Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Post - Athens, OH
The independent newspaper covering campus and community since 1911.
The Post

Honoring your partner's love language 

In 1992, Baptist minister Gary Chapman published his nonfiction book, "The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate." While the book was relatively successful, the idea didn't become widespread until the "The 5 Love Languages" quiz took the internet by storm.

Following the era of BuzzFeed quizzes on topics ranging from Hogwarts houses to Disney princesses, lovers headed to The 5 Love Languages quiz to determine what they wanted most out of relationships. 

Knowing what you most want from your partner is undoubtedly important, but learning how you can respect what others are looking for is also essential. Understanding your partner's needs doesn't have to stop at romantic relationships. Knowing the five love languages can benefit friendships and familial relationships, too. 

Acts of service 

Acts of service require doing helpful things for your partner. This can range from grandiose acts, such as changing their car tires, to simpler acts, like a massage after a long day. Those acts are intended to ease your partner's stress. Doing a chore so they do not have to worry about it later is an easy form of affection.

This love language often raises the "If they wanted to, they would" debate. This quote has been in comment sections on social media apps, suggesting that if your partner loved you enough to do something, they would do it rather than needing to be told. 

While putting in effort is a sign of genuine affection, it is necessary to communicate within relationships. Whether you have been together for a week or three years, detailing your expectations rather than waiting to see them take shape will greatly benefit the relationship's future.

Words of affirmation 

Sometimes, all a partner wants to hear are words of kindness, assurance and gratitude. Words of affirmation involve communicating to your partner why you love them. People with this love language often appreciate love letters, compliments, words of encouragement and specificity when it comes to praise. 

A useful tip for any expression of love is to practice spontaneity. Yes, a rehearsed speech on why you love your partner is beautiful and deserving is a nice thing to do, but do not let the little moments pass by. A small, direct compliment seemingly out of the blue will have your partner marveled each day. 

Receiving gifts 

For some, a gift is worth a thousand words. Valentine's Day is the perfect holiday for lovers who enjoy tangible displays of affection. Give your partner a thoughtful gift that is meaningful to their interests or relevant to your relationship. Let them know what they mean to you through objects, big or small. Keep an open ear whenever they talk about the things they like or want, and surprise them to show you care. 

Spontaneity is a great practice for strengthening relationships, but do not overlook the importance of precision. Be purposeful with the gifts you buy. Have a reason for each thing you place in the gift box. Sure, a cute teddy bear is a great gift, but why did you choose that teddy bear? Let your partner know. 

Quality time 

Quality time is more than time spent together. Quality time is intentional and meaningful. A partner with this love language doesn't just want to be in your presence, but they want to be basked in it. They want your undivided attention. Some think of a dinner date in a dimly lit restaurant, while others think of their living room couch at home. Either way, the location is less important than the time spent. 

The intention is all that is needed to honor this love language. Quality time can exist anywhere with anyone. All you have to do is be intentional about how this time is spent. Eye contact is an easy way to ensure your focus remains on your partner. It is easy to start to forget someone is there once you become comfortable in their presence, but quality time requires meaningful and purposeful engagement. 

Physical touch 

Far too often, this love language is associated solely with lust rather than affection and romance. However, physical touch is just as vital and beneficial as all other love languages. Physical touch refers to expressing closeness with your partner through physical contact. 

Sex should not be taboo when it comes to discussing relationships. So long as you practice consensual sexual safety, it can be a great way of expressing sentimentality. However, it is not the only way to utilize physical touch. Hand-holding, hugs, kisses and cuddling can be just as gratifying. The key to this love language is comfort. Ensure you and your partner are comfortable and actively listening to each other's preferences. 

Valentine's Day is often known as the pinnacle of romance. It is the one day you devote yourself entirely to your partner's wants and needs. However, this should not be the case. Every day is an opportunity to show how much you care about the people you love. 

Take the time to learn their love language. Remember to remain comfortable, intentional, spontaneous and communicative. Love is a practice that gets better with effort. Use Valentine's Day as a reminder of all the work it takes to show how much you care.


Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2016-2024 The Post, Athens OH