Are you familiar with the “Five Love Languages” quiz?
I’m not talking about the Romance languages like Spanish and French, here…;)
Actually, The Five Love Languages is a 1995 book by Gary Chapman. But almost 25 years later (WHAT, 1995 was 25 years ago??)…it’s still one of the most popular compatibility quizzes, and ways of looking at the question, “What is love?”
The “love languages” = a theory that’s really caught on in pop culture/psychology, the same way as the Myers-Briggs personality test (you know, the one that tells you whether you’re an introvert on extrovert, and lots of other good stuff).
I know some people think that these tests aren’t very scientific, or the results you get could apply to anyone. Kind of like horoscopes. 😉
But I personally think The Five Love Languages quiz is an amazing way to think of how every person is DIFFERENT when it comes to how they view love and romance, and what is most valuable to them to get from / give to their partner in a relationship. And if your love language is different from your partner’s, it can explain why one or both of you feel like your needs aren’t being met.
And with that in mind I think my FAVORITE thing about The Five Love Languages is that in some cases it’s such an easy FIX and explanation for relationship problems. If you feel like your partner isn’t putting in the effort, maybe they ARE putting in effort but it’s not in a way that you appreciate…But at least in that case, it’s just an issue of expectations not being ALIGNED, which is easy to fix…At least, I’d rather have that problem than a husband who just didn’t care.
Not that I will ever have that problem 😍!!
But if you and your partner are suffering from the “Love Languages Barrier” what can you do? Well, first things first, I’m going to give a quick rundown of the Five Love Languages if you don’t know them:
- Words of Affirmation – This could be complimenting your partner, listing traits you like about them, acknowledging their accomplishments, etc.
- Acts of Service – This isn’t just cooking and cleaning the house — it’s about cleaning your OWN messes, or taking charge of the day-to-day when your partner is sick. Doing the errands is more than just an action…it REPRESENTS stepping up!
- Receiving Gifts – This is the most misunderstood of the Love Languages, probably! People in this category get misjudged as “spoiled” or “shallow” for wanting gifts, but of course it’s more the thought behind a gift. These people would appreciate a little tchotchke from the Dollar Store, if it showed that their partner thought of them.
- Quality Time – Time spent in front of the TV watching Netflix doesn’t necessarily count, either! So people with this Love Language will really appreciate being your full attention. Sitting down to a meal and looking into each other’s eyes, or backpacking cross-country…they want to spend time with you with no distractions.
- Physical Touch – I don’t think this one needs an explanation. 😉 No, but seriously, some people enjoy everyday touch more than others…And if one person in a partnership is more touch-y and the other is less so, it can create a serious problem.
And you might think, “Wait a minute, I like all of these things! And I also give all of them to my partner! So what’s the point in taking this quiz?”
Hold up! You might think you won’t learn anything new about yourself/your partner/the relationship dynamic, but at least in my experience the quiz can really make you have an “AHA!” moment you didn’t expect.
For example, if your Love Language is Words of Affirmation and his is Acts of Service, then maybe WORDS mean more to you and ACTIONS mean more to him. (And again, there is no Love Language that is “better” than another.)
So maybe you feel like he doesn’t say “I love you” enough or compliment your new dress…BUT, he thinks he is showing that by getting the dress dry-cleaned without you asking. And maybe he feels disrespected when you leave the dishes in the sink for a couple days, but you feel like your words of gratitude to him are your way of showing your love and appreciation.
As said in Cool Hand Luke, “What we have here is a failure to communicate!”
And of course, taking the Five Love Languages quiz with your bae (perfect Valentine’s Day activity, right?? Lol) is the perfect opportunity to talk about what kinds of actions/words/whatever YOU need to feel loved and desired and cared about…And your sweetie can do the same, and you might learn something you never knew.
Of course, don’t turn this into a fight, duh! Like I said, some of the Love Languages tend to be misunderstood (“I guess you only care about gifts/sex/chores”), but really, the beautiful thing about the quiz is that every Love Language actually has a deeper underlying meaning and significance.
So please, really LISTEN to what your partner says about what is important to them and why. And really give your own quiz results a ponderin’, too!
I think it’s a super fun and valuable use of your time. By the way…if you’re wondering what my Love Language is or what Steve’s is, comment below with your GUESS. 😉
Or let me know YOUR Love Language and your partner’s!! Are they the same or different? Has it caused any problems?
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.
One last thing – I’ve been listening to these RELATIONSHIP podcasts from Chalene Johnson all month, and I highly recommend them. There’s one on the 5 Love Languages, too:
Improve Your Emotional Connection
5 Love Languages
Codependence and Autonomy in Healthy Relationships
Keeping Intimacy Alive
Keeping Intimacy Alive: Part 2
How to Help Someone You Love
I’m listening to about 2 per week…Please join me!
And have a very Happy Valentine’s Day!! 💖💖