I was talking to therapist friend of mine about the guy I’m dating. I’m concerned that sometimes I’m not as warm as I should be in a relationship, and that my inability to express myself (my vulnerability) will get in the way of us moving forward together.
I started to list all of the things I think I’m doing wrong and right, when he stopped me and asked if I’ve ever heard of the book “The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Last”?In the book, Dr. Gary Chapman describes 5 primary languages of giving or receiving love as quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, or physical touch.
It was fairly easy for me to figure out how I receive love; time and words of affirmation. All the other stuff is nice here and there, but if you don’t show up for me or reaffirm us, I don’t feel secured or loved in the relationship.
He asked how I give love and I was pretty much clueless. Ummmm.. I think I do all of those things, but the question becomes; do I do enough of what my partner needs?
You may give love with gifts. You bought your partner some jewelry and yet they are disappointed? Maybe it’s because all they really needed was quality time. Maybe you feel like you do everything for your partner with daily acts of service, but what they really needed was a hug and some physical touch.
The way you give love may not be the way your partner receives love. If you don’t learn and communicate with one another about the other person’s needs, then you will never be enough, because there isn’t enough of what they actually need being given.
Do you know how you give and receive love?