This blog post was taken from portions of the Ultimate Intimacy Podcast #15 “How Knowing Your Spouses Love Language Can Improve Your Relationship” with Dear Young Married Couple. You can listen to the podcast in the link found at the end of the article.
There are so many different types of communication, and intimacy. Physical intimacy, emotional intimacy, and spiritual intimacy. There’s so many different ways for couples to connect. One of the most important ones that’s overlooked is the love language. Knowing your spouse’s love language affects all different types of intimacy.
In no particular order, the five Love Languages come from a book by Gary Chapman called “The Five Love languages.” If you haven’t heard of the five love languages, they are physical touch, words of affirmation, quality time, gifts, and acts of service.
Gary Chapman has a neat little assessment or quiz that you can take online HERE that’s been taken by over 50 million people. You can learn what your love language is, and you can also have your spouse take it so that you can figure out their love language, which is actually the more important role here, figuring out your spouse’s love language so you can intimately communicate with them in the way they love.
Everybody gravitates to a particular love language, or maybe two.
For instance, my particular love language is physical touch, and my top one. That’s how I give a lot of times, my love to my wife and that’s how I feel when she touches me. That’s how I feel most loved. But when we get our wires crosses, when my wife is speaking words of affirmation to me, but not touching me… and she’s thinking “I’m just loving him so much, let me tell you how amazing you are.” I think, well I don’t care, come hug me.
If we’re not aware of what particular language they are speaking to you, it can be missed in translation. That is the big takeaway here, it’s not only enough to know what your love language is, but you want to know what your spouses is, and then speak it to them regularly so that they feel your love and then hopefully it’s reciprocal to give you your language.
When we get married, it’s like your speaking a foreign language to each other. If I am speaking another language to my spouse, they can’t understand me if they don’t know that language. Sometimes we think that if my love language is physical touch, that’s what my wife’s love language is going to be because I can only understand that is what I need, and a lot of times we think ours is what theirs is. When we try to give that love that way, it doesn’t do anything for them, or mean anything to them.
What are the 5 love languages?
If your love language is physical touch, you feel loved when you receive physical signs of affection, which could include: kissing, holding hands, cuddling, and actual sex. Physical intimacy is all about the touch and can be incredibly affirming to you. Some people only feel deep affection and love when they are held, kissed, or touched.
Gifts is a very straightforward love language. You feel loved when your spouse buys you a thoughtful gift. Even if it is small. You feel loved when people give you “visual symbols of love,” as Chapman calls it. It’s not about the money that was spent, but the thoughtfulness behind the gift. If your love language is gifts, you appreciate the emotional benefits from receiving the gift.
If your love language is quality time, you feel the most adored when your spouse really wants to spend time with you. Not just anytime, but real quality time with no distractions. You love it when they really listen to you, give you eye contact, and are fully present. You might even love it when they plan a real thoughtful date and make it a meaningful night.
Acts of Service
If your love language is Acts of Service, you really value when your spouse does the little things and goes out of their way to serve you. Maybe it is tidying up the house, or washing your car. It could be making you a nice dinner, or just making your coffee in the morning for you. If you have kids at home, it could be watching the kids while you have alone time, or cleaning up after the kids so you don’t have to. Whatever it is, you love it when they do service for you.
Words of Affirmation
If your love language is words of affirmation as a love language, you value verbal acknowledgments of affection. That might include your spouse saying “I love you” frequently, receiving compliments often, receiving words of appreciation and verbal encouragement, and you probably love romantic texts throughout the day!
Why it’s so beneficial at the beginning of marriage to find out your spouses love language?
When we can learn and really figure out what our spouses main love language is, that can really create some great unity quick into marriage.
We can speak multiple love languages. We actually all speak all five love languages… it’s just that you usually have a primary and a secondary love language. If you were to take the assessment, you’ll actually find out what is your primary, secondary and in order. In certain seasons they might shift, just depending on the needs of that season. Dr. Chapman shared with us that sometimes, when you’re in the in the toddler season of life as parents, the acts of service could speak volumes, when maybe acts of service wouldn’t have been as important to you in a prior season.
Love languages shift with different seasons of life.
I felt like ours have shifted over time, in parenthood stage for sure. I feel like there are a lot of people who see their love language shift. Like for instance, if you have no time, you’re consistently bombarded with your work or even the kids… different seasons call for different things. So when a wife’s love language might be, let’s say quality time, but you know, they’re family is all together all the time because of Covid, but she feels so overloaded with all the burdens of life… and her husband comes in and cleans the kitchen and helps with the kids and says, “hey baby and go go get a massage.” She’s might feel extremely loved even that’s it an act of service taking over and cleaning and taking the weight off her shoulders. That’s acts of service. So particular circumstances can accentuate maybe one love language, that you wouldn’t have otherwise thought was the primary love language.
It is common for love languages to shift over the years. Most find they need something completely different then when first married or dating. My husband was really good at giving gifts, showing up with flowers all the time, buying the little presents. When we got married, that all stopped. So the first year of marriage was really hard for us because I was used to getting these little thoughtful gifts. By the end of our first year we figured out each others love language because of failing. We had to be very open and honest. I wanted that to continue after we got married because gifts is my love language. But my husband doesn’t understand it at all because he could care less about getting gifts. So here we were speaking a totally different language our first year of marriage… and then that shifted.
Click HERE to listen to the podcast and learn more about how knowing your spouses love language can improve your relationship! Also, check out all the great articles on the Ultimate Intimacy App.