What are intimacy wounds?
Welcome to Devotional Anarchy, a podcast about intimacy, attachment, sexuality, spirituality, self expression and other relational themes from a trauma responsive somatic energetic lens. And with the queer polyamorous twist, of course, I’m Isha Vela trauma, psychologist somatic intimacy Alchemist shadow doula love at our guest, intuitive channel and sovereignty coach. You’re here because you understand that integrating intimacy wounds build safety and trust within your body. And that safety and trust is what allows you to fully own and direct your erotic and creative life force in your relationships and purposeful work. My intention is for the conversations and tools shared in this podcast, to light a fire in your heart and under your magical ass while supporting you on your kinky human journey to owning all of yourself. I then don’t beg last Welcome to this episode on intimacy wounds. Who this is so up for me right now because I’ve had several incidents this week of confronting other people’s and my own intimacy wounds. And in keeping with the theme of intimacy, I want to let you know that I have 15 spots open in my brand new mastermind, what I’m calling the sovereign nine month meta body intimacy and integrity accelerator. So this meta body is a hybrid between somatic group process and one on one intensive and it’s designed to heal the intimacy wounds that create barriers to intimacy and partnerships. It’s there to support you to solidify and seal stray boundary leakages increase energetic holding capacity for, you know, activations, like relationship activations and repair work. To help you resolve patterns of self betrayal fun responding, energetic collapse, deepened safety and self trust through emotional attunement to your inner experiences, and align your spiritual values with your relationship behaviors. You already know that the depth and quality of intimacy is about nervous system capacity building and the somatic processes intended to support you in opening up more space for you to receive and hold. And of course, this is about so much more than improving romantic partnerships. This is about owning the full size of your desires and your truth. It’s about creating conscious partnerships in all areas of your life. And in the collective building cultures of connection, integrity and accountability. It’s where the internal alchemy meets the collective ripple, as above, so below, as they say. So the link to the sovereign meta body is in the show notes. And if you’re interested, just get on a 30 minute free curiosity call with me to see if it’s an aligned fit for where you are right now and for what you’re looking for. Okay, so I’m going to have a sip of my tea, and we’re going to get into it. Okay, so intimacy, intimacy wounds, what the fuck are they? And why are they important? How do we heal them? Let’s get into it. Okay. So most of us have experienced some form of early attachment wounding in relationship with our caregivers, meaning that your very first relationship sometimes felt unsafe, or it was inconsistent, or it was emotionally disconnected. And it’s not because you weren’t loved. It’s that you were not attuned to in ways that helped you regulate your developing socio emotional nervous system, right? Your executive functioning your prefrontal cortex. And attunement is the felt experience of love.
You know, when parents back in the day, right, they were busy, and they were there were stressors. And now, nowadays, parents are incredibly distracted and stressed out in very, very different ways. You know, and just having lots of work to do or just having, you know, distractions like the phone and having to deal with COVID You know, those are the mildest versions of Miss attunement. The more extreme cases, of course, would be parents who are emotionally fragile or substance abuse or parental absence, you know, avert experiences of neglect and abuse, or the trauma of oppression, just having to deal with racism, and even having to deal with the compounded collective trauma of slavery, let’s say, let’s say okay, so nobody really escapes the process of being hurt in our first relationships because Parenting is hard. It’s messy, it’s imperfect. And because we don’t have the adequate systems in place to support parents like the systemic supports, we don’t have the villages and the communities that we used to that would reduce stress and provide more opportunities for to relating. And these Miss attunements are overwhelming to a child’s system to a developing child system, especially when you don’t yet possess language, you can’t express yourself with the words, or you don’t have the capacity to filter what’s incoming, and you look to your parent, or parents as the template for how to relate right it’s just this mirroring effect, the child just indiscriminately absorbs the parents level of stress and anxiety. And so this mirroring dynamic and absorption process causes changes in the brain and the nervous system think, you know, dopamine receptors and executive function if you want to get like sciency on it, but also the energy body right, it creates changes in how we manage the energy moving through our bodies as part of managing fear and overwhelm. So when your parents are unable to meet you, in the full expression of your lifeforce, you learn how not to be in order to get love, acceptance, belonging, because for a child survival is much more important than authenticity. Right. So through a process of pruning, you begin to bring forward the forward who you need to be in order to be loved and accepted. And you cut off or exile, the parts that maybe tend to be ignored or that tend to be unappreciated, shamed or punished not only by caregivers, but by collective norms and expectations. Know, for example, in schools, you know, teachers don’t want super exuberant kids. And so they want children to sit at their desks, or they want them to play nicely, or, you know, to not use their voices. So that and that begins to tamp down on this really big juicy expression. And so you, children, create energetic strategies, for example, holding your energy together, right, so pulling it in, or holding it back, right, putting what’s out in front towards the back of the body. Or you hold it up, for example, you pull it up from from the legs and the pelvis up into the chest and the head so you become sort of this more intellectual person. And this all helps you cope with the pain and the fear of disconnection and loss. So when these energetic strategies work, the system repeats them. And over time, they become habitual, and pattern. And the only reason they feel normal is because they’re habitual. But these manipulate these manipulations of energy are actually a traumatized way of being in the body. And being in relationships because the ego and the nervous system, they work in tandem to create barriers and blocks to intimacy as a way to protect itself.
