Authintimacy: What Is It and How Is It Pronounced?

Paul Aaron Travis
3 min readDec 26, 2022
Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

Let’s start with the easy part

Indeed, many people have tripped over pronunciation!

But it’s easy if you start by saying intimacy a couple times: “Intimacy… Intimacy…” Now simply say “auth” beforehand. “Auth intimacy… Authintimacy”!

Now let’s talk about its meaning…

Authintimacy = Authenticity + Intimacy

Love experts like Joanna Shakti write that authenticity and intimacy are synonymous. I respectfully and firmly challenge that notion — principally around “directionality”:

  • Authenticity is outward from me and my heart —
    instead of hiding, I show myself vulnerably.
  • Intimacy is inward, into me, having confidence/trust that
    another person will add to my life and accept me.

When we consider that it is possible to be authentic without being open to intimacy from another — and to allow/invite intimacy without being truly authentic, it is worth examining each combination of these attributes…

Anytime we’re not in the lower left quadrant, we must have done some good work on ourselves.

Now as we move to the right (blue quadrant) where we’ve met our shadow, recognized our triggers, and more but still can’t truly let another person in — this is a “walled off” experience.

Or, moving “caddy corner” (red quadrant) where we haven’t done that inner work, but we desperately want someone to come in know us when we haven’t truly come to know ourself, this is a charade waiting to blow up.

Authintimacy Grid — Combinations of Authenticity and Intimacy

True magic and beauty comes from courageously acknowledging our fears as well as our gifts and being fully present in the process of creating a new relationship (purple quadrant).

Having co-created three multi-year relationships since my divorce, I can say that my heart has grown and my spirit expanded with the Authintimacy model. I learned (and now teach) how to have a whole different kind of experience with first dates on a consistent basis. Conversations that go deep, both of us savoring the experience. Two whole individuals, comfortable being themselves and sharing their thoughts, feelings, dreams, and confusion with each other. This level of relationship is deliciously rewarding and builds a strong bond of trust and understanding.

And. Authintimacy in a relationship can be challenging, as it requires both individuals to be open, honest, and vulnerable — and to be able to communicate effectively. It also requires both people to be willing to listen to and respect each other’s truths. Maintaining authintimacy in a relationship will require effort and attention over time, as both parties continue working on their understanding and appreciation of one another.

What’s been your experience? Which color do you seem to gravitate around? I’d love to hear your input, as The School For Love is developing programming along to expand this topic.

Inspired to learn more and grow around these ideas in your dating?

Then plug into our community and get our newest resource, no charge: The Top Four Online Dating Mistakes of Singles Over Forty (2023 Edition).

Paul Aaron Travis

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Paul Aaron Travis

Son, father, lover, learner, student... Paul teaches Spiritual Singles Over Forty to date with authintimacy instead of nonversation: