Difference Between Sex and Intimacy for the Prisoner’s Wife

Difference Between Sex and Intimacy for the Prisoner’s Wife


When people find out how long I have been married to someone incarcerated, one of the quickest questions I receive is “What about sex?” I respond “What about it?” It is completely inappropriate to inquire about another person’s sex life, which is why I ask the person why and how this is their business. However, the question of sex is a revealing look at the mentality of people when it comes to prison, relationships, sex and (the piece they don’t consider)…intimacy, as it often leads my inquisitor to respond with “I don’t see how you do it.” And, this is where I educate them.

We live in such a sexualized world. Sex permeates every aspect of our lives, from direct references to the slightest innuendo. Some say sex is the most important part of a relationship. If that were true, relationships separated by distance and time would be flaccid, but that is not the case. When you are in a relationship removed from sex, thoughts and urges wane.

Intimacy is not a function of the anatomy. It is a function of the heart and at the center of that heart is communication. Communication is the tool by which intimacy enters. In this type of relationship, you can’t use sex to fix an argument or pass the time, you have to communicate. Intimacy is the ability to connect on a level so deep it transcends physicality and understanding. Intimacy is the by-product of communicating with love.

I’m able to be with my husband because we have true intimacy. I hear his heartbeat from the inside. I read the sound of his voice. I know the wounds and hurts before the words are spoken. I see the weariness that hides behind his eyes. I possess powers no other woman has because he only communicates with me, as in he allows me to see him stripped-down naked without masks, presumptions, or ego. Sex is fleeting, a moment in time, or a washed-off action in jest. Intimacy is a fingerprint on the soul. His hand print is on my heart. This is how I do it. Education complete.[rft]

Do you have true intimacy with your partner?
What’s the difference between sex and intimacy for you?

  1. moiramoira05-06-2013

    man, this is IT!! i love the intamacy v and i share. i have had it only with him and when someone asks me how i do it? i tell them the life isnt easy but he makes it worth it. thanks for this…maybe it wll open someones eyes before they open their mouth!

  2. Linda CollinsLinda Collins05-06-2013

    Tomorrow is our 15th Anniversary. We met inside a prison. I’ve never been so loved. God is first in our marriage. Many think of love and sex… we think of love and commitment and we know that one day we will be together. We have our intimate moments with a touch, a look, a letter, a phone call. Just to see him walk in the visitation room sets my heart a a glow.

    • Barbara MaysonetBarbara Maysonet05-16-2013

      Andre and I are both over 50. I know I love him. His years in prison has changed him (over 17) I admit I worry about his possible ,but not probable, coming home (august). I have been the sole bread winner ,bill payer, home maker for a long time.I don’t think he will make it this time.I didn’t expressed these feeling to him cause I feel I am the last bit of sanity he was clinging too.It is true that I have long since ceased to think about sex. He is now in solitary confinement for defending himself from a 27 yr.old (he is 54). His letters are confusing and don’t make any sense, they just ramble on for 18 to 20 pages of old memories from childhood and threats of how he is going to to get even.I believe he has lost his mind.I knew he had mental issues from his lengthy sentence.. How do I let him know I still love him when he is no longer sane?The old feelings of closeness and intimacy are gone.

      • GheorgheGheorghe09-08-2014

        Just a ridiculous teatlmpe. I absolutely love it. You do great work and like the others posting here, I appreciate you sharing your work and advice. Hope you’re getting paid too!Above, you mention that the custom.js allows for updating Twitter account information. How do you edit it so it pulls the latest tweet from Twitter? Can seem to get that part to work