And this, like this traumatize way of being is like this awkward suit that we wear, like it’s too big, or it’s too constricting, or it’s like, it doesn’t fit, right. And we walk around thinking, Oh, this is the way I am. Right. So just going back to the nervous system, and the ego piece, the your your body system, when it’s all protected. And there’s all these barriers and blocks. Your system will read intimacy and connection as a threat. And that’s why the capacity to receive intimacy and connection is limited. You can think of this as scar tissue developing around a wound. And why it’s important is that we bring the scar tissue into all of our relationships, especially romantic ones, because at the soul level, we’re seeking to heal these intimacy wounds, right. And our suffering. A lot of our suffering relationship is set up by our natural and healthy desire to heal ourselves, which is which is great because we do heal in relationships. And it’s also brought on by reaching outside of ourselves, to get our belonging needs met, etc. So, like I said, ideally, we do healing relationships, but often, we’re unable to truly create relationships that facilitate healing, because we’re not aware of how these intimacy wounds are playing a part in the dynamic So even though it’s not conscious, we have parts of us that want to outsource, being loved, belonging, being taken care of being accepted, being wanted or desired, you get where I’m going with this. And when we’re not aware of the templates, these these energetic strategies or relational strategies, we end up recreating and reenacting the wounds because they act like scripts written into the body, right? written into the, into the muscles, complete with mental narratives about ourselves and other people, like, you know, not trusting people not trusting life, not trusting the universe, not trusting ourselves, like, all of that stuff is sort of part of the energetic holding, and the scripts that are written in our bodies. So although the original intention of the strategy was to protect, but because it’s so big, into the system, it’s going to show up everywhere, right, because that’s what you carry with you, and you sort of replicate and repeat that in anything you put your energy into, from your relationship with God universe, spirit, to your relationship with money to your work partnerships. So an example of this would be, let’s say you have a fear of rejection. And so you don’t allow people to get really close, because it gets really scary, that you might be left.
