Real Talk Love Therapy: EP 6- Exploring The 5 Love Languages -- Featuring Vanessa Parish
So is anyone familiar with The 5 Love Languages?
For those of you that are not familiar, it is a relationship assessment quiz that is meant to help you further understand how to give and receive love from those around you.
And while the information is typically used in a romantic context, you can also use the information learned to further deepen your other interpersonal, non-romantic relationships as well.
So for this week's episode, we decided to invite my good friend Vanessa Parish onto the couch since she read the book as a teen to help with communication issues that she was having with her mother.
So how The 5 Love Languages work is that there are five key components to love that author, Gary Chapman, outlines in his New York Times best-selling book. The five love languages are:
These are people that like to receive love through physical actions like cuddling, kissing, and holding hands for example.
These are people that like to receive love through actions that involve spending personal time with others such as watching a movie together, playing games together, or going for walks for example.
Acts Of Service
These are the people that like to receive love through the actions that others do for them such as taking out the trash, cooking a meal, or getting the car washed for example.
Words Of Affirmation
These are people that like to receive love by hearing thoughtful words from their loved ones such as “ I love you,” “ I'm so proud of you,” and “you look beautiful” for example.
These are the people that like to receive love in the form of gifts such as buying them a coffee, buying them their favorite electronic, or getting them concert tickets for example.
Eli found out that he was very big on words of affirmation. He really likes it when his partner can take the time to notice what he's doing, and pay him a compliment about it.
However, despite using The 5 Love Languages in his last relationship to help him further understand his girlfriend, he still felt like they had a hard time communicating with each other because she wanted to receive love in a way that he doesn't like to give. For example, Eli hates giving/receiving gifts, whereas his girlfriend rated much higher for giving and receiving gifts.
Vanessa then highlighted for us that one of the biggest problems that couples will learn about after doing The 5 Love Languages is that people often give love in the way in which they like to be loved. But in order for The 5 Love Languages to truly enhance your interpersonal relationships, you would, ideally, need to share how you like to be loved with others, and be open to giving love in the way that others like to be loved.
And after this last relationship, Eli didn't feel like he had it in him to love someone who's primary love languages were different from his. In the future, he hopes to find someone that has a complementary love language to him.
Me and Vanessa, on the other hand, had quality time, acts of service, and words of affirmation rated very high on our results.
What was interesting about taking my love language quiz this time around is that the order of my love languages changed from when I took the quiz 6 months ago.
When I took the quiz back in December, my top rated love language was words of affirmation. It is from this difference that I started to wonder if your love language can evolve based on where you are at in life?
I noted how when I took the love language quiz the first time, it was right after I had just left BuzzFeed, and I hadn't launched Yes Queen yet. So words of affirmation would have meant a lot to me back then because I was at the beginning of my transitional period. But now 6 months later, with Yes Queen up and running, managing freelance gigs, and trying to prepare for grad school, it made a ton of sense to me as to why acts of service were important to me than words of affirmation. Even just the tiniest bit of help from others goes a long way with me now then it ever did before because I'm always working.
Vanessa, ultimately, let us know that loving someone that has a different love language than you doesn't have to mean the end of your relationship. She is currently in a 4-year relationship with her girlfriend Jade, who has receiving gifts as her primary love language.
She says that at the beginning of the relationship, prior to doing The 5 Love Languages, there was definitely a lot of tension between them because they were both giving love in the way that they like to receive love. So they had to have a conversation about it, but were able to come up with some pretty creative solutions on how to love each other in ways that they would each respond to effectively.
So what are your thoughts on The 5 Love Languages? Have you ever used them before, and how likely do you think they would be to help you enhance your relationship?