How well do you know your partner? Asking them certain questions can help you connect on a deeper level.

When is the last time you had a meaningful conversation with your partner?

Intimate conversations can help build trust and compassion in relationships, deepening your connection.

When you’re transparent enough in a relationship to share your thoughts and feelings, it can strengthen your bond.

Some experts say that engaging in “reciprocal self-disclosure” — revealing personal information in the same setting with your partner — can increase feelings of closeness.

If you’re feeling distant or just want to get to know your partner on a deeper level, taking the time to talk, actively listen, and build intimacy can make your relationship stronger.

Opening up to others isn’t always easy, though. That’s why asking questions offers both individuals the opportunity to feel seen and heard, and reduces the likelihood that the sharing feels one-sided.

What kinds of questions build intimacy?

Building emotional intimacy with your partner means delving beyond the simple “yes” and “no” transactional questions of our day-to-day lives, and establishing an understanding of:

  • what thoughts and events shaped their past
  • what ideas factor into their character today
  • what your partner presently feels they need
  • what values and goals make up their heart’s desire

To help build this understanding, you might want to ask more than just the typical “how are you?” and close-ended questions — instead, ask about their past, present, and future, their memories, ideas, and affinities.

When people hear the word intimate, they might presume it’s related to pillow talk. However, intimacy can refer to any acts that deepen and promote mutual validation in your relationship.

Emotional intimacy is when you can reveal your true self to your partner. It’s a feeling of trust and connection that helps keep your relationship going. Think of having a “no-filter” kind of authenticity, where someone sees all of you and accepts it.

According to 2020 research, emotional intimacy can not only contribute to overall satisfaction in your relationship, but it can also (for some) be more important than sexual intimacy.

The research suggests that in terms of relationship satisfaction, those who had low levels of emotional intimacy with their partner felt uncertain and dissatisfied with their relationship. Because of their relationship dissatisfaction, they were more likely to engage in infidelity.

You can carve out a date night or virtual session for you and your partner to sit down and take turns asking and answering each other’s questions.

Here are 40 deep questions to get you started:

  1. What were your first words as a child?
  2. What did you like the most about where you grew up? What did you like the least?
  3. Who was your childhood hero? Why?
  4. What or who has influenced your life decisions the most?
  5. How have you changed from when you were in high school?
  6. What did you dream about being when you grew up?
  7. What’s something that delights you in your everyday life?
  8. What did you think when you first saw me?
  9. What three traits of mine made you fall in love with me?
  10. What’s the first image that immediately comes to your mind when you think of me?
  11. What’s one thing in our relationship that used to bother you, but you’ve since grown to accept?
  12. What is something you did to impress me in the early days of our relationship?
  13. What’s one thing that used to irk you about yourself that you’ve learned to accept?
  14. What’s a word or phrase I use that you adore?
  15. What’s your most treasured possession?
  16. What’s something that’s missing in your life?
  17. What saying best describes our relationship?
  18. How have you changed in the last year? How have I changed?
  19. What’s the most surprising thing about love?
  20. Have your goals changed in life? How?
  21. What’s a recurring dream of yours?
  22. How do you compare yourself to your mother/father/caregiver?
  23. What’s your mission in life?
  24. What’s a piece of wisdom you’ve learned by observing the person you like least?
  25. What do you find exciting in your life right now?
  26. If you could have one magical power, what would it be?
  27. Which one of these objects reminds you most of me: An umbrella, light bulb, cell phone, loaf of bread, or pencil. Why?
  28. What’s one of your biggest worries about our future?
  29. Which color describes our intimate relationship?
  30. What word matches the color you picked?
  31. How do you think we can have more fun in our lives?
  32. What animal do I resemble?
  33. If you had to create a company name for our relationship, what would it be?
  34. How do you envision me 10 years from now?
  35. Who in your life is the most stressful? Why?
  36. What’s your love language?
  37. What goals do you have for our relationship?
  38. What are some unfulfilled things in your life right now?
  39. Has your outlook changed regarding our relationship? If yes, how?
  40. What did you do to pull out of the darkest time in your life?

Emotional intimacy in a relationship is important because it builds trust and keeps you satisfied with your bond.

Asking deep, open-ended questions can help both partners be seen and validated by each other. It allows you to share your thoughts and feelings in a safe space where you feel comfortable being your true self.

You can take your time asking and answering these intimate questions with your partner. You may find your relationship strengthens.

If you want to deepen your bond with friends and family, you can find 45 deep questions to ask them here.