Most of us yearn for intimacy with our partner. The problem for many couples is maintaining the level of intimacy yearned for. After all, every relationship has its ups and downs. It’s inevitable. Two people with individual likes and dislikes, needs and desires will differ and argue at some stage. This can leave partners to feel isolated and alone. So how do we navigate the highs and lows and at the same time maintain a desire to be intimate?

The answer lies in our need for “secure connection”.

In her book “Hold me Tight” Susan Johnson writes (2008, p22) that studies have shown:

“a sense of secure connection between romantic partners is key to positive loving relationships and a huge source of strength for the individuals in those relationships.”

Johnson (pp22-24) identifies four key findings:

  • Being comfortable with closeness and able to trust and depend upon our partner, we are better able to seek and give support.
  • Feeling safely connected to our loved one, we are able to more effectively deal with arguments and painful situations – we will respond less aggressively.
  • Loving, secure connection is empowering for both partners.
  • The more secure our relationship with our partner, the more we are able to reach out to them, and amazingly the more separate and independent we become.

If you would like to know more about developing secure connection in your relationship, Susan Johnson’s book “Hold me Tight: Seven Conversations for a Lifetime of Love” (Little, Brown and Company: New York, 2008) is a good read. As the title suggests, Johnson takes the reader through seven key conversations that promote secure connection.  Conversations such as: “Recognising the demon dialogues”, “Finding the raw spots”, “Revisiting a rocky moment” through to “Keeping your love alive”. Dotted throughout each conversation is a “Play and practice” section for you to use as a couple to help you identify and work through your own issues. This book is a tool for helping you enrich your relationship and is not a replacement for couple counselling.

“Hold me Tight: Seven Conversations for a Lifetime of Love” by Susan Johnson is available from:

Book Depository: for $26.29

Booktopia: for $37.90