Todd Baratz is a licensed personal and couples psychotherapist, podcast host, and writer who specializes in relationships and sex.
D’bunked strips down the myths surrounding gay sex, intimacy, relationships and love and is brought to you by GLUE.
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Yes know their favourite colour, flavour of ice cream and all the cute stuff, but also know who they are – at their core.
A common barrier to this can be when one or both partner’s don’t know themselves. This, however, is when growth happens in the context of a relationship. You can get to know yourself by getting to know each other. This is when self-awareness happens in conjunction with intimacy.
Important things to know about your partner…
Early family relationships directly impact who we are for the rest of our lives. In fact, the only relationships that directly mirror each other are the ones we have with our adult partner’s and the people that raised us. The more you know about each other’s history the better you can become around understanding conflict, disconnection, and therefore the easier it becomes to create repair.
Trauma, Neglect, and/or Abandonment
If there is a history of trauma, it’s important that couples be aware from the beginning. Trauma has a way of impacting a variety of our relational experiences. When one or both people don’t know these details, the likelihood of being triggered increases.
Sexual Desires, Kinks, and Eroticism
If you want to have a good sexual connection, having an understanding of who each other sexually is crucial. That includes erogenous zones on the body, preferences for touch, and the fantasies that define what is erotic.
Relationships are about fun, pleasure, and joy. If a couple doesn’t know what makes each other happy the chances for joy decreases. Learn about what breathes life into each other’s daily experience.
We all have complex and exciting internal worlds. You know the random thoughts and responses to our day-to-day experience. Get in the habit of inviting each other inside by sharing your inner thoughts and feelings.
The more you know about what each other prefers—in a variety of contexts—the more you can anticipate needs and provide care.
Start from date #1 and work towards creating alignment – as best as possible. Do not withhold.
And remember, if you’re reading this thinking you know everything about your partner – you’re wrong. There is always something new to discover about each other. Which is actually pretty great. So go get discovering!