04.03.13

LOVE LANGUAGES

sometimes i write a post when i shouldn’t. maybe it’s too personal. but my blog used to just be my diary, so it’s nice to just be able to be candid on here from time to time. and usually when i am, i find that a lot of you have awesome advice and can relate to the topic as well.

today we are talking about love languages. have you ever thought about what yours are? how do you show your love? i would definitely say i show mine in actions better than words. i love picking up little gifts for arian, or planning out dates and vacations. i like writing short love notes and leaving them on his desk. or making him dinner. it’s all about actions for me.

with arian, it’s definitely different. he’s a DUDE. he likes to surf, air drum, listen to hardcore music, and talks about motorcycles. while i consider him a creative person, he is definitely not planning out our vacations or unique dates. holidays and birthdays stress him out because he thinks gift giving is overwhelming. i remember all of this stuff used to bug me. i would look at my friend’s husbands who got their wives that coat she’d been wanting, or that bouquet of flowers for no reason, or planned a surprise tropical getaway… it made me feel like arian didn’t love me the same way. (but like someone reminded me today…”comparison is the thief of joy.”) we actually used to fight about it quite a bit. and ladies i am sure you know that if you fight about flowers it definitely takes the sparkle out of the moment when you actually do get them.

but then i started trying to think about it differently. analyzing how he DOES show his love. arian is the best listener. he always takes my side. he is affectionate and loving. he always kisses me goodbye. he always drives when we go somewhere. he makes me coffee every morning. there is a lot of ways that i just wasn’t seeing clearly. which i will fully admit that it’s bratty and traditional for me to think love means flowers and date planning. and once i let that go, i started noticing and appreciating the things he does do and not just feeling resentful for the things he wasn’t.

here are the 5 love languages…which of these are you doing? (girls can sometimes be all of them!)
• WORDS OF AFFIRMATION
• ACTS OF SERVICE
• RECEIVING GIFTS
• QUALITY TIME
• PHYSICAL TOUCH 

what form of love do you NEED from a partner? any deal breakers? for me, affection is important. i only tell you guys this because it was an eye opening experience for me to think about HOW we love our partners. in what ways. and maybe there are ways you’re just looking past. …xo -bri

(photo via the designlovefest instagram from our recent spain trip)

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  • 1. Ann  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    a friend told me about this a long time ago in college, and it actually helped me understand my relationship with my parents a lot better too. def. takes the guessing out of relationships!

  • 2. Meena  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    Oh great post! I actually took an online quiz once to get my love language scores. I found them to be pretty accurate. Understanding what communicative forms of love speak to me made me feel less crazy about how I react (or don’t react) to certain languages and people. http://www.5lovelanguages.com/

  • 3. Quinn Cooper  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    What a great post, Bri. These kinds of posts I’m sure are hard to write. Or maybe not hard to write but hard to post knowing that you are really putting yourself out there.
    My husband is similar to Arian, in that he will never plan a surprise vacation, doesn’t really give me flowers or gifts just because and is not the greatest listener.

    But he does give me a lot of attention, makes me tea every morning and sometimes breakfast in bed just because. He also always puts in effort for my birthday by getting me something that I really wanted, often something I didn’t even think he noticed I wanted.

    Thanks for writing this awesome post. After writing down the things that my husband does do for me, it actually makes me realize how good of husband he is (even though deep down I already know this). Its nice to remind yourself of what you actually have.
    xo Quinn
    Quinn Cooper Style

  • 4. bri  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    so true quinn!

  • 5. rachael  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    this is a good thing to think about!

  • 6. Kate  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    It’s so nice to hear that other people have relationship complaints sometimes! I’m the same as you, I get disappointed until I get things in perspective! My boyfriend is also the best listener, even though he’s not the best communicator all the time. Sometimes it annoys me when he’s accepting of people or things I can’t stand, but I have to remind myself that hey, he’s also super accepting of my neurotic tendencies (like the fact that I could talk about my cat all day long).
    The hard part for me is that we’re long distance, and because his job has to be in office and mine doesn’t I’m the one who does almost all the traveling. It’s really easy to get fed up with and feel like I’m putting more work into the relationship, but I try to remind myself that it’s not his fault. After all, he does plenty of stuff he doesn’t like for me (i.e. standing around at the Rose Bowl flea!)
    On the gift front…I suggested to my boyfriend the first time he had to buy me a birthday present that he browse my Pinterest. Ever since he’s learned to stalk my Pinterest boards and blog for ideas. It’s a win-win: I get an awesome gift, and he has an easy time finding out what I want!
    xo

