Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Love Languages

Years ago, I took a test to find out what my love languages were (http://www.5lovelanguages.com/). I don't totally remember where all of them fell, but I remember my top one and my bottom one. My top one was Acts of Service. This was obvious to me and I didn't need to take a test to tell me that I like to be a team with my husband. I like him to help me with things around the house and things with our child...we only had 1 at the time. 

The bottom one was physical touch. The other ladies in the Mom's class that I was a part of were shocked. Not only was it at the bottom...but it got a big ol' fat ZERO! It wasn't that I did not like physical touch, which was their interpretation, it just wasn't my love language. I felt like the test was rigged against me!! If you ask me a question like, do I like my husband to hold my hand or do I like my husband to help with the dishes...of course I am going to put help with the dishes!!! Holding hands isn't going to get the dishes done by either of us! But if we do the dishes together, then there is plenty of time for more then just holding hands!! 

The other ladies made it their goal that they were going to help me change my love language and make me more comfortable with physical touch by giving me a hug every time they saw me, I mean, my poor husband! I must never allow him to touch me, right? This is where I roll my eyes. If only I would have been bold enough to say, "Trust me ladies, my husband is not complaining when it comes to the bedroom!" But I was young and didn't think it was appropriate to talk about such things at church! And doesn't that defeat the whole purpose of the Love Languages? You are supposed to figure out what they are and how to communicate with your spouse through that...not change them to make someone else happy!

Learning about the five languages has definitely helped me in my marriage, my parenting, and in other relationships too. If you know what someone's love language is, you can love them in their own language and improve your relationship with them. Or if I am having difficulties in a relationship, I can almost always contribute it to that we are speaking a completely different love language.

There are times, though, when you can figure out someone's love language and try to love on them in that way...and it still doesn't work. Some relationships just have a complete disconnect no matter how much you love them or how much you try.

Today, I decided to take the test again. I was curious if my love languages have changed over the years. This was the result: Acts of Service (11), Quality Time (9), Physical Touch (5), Words of Affirmation (4), Receiving Gifts (1). So Acts of Service is still at the top, which again, doesn't surprise me. Quality time doesn't surprise me either, I feel loved when people spend their time with me. Physical Touch has moved up!!! I think part of this was because it got matched up with questions about receiving gifts. I also think that with now having 4 children, there is not as much daily physical contact...therefor it's appreciated a bit more. And I do love my honey's massages! I'm actually surprised that Words of Affirmation is as high as it is since usually it makes me uncomfortable, but I do like it when Mr. M says he is proud of me or when someone thanks me for doing something for them, so I guess it makes sense. The bottom one this time around is Receiving Gifts, and the only thing that surprised me about this one was that it got anything! Lol. I'm not big on gifts at all! I'd rather not get gifts for my birthday or Christmas or any other holidays for that matter. I would much rather you spent time with me then buy me a gift. So some things have shifted around, some remain the same. We grow and change and love changes us too!

The one thing that really struck me about my top 2 love languages, Acts of Service and Quality Time, is that my husband can not do either of these when he is away with the military. He can't give me Physical Touch either. So my top 3 are totally impossible for him. NOW I say, my poor husband! It's really amazing that we have such a wonderful marriage after 17 years of him being in the military. It would be much easier for him if my love languages were Words of Affirmation or Receiving Gifts...but they just aren't. 

So how does a marriage not only survive, but thrive, even when your love languages aren't being met? The answer is simple for me...God. God is the language of love!! No one can love me like Him.


Mrs. H said...

When Gary left the first time, we talked with Dane to get wisdom and advice and one thing we discussed was love languages! Mine is for sure acts of service. Dane said, is that going to be hard for you since he'll be away? I didn't think so at the time, and my feelings have remained the same; to me, his commitment to the Navy IS an act of service to me, protecting me and our families, providing financially for us, and his letters and notes home are all like an act of love towards me! His highest on the spectrum was words of affirmation ... now, this I can do from afar!!!

Mrs. H said...

but doesn't every blogger love words of affirmation? :) thanks for posting about this. Most especially fun to see how it evolved for you with kids joining the circle!