What Is Your Love Language? | 10.11.2021

Have you ever felt unloved by your partner? Perhaps you both are simply speaking two different love languages.

There are several great relationship books. One I find extremely helpful when working with couple’s is The Five Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman. According to Chapman, the way we feel loved is different for everyone. This is how you feel the most loved and how our love tanks are filled. We have a primary and a secondary love language. He broke it down into five following basic love languages:

  • Acts of Service: These are doing something for your partner like emptying the dishwasher, doing laundry, cleaning the house, etc. You appreciate help more than anything.   
  • Physical Touch: This can be expressing your love by holding hands, a back rub or a touch on the arm. The type of touch varies based on the individual.
  • Words of Affirmation: This is when you notice and communicate something you like or appreciation about your partner. It can also be words of encouragement. For instance, if you notice that your partner vacuumed the living room, you might say, “Thank you so much for taking the time to vacuum the living room. I really appreciate it.” It helps your partner feel loved and appreciated.
  • Gifts: This is achieved by giving your mate a “special something.”  It can be as simple as a rose out of the garden, or a card from your local card shop. This is an “act of love” to your mate by taking the time to pick up and find the right gift, which shows to your mate your love. Often, less can be more.
  • Quality Time:  Some people feel loved by spending time together, whether they are walking, talking, eating or working out in the yard. It’s about being together without distractions like the television, computer or cell phone. 

In order to understand your own love language, ask yourself these questions: 

  1. How do I give and express love?
  2. What do I complain about the most? 
  3. What do I ask for most often?

Speaking in your partner’s love language probably won’t be natural for you or how you feel loved. Typically, we tend to give our own love language. For example, if your love language is physical touch, you will offer a lot of affection. However, that may not be your partner’s. Once couples figure out their primary love language, I have seen relationships transform. It seems so simple yet it can be extremely powerful.

Once you become aware of your love language and your partner’s, begin to “speak” their language, and see what happens. Check in with your partner and ask, “What can I do to help fill up your love tank?”

-Kristen D Boice M.A., LMFT, EMDR Trained

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