  • 7. Amy  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    I really needed to read this, exactly RIGHT NOW. I’m relieved to hear that others are feeling like me! I too listen to my workmates’ tales of romantic surprise dates or proposals, amazing gifts, weekends away, candle-lit dinners out and generally incredibly romantic and attentive sounding experiences with their partners that I feel bereft of! I have been fixating a bit lately on this (and dropped more than a few hints). I agree there’s only so far you can take it before the poor guy probably decides to make a point of NOT doing it because he feels annoyed now (and it’s awfully humiliating being one of THOSE girls, and actually SAYING that you want to be given flowers – for goodness sake!). Sometimes i feel that because my guy doesn’t do any of these lovely things it means he mustn’t prioritise our relationship, doesn’t think of me much or love me enough (why else would it never occur to him to do lovely things to make me feel special), but perhaps it’s just that we are different, like you say. He DOES make me tea every morning, give me massages whenever I ask, show me affection in public, spoon me at night, read to me, remind me of the ‘bigger picture’ when i feel down…I think I need to write a list of positives and try focussing on those things instead of fixating on the lacks! Thanks for this conversation X

  • 8. Lexi  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Bri, I love these posts of yours, they are my favourites!

    I have definitely been in your boat as well. My love languages are giving/receiving gifts and words of affirmation. Big time!

    My boyfriend never buys me flowers and, like you, I used to get a little put out by that. He finds buying me gifts and flowers stressful, he’s just not sure how to choose something I like. Once he bought me carnations and I think that was when I really got okay with the idea that he doesn’t buy me flowers, haha.

    We actually talked about love languages once and he told me he tries to show me love by spending quality time when he is really busy. He also loves to give me a million kisses all over my face. When I find it annoying, he just says, “shh, let me affection you”. It’s sweet.

    I think actively trying to acknowledge the ways our partner shows us love is so important to a happy relationship. Hooray for love!

  • 9. Ginny Macdonald  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    For me it really is about happiness. Are you truly 100% percent happy with your partner. And is he appreciative of you. I also think it’s important to be listened to and also for them to compromise. I’m not really one for flowers and chocolates but when I receive a text saying “I would like to take you out on a date tomorrow night. For yes, say yes. For no, say hell no!” that makes me smile more than any box of candy. Lovely post and cute photo !

  • 10. Kory  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    Boy this is important! My boyfriend and I realized that we’re very different in this after we started telling each other “I love you”. I would like to say it all the time, but he never did. It was so incredibly frustrating, but I’ve realized the way he shows his affection is more in little actions and through physical touch. It’s hard to get past that sometimes when you first start dating someone, but when you learn about the love languages and realize how your partner is showing love (even though it may not be in the way you are used to) you can get past those fights quickly! :)

  • 11. Rachel  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    I think that relationships take time. While the beginning can be so exciting, it takes years to really know each other and know how to really love and be loved. And while the post-butterflies part of the relationship might not be the stuff of Nicholas sparks novels, it makes for a good life. It took me a long time to know what I wanted but man, do I know now that nothing makes me love my husband more than when he offers to help clean the house. I’m sort of embarrassed to be that woman but I guess I am.

  • 12. bri  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    rachel, so true! coming up on 4.5 years i still feel like i am learning about him. and us. and what we need from each other. and how to make it all work. as long as you can stick with each other and really LISTEN, bumps in the road aren’t scary. they’re just bumps.

  • 13. bri  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    amy, loved your comment.
    love reading all of them, actually!

  • 14. Tianna  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    What’s funny is I just received, the 5 love languages, in the mail today! And like someone mentioned above, realizing your live language along with others you have close relationships will only help you feel more loved.

