Safety + Honesty = Intimacy
Safety is created by promises which are made and kept. Ideally, our sense of safety and security begins in childhood. We develop our sense of self in a safe environment, created by parents who make and keep promises. Our sense of self continues to unfold with our marriage partners, who are also expected to make and keep promises. If we have difficulty experiencing intimacy in marriage, it may be due to a lack of safety and security, either because our parents or our marriage partner (or both) have broken important promises in a significant way.
Honesty is crucial to intimacy because another person cannot know you intimately unless you are willing to pry the lid off the deep recesses of your life and honestly reveal who you really are. To be honest with another person, you must first be honest with yourself. You must know yourself—and that's not as easy as it sounds. Most of us are, to some degree or another, not fully aware of our feelings and emotions. We are in denial about some of our bad habits and traits. We have blocked out painful memories. We reject the knowledge of some of our worst sins and try to pretend we have no dark side.