    • TinamarieTinamarie04-07-2015

      I just wanted to say I have been reading all of these little things on here, I found this webpage by accident. My fiancé and I have been together two years and our relationship was true and genuine but I was feeling in limbo. Then he was detained for immigration reasons. He has been detained only since January and we are fighting his deportation. It is a criminal offense that is holding him from 2009. I always felt in limbo with him because he didn’t really tell me about his past and I was going to leave him before the immigration thing happened. I decided to stick it out and try to help the best that I could. I took the bull by the horns and finally found a way to fight and hopefully come out on top. what I wanted to say is since all of this occurred, he has seen my dedication and my use of my time for him. He tells me all the time how much he is inlove with me and God blessed him to send a woman like me to him. He asked me to marry and I said yes!! I feel more bonded with him now than I ever did and I was reading about the intimacy part and what I find to be true is even though there is no sex right now, I feel closer to him than I ever have. and trust me our sex life was excellent. I feel like we have crossed into a zone of no return and my heart feels so much love for him, I would do anything for him at this point. I never thought I would feel like this about anyone. my situation is temporary but my feelings on this are real and I just wanted to support any women out there that have long term situations. I have to say, do not listen to negative people who would tear you down about your commitment, as a matter of fact people will tear you down, if not to your face, behind your back, the only thing you could do is stay positive and talk to as few people as possible that do not have your same situation. people don’t really understand, everyone is different, every case is different and unique, no one can understand what your particular situation is or why you chose to take it on. I say search your own heart and soul and if you know it is true, stay the course. Good Luck everyone.


  3. ALRLALRL05-07-2013

    I love your story, and I couldn’t agree with you more..I wrote my story under a different header here, maybe you can read it sometime. Lee and I are older and we are newly weds. marrying the 4th of March 2013. It would be great to be able to be physically close but that’s not the only kind of intimacy there is..Lee and I find intimacy when we talk on the phone, call each other our little pet names and I can feel his embrace for days following a visit. I can feel his presents here with me all the time because I choose to. There is so much more to loving someone than sex ,weather you are separated by prison walls or see each other daily on the outside. There is a closeness that true love brings that could never be duplicated in a bedroom…I think you realize that as you get older. Thank for sharing…good luck and God bless..Mrs Lee.

  4. TiffanyTiffany05-24-2013

    My boyfriend has been back in prison two months. I know thats nothing compared yo some othete but its everything to me. We met 4 daus after he was paroled aftet being in prison 6 years. I feel in love as so as he saw me. For me it took a little bit longer to decide what I felt for him was love. At the halfway house he was placed in took his tobacco and treated his like a prisoner he felt like he shpuld be free, so he left. He had two months left. He believed that ky street credit would apply to him, as longg as he didn’t get into more trouble. 10 months we spent, my family tortured us, downgraded him, and he still stayed with me. All we wanted was to go home. He had property and a trailer waiting for us, along with his kids, 18 & 17, that he had not seen in 6 almost 7 years. After ten month we finally got a ride him. We found his home destroyed by partyiers and the copper turn from the walls. We fixed ot up a bit. , 6 days after ee get here hos aunt call the police over and over again until the came and arrested him. Said we had an active meth lad. We didnt have electricity how were we suppost to run a meth lad come on. Well they take him away for a pv. Police said he would be out in 3 daus a week tops. Two months later I get my first letter. I saw him once. I dont mind no electricty I see it as living in a cabin in the woods. Its peaceful. but I spend alot of time alone crying, depending on his family and boys to take care of me. He said he has90 days. Which is may 30- 40 days left. Sex never mattered to me before so it dont bother me now but if he had years I dont know if I would wait. I dont know if im that stronge. I love him with all my heart but if he did something stupid and got more time I wouldnt stay. If I happened to be single when he got out then we would try again. Thank good he only has a few month. sorry for the misspelled words im typing on a crappy andriod its hard to control it.

