'Tis the season for a good late-spring fling and beachy hookups — if the arbitrary rules of non-cuffing season are to be followed — but you know what? I, for one, am always in the mood for wholesome relationship content, even if it makes me, a very single person, want to die a little bit inside.
So naturally, when the Reddit user tb1649 posed the question, "What is the most intimate, non-sex thing you do with your partner?" to the AskWomen subreddit, you better believe I clicked immediately.
Anyway, here's 21 of the most wholesome and pure acts of intimacy that women shared in their responses:
1. Being taken care of when you're sick.
2. Sharing a morning or evening routine.
"Getting dressed for the day or undressed for bed together. Having deep meaningful conversations on the couch. He scrubs my back before I get in the shower. "
3. Literally sleeping together, of course...
"Literally sleeping together. That’s not something I’ve done with another person for a VERY long time. Cuddling and eventually falling asleep in someone’s arms is very intimate and requires quite a bit of vulnerability."
4. And the best thing of all: cuddling.
"Even though cuddling does get hot (temperature and sexual-wise — I’m talking temperature in this scenario), sometimes we’ll end up going to our ends of the bed but we always make sure some part of our bodies are touching. I don’t know if we do it on purpose but it happens every night without fail."
5. Holding your hand when things get really scary.
"I think the most intimate thing happened during my second son’s birth a few months ago. I had given birth quickly and easily, but then began hemorrhaging. They stood me up to go to the bathroom and blood began pooling down my legs and feet ... The nurses were scared and a team ran in. My husband laid the baby down and held my hand — I was terrified I was dying and leaving them. I just kept looking into his eyes and telling him I was so scared, and he stayed calm and smiled and reassured me."
6. Keeping each other moisturized!
7. Playing music for you.
"He plays love songs on the piano while I stand behind him kissing the back of his head. I almost cry sometimes. He's autistic and doesn't do verbal affection, but he finds ways to show me that he loves me."
8. Drawing each other, yes, in the nude.
"My boyfriend draws and sometimes he draws me naked. Granted it's a prelude to sex some times but not all the time. It's super intimate, watching him quietly concentrate and do his work while sort of examining parts of me. I used to be super self conscious, so just laying there and being out in the open is sort of freeing and idk. Just feels close."
9. Tending to his 'brows.
"I pluck my husband's eyebrows. He's really insecure with how his eyebrows look and he trusts me enough to style them for him."
10. Delivering the best backscratches, ever.
"I scratch his back and head. He was telling me how his mom would scratch his back and it is a very intimate thing for him. His grandma would scratch his head until he fell asleep.
Ever since he told me that, I’ve been trying my best to stay awake long enough that he falls asleep from head scratches too, as he has trouble falling asleep. Last night I finally held out long enough. I could hear his breathing change and his body relax and felt him fall asleep under my hand, and I don’t know why, but I was the happiest in the world because I could do something for him like that."
11. Giving each other's nicknames.
12. Being present when you're feeling most vulnerable.
"One time, awhile ago, I had a very bad panic attack and he carried me into his car, drove me to his place, brought me upstairs, and cuddled and slept with his entire body encompassing me, just repeating 'you’re safe here.' When I would wake up in a dead panic throughout the night, he would pull me closer and just pet my head to calm me down and say 'I’m here.'"
13. Letting them help with your beauty routine.
"I’m African, he’s Middle Eastern. It took me a while but I eventually let him help with taking out my cornrows when I change hairstyles, and helping me wash/condition my hair. That’s pretty intimate to me."
14. Discussing your favorite bathroom, uh, fixtures.
"We just bought a bidet. We love the bidet. We regularly talk about how awesomely clean our butts feel, usually while one of us is using the bidet."
15. Feeling supported while managing your birth control options.
"He held my hand while they changed my IUD. I hate it and it was awful. He also made sure I was comfortable after and drove me home."
16. Describing very elaborate movie plots out loud.
17. Trusting each other with all the important info.
"I trust him with all my passwords and bank info and...honestly, at some point or another, we've told each other our SSN/SIN's, for paperwork or something. He's the same at me. We just...are a cohesive unit of 'I trust you, you trust me, can you check my email for me to see if my mom emailed me back' at all times.
It's intimate, for me, to have that trust be mutual."
19. Having a personal "sauna" sesh.
"About once a week we get naked and sit in a quiet little room to talk about our worries, things that annoy us in work, funny things that have happened and our plans for the future.
It's a sauna. We go to a sauna together."
20. Giving the dog a bath together.
"I know it sounds stupid but we bathe our dog together... like, we take him to this self-serve dog wash, and he’s big and hates bathes, so one of us wrestles him and the other bathes, and it’s actually an amazing team-building activity."
21. And finally, maintaining some good old-fashioned eye contact.
"Deep, extended eye contact. It feels so intense, just this side of unbearable."