Love languages are the way we express and receive love. There are many iterations of this concept, but the most famous and well known has five.
- Words of affirmation
- Quality Time
- Physical Touch
- Acts of Service
- Receiving gifts
This meme captures the five perfectly:
When my husband and I were newlyweds, we heard about this and took the quiz (it’s free and linked below). We discovered that our languages were basically opposite: his is physical touch and words of affirmation. Mine is quality time and my very least is physical touch.
Over the years, this has been important information to have. For example, if my husband loads the dishwasher, he really likes mt to acknowledge this fact; he wants me to literally say, “Thanks honey!” or some such thing. That, honestly, seems silly to me, because I could care less about words of affirmation. But I understand that me telling him thanks for loading the dishwasher is a way he feels loved, even if that’s not what makes me feel loved. So it’s important to know each other’s love languages and to show your partner love in the way they need.
Recently, I learned that the 5 love languages can also be applied to our kids. My youngest daughter was the easiest to figure out; heck, I didn’t really even need to give her the quiz to know her love language. She LOVES to give and receive gifts. She found out that the Saturday before Valentine’s Day was national mail carrier day, so she made our mail carrier a Valentine, put it in an envelope, and left it in our mailbox with a note that it was for her. She was crazy excited when we went to get the mail and the mail carrier had taken it. It was pretty sweet.
My middle son THOUGHT his was going to be physical touch (though the only person he wants to hug is me, so not sure why he thought that), but it turns out that he and I are basically identical. His highest was Quality Time and his lowest was physical touch. He just wants to hang out. His new favorite thing is to sit around and read in the same room as me. Peak parenting right there!
All that to say, here is the quiz. Once you click in, there are sections for adults, teenagers, and children. My reading child just filled it out himself (You read two statements and pick which one you want to hear more. For example, “Give me a hug!” or “You are terrific.”), and I read them to my non-reader. At the end, you get a breakdown of all 5 from most to least.
For example, this was my son’s:
As you can see, his #1 was quality time. Receiving gifts, words of affirmation, and acts of service were evenly split in second place. And then coming in very last was physical touch.
(I feel like this doesn’t have to be said, but we’re talking love languages here. Yes, sex is part of physical touch when you are looking at adult relationship love languages. But it’s just part of it. Hugs, holding hands, high fives, etc. are all included in physical touch. Especially when discussing our kids. Duh.)