Do you know your love language? Do you know the love language of your spouse? What about each of your kids? Do you even know what a love language is?

I recently checked out The Five Love Languages from the library and found out the answers to all of these questions and it has really helped me to be more effective in giving each of my family members the love that they need. And in knowing myself better.

For example, I finally realized why I’m such a horrible gift receiver (besides the facts that I’m awkward at saying thank you and am always trying to determine the usefulness of the gift while people are expecting a response), it’s because the Receiving Gifts love language is last on my list of ways I feel loved. Gifts just don’t mean that much to me. Whew! I’m glad I was able to type that out loud.

The 5 Love Languages

  1. Words of Affirmation (Showing love through language and affirmation. For example, telling someone how much they are loved, appreciated, respected, etc. or thanking someone or being kind through language, etc.)
  2. Acts of Service (expressing love by doing something for someone, e.g., washing the dishes, making dinner, raking their yard, cleaning, etc.)
  3. Receiving Gifts (showing love through gifts, preferably thoughtful ones)
  4. Quality Time (showing love by spending quality time with someone and giving them your FULL attention)
  5. Physical Touch (showing love through physical touch, e.g., hugging someone or scratching their back or being intimate)

So why is knowing your love language and the love languages of those you love so important? Because it’s hard to communicate with a French person if you only speak Chinese.

If you are constantly doing Acts of Service for your spouse because that’s your love language but your spouse’s love language is Words of Affirmation, your spouse isn’t going to feel loved by your acts of service and you aren’t going to feel loved when your spouse constantly tells you how wonderful you are but never takes out the trash.

Knowing someone’s love language allows you to do two things:

  1. Show that person love in a way they understand and appreciate.
  2. Recognize when they are trying to show you love, even though it’s not in your love language.

After reading the book I took the quiz to discover the order of my love languages. Then I had my husband take the quiz to find out the order of his love languages. And then I had my kids each take the Online Children’s Quiz to find out the order of their love languages. And then I wrote everyone’s down, including my own, and put them into my phone so that I could look at them often.

And now I know that if I use Words of Affirmation, my two oldest kids feel loved because that’s high on their list. But for my youngest, Words of Affirmation is dead last, so that doesn’t work for her. She’d love a back scratch instead. And while I’ve been trying to show love through Acts of Service all these years (because it’s highest on my list), it’s close to last for everyone else in my family so they haven’t been feeling that love that I’ve been showing, which can be frustrating for everyone.

I’m so glad that I took the time to read The Five Love Languages. It has really opened my eyes to how my family has been communicating with each other. And I’m glad that we took the time to discuss it as a family so that we can all work a little better together, make sure that everyone feels loved and appreciated, and have more happiness in our home. Because happiness is awesome.

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