    :)

  • 15. shayna  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 6:12 pm

    Sounds like ALL men: my husband included. But my hubby is also a good listener. A few years ago I told him (after 8 years together) I needed him be a little bit more romantic once and a while and he totally listened! Now he’ll bring me flowers home from the grocery store or plan little dates for us. Not all the time, but enough to make a difference. It nice when you’ve been together a long time to experiment and show affection in new ways :)

  • 16. Myrna  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    Bri, thank u so much for this post I thought my husband was the only one who doesn’t remember that dress I wanted at Jcrew or doesn’t surprise me with the little things like notes u know stuff like that. Well my hubby and I have been married going on 10 years in may. On our 4th year we almost split because I was constantly comparing him to my best friends husband who did do all those things I thought made a relationship – he would buy her that Banana Republic bag she liked leave her sweet messages in her lunch bag etc . So my hubby and I took a 3 month separation and while I was trying to figure things out it was in those 3months that I remembered all my husband did and does for me. We made up or shall I say I came back and he excepted me with open arms. It was then that I realized no he doesn’t do those things but he is loyal, respectful, makes me laugh, loves ME for me supports me and encourages me etc. So what if I have to show him EXACTLY what I want it doesn’t matter. Haha and once I accepted him for him I fell more deeply in love with him. And my best friend unfortunately got divorced after one yr. he was cheating on her and after he left it was then that she spilled the beans about the reality of her marriage. It was then that I learned things are not always what they seem.
    FYI – I love ur blog, style and talent! I hope to meet ya one day and pick your brain!!!

    XX-Myrna
    Mybeatboutique.blogspot.com

  • 17. Amy Jo  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    The Five Love Languages is such a great, insightful book. Great for learning communication and deepening our relationships with loved ones. Another great book that has given me a wealth of insight is Please Understand Me II. One of the BEST BOOKS I’ve read encouraging deep understanding and awareness in relationships. Cute picture of you two, Bri.

  • 18. Channing Fransz  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    Can I tell ya how HAPPY I am that you posted something about love languages?!?! My husband and I read a book together about love languages when we were dating and let me just say it was and STILL is a big part of our relationship. The thing though over these past 5 years of marriage we really try to make sure to spend more time fulfilling each others love languages. His are quality time and words of affirmation, I am words of affirmation and physical touch. He knows that I feel loved when he listens to me, encourages me and him just putting his hand on my back when we watch a movie (poor kid but hey he does it! ha!) I know that he likes it when I make a point to put my busy life aside and spend quality time with him and listen to him. We get selfish and have our ups and downs but in the end he is for sure worth it!

  • 19. Leanne  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    comparison is definitely the worst thing to ruin a relationship. i struggled with it a lot at the beginning of our relationship and now im getting better. my boyfriend showed his affection in the form of doing things such as driving when we go out and also getting me non-cliche gifts, which for some reason used to bug me, i wanted the red roses and the heart necklaces, instead he gave me multi coloured flowers and books.

    im starting to understand that it is his way of showing love and im appreciating it more

  • 20. Rosie  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    It took me a while to realize you can’t change the way someone shows their love. You just have to find the ways they do and love them. If he’s not a someone that plans out fancy dates you cant force it on them or it is no longer genuine. Once you have figured out eachothers love languages and accept them your relationship is golden.

  • 21. Melissa Diane  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    I am definetly acts of service with a touch of quality time. My husband is words of affirmation with a bit of physical touch.

    I too sometimes get frustrated because my husby doesn’t always show me love in ways I want (i.e.: putting away his laundry without me telling him a million times or having to ask him to do things multiple times rather than the first.) But since we HAVE talked about our love languages, he is much more aware! He actually made the bed one day as a surprise for when I got home, the other day he did the breakfast dishes before he left for work, and he washed my car for me a few days ago. For me it’s the little things. (Seems like mostly to do with cleaning!! haha) But for him, I made a little box and filled with with slips of paper that had things that I love about him on them. Each day he reads a new one! He absolutely LOVES it! And i just remind myself to compliment him on his hair (he spends quite a bit of time slicking it back just right like David Beckham!) and sending him little love poems through text, etc. Just small things, small words that make him feel loved and appreciated.

    I think talking about it with your partner and making them aware of it really really helps! (One of my girl friends was struggling with this with her husband, so I had them each take a piece of paper, and separately write down 5 ways that their spouse can show them that they love them. So for example- her’s had that they didn’t talk about finances after 6pm, while his said going to the gym with him a couple times a week so he wouldnt have to go alone. Then they each kept the papers in a spot that they would be reminded! They both said it really helped them!)

  • 22. Shawnee  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    I love you for posting this, Bri! My mom introduced me to the book – I love discovering these kind of things about myself. Although I’m not married or dating, I will definitely remember this for the future! So important to appreciate and recognize the language there, instead of comparing.

