The Five Love Languages

by Carrie Pokrefke

About five years ago, someone encouraged me to read the book, “The Five Love Languages,” by Gary Chapman.  I didn’t think much about the book or the content of the book until I started reading it.  The book was a quick and easy read and even had examples of various couples to help paint the picture of the points the author was trying to make.

The five love languages are:

1)  Acts of Service
2)  Words of Affirmation
3)  Quality Time
4)  Physical Touch
5)  Receiving Gifts

But, what are “love languages?” They are the “languages” that you need to feel love.  For some people, in order to feel loved, they may need to hear words of affirmation from their partner.  However, if their partner is constantly giving them gifts, and not speaking any words of affirmation, then that individual will not feel loved.  Enter lots of conflict and misunderstanding, which can result in a very unhappy romantic relationship.  The book highlights each of the five love languages and has a quiz at the end so you can figure out what love language you need.

In reading the book, I picked up on what love language I “spoke.”  I was raised in a household where my parents were always encouraging to us and spoke lots of words of affirmations to me.  So, I naturally “speak” words of affirmation to those around me and that is one way I express love.  My parents were also doing acts of service for each other and for me, so that’s another love language that comes easily to me, too.

I don’t really think it is ironic that for me to feel loved, I need words of affirmation and also acts of service.  Receiving gifts to me is definitely NOT something I need to feel loved, probably because I feel like it is easy to go run to the store and put some money down to purchase a gift.  If someone took the time to run an errand for me or to send me some nice words, that would go farther than an expensive gift.

Love languages can even translate between parents and children, teenagers, for singles and at work (obviously, the languages aren’t the same for these situations as for people in romantic relationships).  Gary Chapman has written several other books with similar titles.  Think about what you like to “receive” as a reward when you have done a good job at work.  I think at work, I’m still a “words of affirmation” person, but my other language is “quality time.”  And if you have employees around you, it is good to figure out how they like to be rewarded.  I don’t have children, but I think about how my parents treated me and how important it was that they “spoke” what I needed to hear.  There is no doubt that I was loved unconditionally by both of them.

If you are curious to learn more, I encourage you to go check out the website

You can take a quiz and find out more about the Five Love Languages.  You can see all the various books Gary Chapman has written.

If you are in a funky spot in your romantic relationship (or any, relationship, really), this book is worth the few hours it takes to read it.  And, if you are in a good relationship and want to make it better (and who wouldn’t want a BETTER relationship??), it’s definitely worth the quick read.  The book gets two thumbs up from me!!