When we try to put language to the feeling of love, as with many emotions, the human brain can struggle to transform the information from our emotional centres into rational language. Leaving us often left wanting for more words to express how we feel.
Luckily however words of affirmation are only one of the tools at our disposal when looking at the different love languages we each may possess.
Many people are now familiar with the 5 Love Languages, an approach that has been in circulation for 25 yrs. Understanding these love languages assists people to learn more about themselves and their loved ones to grow closer and improve connections. Through this model each of our love language preferences fall into these 5 categories, we all prefer to display and receive love in ways that are most meaningful to us.
Most commonly people find the love languages approach in the context of their intimate partnerships and romantic relationships. Without doubt it is powerful in these relationships with many testimonies are available on the improvements this understanding can make. What I find however is that we far less often hear about the great influence this theory can have within out parenting relationships.
We know children need to feel safe, loved and secure for the best mental health and behavioural outcomes, but how many of us know the language through which our children or teens prefer to receive our love? I have worked often with very loving and attentive parents who become exhausted and overwhelmed trying to communicate love to their teenagers through acts of service, only to find that purchasing them a watch from a dollar store makes more of an impact, or experience similar language gaps.
In less than 10 mins you can complete the free online quiz to learn your own preferences and then support your child or teen to complete their profile. Use this time to connect and discuss how you like to love and be loved, you may just find a really important need or strength that exists for your family.
Find out your love language https://www.5lovelanguages.com/quizzes/
Gary Chapman has gone on to author many books particularly on love languages in marriages, parenting, blending families and families with special needs. Please check out his website and books if you would like to learn more about any of these concepts.