    What a sweet post:)

  • 23. kelsey  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    love languages are my favorite thing to look at and find out about others. :) thanks for sharing
    kw ladies in navy

  • 24. Amanda  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Yes! I am so glad you posted this! I was JUST thinking about this yesterday. I recently started dating someone and I’ve noticed that our Love Languages are different. I just shared this post with him and we had a really good conversation about it. Thank you!

  • 25. Alex  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    Thank goodness for these kinds of posts :] Yeah, I get on my boyfriend about not doing this or that while claiming that I “understand” he’s not good with words. But now I see it’s just not his “love language”. Sorry boyfriend, haha! And plus, I don’t “serve” him like he always does for me. I need to step it up. Lady, you have some good advice. Now, where was this post when someone awkwardly asked me if my boyfriend was my brother (“because [we] aren’t affectionate -_-)? *shudder*

  • 26. Jill Bencsits  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 10:59 pm

    This is a fantastic picture of the both of you but Bri you MAKE this photo!

  • 27. Bre'an  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 11:12 pm

    Thank you so much for posting this.
    Sometimes it’s hard for me to put those different languages into perspective, and this was certainly a great reminder. I think we forget, pushing aside what the other person needs, and we replace them with our wants. And that’s no way to have a good healthy relationship.

  • 28. Lynne  |  April 3rd, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    I love the book, have given it to a few friends – one said it transformed her marriage and made both her parents read it too. Have you done the Myers Briggs personality test? That’s a good way of understanding your partner too.

  • 29. Sarolta  |  April 4th, 2013 at 2:06 am

    What a beautiful post! Thank you so much for daring to get personal like this!
    My hubby and I are both touchy and love to be listened to by each other. So that part is easy. In the beginning however I was sad he hardly ever gets me flowers and little stuff like that. But when I looked at what he actually does I thought I’m the happiest girl in the world. He cooks for me, plans weekend getaways and is always there to encourage me when I’m feeling down. And when he does get me flowers from time to time I am over the moon now because I don’t expect it anymore.

  • 30. Debra  |  April 4th, 2013 at 2:10 am

    My husband isn’t known for his romance, he has his moments but it’s not a daily thing. I think once you’ve been together a while the big gestures loose their importance and little things mean so much more.

    There’s a poem by Wendy Cope called Flowers, that always reminds me of my husband. When we first got together he actually came to see me one day and told me he had nearly bought me flowers but for what ever reason he hadn’t got them. The poem ends…

    It made me smile and hug you then.
    Now I can only smile.
    But, look, the flowers you nearly bought
    have lasted all this while.

  • 31. Anes  |  April 4th, 2013 at 2:39 am

    Cadaqués sweeet place <3

  • 32. Annie  |  April 4th, 2013 at 3:47 am

    cute pic and a great quote. my boyf isn’t the flower buying & date planning kinda guy (although they do happen on the v.rare occasion) but he loves to cuddle and really I think that’s the deal breaker for me :)

  • 33. Anna  |  April 4th, 2013 at 3:59 am

    Great post, loved reading it! I think affection and trust are what is needed in every relationship, you need to show that you love each other, perhaps not in conventional ways like you said, but there needs to be some sort of gesture here and there!

    http://www.beblacknblue.blogspot.co.uk
    BLOGLOVIN’

  • 34. tigerheart  |  April 4th, 2013 at 4:15 am

    Quality time and physical touch definitely have to be at the top of my list – these become priceless when you have to do long distance for a while… Lovely post xx

    TIGERHEART

  • 35. Allison  |  April 4th, 2013 at 5:11 am

    this is a great post! comparison really is the thief of joy, love that quote! <3

  • 36. Al  |  April 4th, 2013 at 5:46 am

    I’m definitely more of an actions person. Gifts and notes are right up my alley. It’s the little things that show you really care. I’ve never been great at verbalizing my feelings though.

    Also, that pic is ridiculously adorable.

