5 Love Languages
Do you know your love language? Is it:
Acts of Service
Words of Affirmation
How do you find out what your primary love language is? Take the quiz on the website to find out. http://www.5lovelanguages.com/
When I was younger, my primarily love language was Words of Affirmation. It wasn’t enough for a man to say “I love you”, I needed to know why. What is it about me that you love? I am the veteran of several broken relationships and one disastrous marriage. The common denominator in each of these relationships was the man’s ability to express his love for me in ways that nourished my soul. As a writer, words are meaningful and important to me. I have difficulty expressing my emotions verbally, but I am able to write my feelings with depth and richness. Words are, for me, tools to help me think, process information, develop ideas, express emotion and share myself. Take away my words and you take away my identity.
I took the quiz a couple of weeks ago and, guess what? My number one love language now is … Acts of Service. I am a single woman living alone in a big city. I can earn a living and keep a home, but I am not handy, nor am I very strong physically. I can drive but don’t have a car.
That’s why, what says “love” to me is, “let me help you with that”. Or “I’ll drive you to the store if you need to buy something big or heavy”. Or “I’ll come over and fix your xxx”.
Words are still very important to me. But, after three decades of loving men with pretty words but weak character, I have come to value ‘show me’ and ‘do it’ instead of ‘tell me why you love me.’
Dr. Gary Chapman, a Christian counselor and therapist, is the author of The Five Love Languages. In his many years of trying to help couples salvage their fractured marriages he came to understand that, while most of these men and women liked and respected each other, they did not feel loved; in fact, they felt drained. “I keep doing/saying xxx but my husband/wife does not respond” And so the idea of different love languages was born and developed over the years.
Are you single? I am. The principle applies to ALL relationships – with your parents, your children, your siblings, your friends. Look at the people in your life. Think about them. When you spend time together, what do you do? What makes them happy? Is it snuggling together while you watch a movie? Is it long conversations over coffee, just the two of you? Is it getting them the perfect gift for no reason at all? Is it when your kids come over and say, “OK Mom, we’re going to do all those jobs around the house you need done”. Or is it when a dear friend says, “I want you to know how much it meant to me when you helped me after my husband died. You are my rock and the nicest person I know.”
Dr. Chapman talks about our “love tank” being empty or full. How we express love to the people closest to us will either top up their love tank or deplete it. A car will not go far with an empty gas tank, will it?
Why not make the effort to discover and learn to ‘speak’ the love language of your spouse, child, parent or friend. Oprah was thrilled to discover and practice this – can you guess her main love language? – perhaps you will be, too.
Check out www5lovelanguages.com. Read the book. Understand and apply the principles and see every relationship in your life blossom and grow.
Oh boy, Vera. Now I am worried. I had better find out which of these I am doing vs what my loved ones would like me to do! Why, oh, why can’t we all figure this out? I was with my mother-in-law yesterday. I spent four hours driving, thinking I was doing something nice for her. But when I got back, I wasn’t sure I gave her what she needed. I tend to spend the time, bring the gifts, chatter positively but something was missing and I felt I hadn’t been thinking of her needs enough, despite spending the day with her. I have to give this much more time and thought. I will check out your links. I think I will gain more insights from them.
I wish I had known this sooner! I know some churches have couples read the book before they marry. There are important truths here. It’s never too late, so check it out, take the quiz, have your hubby take it, then think about the people you are in relationship with – learn how to love them in their own language. My sister applied this with her 2 boys – she said, I love both of them equally but I need to express my love for each one in his own language. (PS. Even Oprah jumped on this – Dr. Chapman was on her show and I see people on the subway reading the book). Wishing you fluency in the LL of your loved ones 🙂
I have added all this to my must-read list. We learn all the time, isn’t it amazing?