Break Relationship Barriers: Learn Each Other’s Love Language

Unmet needs and feeling underappreciated can put a strain on the healthiest relationships. Frustrations and disappointment arise when it seems your partner doesn’t understand what you need, or when you’ve done everything you can to please them only to have your actions met with indifference.

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It may seem as if they’re speaking a different language -- and maybe they are. According to a marriage counsellor and author of the book “The 5 Love Languages,” people tend to display their love in the manner they wish to receive it. For example, if your partner shows their affection through compliments, they might expect the same treatment from you. S/he might not be able to appreciate other forms of endearment, like gifts or being touched.

Enhance your relationship by discovering and learning how to speak your partner’s love language:

  • Words of Affirmation. Those whose love language consists of words of affirmation display affection by saying things like, “I love you,” “You look beautiful tonight,” or “I really appreciate you doing this for me.” They value compliments and verbal displays of affection.

  • Acts of Service. Communicating love through acts of service means performing tasks or chores your spouse will appreciate, like doing the laundry, picking the kids up from school, or giving back rubs.

  • Receiving Gifts. Those whose primary love language is receiving gifts place significant value on the giving and receiving of tangible objects. Though perhaps misconstrued as materialistic, gifts, for them, are a thoughtful and loving gesture.

  • Quality Time. Those whose love language is quality time value the undivided attention their partner gives them. They highly appreciate spending time with their partner, whether it’s going on dates or simply conversing with each other.

  • Physical Touch. Physical touch is not limited to the bedroom. Hand holding, hugging, and positive physical contact validate feelings of security and affection.

Learning these five love languages and using them to communicate with your partner can help you understand each other better, especially if your relationship is struggling. However, this is only one step on your journey to healing. Underlying problems may exist, requiring you to expend more time and effort to figure out how to deal with them. The good news is you don’t have to do this alone; professional counsellors can help.

Seeking the guidance of a trained professional who can guide you through relationship and marriage counselling. Understand your partner more deeply and intimately. Schedule your appointment with Living Well by Design; call (780) 246-8100 or email Wendy Hart today.

Wendy Hart