I used to think he just didn’t care. Or that something was wrong with me. Like really – I would think, “What am I doing so wrong that I can’t feel loved in our marriage? Is he just not trying? How so soon after being married have we failed so fast?” Many times over the first few years of our marriage this came up. And boy was it disheartening. I thought we had made the wrong choice – that he wasn’t the one, even that I wasn’t deserving of love. Little did I know…we just still had a lot to learn!

Friend, can I ask…do you feel loved? Do you? LIKE…REALLY?!

In marriage feeling loved is important. We’ve talked extensively about how love is a choice. Feelings are fleeting…but…that doesn’t mean they aren’t important.

The first step to righting this confusion is knowing (or learning) HOW you need to be loved. One of the biggest pitfalls (that took entirely too long for us to discern) Andrew & I encountered during our first few years of marriage was that we didn’t necessarily love each other the way we NEEDED to be loved. We loved each other…but we learned we had different love languages. And Andrew was giving in his love language and I giving in mine and both falling short of what the other needed.
On this Valentine’s Day Eve we wanted to share something that might be a little light to some relationships. Let’s start at the beginning by indentifying the five love languages. If you haven’t heard of these, the five love languages are the general ways that every one of us might receive and give love. In every relationship (but especially with those in our immediate families of our spouse and children) if we want them to feel the love we are trying to communicate, we must express it in a way that they will receive.
 
The five love languages are words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, receiving gifts, and acts of service.
So what are these?

1. WORDS OF AFFIRMATION

Simply, using words to affirm other people. For those whose primary love language is words of affirmation language, hearing “I love you” and other compliments are what they value the most. On the flip side, negative or insulting comments HURT deep — and won’t be easily forgiven.

[Note: This is Andrew’s primary love language and consequently an area I LEAST relate to!]

2. QUALITY TIME

Quality time is all about giving the person your undivided attention.  People who value quality time are usually feelers where spending true uninterrupted time will make them feel comforted and valued. Distractions, postponed time together, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful.

3. RECEIVING GIFTS

For some people they feel most loved when they receive tangible gifts. This doesn’t necessarily mean the person is materialistic or needs to be lavished with expensive things but a thoughtful present goes a long way to making them feel appreciated.

4. ACTS OF SERVICE

For people whose love language is acts of service – actions are key. These people want others to recognize that they struggle and desire for help in any way possible. Lending a hand or just doing sweet unexpected things for them. People who exhibit this trait don’t do well with broken promises or in situations where it seems like more work was actually created for them and see not being appreciated as not being valued.
[P.S. This is my (Tianna’s) love language! I think this is why I’m such a giver and end up doing everything myself. It’s a lot easier to just get something done then have my feelings hurt because I didn’t get helped in the EXACT way I needed.]

5. PHYSICAL TOUCH

These people crave physical connections. Handholding, kissing, snuggling up, any type of re-affirming physical contact is greatly appreciated. A person who speaks the language of physical touch isn’t necessarily an over-the-top PDAer, but making sure there is a closeness established affirms them. Of course for these people any type of physical abuse is a huge NO no.

NOTE: Women. Ha – I know you are probably thinking – isn’t every guy drawn by physical touch?! We will talk about this a bit more iin-depthduring subsequent blogs but sex and physical touch are NOT the same thing. While yes for just about every male sexual intimacy is super important to the marriage don’t just assume that physical touch is a primarily love language. Here we are more talking about every day common affection.

Now that you know what they are, find out how you love and how you need to be loved!

Take the quiz here:

The Five Love Languages Quiz

Know that we’ve talked about what these love languages are our follow up blog posts will talk about what it PRACTICALLY looks like to love your spouse in their love language.

Stay Tuned!

Love,

Andrew & Tianna

 

Sources: She Knows.com

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