Here is a brief look at the five different love languages:
Words of Affirmation
Individuals who best express and receive love through words of affirmation believe that words hold a lot of value and like to hear specific comments showing that they are cared for. For example, if this is your language, hearing your partner say something like “you are amazing and I appreciate everything you do” can be the best way to make you feel validated.
Some people feel most loved and validated when they receive gifts. If this is your love language, a thoughtful or meaningful present can be the best way to make you feel loved.
Acts of Service
Some people feel most loved when their partner does something nice for them – an act of service. An act of service can come in many different forms. Maybe you feel loved when your partner notices that the gas in your car is almost empty, and fills it up for you.
If this is your love language, you require quality time and undivided attention to feel loved and appreciated. If this is you, a romantic night out, with no cell phones or distractions might be much better than jewelry.
Individuals who value physical touch believe that physical affection is what makes them feel the most loved. This isn’t just intimacy in the bedroom. For these individuals, kissing, hand-holding, hugging, and cuddling can all be ways that express love and deep affection.
So what happens when you enter into a relationship with a partner who does not share your love language(s)? Things get complicated. Recall that we generally treat our partner the way that we want to be treated, rather than the way that they want to be treated. So, simply becoming aware of your own love language and, more importantly, your partner’s love language, can be very beneficial. For example, if you communicate to your partner that you best receive love through words of affirmation and you learn that your partner best receives love through acts of service, you can each understand what you can do to express your love to the other in ways where both of you will feel loved and validated. However, just because you and your partner have differing love languages does not mean that you have to stop expressing love through your own language— even though we favor one or two specific love languages, we oftentimes appreciate traits from others! It is just important to be cognizant of your partner’s love language and make sure that you incorporate it into your actions. You and your partner will both appreciate the results!
Click here to find out more about love languages and what your specific love language is!