The history of love languages goes back 40 years. The love languages concept was created by Gary Chapman a renowned marriage counselor. After 20 years of helping married couples salvage their relationships, he realized that as people come in all shapes and sizes so does their personal choice of expressing love.
When I am working with my single clients looking for love, one of the most important questions I ask them is what is their love language. I am always surprised about how many people are unaware of this concept after all, the book has sold over 9 million copies and has been translated into 32 languages.
What I have found is that if one person’s love language is different than the other persons, it can potentially cause problems in their dating journey.
There are five love languages:
• Physical Affection: Some people feel the most loved if you GIVE THEM AFFECTION all the time. They always want you to hold their hand, hug them, kiss them, spoon them, give them massages, play with their hair, scratch their back, snuggle them on the couch or in bed, etc. Not sex. Affection.
• Words of Affirmation: Some people feel really loved if you SAY things to them like, “You are really smart. You are so funny. You are very sexy. I had a good time with you. You did a great job with that. I know that you can handle that challenge. I believe in you,” etc.
• Acts of Service: Some people feel really loved if you DO things for them: mow the lawn, do the dishes, make the bed, cook them dinner, clean the house, put gas in their car, iron their shirts, etc.
• Receiving Gifts: Some people feel really loved if you GIVE them something all the time – a book, a card, a CD, they want you to bring them back a souvenir if you’ve gone on a trip, or just any type of gift that says you were thinking of them.
• Quantity Time: Some people feel really loved if you SPEND A LOT OF TIME with them. This is not the same as “quality time. EVERYONE wants quality time, but “quantity time” people feel loved if they can spend as much time with you as possible. Given their choice, they would see you every night of the week and all weekend. They’ll say things like, “I need to run a bunch of errands today. Will you just come along with me?”
So now that you know what the five languages are, how do you figure out what the other person’s love language is?
1) Observe. If they are often praising you then words of affirmation could be their primary love language.
2) A second clue is what do they complain about most often. For example if they say we don’t spend anytime together then time could be their love language. Or if they say you don’t touch me unless I initiate it, their love language is physical touch. Saying “can we take a walk after dinner or go away for the weekend” means they are asking for quality time.
Now back to the love languages matching process, Of course the chances of having a successful relationship increase if both have the same love language. However they may have preferred ways of expressing them like one person wants words of encouragement and the person wants words of praise.
Most people equate love with a racing pulse cued into action by the mere thought of their object of affection. If you’ve ever been in love, you know that even though things usually start out on a can’t eat/can’t sleep high, those romantic feelings in love relationships can become difficult to maintain over time. Understanding the history of love languages can help your relationship last.
Can Couples overcome a love mismatch? When we are unaware of how our partner expresses love, we can start to feel neglected because he or she doesn’t communicate affection in our own primary love language.