  • 37. Charity  |  April 4th, 2013 at 5:59 am

    This post is perfect. I love your honesty. I’m definitely a words of affirmation kind of person. But it does take a lot to realize that not everyone is… and just because you tell someone a million times how much they mean to you…bc that’s how you express yourself, doesn’t mean that they understand LOVE that way. I’m about to read the book. I’m looking forward to it

  • 38. Amanda  |  April 4th, 2013 at 6:53 am

    Really enjoyed this post- I can totally relate. I’m a creative type and I love finding fun dates spots and planning trips but I found my bf didn’t seem to put the same energy in his planning. I learned to not expect anything and that is when I really started to notice his own love language. He is not a flower guy, only valentines, but he is an amazing cook, very affectionate, he always makes me coffee, and always so encouraging– I was so lost in what we see in the movies and comparing friends bf’s that I was missing out on seeing all the little things he does everyday :)

  • 39. Candice  |  April 4th, 2013 at 7:32 am

    the online quiz is SO helpful. my husband (then fiance) and I did them together and it really was helpful in knowing how when there is a choice “I could either scratch Morgan’s back or tell him how much I love him” which to choose…because now I know that I need “words of affirmation” but he needs “physical touch”

    we also learned that it is natural to show love to others the way you want to receive it, like I love encouraging people and Morgan is very affectionate with me….but we both need the opposite

    :) pretty cool how we all work

  • 40. Sara  |  April 4th, 2013 at 7:38 am

    As my brilliant mother always says, “If you love someone, seek out their goodness.”

    I have a nasty tendency to seek out reasons why to NOT love my boyfriend. He doesn’t get my jokes sometimes, gets grumpy when he’s hungry & has questionable taste in music. No way could I love someone who isn’t my version of perfect, right?

    Wrong! I make a sincere effort to appreciate his goodness on a daily basis. He showers me with attention and affection, surprises me with sweet little gifts and never lets an opportunity pass to tell me how much he loves me. I get caught up in the idea of “sOuL mAtEs” and comparing my relationship to those around me, but where’s the fun in that? Love what ya got!

  • 41. Heather  |  April 4th, 2013 at 7:56 am

    Thanks! I needed to read this today, as I am going through this same thing. My boyfriend is much like yours, he just not the flowers and “just because gifts” type of guy either. I will start thinking and noticing more of the ways he actually does show his feelings for me.

  • 42. vv  |  April 4th, 2013 at 7:59 am

    thank you so much for opening up to share this. in this exceptional case, comparison is offering a bit of relief. definitely feeling parallel with you on this one, bri! ;)

    all the best to you two as you continue to grow & explore together.

  • 43. Lindsay Ware  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:02 am

    Love this! I can totally relate — thanks for sharing.

  • 44. Silvia Silva  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:02 am

    I am not the usual type of girl that loves flowers and stuff all the time. Well, I do love them, but my guy is not that type, and as I know him long time, I do not expect those things because they are not natural to us.
    For me is all about physical touch. A hug in the right moment, his arm around me on the street, little things that are truly special and personnal:)

  • 45. Morgan  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:07 am

    Have you read the Five Love Languages book? It’s so good! Last year I read the Five Love Languages for kids, too. It talks about how everyone is all five, but we have one predominant one, maybe two. They can also change over time. I’m words and physical touch and my husband is acts of service. Of course, we’re the exact opposite of how we naturally show love. I think couples are usually like that! ha! :)

  • 46. Ashley  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:11 am

    I absolutely adore this post, and you two. We all love differently, and that’s what makes the fabric of humanity so varied and beautiful. Thanks for sharing with us :)

  • 47. Holli Anne  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:24 am

    Oh, I’m such a big geek about my love languages. My now husband and I actually took the test way back when we were just friends. Turns out we aren’t too far. My top love language is quality time. I don’t need it ALL the time, but if we are on a date or busy doing something else, I like it to be just about me (so we have fought about him answering the phone on a date before). And my next two are physicial touch and words of affirmation (tied). His are physical touch and quality time next, so he really works at the words of affirmation for me, and I’m really open with him when I need feedback of some sort.

    I think it’s just really important to know your own love languages and each others and to be really mindful and open about things when you need something. Works for us anyway!

  • 48. Robin Plemmons  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:24 am

    Totally dealing with this right now too! It’s always been a “problem.” We have opposite languages. We’re intentionally going through the book together & have been reading it out loud in bed. It’s helping! (Thank God). He’s making my love tank tingle.

  • 49. steinmoney  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:24 am

    Aw.. I liked this.

  • 50. Alexandra Pettinato  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:28 am

    I feel the same way sometimes!

    Gift-giving stresses out my boy more than anything (but I kind of love it). But he definitely shows his love in a million other ways :) <3

  • 51. Hannah  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:31 am

    Wow! Thank you Bri for being so honest and sharing a bit of your personal relationship and insight with us. For years I was comparing my relationship with others and it definitely wasn’t healthy. I love these posts because It confirms that I’m not alone. So, thank you!

