The 5 love languages
Are you familiar with the 5 love languages?
In our marital communication article, we encouraged you to purchase the book, “The 5 love languages” by Gary Chapman. I say again, this is an excellent book that will help your marriage and family greatly, as well as being fun. However, I have been asked to expound on the principles of this book and give some examples…I’ll do the best I can.
The five love languages identified by Dr. Chapman are:
- Quality Time
- Physical Touch
- Words of Affirmation
- Gift Giving
- Acts of Service
Now the premise is that everyone has a “Love tank” and we all have languages that say “love” to us. When that language is spoken to us by word or deed, it makes a deposit in our love tanks. The trick is to find out what our spouse’s love language is so that we can fill their love tanks and they can fill ours.
Let’s take them one at a time:
This happens to be my primary love language. In essence, Quality Time means that when you turn off the television, stop playing your video game and look me in the eye and talk, listen and hear me, that makes a deposit in my love tank. When you take the time out of your schedule to pay attention to my heart and what concerns me, that time to me says, “I love you”.
Of all the 5 love languages, this is the most self-explanatory. Some people feel like that you are saying I love you to them when you touch them physically. Not necessarily a sexual touch, maybe just holding hands, a touch to the face, a pat on the behind (which is legal for married couples, you know) or just a hug.
Words of Affirmation
I think we all need this. That happens to be my secondary love language. Many people need to hear, “You did a good job.” Wives want to hear, “The house looks very nice dear.” Husbands want to hear, “I appreciate all that you do for our family.” Women love to hear about how nice their hair looks or that dress looks great on you.” Men also want to hear, “Those pants are hot and make me hot.”
This is when a doesn’t feel loved when they don’t get a gift, flowers, perfume, cards, sports cars, money, etc. There are also some who just love to give gifts so it can work both ways.
Acts of Service
This is a big one that many people confess as their primary love language. This happens to be Ronnie’s #1…at the top of the list no doubt about it. This one asks that the house be clean, the clothes folded a certain way, the dishes washed and anything else I need to have done for me be done. Would you please pick up my clothes from the cleaners, will you run me some bath water, and is my dinner ready? His secondary is Physical Touch.
There you have them, try to guess what is your spouse’s primary and secondary. I think I didn’t mention the secondary is the one that is needed and wanted almost as much or as much as the primary.
I wanted to leave you with one example that ran this love language home to me as being valid. Remember, my primary is Quality Time and Ronnie’s Acts of Service.
A romantic rendezvous
One evening I wanted to do something special and romantic for Ronnie. I cooked a great dinner, spread the tablecloth on the living room floor and made a picnic table with candle light and a love letter in his plate.
When Ronnie came home from work, I opened the door with my negligee on. His eyes were as big as saucers. He went in and took a shower, came back and we enjoyed a wonderful romantic dinner with soft love music. Then we proceeded to the bedroom and made mad passionate love. I was so content that I had given Ronnie all of this (quality time).
Well, Ronnie said to me gently, “Jack, I know you are not going to leave all of those dirty dishes out there on the floor all night, are you?”(Acts of service)
I was flabbergasted! But I learned something from that. Most of us try to give to the other person what we need and not what they are asking for and need. We both got out of bed together and cleaned up the picnic and washed dishes together. Both of our love tanks were full. (Smile)
Take the 5 Love Languages Test
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