Gazing — Are You Afraid to Stare into Your Lover’s Eyes?

Hello Faithful Readers,

Today, I want to highlight something that has really been a struggle for me over the years, gazing.
What is gazing? Scholastically, it’s defined thusly: look steadily and intently, especially in admiration, surprise, or thought.
But, Mark Twain once said, “Don’t let school interfere with your education.” And, here at Sexually Secure, we are learning together from each other; it’s not a college. So, let’s take a deeper look into the art (not science) of gazing.
Some of you out there have pets. Commonly, cats and dogs, so let’s put our focus there. Did you ever have a moment when your pet would look at you for a prolonged period of time, and then you did the same? Did it feel comfortable and close? Did you feel like you might have been communicating in some non-spoken language? Did it feel safe?
The last question is the most important. “Did it feel safe?” For the longest time in my life, I didn’t even know I had this problem. I could stare into the eyes of my cats or my parents’ dogs, but no matter how close I was to any girlfriend, fiance, or my wife,  I could not gaze into their eyes. It did not feel safe…
So, through some talk therapy, I was able to overcome this — to a degree. It’s something I still struggle to enhance, but it gets better little by little. Whenever I would stare into my wife’s eyes, I also had the feeling to turn away. I could absolutely not let myself open my heart and be vulnerable to her. It was a scary feeling of losing myself in her, and thus, submitting myself to her and the moment.
We had to start small. Initially, with some help. The idea was simple. Practice. Practice. Practice. Stare into each other’s eyes with the intent to let go of control, and when it got uncomfortable, turn away. Then, try it again. Do this for a few days or weeks, until it no longer feels awkward. The key to everything we are going to learn at Sexually Secure is patience. Take your time with your partner and encourage him or her to keep going. Eventually, that uncomfortable feeling will dissipate, and you’ll notice each other gazing like you did when you first met.
We really only do this to people and animals with whom we are close. Think about staring into a newborn baby’s eyes. Admiring her, wondering what she’s thinking, trying to connect with her. Now imagine staring into a stranger’s eyes… really different, huh?
Your partner is just that, your partner. For the love of intimacy and vulnerability, I encourage you to give this a shot. We’ll get to more advanced gazing, and gazing during sexual intimacy in a later post. I still have my own growing to do, and I don’t want to steer you the wrong way.
If you’re having trouble talking to your partner about this, or if you need some assistance, please email me directly. I’m happy to help.