  • 52. Anouk  |  April 4th, 2013 at 8:44 am

    Amen ! All this is so true. I am quite impulsive so I always get upset when my boyfriend doesn’t show me his love…in the same way that I do. Words and physical touch are really important to me but he doesn’t really respond to that. He is more of an action man. I should remember more often to look at his ways of showing his love, because there is actually plenty. Silly me ! Thanks Bri !

  • 53. Sandy  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:17 am

    WOW– this is totally what I’m going through right now. I totally printed the PDF version and am going to do this w/ my boy tonight. I definitely appreciate the personal posts, too! Keep them coming.

  • 54. Vanessa  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:31 am

    My husband and I read that book right before we got married. We used to fight just like that, because we didn’t have the same ways of showing each other we loved each other. Now it makes so much more sense. My love languages are the same as you, Bri, and his is like Arian!

  • 55. stephanie marie  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:32 am

    I’ve had similar issues with my new husband… he’s like Arian– into surfing, running, basketball, art and design, quiet and stoic, showing his affection through tiny actions and not grand gestures or even words. He also has a weird Ayn Rand-ian view of love and need. I say, “Don’t you need me?” He says, “No. I need air and water. I want you. Isn’t that better?” Me: “Just say that you need me!!” So I get it. Appreciating your partner for their unique love language can be a challenge, but everyone meshes in unique ways! xoxo

  • 56. Dot  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:37 am

    My experience is a lot like yours–my husband & I used to fight all the time because he wasn’t a good gift giver or wasn’t being vocal enough with his affection. (I need a LOT of words of affirmation, whereas his love language is definitely acts of service). Now, for holidays, I just tell him what I want and email him a link. Then we’re both happy. And when I start to question if he loves me, I remember all the things he DOES for me, the love language he’s speaking–paying our taxes (I hate that stuff), changing the light bulbs in the kitchen, sweeping up dog hair. It’s great to know there are other couples out there who are mismatched & working with it!

  • 57. Heather Marie  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:38 am

    I recently read this book too, it totally changed the way I approach ALL relationships (romantic or otherwise).

    Dr. Gary Chapman was featured on OWN, you can find your own love language via a quick online quiz here: 5lovelanguages.com

  • 58. Tori  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:40 am

    Bri, this is so amazing! And I can’t believe how many people in the comments feel the same way. I have been in the EXACT same situation with my amazing boyfriend–it’s so bizarre and horrible, but I have definitely been the gf who picks fights about not getting random bouquets of flowers. Ugh. And I’m like you, too–random gifts, letters, etc. Anyway, like you said, it’s so important and freeing to realize that we all communicate love in different ways.

  • 59. RC  |  April 4th, 2013 at 9:55 am

    What a lovely post! Thank you for showing us your heart & your relationship follies and lessons. Its humbling but you’re such a great example of a healthy couple making love work.

    These are some of the reasons I don’t have a blog anymore; not only do we sound like we have the same husband but I think we think similar thoughs too! Haha! Thanks for writing my thoughts for me!

    Really though, I saw Gary Chapman speak many many years ago & he brought up some ways to use this information once you figure it out. He encouraged us to find out each of our loved ones LL & practice them! This way your not as concerned with what you’re good at but rather always thinking about how to encourage others and love them best. I’ve been married 15 years, and we’ve both often changed what love language we’d like to receive over the years. I’m never bored & l love him more every year. ~ R.

  • 60. Nat  |  April 4th, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Before I met my husband, I went through a relationship where we did not often see eye-to-eye on day-to-day things, yet when it came time for birthdays or special occasions, my boyfriend would shower me with gifts. I’ve since come to realize that those gifts are meaningless without the underlying mutual love, respect and affection that a relationship truly needs to survive long-term. Great post.

  • 61. Natalie / Half Asleep Studio  |  April 4th, 2013 at 10:40 am

    This is so interesting! It’s funny because my boyfriend does bring me flowers and little treats and plans birthday & Valentine’s Day surprises (and I have friends who are jealous of this), but I get so frustrated because he usually completely ignores me when I ask him to help me around the house, or says he’ll do something and never does (or waits until the last possible minute to do it, or only does it like 80% of the way like taking the garbage out but then leaving it by the door?) and it makes me feel like even though he LOVES me, he doesn’t necessarily RESPECT me all the time? Love and Respect are two different things, apparently, but I always though that you respected the people you loved! *sigh* BOYS!

