I’ve been very familiar with the Five Love Languages for adults for years now. I can’t tell you how much it has helped in pinpointing issues between me and Scott. I was feeling a little behind in reading the children’s version but it turns out you probably can’t fully identify your child’s love language until 5 years old.
If you’re not familiar, the five love languages are words of affirmation, touch, quality time, acts of service and gifts. We all need love in all forms but we especially feel loved through one of these. We also tend to love other people in our own language. I’m primarily acts of service with words of affirmation as a secondary. Scott is touch, touch and more touch. As you can imagine, many times our languages don’t mix!
I was pretty sure Emma was quality time and words of affirmation secondary and Lexi was touch and words of affirmation. After reading the book, I’m more convinced that is the case. At least for now, because they can change.
I may spend a lot of time with Lexi and do a lot for her, even tell her I love her, but if I were to never hug her, she’d be devastated. Same for Emma. I can tell her, do things for her, buy stuff for her but until I sit beside her and give her undivided attention, she’s like an empty sponge. Her love bank is empty. I remember her writing in her journal in Kindergarten that the favorite thing I did as a mother for her was play Barbie’s with her. I think that’s part of the reason I’ve been so grateful to have stayed home with her. She’s usually ok as long as I’m nearby. It’s no fault of hers or mine, that’s just the way she’s wired. Lexi can be very upset at something, and a quick hug and kiss will sooth many anxieties. She loves you to scratch or rub her back and arms. She likes to hold your hand. She lives on hugs and kisses.
What I love about this book is it not only explains the languages and gives you ideas on how to spot it (two things I was pretty sure I knew how to do), it also gives you guidance on how this affects discipline, learning and even anger issues. Ever see just a mad kid? Oh yes, I have. The book suggests a parent could change the way they are expressing their love to them and a lot of that would change. Not all, but most anger issues are rooted in a lack of love. Well, let me rephrase, it’s not a lack of love but a lack of expressive it in the right way. Kids are wired so that their love banks also have to be filled in order to learn properly. The book gives you lots of suggestions and scenarios to help you understand how to wade through these tough issues.
I would go so far as to suggest this as a pre-requisite to parenting. As I knew about the love languages for lots of years, I was paying attention to how I expressed my love to the girls but I think this book gave me an extra insight to how to relate it to children and the damage it can do if we don’t.
Can’t recommend it enough! Check it out on Amazon!
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