And, again, this is you probably have this because at some point, you experienced some form of rejection, whether it was, you know, an example of having been treated very harshly, like through overt abuse, or something more subtle, where you felt rejected, or your perception was feeling rejected, but your caregiver or whoever you were interacting with, didn’t actually intend to do it that way. So in your adult relationships, perhaps, you actually choose unavailable partners, whether they’re not really invested in committing, or they’re kind of emotionally indifferent. So we unconsciously reenact the rejection, right? Because they’re kind of not there emotionally, or they don’t show up for you. It creates the same pain and those when that pain is recreated, it’s an opportunity for you to go into the pain until like, like resolve the pain to feel it. But what we often do is that we stay in the story of the pain we’re like, I’m so rejectable, right is the story we’re holding in our bodies. It’s the narrative or the script that we’re holding in our body and we sort of kind of recycle that instead of going through the true raw pain of having been rejected that original pain. So this same example on a business level might show up, you know how this might be a reenacted, reenacted in in an entrepreneurial sense, right? You might reenact the rejection, with potential clients on a sales call, you might not put your offer out there or talk about it, really get behind it, because you feel like if they say, No, it’s gonna hurt you. Right, or you might not reach out to a potential mentor, because you think they won’t want you to, they will want to have you around, you know. So, these these show up in an obvious and subtle ways, I’m really interested more in the subtle ones, because I know that you’ve already, if you’re listening to this, you’ve already done a ton of work on yourself. It’s really about subtle energy, and about subtle manipulations of power and control, which is really about the shadow work. And even something as simple as using relationship cut off, or cancellation as in canceled culture, in relationships is often how these intimacy wounds get replicated. That’s also another example. Especially with Shadow Work, our protective defenses often work against what we most desire in our hearts and on the soul level, which is to be seen, felt heard and deeply connected to. Creating spiritual partnerships in particular relationships that that hold the potential to heal these intimacy wounds is about being responsible and taking ownership for the energy you bring into the dynamic. We can’t own and be fully responsible for the energy we bring into relationships. We don’t know what we’re doing, if we’re not aware of our patterns, and not just aware I got the August things again, this goes more into the subtle energetics of it. Because this stuff is pre verbal. It is sneaky and subtle, trust me, because I’m tracking it all the time. And I’m just like, whoops, that showed up again, you know. And, in case this is sounding a little bit harsh and serious, it’s because I paid a really, really high price for this. And in my life right now, there is fuckery, because of this. And I also believe, wholeheartedly, that healing intimacy wounds changes, not only the energetics of our closest relationships, but because it’s related to our relationships with everything, it actually changes the energetics of how we inter be how we interact, and how we show up for one another, in the bigger collective picture. You know, this deal this week, you know, dealing with, you know, Putin, invading the Ukraine and with anti trans legislation in Texas and Florida. Racist, bullshit everywhere. You know, we have people with intimacy wounds, who are you know, we have people with intimacy wounds in leadership, who use power as a way to control their internal dysregulation, right? So, when we see this type of abuses of power,
it all goes back to these intimacy wounds, and I know that you already know that I just feel like I need to say it to the people in the back. You know, these are the sort of the obvious abuses, but again, like bringing it into the subtle body, you know, I, I had interactions this week where I could feel my, the part of me that, that where I feel rejected, where I feel kind of left out, it was sort of coming up. And I was just observing that, and there was a way that I could feel the protective part wanting to come right over and, and say something mean about the person that I felt rejected by and I sort of slowed that down and pulled the backs up. Yeah, yeah, we don’t need to do that. Just feel just feel that place. What does that feel like? Stay curious, right. And that curiosity. And that willingness to go inward is part of the healing process. And it requires so much compassion, a lot of times we get, we get kind of impatient with these parts, we get kind of like tired and exhausted by like, oh, here here again. But really, these parts what these parts need is that loving, attunement, that loving, attunement, that they didn’t get that we also seek to get in our relationships with other people. So healing my own intimacy wounds is specifically having to witness these parts of myself with compassion. And with that attunement has supported me in being able to come hold compassion for other people who are also in their wound, even when they’re, you know, externalizing and projecting their pain. I can hold space for the part that that is hurting. Although, you know, you got to put boundaries around that, as well. Um, you got to protect your energy. Yeah, so I’m just gonna take a drink for a moment.
