by Wally Johnston (c) 2013
What are the “romance languages?” All romance languages come from Vulgar (not naughty but common) Latin, including French, Italian, Spanish, and others. These languages are related through their use in the Roman Empire.
“Love languages” are different from romance languages. They are the various expressions of love related to our personality. Because we experience love in different ways, like different flavors, we respond to the gestures of love that fit us. My son loves ice cream. As a child his blue eyes would enlarge and light up in the presence of an ice cream cone. In order to keep ice cream in the house longer we made a discovery — he doesn’t like anything mocha. So we bought mocha flavored ice cream and it lived to see its shelf life. Each of us like a different flavor of love.
Gary Chapman wrote a book called *The 5 Love Languages. This New York Times bestseller says if we know a person’s primary love language, we can more appropriately express our love to them.
Here are some examples of love languages:
• Words of Affirmation – You feel most loved when complimented. You like the verbal “atta-boy/girl.” Saying, “You’re not so dumb after all” does not qualify here.
• Acts of Service –you feel loved when someone does something for you as long as it is meaningful to you. Making a list of exercises that will help your wife lose weight is not an act of service wives usually like.
• Physical Touch – You love being touched in loving, spontaneous ways by your partner. You like having your partner sit close to you. This probably doesn’t work well during an argument.
• Quality Time – Being together that is meaningful to you. Wives, most men do not see clothes shopping with you in the women’s apparel section meaningful time. Why do you think they have “husband chairs” in those stores?
• Gift Giving – Gifts of any size or price say, “I love you.” Gentlemen, giving your wife a new power tool does not usually work here.
I would encourage you and that significant other in your life to learn each other’s love languages. I have a quiz you can download here to discover those languages. This can make a world of a difference for your relationship and also make it possible for you to tell others you are bi-lingual!
Next time: A timely article about parenting.
*Another book that addresses this subject is Love Talk by Les & Leslie Parrott.