When you're thinking about how to meet emotional needs and achieve emotional intimacy, consider this.
How many times have you been in a relationship where you withheld something because you were worried about the other person's response?
You were thinking at some level, 'If I share this, I don't know if you'll stay.'
We fear someone will leave us if they see or understand what's really happening below the mask or the surface emotions.
Our truest and deepest desire is will you be there for me, will you stay present for me, will you hold me in this space?
To understand the two major ways we communicate in a relationship, imagine a disagreement. The usual styles of responding are to either attack or withdraw.
Often in a relationship you'll find one person is the attacker and the other the person who withdraws.
An attack doesn't have to be a violent request. It can simply be a request: 'You're not listening to me. Why are you not paying attention to me?'
Think of it as an emotionally forward movement.
The opposite of this is a withdrawal. So say somebody says, 'Let's have this conversation—what's going on?' and the other person's response is to take a step backward and say, 'I don't know, I don't want to talk about it.