Yeah, so once I became aware of what I was doing with my energy, and I was able to, to bring these unconscious patterns into awareness through the healing process, and absolutely change the way I understood myself as a human being, how I understood other people, and how I interacted with them how I interacted with them. There, I just developed a completely different language for being able to name what was happening in the moment. Before I didn’t use to name all of these these subtle experiences going on inside but when you start to notice, like the subtle energetics, and the subtle sensations in the body, then you’re able to catch these things much, much better. Before my somatic training, I had no idea that I was protecting myself in all of these ways. And I thought, the strategies were part of my personality, like just the way that I was. For example, I used to I used to withhold my vulnerability. I used to withhold information. I used to withhold my process I used to withhold my love. I used to withhold truth, my authenticity basically, I used to hide I was really good at hiding and not letting myself be seen. Even Though deep deep down my deepest desires, my deepest desire was to be seen and witnessed. And I know that if you’re listening, you’re probably aware of how some of these dynamics are, you know, moving in your own relationships. But what you may not have experienced is the incredibly transformative power of Alka maizing them through the body through energy awareness and expressive movement. And additionally, what’s truly beautiful about healing intimacy wounds, and this is my favorite part, in case this was getting a little bit to trauma, gloom and doom for you is that the places you were hurt are the same places in which your greatest gifts can be optimized. So I’m going to say that, again, the places you got hurt are the same places where your greatest gifts can be optimized. So I’ll share an example. So I said just a moment ago, my strategy of holding back my heart? Well, during my training, what I stupidly came to realize was that my heart was so huge, and squishy, and gushy, I could barely stand it, I couldn’t tolerate it like it was, there were times where I actually had reactions of disgust at my own softness. And so I realized over the course of those four years that love giving and receiving it was actually my superpower. And for those who have worked with me, you, you felt it, I know, you felt it, I’m right there with you. My heart can really hold a lot. And the only reason I brag This is because like I said, it wasn’t always the case, I wasn’t always connected to my own love, because that’s precisely what had not been seen or appreciated in my family of origin. And I was loved for sure I was, but I was also raised to be tough, not soft softness, would have led to my emotional annihilation. Which leads me to an important piece, truly appreciating the way your body kept you safe, when it wasn’t safe to be your shiny and loving, fully expressed self. The strategies you developed were ingenious, and that they helped you survive. And they deserve that recognition. They deserve to be applauded, right. You just don’t need them now. In fact, now that the context for them being there no longer exists. They’re kind of in the way, right? They’re kind of like funhouse mirrors, like, you don’t need to be distorting your partner through this to this funhouse house mirror, or you don’t need to be distorting how you see yourself through these distortions. So I’m gonna talk about one of the strategies, that is one of my favorite because the capacity for limitless love is the superpower. So the merging pattern with emerging strategy is based in abandonment, lack of nurturance and support. So the energetic strategy is to hold on right to grip and grasp. And that can mean holding on to other people, right? Clinging, sometimes it’s called, or holding on to external supports, such as food, alcohol approval, you know, all of those things, it’s a little bit you can feel the fawn response in there with the approval.
So externally, you can, it’s most visible to a sense of fatigue and non assertiveness, right, there’s a there’s a way there’s like a, there’s an energetic collapse in the body. And I can, I can not only see, like, I can read bodies, but I can feel energetic bodies. So I can like see the energy and how it’s moving in your body. So it’s hard for me to describe sort of what I see. But there’s this like, it’s almost like the energy is is like leaking out of the root. But more specifically, from just below the belly button, it’s kind of like pouring out and forward, like, and there’s also like this pouring out from the heart. And I’ll go into that in a second. So the basic belief of this strategy, the belief that’s baked into the system is that they’ll never get enough love, you’ll never get enough love, they’ll never be enough. And in the body, it’s really about like not having really gotten enough nurturance and so there’s this energetic sense of emptiness that needs to be filled, like a void that wants to be, you know, filled up. And sometimes that happens through overeating. Sometimes it happens through shopping, alcohol, sex. You know, polyamorous relationships. Some people like some people enter polyamory because they want they want all the attention or they want all of these relationships, but there isn’t really A lot of depth to any of them. Sometimes it’s video games, sometimes it’s hoarding money, right? Not enough money. There’s a, there’s that internalization of not having gotten enough support and nurturance, that is personalized also to not being enough, which translates a lot of times into doing more. So in that there’s the belief of, if I love enough, then maybe I’ll get loved back. Right. And so, here we see the, the pattern of, you know, empaths, getting into relationships with narcissists, who are takers, right, and the empath is like, well, maybe I’ll maybe I’ll give enough, you know, my partner will change, they will be transformed by my love, and they will love me back. Or thing. They’re, so they’re so hurt and wounded. So I’ll leave that there for a moment. And in this in this strategy, there’s there’s two subtypes, there’s the one that is over giving. And then there’s the one. Yeah, there’s the one