I was thinking back to the days my husband and I were dating and everything was amazing. We talked about all sorts of things as we learned about one another, we did things to show the other person that we cared and paid attention to what s/he had said about having a “favorite” something, was thoughtful, etc. Then you grow up, get married, and have a family. Some people are actually able to maintain this commitment to one another while others, like my husband and I, seem to just come to a common understanding that family comes first. We then put all of the love and commitment into the one little person that has been brought into our lives. As the years go by and another family member is added, your relationship is put on hold again. Then one day you find yourself sort of longing for that again and you aren’t sure where to find it because you’re not really sure when it was lost or how it was lost.
I’m not saying that my husband and I are having any marital problems but there is a bit of an emotional disconnect. I always go back to the book by Gary Chapman called 5 Love Languages. I don’t remember much from it but I do remember having “ah ha” moments many times while reading it. The foundation is that every individual has one or two of the 5 love languages. By learning what your love language is and being able to communicate that to your partner, you’ll find that you can change the way your relationship works. Some people are lucky enough to be intuitive enough or have the same love language so it always feels like you’re “in love”. Now the biggest part is that your partner will need to be supportive of your love language.
For example, my love languages are a mix of quality time and physical touch. I love spending time with my family and exploring new places. I love getting hugs and kisses. There is much more to these two love languages but you get the basic idea. When you can explain to your partner that these are what makes you feel loved, s/he should be able to respect that and try their best to meet your needs. Of course, you should do the same. If their love language is acts of service, maybe make a bigger attempt at tasking the trash out or walk the dogs WITHOUT being asked.
As I look through Gary Chapman’s website, I see that there’s a children’s version of the book now. The famous 5 are back. You may be thinking that kids might not have any other needs than just quality time and physical touch but you may be surprised by watching what your child does for you. Does s/he draw you pictures and give you little gifts like flowers, rocks, or insects? S/he might feel more loved by gifts that you give to him/her. I haven’t read the book yet but I’m assuming, based on what I have read in the adult version, that this might be similar. People tend to perform the love language that makes himself or herself feel most loved.
Anyway, I’m not here to promote a book but I wanted to remind myself (and maybe some others) to take a moment each day to show all of these important people how much you love them by doing it in a way that they will feel most loved.