Saturday, January 9, 2010


First, a big THANK YOU for all who commented on my last post with their wisdom for resolving conflict! I am so appreciative of that!

What is on my mind today is love languages. Some of you might be familiar with this, based on the book The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman (If you visit his site, you can take a quiz to see what your languages are!).

The basic concept is that there are certain ways we as individuals like to give and receive love. If someone is showing us love in our 'language,' then we get a sense of feeling loved by that person. A person may still love us, but if he is showing love in his language and not our language, we might feel unloved by that person, when in fact, he does love us.

So, the point is to find out which way you and your partner give and receive love, and try to show him love in the way he receives it, not in the way I like to give it. And vice versa - your partner should try to show you love in the way you receive it, not in the way he likes to give it.

Well, the J-man and I had another pre-marital counseling session, and the focus was on love languages. We had taken a love languages test months ago, when we were in our pre-covenant classes (a great 8 week course required for anyone getting married by one of our pastors). We both scored high on 'physical touch' and 'words of affirmation' - so that was good.

But the one difference we had was in 'quality time.' I scored very high on my need for quality time, and he scored much lower. And this makes sense. The J-man values his alone time and often is OK spending time with himself. I, on the other hand, while I need time by myself to regroup, I generally like to be around people and find it stimulating (most of the time!).

Now obviously, the point of a relationship is to relate to another person which can only be done by being with him/her. But I think this was enlightening for both of us. For me, it showed me to not take it personally if the J-man needs to be alone at times. It is just who he is.

On the other hand, the J-man was encouraged to be aware and sensitive to the fact that my needs are different, and that if I am feeling disconnected, then quality time is needed on the double.

And over time, the hope is that it will balance out - he will get used to spending more time together, and I will grow to be more comfortable with time he needs alone.

The give and take of a relationship. The dying to self - that was a point our pastor made. Sometimes, to love someone else, in his or her language, it's not always what is comfortable for us or what we would prefer. But if we love that person, we will get beyond ourselves. And, by doing that, we learn to grow as people. Which, really, is one of the points of marriage.

[p.s. - I just added Gary Chapman's blog to my blog list. They have some great relationship resources and articles! A great find! It's definitely worth a visit!]


  1. This is a great book! It really makes a huge difference when you know what your spouses love language is! Glad to see people are still finding it!

  2. Oh my, that is so true! My husband and I had some major problems with having completely opposite love languages at the beginning of our marriage, but thankfully we recognized that and now "get it"!

  3. I absolutely love this book! Even though I'm single, it's really helped me a lot in learning how to relate to other people. And of course that's why he's come out with the Love Languages for singles, children, high schoolers, etc. It definitely takes a portion of grace to be able to read the 5 love languages for couples and be able to extrapolate it out to a single person's life (you have to not get sad that you don't have a man in your life) :) So I would highly recommend one of his books for pretty much anyone out there. :)

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  5. That's really interesting. Often my husband and I spend time "together but doing different things", which satisfies my need to be near him and his need for some 'him' time... the hard part is for me to shut up! ;)