that is over giving, over giving, and that won’t need. And then there’s one that is over giving, and that also pulls energy, but it’s kind of like, I will over give, and I will show you that I’m over giving, but sort of on the back end, I’m also like wanting something in return, and they’ll sort of pull that way. So when is compensated, and yeah, when it’s compensated and is disconnected from their own need, they see need out in the world, like, oh, this person needs something and that person needs something, but they’re not connected to their own need. So deprivation, any sort of deprivation and threat of abandonment is what activates the strategy. And they tend to perceive deprivation, because that’s already their history they’re holding in their body. So that’s the stuff that you will notice first in your relationships that the deprivation and the and the activation around the trip the deprivation. So what happens in the strategy is that there’s a sense of emptiness, this inner emptiness, and sometimes that shows up as depression or dependency, there’s a tendency to collapse and feel lost, there’s a feel fear of being left behind maybe some FOMO. So the underlying paradox that wants to be resolved, is to honor and express the fact that you need that you have need because you’re human, while also acknowledging the power to meet your own needs by advocating for them. And in this strategy, there’s this, there’s this part of the dynamic is serving at the expense of self. So there’s an abandonment of one’s own one’s own knees and trying to meet the other people so that they can be loved. So there’s this energetic pattern of like, coming up and out and going out into the world. And so, this the part of the healing is to bring the energy in and back down. Yeah. So the strengths, the beautiful strengths, that I had mentioned earlier of this particular strategy is wisdom, logic and a deep sense of empathy. And this when when that is allowed to deepen, when that deprivation is allowed to be filled energetically, this can open into a deep reverential love, like from this place of
needing to be filled up or not having had enough, there’s you can actually create a feeling of abundance that then gets poured out into the world. So these are the the true lovers of the world, the deep feelers, the people that truly, truly care, a lot of which are nothing less. And sometimes, you know, we also need to sort of temper these places enough that cares so much I see this pattern a lot of like caring, so much caring so much about we’re in the caring, we’re also pouring that love out, we do need to nourish ourselves in the process. And that’s how we create we create energetic boundaries so that we don’t get overwhelmed by by the hurt in the world. So yes to the deep feelers, and we get to feel ourselves as well. So how do we heal these intimacy wounds? So let’s get into that. Okay, take a drink here. All right. So because these strategies are lodged in the nervous system and in the subtle energy body, in somatic intimacy, Alchemy, we become aware of them through breath work, subtle energy awareness, sensation and expressive movement. And we also use attunement, right once you become aware you have the choice of moving towards emotions with curiosity, that were once too overwhelming To feel and this is the emotional regulation piece, and there’s a specific four step process that I teach for it. You interrupt the strategy, when you notice it coming up, and you act in alignment with your deeper values and desires. That’s partly mindset, right being able to notice when the pattern is arising and exercising choice. And part of it is opening up or reclaiming the parts of the erotic lifeforce that were previously locked away. And when you open up the lifeforce, you open up for more pleasure, creativity, play expression, that’s all part of pleasure. And of course, you know, we have the opportunity to become aware of how these strategies show up in our everyday life through our relationships. But because the ego is so good at protecting itself, it often creates a story about us being justified in our protection, so that it blocks our awareness where it stops the awareness, which obviously just keeps the strategy in place. So healing really involves a lot of ego death. That’s the I think that’s the hardest part. And the rewards are so fucking huge. What I want you to know, today, as you listen to this is that your true capacity for intimacy is much deeper than you believe it to be, and that it’s in there. It was baked into you before that other shit got big into you. It’s dormant inside and you can wake it up, it’s your baseline, it’s something that you can read dash member through the healing process, right? That complete, fulfilled, love already exists inside of you. And you can learn attunement, and learn to direct it inward towards the parts of you that were not met. The parts of you that need the parts that want belonging, the parts that fear rejection, you can direct that inward and become a really good listener to the aspects that are coming up to sensations to the subtle energies, and really hold them and care for them in a way that they weren’t before. So, healing intimacy wounds is when to think about the body is really about opening the heart, opening up the pelvis connecting heart to sex, which is so much of what this podcast is about bringing it into alignment. And obviously the nervous system regulation piece, right, bringing that all to its to its original capacity. And this is all about reclaiming the lifeforce, remembering your inherent wholeness and emotional and energetic sovereignty. Ah, so that’s it for today. I feel like this is particularly satisfying to talk about today. What’s happening in the world and what’s happening in my life personally, that this really is a message that I’m not going to stop talking about, because it really is at the core of building relationships that heal building businesses and that that that feel good that are drenched in pleasure that you know, like, it really is so much bigger than then sort of the personal, the personal, what’s happening in your personal life, but it really about the ripple into the collective. All right, thanks for listening. Love, y’all.
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