Is that even a valid question? Is there really a difference between intimacy and long-term?
To me, there is a difference, and there is no direct correlation between relationship time and intimacy.
This is the main reason two people living together for ten years can barely know each other, and two people who met a week ago can discover things about each other that their spouses don’t know.
Oh, sure, they know that their partner prefers dipping their fries in brown gravy instead of eating mashed potatoes with their meatloaf. I mean, after ten years, you pick up that kind of mental detritus.
But they don’t KNOW each other anymore.
If they ever did.
Long term romance is simply staying together.
It MAY mean growing together and trying new things, but it may not.
It may also mean getting complacent, stagnating, and even regressing, while hurting each other in hundreds of small ways every day.
Intimacy is getting to know each other better, every day.
Learning the ins and outs now and in the future, as things change. It’s become better aware of each other, and accepting of each others’ faults and loving each other for them. Finding new ways to love each other and show that love for each other every day.
Intimacy is sex and love and romance. It is sometimes consistency and habit, and it is sometimes exciting and surprising and entirely new.
Because it’s about learning each other, now and 1, 3, 5, 10, 20 years from now.
Even when you think you know each other, it’s about making sure, and having the amazing discussions and voicing your big ideas. It’s about listening when your partner voices their big ideas and opinions, too.
Because you want to know, not just because they won’t shut up until you do.