Sharing your body with your partner is one of the most intimate ways to express your care for them. This is because at the root of intimacy lies vulnerability. Opening up your most personal space to another person is no easy feat. For many people, it takes a lot of courage to be physically intimate with their partners, even if they’ve been together for a long time. And when you don’t have the best perception about your own body, having sex can feel daunting and even cringy. It’s like inviting someone to your home: when you’re comfortable with your space and proud of it, it’s a pleasure to have company over and invite them to indulge in the comfort with you. But when you’re not 100% comfortable with your space–there may be a few leaks and cracks, some walls that need to be repainted, or even a white fridge that you’re hiding– you can end up projecting your own insecurities onto your guests before they have a chance to form their own opinion.
Having sex while being self-conscious about your body can create a lot of uncomfortable scenarios for you and your partner. You may want to explore certain positions, but hold back because you’re afraid of how your body will look from different angles. Having the lights on may be completely out of the question. And lingerie may never see the outside of your closet.
But there’s no way to fully enjoy intimacy with your partner if you’re not really feeling yourself. Yes, we’re about to dive into some self-love talk. But the aspect of self-love, or loving anything or anyone really, that isn’t focused on enough is the fact that it takes time. Loving yourself does not happen overnight. It takes work, consistent investment in yourself, and full acceptance, even on the days that you’re not where you want to be.
There are a few things you should always keep in mind as you put in the work to strengthen your relationship with yourself and to fall in love with your body:
Everyone Has Insecurities
Even the most snatched model is insecure about some part of their body– a scar, a hidden stretch mark, a relentless roll. What’s important to remember is that the elements that make your body uniquely yours are what really creates the masterpiece. Own them!
Getting Comfy Helps You Get Confident
For me, masturbation has been an accelerator when it comes to truly accepting my body. One self-care ritual that has forced me to get more comfortable with each one of my curves, dips, and rolls is masturbating in front of the mirror. I admire myself, notice all the imperfections, and commit to loving them. My mind relates the beauty I find in my own reflection to the pleasure I can provide for myself, and I get to a point where I turn myself on! I also use this energy and confidence when I show my partner how to pleasure me.
You Deserve Pleasure
I used to punish myself because the ideal body image that I strived for did not match my body I.R.L. This mindset creates a cycle of self-imposed misery. Let it go! You, at every point of your self-love journey, deserve to enjoy this life and indulge in the things that make you happy.
You Are Your Own Green Light Gang
Sometimes, you have to have a 50 cent level of self-assurance to overcome your insecurities. Establish your value for yourself first, and others will have no choice but to respect it and respect you. Once you know your value, you won’t be so compelled to base your self-esteem in comparison.
No, really sis. Chill out. Most of the time, our insecurities start in our head and feed on all of the images and information that tell us we don’t measure up. These self-doubts tend to create anxious energy that eventually influences how you connect with your partner.
Remember who you are. Remember that you are enough. And remember to give yourself permission to enjoy the experience.
Self-esteem is built up and sustained by you, but your partner can be one hell of an asset as you gain a deeper appreciation for yourself and your body. With a growing self-love and someone who thoroughly enjoys all of you, even the parts you see as flaws, you’ll be able to reach unimaginable peaks of pleasure and intimacy.
Featured photo: Unsplash/Ricardo Esquivel
Kymberly Deane is a writer, content creator, and storyteller based in Brooklyn, New York. Her passion for continual self-improvement and exploring new things has led her to become a health and wellness zealot, with a particular love for sexual health and wellness. She uses her writing to share the gems she discovers throughout her journey.