response. We will stand like a block of ice, arms down by our sides, back stiff and stare straight ahead willing this uncomfortable moment to end.

  1. No longer naked

We once paraded around naked in front of you, letting it all hang out, without a care in the world. Truth be told we wanted you to look on our naked form and admire and it was also done to signal to you that we were entirely comfortable around one another in the buff. Now we behave like a coy virgin. We wear pyjamas in bed rather than sleep naked, we lock the bathroom door when we are in there so you cannot walk in on us and we always wrap a towel around us in order to cover-up our intimate areas so you cannot see us. If you happen to walk in unexpectedly when we are naked we will grab the nearest shirt, sombrero or fruit bowl to cover our modesty or dive behind a door, under a bed or out of the window. You don’t get to look any more.

  1. Proffering a cheek

You wait to kiss us and want to plant a tender kiss on our mouth. Others are looking and we must have consideration for the façade. An awkward evasion move now would be unwise and might invite unwanted speculation and comment. Instead we turn our head so you are left with no option but to plant that kiss on our cheek. We will not hold the cheek there either but pull away as soon as you embrace it. You are being given advance warning of your demotion from intimate partner to outer circle friend with this rejection tactic.

  1. Moving if you lean against us

You want to cuddle up next to us on the expansive sofa. If you do, we will get up and move to an armchair as soon as you begin to lean onto us. If you try and then sit in my lap, I will tip you up and deposit you on the floor as I leave the room and give you a silent treatment for pushing the matter too far. If I am lying down watching television and you try and climb on me, you may as well be trying to wrestle a crocodile as I will resist your advance and push you away before moving into a position which is easier to fend you off and send you a clear signal to sit elsewhere.

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17 thoughts on “The 10 Rejections of Intimacy

  1. Anna says:

    To be fair, every single one of those sounds like the ending of a very long term relationship or marriage which has soured.

    Worse is, if those behaviours happen and the other person doesn’t even notice or care to why the behaviour occured. If the behaviour is from a non narcissist.

    To me those signs are that the relationship either needs alot of work, or it is doomed. The love has gone.

    1. A Victor says:

      Hi Anna, yes, but the motivation is different in a narc than in a non narc. The narc does these things intentionally to meet the prime aims, to cause pain, no empathy for the other person, it’s all about the narc. The non narc may do them but would be responsive if the other person, also a non narc, spoke to them about it. The narc may seem responsive but will only use that information for further hurt, the non narc will have empathy and will look for a good resolution, not seeking to continue the pain for the other person but instead want to end their partner’s pain.

  2. Vips says:

    All of these HG. Every. Single. One. This makes me shudder just reading it. I was a strong, smart, loving and very attractive wife. And on what I thought was the beginning of a beautiful life together – my wedding night – it was clearly the beginning of the end of me emotionally. He never touched me again. After a decade, like that of the orphans in Russia in the 40s, because they were never held, they did not thrive. As a touchy-feely person who grew up in a family that was always hugging and saying I love you, it was an extention of who I was. I know see this time of emotional starvation a cruel and inhumane act. The rejection and humiliation was so profound that I was dead inside. I was a beautiful, soft, flagrent rose bush that was uprooted and transported to the Mojavi Desert where I was left to die.

    1. Anna says:

      Vips. That is terrible. When you go from being warm to cold because of someone else. I love your example of the rose bush.

      With my marriage it started off warm. Then the bad behaviour creeped in. Emotionally. 0 empathy. Worse still. I used to love sex, but then he made me hate it by taking advantage when I was drunk and performing disgusting degrading acts which had nothing to do with love. This made me hate sex. Sex had become something about power and control. It was horrendous.

      It is terrifying how someone can make you hate something you love. It is awful how someone who is supposed to love you can get pleasure from degrading you, and if you confront them you are gaslighted, blamed, thrown out into the cold. Someone who is supposed to love you, care for you, be there. Then one day you wake up and realise what that person is, and if you are with them too long, what they have made you become to survive.