  5. Wing ManWing Man06-10-2013

    I loved your story. I have to admit that having been incarcerated with a girlfriend waiting I always wondered what she really did to compensate for me not being there. Honestly, I thing my girl just worked herself to the point of exhaustion every day to keep her mind off it and have an excuse to not do anything about it. The level of intimacy and deep connection between the two people involved has to be cohesive. I remember many nights sitting on the phone after we talked some just listening to the other breathing. Every now and then I would hear her sniffle a bit, knowing she was crying. It always broke my heart and I even tried running her off a couple times but she always insisted it was her life and she knew what she was doing. She is one of a kind and I don’t know what I would do without her. I saw so many broken marriages and engagements when I was locked up, but most of the time the guys were selfish idiots and had it coming but there were a few I really felt sorry for. Then there are the ones you wish had someone because you knew they would be good to them and was all in all a pretty good person despite the obvious circumstances. I’ve been combing the internet for a few days figuring out how to best help my friend who is incarcerated. I was locked up with him for a few years in the same prison and we became friends by getting to know one another working in our craft shop. He has been locked up a long time now. Its been 25 years, since he was just 17. He is such a good person, I hate not being able to help him. He only has his father and grandmother that he corresponds with regularly. He has lost touch with all his old school friend and doesn’t like making new ones, hates it when they quit writing. I’ve never met anyone like him inside or out. I honestly don’t understand how he got into the situation that landed him in prison. I know it sounds weird but there is no one I would like to see happy and fulfilled than him. The comfort and love my girl gave me when I was in helped me feel like I was still human and still had a purpose. I want the same for him but I’m having a hard time finding someone that I feel would be “right” for him. If you have any ideas or words of advice I would really appreciate it….and that goes for anyone else who reads this. And, “THANK YOU” for all the strong, faithful and crazy women out there that stand by us.

  6. CruzianprincessCruzianprincess06-10-2013

    Thanks so much for this site. It is so good to see that you are not the only one out here going thru this . I have met a wonderful man of God who has been in jail now for 22 years … Every time I go home to the Virgin Islands to see him he gives me butterflies in my stomach . He is such Awesome man who loves God with all his heart and leads his home in the right path the sad thing is I don’t have him here with me . We have been dating now for 2 years and 2 months and will be getting married on July 7 , 2013 . He is up for parole in 2014 and I really hope he gets out , but you know what no matter what I would wait for this man . He always makes sure that I have read my bible and pray everyday and when he does call we pray on the phone together. God you are Awesome and I look forward to a long life with my husband to be …. Thank you all for your stories

  7. ecadystantonecadystanton06-18-2013

    I would like to have and give input as to how to manage this situation. I (my husband) has 4 years to go then what ever guidelines we must follow when he DOES come home. I need to know how to make this time more bearable for both of us.

  8. BrianneBrianne06-20-2013

    Lmfao!! Don’t u love how that’s always the first question. Not How are u coping how are u dealing. No.. They want to know how we deal with the sex thing.. Well I think you nailed it right on the head true intimacy makes it a little more bearable.. To me even though my husband has told me I’m allowed to do “what I want” the idea terrifies disgusts enrages and is unfathomable to me. He is my one he is my rock the only one who stood by me through thick n thin is the father of my child and my fantasy. No other man compares.. So I wait.. But don’t get it twisted we deal but its not frickin easy.. When my co workers or girl friends start talking about their sex lives a big part of me wants to slap them… Hard.. Lol but it is what it is

  9. Genevieve DavisGenevieve Davis06-21-2013

    I think that love can survive all obstacles. Relationship where you have to talk your time, communicate and take it slow have a better foundation and result in a closer bond. True love will conquer all!.

  10. BakaBoomQueenBakaBoomQueen07-02-2013

    AMazing story ~ I feel as if I had written it myself. Until I had this “opportunity” to learn how to be truly intimate with my significant other due to his prison term, I hadn’t a clue of what intimacy really was. He says the same. Our relationship has been redesigned and reshaped in such a positive way that despite the time apart and the struggles we both face during this time apart (5 1/2 years already), we have a relationship that is far superior than either of us ever dreamed. I wouldn’t change it for the world!

    BTW ~ he has managed to parent our daughter, who is eight from behind bars and done an exceptional job! I encourage the woman out there who have children to allow their father, even though behind bars or glass, the opportunity to be a parent. I believe that you will be amazed at the results…Remember consistency , quality time and positive reinforcement and encouraging, loving words (and lots of hugs) make for a happy family! MoMs ~ you can do this!

