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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Book Review: The Five Love Languages

We began reading this book shortly after our honeymoon. Everything was going great until this quote in chapter 3 (pg 30-31):
Eventually, however, we all descend from the clouds and plant our feet on earth again. Our eyes are opened, and we see the warts of the other person. We recognize that some of his/her personality traits are actually irritating. Her behavior patterns are annoying. ... Those little traits we overlooked when we were in love now become huge mountains."
Not the best reading for a couple still very much in "euphoric love." But as we continued to read through this short book, it became powerful as we saw ourselves in the stories and ultimately identified our individual "love languages."

Gary Chapman uses stories from his many years of marriage counseling to drive home his point that marriage requires work, and that if we want a long lasting marriage we need to do what makes our spouse happy. He simplified the multitude of things that can make our spouses and ourselves happy into 5 phrases or love languages:
  • Quality Time
  • Words of Affirmation
  • Gifts
  • Acts of Service
  • Physical Touch
I would recommend this book to any couple (with the above caveat about newlyweds) and encourage you to dialogue, understand your love languages, and begin working to meet those languages!!

Finally, from the back cover:
He sends you flowers when what you really want is time to talk. She gives you a hug when what you really need is a home-cooked meal. The problem isn't your love-it's your love language!
Dr Chapman has expanded upon this best-seller and created a whole "series" of love language books. I would speculate that they are all similar ideas and we actually spent some time contemplating the love languages of our nuclear family, so maybe we can love them better too!

More information can be found by visiting their website.

PS My primary love language is Acts of Service and hers is Quality Time!

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