      1. Vips says:

        Thank you for your acknowledgment. I am sorry that you were used like that for someone’s pleasure at the cost of enormous pain. I trust you will heal but never forget and once again become the beautiful rose. 🌹

      2. Asp Emp says:

        Anna, I can relate to what you say here. The Lesser did similar to me after a night out, on a couple of occasions. It put me off him but not sex. Because both occasions it was not consensual. And, he never apologised for hurting me because it would indicate that he “acknowledged” his behaviours. I did not “confront” him at the time because I did not sit and consider what he had done to me, because a) I put it down to fueled by alcohol (he was not really drunk as such) and, b) he would have denied it (I had “learned” his reactions to such accusations of any of his actions) without being acutely aware exactly what I was “involved” in with, or actually seeing his behaviours “clearly”. I did think, just now, whether Lesser was “punishing” me for anything he may have “perceived” me to have done (or said) while we were out with a group of people earlier in the evening. There is no way in hell was that Lesser was going to drop his “I’m a good guy” facade in public. No, my ET is not affected as I type this, maybe just, with more clarity.

        The MRN did not behave in the same manner and I was never taken back to the times I was “hurt” by that Lesser (which is a positive to a degree!). I only understood a great deal when I read HG’s book ‘Sex and the Narcissist’, where the realisations and understanding also brought back memories. Even though, I cannot undo what happened, I can, however, manage my ET and keep my LT switched on when I talk about it (2 years ago, that would have been very difficult to do).

        RE: your second paragraph – barring the first sentence – I could not agree more. When you manage your ET / LT better, and, repeatedly, you begin to see through your lens more clearly as time goes by. You also become more aware of those around you. Sometimes, it is not just “made you become to survive”, when HG’s logical thinking methods are being applied & used, you actually become more wise because of the increased awareness and understanding, with ET management.

        Thank you for listening and for sharing your experiences. Good to see you here 🙂

    2. A Victor says:

      I am so sorry to read this Vips. Glad you are here now.

      1. Vips says:

        How lovely to hear. 🪷

  3. Stacey Schwizer says:

    I know these all too well..

    1. A Victor says:

      Same. I used to laugh, inside my head of course, when he would get dressed all secretively, it was funny to me. I didn’t understand what was happening, I thought he was shy! It didn’t dawn on me that he’d not been like that before, so why now? The turning his back in bed was not funny however, nor were the others.

      1. Vips says:

        😢 I’m sorry.

        1. VIPs says:

          Ty. 🌻

      2. Joa says:

        Oh, AV, you wrote something again that “hit” me with the resemblance. At the same time, you have ruined one of my most beautiful memories. Though that’s probably fine. Another thing I have to dismiss as irrelevant. Soon I’ll be empty like a well without water and I’ll be as still and boring as stone…

        It happened, that when in sex he surrendered to my will and I was the active party and he just accepted what I do and give, then sometimes he would cover his face with a pillow. I also thought he was shy… It was both heartwarming and exciting at the same time.

        In fact, he was completely shameless and laid back, why did I think it was some inner shyness of his?

        I also didn’t like it, when he turned his back on me in bed. Though he never pushed me away, when I cuddled up to his back and hugged him.

        Though… yes, there were times, when you couldn’t approach him at all and he wouldn’t tell what was going on. I was very worried about him then.


        As I wrote this, I wanted him so much. What hopelessness! If only I could love someone else, he would disappear my mind in an instant! Yes, it’s not him I miss, but the love I felt. He was just a receiver, and a weak one at that…

        1. A Victor says:

          Oh Joa, I’m sorry for running that memory for you but I think I’m safe in saying I don’t think you’ll ever be “empty like a well without water and I’ll be as still and boring as stone…”! Not possible!! You are too full of life, and it’s beautiful to see it here.

          Mine never actively pushed me away either but the back itself was enough of a rejection that I gave up trying. I was so confused, exactly what he wanted. He’s a horrible person.

        2. Contagious says:

          And just one. There are 9 billion left to explore if that is what you want.

    2. Vips says:

      🪴They may have rob you of the water, but you are still the seed.

    3. Vips says:

      I’m very sorry. 😢

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