A few weeks ago, my friend Rosie blogged about the 5 Love Languages and this got me thinking (dangerous, I know). For those of you that don’t know, I will list the 5 Languages here, and I’ve embedded the link if you want more information. Basically, it says that people don’t always communicate the same, and to minimize misunderstandings, it helps if people can recognize the other languages in case that is what their partner is speaking. The 5 Languages are:
1. Words of Affirmation
2. Quality Time
3. Receiving Gifts
4. Acts of Service
5. Physical Touch
This really does help. For instance, my languages are more 1, 2, and 5. I need words of affirmation, encouragement, love. Most women do. We are vulnerable creatures and we need that positive reinforcement. I need quality time. My husband has an irregular work schedule, so quality time is important when he can’t always devote the time. And physical touch? I love to hold hands. I love for my husband to put his arm around me in public. Just the little touches that can say to me, “You’re special. I want the world to know you belong to me.”
Men (or at least MY husband – yours may be different) tend to speak more 3 and 4. I get little cards, flowers for no reason, and sometimes maybe he’ll buy me that book I’ve been wanting. These are all special and the definitely make me smile. This is the language that is easy to interpret, assuming the gifts are given with the appropriate attitude. Throwing a jewelry box on the vanity as a man walks by a woman will not earn him very many brownie points.
But 4 is the language my husband really speaks. And I have to constantly remind myself of that. He cuts the grass, takes out the garbage, gets the boys ready for school in the morning, and a myriad of other little things. To him these are Acts of Service he does out of love for me and our family. To me, these things are chores. To him, they are the deepest expression of how important he thinks we are.
So this weekend, I think I’ll try to speak HIS language. I’ll clean the house, wash the laundry, and I’ll even dust (which is a chore I detest above all others). I will scrub the bathroom fixtures and bleach the kitchen counter. I will perform Acts of Service to show HIM that I love him.
And then, I will look out the window and see him cutting grass (with a sinus infection), and it will warm my heart that he is doing that just for me.
Remember, we not only have to speak the Language of Love, but we have to hear it when it is spoken to us. Sometimes you hear the most in the silence.