Over drinks one night with my sister, we started reminiscing on past relationships. It started out as a playful trip down memory lane, with some extremely cringe-worthy memories of the guys that we had dated. When we started discussing the guys in our lives now, the conversation took a turn towards deeper realizations.
With tequila as our guide, we discussed the small pieces of doubt we each had that could possibly turn into a big problem if these guys stayed in our lives. That’s when my sister brought up a concept completely new to me. There is a theory by Gary Chapman, that there are 5 Love Languages that each person identifies with, and craves when in a relationship. Each person is unique, and we each value these “love languages” differently. In a healthy relationship, your partner would ideally speak your “love language”- and vice versa.
Full disclosure, I am not usually one to take love advice from others (especially not online sources of any kind), but I am also a journalist with morbid curiousity. Therefore, I proudly took Chapman’s quiz to find my strongest “love language.” I can’t say I was surprised by my results; being a very vocal person I need someone who can be upfront with me and say how they feel. However, on the same level I also value quality time and receiving small thoughtful gifts as a way to reaffirm how someone feels about me.
So basically, if you’re wondering how to win my heart, surprise me with a double espresso and tell me how wonderful you think I am while we cuddle watching Netflix.
Which Love Language do you value the most in a relationship?
This love language is all about the little touches of affirmation. A person who values physical touch craves hugs, holding hands, thoughtful touches on the arm, shoulder, or face- all ways to express excitement, concern, care, and love. Chapman explains that, “physical touch fosters a sense of security and belonging in any relationship.”
Any person who craves this type of love language values the undivided attention of his/her partner. There is something to be said for a guy who will listen to your stories without looking at his phone halfway through the conversation. If you are anything like me, I am an entertainer at heart, and love to tell stories/funny antecdotes. When someone is a reactive listener and makes me feel like I can tell them anything, I swear it makes my heart swell with happiness. Unsurprisngly, one of my biggest turn offs is a bad listener or someone who has zero curiousity about a funny story I want to share with them. Quality time love language people also value activites shared together.
Chapman describes this love language as, “don’t mistake this as materialism; the receiver of gifts thrives on the love, thoughtfulness, and effort behind the gift.” Any gesture that shows you that your partner was thinking of you will make you fall deeper in love with them. If a girl knows that your favorite food is barbeque, and she buys you guys tickets to a summer barbeque festival just for fun (extra points if she doesn’t even like barbeque but wants to go with you), then you have got a keeper for this love language. Gifts are visual affirmations of love and are treasured deeply by this person.
WORDS OF AFFIRMATION
Your love language is language; you crave those unsolicited compliments. You value a scenario like this one- you are stressed to the max at work, and your partner wraps you in his arms when you get home and tells you how much he admires your work ethic. You know how amazing you are, but every once in awhile it’s nice to know that your partner thinks so too. Chapman explains, “Hearing the words “I love you” are important, but hearing the reasons behind that love sends your spirits skyward.” A guy once told me out of the blue over breakfast one day, “I could listen to your laugh everyday for the rest of my life.” And that my friends was so simple and sweet that my heart melted a little that morning.
ACTS OF SERVICE
This love language is all about actions over words. Anything you do for your partner that makes life a little easier for them that day, will speak volumes to them. Chapman advises to be careful of how you show this type of love language, because “laziness, broken commitments, and making more work for them will tell speakers of this language that their feelings don’t matter.”
So what love language do you speak?