According to Dr. Gary Chapman in his highly popular book The 5 Love Languages, you communicate with your lover with only five love languages. When you do the quiz, the results show the 5 in your particular order of importance. This is supposed to resolve all your communication issues so you can live happily ever after. But I believe it’s not so simple and that there is a Master Love language that is indeed running the show. Once you discover how your Master Love language rules your life, you will be able to attract your ultimate lover.
Your simple love languages
Most of us go through life never really understanding what our love languages are. I was one of these individuals. I only figured them out after my divorce. I had heard about the “5 Love Languages” years ago, but never really bothered to do the quiz.
If you’re curious, do it here.
Let me know what your love languages are in the My Life Crush group. We are having a lively discussion.
You will have discovered your 5 love languages organized to indicate your most important ones at the top. These are mine.
Acts of Service
Words of Affirmation
Acts of Service
“Can helping with homework be an expression of love? Absolutely! Anything you do to ease the burden of responsibilities weighing on an “Acts of Service” person will speak volumes. The words he or she most wants to hear: “Let me do that for you.” Laziness, broken commitments, and making more work for them tell speakers of this language their feelings don’t matter. When others serve you out of love (and not obligation), you feel truly valued and loved.”
Words of Affirmation
“Actions don’t always speak louder than words. If this is your love language, unsolicited compliments mean the world to you. Hearing the words, “I love you,” are important— hearing the reasons behind that love sends your spirits skyward. Insults can leave you shattered and are not easily forgotten. You thrive on hearing kind and encouraging words that build you up.”
“A person whose primary language is Physical Touch is, not surprisingly, very touchy. Hugs, pats on the back, and thoughtful touches on the arm—they can all be ways to show excitement, concern, care, and love. Physical presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect or abuse can be unforgivable and destructive. Appropriate and timely touches communicate warmth, safety, and love to you.”
Once I discovered my love languages, it was a bit of a revelation, but I wasn’t surprised by them. I was mildly aware that “acts of service” was important to me because that’s how I expressed my love. I would easily and quickly offer to do something to make my lover’s life easier. However, the second one was a mystery.
Words of Affirmation were tough for me to express. Primarily because I never heard any as a child. In fact, I heard words of criticism more often, and so I believe this confused my love language growth.
What I mean is, instead of using or hearing words of affirmation, I would shut this one down. Even if I heard compliments, I couldn’t “hear” them because I was hardwired to hear criticism and sarcasm. But more tragically, I would also dole out criticism and sarcasm to my partners and alas, to myself. Did I discover my Master Love Language?
You only know what you know
When I reflected on my lover’s languages, I discovered that for a while, I was picking partners who also didn’t or couldn’t use words of affirmation. And when one day, I landed on a lover that did say things like,” You’re so beautiful,” I remember being very overwhelmed by it. And once I was able to take it in, then everything shifted.
After that, all I found were lovers who knew how to speak words of affirmation. How did this happen? Was it the lover, or was it me who shifted the language?
Simple answer, it was me. I shifted and started realizing that I was ready to receive kind words of affirmation, rather than what I knew from what my parents modeled.
Physical touch was another complicated language for me. I didn’t receive enough physical affection as a child. This resulted in a very conscious dance I would do with my lovers. I would withhold physical affection as a form of control. Not just sex, but hugging and touching as well. I recognized this pattern from my mother. She grew up in a violent household, so for her, physical touch meant danger most of the time.
Over time, when I became conscious of this behavior, I realized that I was denying myself physical touch.
Complicated signals of love from childhood shape how we interpret love as adults.
How your Master Love Language rules your life
I wish life were that easy, and all we had to do is find a partner with matching love languages. Imagine a dating site that incorporated them. Hmm. Wheels are turning.
Imagine how easy it would be to find a job you loved if your boss did the test and you also matched or at least you understood their love language and what you had to do to make them feel secure in your working relationship. You would have them all figured out and you’d get that promotion in no time. But life isn’t that simple, is it?
Communication between individuals is complicated. Moods change from minute to minute. Some of us keep our frustrations bottled up and others lash out instantly when a perceived offense occurs. Some of us use passive-aggressive communication as the preferred mode of getting what we want, while others are straightforward and to the point.
The 5 Love languages shed a bright light on how we communicate in romantic relationships, but it doesn’t reveal the whole truth. There is a Master Love Language that is driving the others. That Master Love Language takes shape as we watched our parents communicate with each other and with us.
After much digging, I discovered that my Master Love languages were control, criticism, sarcasm, and withholding physical touch. Once I identified the influences of my childhood, I was able to switch around the languages to the positive influences of acts of service, words of affirmation, physical touch, etc.
To discover how your Master Love Language rules you life, first, do the 5 Love Languages quiz.
Then take a look at your top 3 and ask yourself if that love language is one that you practice?
Then ask yourself: What makes me feel safe and secure in a romantic relationship?
Do some digging around the past and your example of love language as a child from your parents or caregiver.
Write your findings in your journal and come over to the My Life Crush FB group and share for more insight.