  11. KareBearKareBear07-04-2013

    Thank you everyone for sharing your experiences. I have been with my boyfriend for a little over 2 1/2 years, 3 years as friends. He makes me feel like I have never been loved before. The intimacy & friendship that we have is incredible. He is my best friend. All we have to do is say “Hey” as we answer the phone and we know immediately how the other one’s day is. Not many couples can say that.
    My friends ask me how I do it but I have to say that I feel my boyfriend and I are more fulfilled in all areas of our relationship than 90% of my friends. I have friends that tell me they don’t even talk to their other half as much as I talk to my boyfriend nor share intimate moments. As you all know phone calls are expensive so we don’t really spend enough time together.
    As for Intimacy and sex I think they go hand and hand. I think that intimacy is more than just making love but being lovers takes intimacy to another level. Though it takes a very creative mind My boyfriend and I share intimacy on all levels (without going into too much details).
    When we disagree our love making, through words of course, makes us feel one in heart. Something I have never felt with anyone else. I feel what we share is a deeper kind of passion and intimacy then what most couples that are together share. I can only hope it is as magical in person.
    I hope that is not to much information and that I do not offend anyone. If so please let me know and I will take down my post. I wanted to share that I think intimacy can be shared on every level even through the distance of our other half.

  12. Mrs. HenryMrs. Henry07-17-2013

    This is beautiful because I literally just shared this perspective with my friend a few days ago. My finace’ behind bars, hers not but they are practicing celibacy before tying the not. Never experiencing physical intimacy. The only solace I have been afforded above her is that my fiancé and I were HS sweethearts and were together 6 years. We’ve known one another 21 years and we have been “intimate” the entire time.., emotionally. We have always had a connection that needed no words. This incarceration would probably break us if not for the fact that we have always been communicators of the heart since day one.

    True love takes fleshly desires and holds them to a new standard. ;-)

  13. Mrs. BccfMrs. Bccf08-07-2013

    Thank you so much.

  14. ReeRee10-01-2013

    I came across your site.And i want to THANK YOU ALL I THOUGHT I WAS ALONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNE.

    • queen lalaqueen lala12-29-2013

      Yes me too

      • Ms.RoniiMs.Ronii01-14-2014

        There are also dozens of support groups on Facebook, where loved ones of the incarcerated can chat in real time and share stories, strength and support one another while trying to maintain a relationship with an inmate. Holding it Down, He’s My Rock and I love My Inmate are just a few.
        Good luck ladies!

  15. AshleyAshley06-07-2014

    I have to say I found your story to be amazing. This is exactly how I feel. My boyfriend and I were friends before he got incarcerated. Our love story didn’t start until shortly after. There has been no sex, just intimacy. It is amazing really. When we talk, even if just on the phone, I can instantly tell if something is wrong. In his letters, I hear his voice as if he were truly having a conversation with me. When I go for visits, the look in his eyes, stares deep in my soul and I know its love. When we are together or write each other, we are stripped completely naked. We know each others hopes, dreams, fears, insecurities, worries, flaws, and imperfections. I love that we share everything. He has been incarcerated for 7 months and has a few more to go. But I know that is nothing compared to a lifetime of being together. We are best friends, lovers, soulmates. We have no secrets, no lies. We have amazing communication and that is what it is all about. I would rather have intimacy than sex anyday. Intimacy is lasting and sex is not. Some people don’t understand what I am going through because they have never had this type of relationship. Being with someone incarcerated is very difficult because other than your partner, you feel like sometimes you have no one to talk to. But wow. I am so glad I came across this site. Glad someone is out there that I can relate too. Thank you for sharing your story.

  16. Great blog here! Also your web site loads up very fast!
    What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to
    your host? I wish my website loaded up as quickly as yours

  17. nicolenicole12-11-2014

    any sites to recommend for local support/sharing cost for me my man is federal inmate thanx

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Living your life when your partner is locked up means knowing what you can and can not control and making the most of it.

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