Seven levels of intimacy
Chris X
English (United Kingdom)
7 seven levels intimacy tools

This recovery tool was submitted by a member as part of a set of tools which may or may not be helpful for everyone.

I believe the original Seven Levels of Intimacy was based on the book of that title by Matthew Kelly, but I learnt about them from an SAA member.

Much of my addictive sexual behaviour arose from the combination of a deep need for intimacy, and a deep fear of intimacy. Learning and putting a label on how people negotiate levels of emotional intimacy helped me develop healthy alternatives to sex as a substitute for genuine intimacy. It also helps me as I learn consciously what I may not have learnt intuitively - how to negotiate genuine intimacy with myself and others without remaining superficial on the one hand, or rushing things and violating others' emotional boundaries on the other.

I'm not sure what the original seven levels were, but I remember the following:


  • how are you? fine
  • terrible weather, might clear up later


  • Brahms fourth is on the radio tonight
  • I bought this at ClothesCo


  • Brahms just repeats unimaginative motif
  • ClothesCo exploit the third world

Hopes and dreams

  • I wish I could write even one symphony though
  • I want to work for a third world charity


  • Playing Brahms really energises me though
  • I hate seeing newspapers making money out of tragic pictures

Faults, fears and failures

  • I gave up playing regularly because of my workaholism
  • I'm ashamed of my urges to take advantage of little children

Legitimate needs

  • I need the fellowship and emotional expression that I get from music
  • I need someone to share love with


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