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Learning Your Spouse's Love Language

Mar 4, 2008
Visiting a foreign country certainly has its obstacles, perhaps the greatest being the language barrier. In fact, if you want to communicate properly, it would be in your best interest to learn a few words before your trip to avoid confusion and misunderstanding with taxi drivers, hotel employees and restaurant waiters. Learning those new words may take some time, but will pay off on your visit.

In the same way, communication in marriage is a learned skill, and when mastered, will pay off in multiple ways.

Gary Chapman's book, "The Five Love Languages," suggests that each of us has our own language when it comes to giving and receiving love. The book teaches couples to love according to their partner's love language - which might just take a while to learn since the odds are very good that their spouse's primary language is completely different from their own!

Put on your detective hat and investigate which of the five following languages of love sounds most like the one your spouse speaks. Then start learning that language yourself and watch your marriage climb to a new level.

Quality Time - Does your husband complain that you never have enough time left in your day for him? Maybe he frequently notes how everyone else seems to come first. Quality Time may be what speaks love to him. Spend a predetermined amount of time each week to reconnect without distractions and focus solely on your marriage.

Words of Affirmation - The person whose love language is Words of Affirmation is seeking verbal expressions of your love and appreciation. She is also more sensitive to your tone and body language so pay attention not only to what you say but how you say it. If you're not comfortable telling your wife how much she means to you, practice makes perfect. She'll appreciate the effort.

Gifts - Don't worry...if your spouse's love language is Gifts, it doesn't mean you have to go broke! Pick up that CD or book he's been eying or even a simple greeting card. What counts is that you took the time to pick up something special just for him. A clue that his love language is Gifts: He seems to find great pleasure in giving to you!

Acts of Service - Does your wife enthusiastically express her gratitude when you do the dishes, sweep the floor, change the baby's diaper, or brush the snow from her car in the winter? These kind acts of service are likely what makes her feel loved. So grab a broom or the snow brush and start doing!

Physical Touch - This language isn't limited to romantic touch, although that certainly can be included. A hug, holding hands, a back rub, or a gentle touch on the shoulder speaks volumes to the man whose primary love language is Physical Touch.

When you first start speaking a foreign language, your speech will probably be broken and awkward. But the more you speak the words, the clearer they will become. It is the same when learning a new love language. Keep practicing even when it gets tough. If you do, it won't be long before you'll be able to communicate fluently in your spouse's language of love.
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