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Hey Woody,

Remember when you got all gooey last fall and came up with what you called “intimacy builders?” I laughed when I read them cuz they sounded so out there. Until I tried them and they really worked. I was wondering if you’ve come up with any new ones.

-Never doubt you again

Hey Woody,

Remember when you got all gooey last fall and came up with what you called “intimacy builders?” I laughed when I read them cuz they sounded so out there. Until I tried them and they really worked. I was wondering if you’ve come up with any new ones.

-Never doubt you again

Dear Never,

Well, you’re not alone in initially ridiculing them and then suddenly experiencing the jolt of closeness you can feel with your partner.

The exercises are designed to strengthen the emotional connection with your boyfriend, but they often reveal how little connection you actually have. I’ve got two new exercises for you.

The Observatory

Get naked and sit cross-legged, face to face with your partner. Knees touching. Your hands are resting on his knees, palm up. He puts his hands on yours, palms down.

Now, look into each other’s eyes for a few minutes with the intention of studying them. Note the color, the size of the pupil, etc. You’ll notice a lot of judgments come up (good or bad). Make mental notes but don’t break the silence or the eye contact.

Now take a break and cover your eyes with your hands for about a minute. Then place your hands in the same position as before and stare into each other’s eyes. But this time don’t study your partner. Instead, let him look at you. Receive his gaze. Let yourself be looked at. It’s a completely different feeling because you’re allowing him into you just as he’s allowing you into him. As the observer becomes the observed it might feel like you don’t know where you begin and he ends. That’s the point—to experience unity. It’s not unusual at this point for people to cry as they notice how many barriers they’ve put up against the man they love. As those barriers evaporate (remember, you must keep at this in silence for a few minutes) you’ll feel vulnerable, exposed and fragile. And as you realize that you can be all of those things safely in front of your partner, your emotional closeness grows.

And then you can get it on.

The Star-Crossing

Get naked. Hmmm. Why does all my advice start with the words “Get Naked?” Gotta talk to my shrink about that. Anyway, lie down on a rug and spread your arms wide. Your legs should be spread about shoulder-width apart. Your lover stands over your crotch, sits his butt down on the ground between your legs and mashes his cheeks against your crotch. Now get this: He then lays back like you did and spreads his arms out next to your feet. He puts his hands on your feet and keeps them there. He spreads his legs over yours so that his feet are next to your hands. Hold his feet. If you could see it from above it looks like you’ve formed a star.

Notice the position. Your genitals are facing his but not touching. The space between them carries a very interesting and sometimes scary vibe. You’re sexually vulnerable but emotionally connected (symbolized by the touching of each other’s feet).

The exercise brings up different feelings depending on whether your legs are over or under your lover. Either way, the point is to experience simultaneous vulnerability and support. Which, of course, makes it easier to get it on.

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