For me, I define intimacy as my need to feel some type of emotional connection with another and have that returned. (It has nothing to do with sex) It has elements of sharing, caring, giving, receiving, trust and risk. It is the ability to communicate about the 1:1 relationship that goes on between people. It is intense and alot of work! There are two keys to intimacy: Self-disclosure and Vulnerability. Perhaps this is why there are several people who are just standing/or sitting :) back observing. "Gee, I don't knon if I want to share (self-disclose) this information because I don't know what is going to be done with it (trust) and I don't want to be vulnerable because I may get hurt!

Maybe that the illusion of intimacy can get you into trouble. Maybe that it's the only thing that makes the Internet work.
Seriously, matters of personal countertransferences and intimacy really are in that area of psychotherapy (and not generic group dynamics) which I wouldn't feel comfortable divulging on the net and which I wouldn't ask or encourage anyone else to do either
being as much human as anyone else, of course i am also given to imaginings of a rl nature. one imagines what people look like, doesn't one. . . . i am finding that instead of mutuality they are in fact but barriers, the social barriers one continually erects in rl. but being forced to forego given attributes, and forcing others to do the same... changes the very trust of communications. In fact, in my experience, they *invoke* intimacy.
I've dated people I first met online, and I have also forged longterm relationships with men and women who I have never met in person
As friends do, we became more (non-sexually) intimate, sharing feelings, dreams, fears...finding similarities and contrasts in our fairly dissimilar lives. I formed a "3-dimensional" picture of Robin in my mind, one that I trusted genuinely reflected her RL that I liked and admired.

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