By Joy Lydia Mercedes
In one of my lady chat room dates, I was introduced to a very interesting topic. That was love languages. Intrigued, I went further and did my research about this particular topic. I landed on this book. And it drastically changed my view on relationships and so many things!
In the book, author Gary Chapman explains that human beings express (show) and experience (feel) love in 5 main ways:
Words of affirmation(Compliments, positive feedback)
Acts of service(Helping, running errands)
And physical touch.
So, while some of us feel loved when acts of service or devotion are performed for us, others prefer to experience love through quality time spent with loved ones. Out of the 5 different ways, Chapman explains that each individual has only one primary and one secondary way of experiencing love. Yes, the other 3 love languages may be welcome (who doesn’t love kind words (affirmation) and intimacy (physical touch)?), but it is only the primary and secondary love language that truly make an individual feel loved.
He therefore argues that in relationships, you shouldn’t use the love language that you like the most on your partner. Instead, you should use the love language that your loved one can receive. In other words, never assume that your partner receives love the same way that you do. We are all different. Find out what makes your partner feel loved, then do it.
Where we go wrong!
When I first started dating, I often gave my boyfriend little gifts. The fancy thing I liked to receive, candy, cookies, clothes. It’s funny how he often just tossed them away or would just say a little thank you and that was all. And I would be like the heck! How come that didn’t make him happy? It killed me inside! I, on the other hand, give me any gift, be it a mere pencil or cheap candy! And we shall be friends! As time went by, I got to realize, when I told him something good about himself his spirits jumped over the moon! He was so receptive to compliments. The more compliments I threw at him, the brighter he became (I often won myself dinners too because of these hihi). Lucky enough I got to discover the languages before anything went south!( Thank God).
Now that point is where most Ugandan and African couples go wrong. We spend so much time expressing love in our own languages and ignore that of the receiver. Many times men cry about how they gave girl X lots of money and she still ended up leaving him. For a man who is broke, has nothing. Or girls beat themselves out with house chores at a boys place and sometimes they do not notice. And most annoyingly get to dump them and move on with a girl who does not know how which direction to stand at while holding a broom! To cut the chase, let’s make it a point to understand your partners love language and the rest will be fireworks! Adios….