  • 62. Chelsea  |  April 4th, 2013 at 11:14 am

    Thank you for this post Bri! Sometimes it’s hard to look past the lack of date planning and surprise gifts but you helped me to recognize how many ways (always driving, always kissing me goodnight) that my beau DOES show his love. I’m definitely a ‘words of affirmation/quality time’ girl but receiving gifts never hurt a girl.

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  • 63. Latrina  |  April 4th, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Lovely blog post, Bri! Relationships (and marriages!) are experienced completely different once one figures out which Love Language suits them best. I have been with my guy for almost 13 years now and we didn’t figure this out until LAST YEAR! What a transformation… wow.

  • 64. Sarah  |  April 4th, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    I like the sharing! My husband is very much the same way. He doesn’t really see why he should buy me flowers for valentines day, or plan the perfect date, it’s just not his style. But, he does make me coffee every morning (and stir in the splenda, which he thinks is disgusting), cook for me every night, and support me in every career decision I make. You can keep your cookie cutter dozen roses kind of guy, I (really, really) love my dude just the way he is!

  • 65. Megan  |  April 4th, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    You’ve just summed up the root to most relationship fights. Guys don’t always show it back the way you give it, but it always comes out in a personal way – you just have to be on the look for it and appreciate it when you do. So well put, Bri!

  • 66. Libby  |  April 4th, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Great post! And I completely agree with you…once you start looking at things from this perspective, it helps a lot. I am a lot like you – I love to spend time finding the perfect, thoughtful gift or planning a surprise party – but that kind of stuff stresses my husband out big time so it pretty much doesn’t happen. But I am okay with this because of the other way he shows me love. No matter how late we’ve stayed out the night before, he sets the alarm early on Sunday mornings so he can take our elderly dog out to pee. He always put spending time with me above everything else. And he listens! Thanks for posting this. It is a good reminder for me, and looks like for a lot of other people too :)

  • 67. Molly  |  April 4th, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    Not too personal at all! It’s something that everyone deals with at one time or another. I was actually looking at checking out the full book from the library this morning; there are 80 holds on Seattle’s 30 copies!

  • 68. Jill Bencsits  |  April 4th, 2013 at 2:33 pm

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  • 69. Shelby  |  April 4th, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    I just spent 30 minutes reading this post and all the comments. I’ve heard of love languages before but haven’t researched much about them. My boyfriend of 3 years and I are currently on a break to try to “reboot” our relationship – we’ve completely gotten in a rut. Now I’m realizing that most of our fights were because our love languages are different. He is acts of service 110%, always cooking me dinner and planning dates and bringing me flowers. He does those things more than any of my friends’ guys combined. I’m not like that – I’m much more about words of affirmation and quality time. He often feels that I don’t appreciate all the things he does for me, and I don’t think he tells me he loves me enough! During our “break”, it’s my goal to read the Love Languages book you all have mentioned before. Just the realizations that became clear to me by reading this brought so much clarity. Thank you, commenters and Bri!

  • 70. Heather  |  April 4th, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    Ahh….I can so see it. You are tactile, detailed and in admiration of the symbols and beautiful things of the world. All those small things combine into a pattern that is you, and how you choose to define the inside on the outside. A perfect necklace with meaning, a stone, flowers, yes, but not common red roses….you are a collector of things of meaning. Therefore you expect your mate to be the one with the clearest vision of you, the one who knows and senses you best and who must also instinctively know what your heart desires and what you need, a token, a thought, a beautiful love note and arms full of daisies, but he simply does not. :-) Yes, I know him too, but you are right, coffee and a smile is a close second. Amazing, we are all so different and then remarkably so much the same.

  • 71. Heather  |  April 4th, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    And, by “know him” I meant, my Wolfi is exactly the same :-)

  • 72. Simone  |  April 4th, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    Thanks Bri, your post really hit home today. I think I am still in that head space of ‘he knows my main love language is gift giving. Why is the thousand reminders I set on his phone not giving him the hint?!’ I am pausing right now to have a little soul search into what he does for me and it is true! He shows his love in the little everyday things! Affirmation, affection, suport, opening of doors, cutting the onion because he knows I cry, making me my morning coffee, giving me the window seat on the plane… Thank you for your heartfelt post!

    I think it is still important to have your love languages filled sometimes though…my sister and I get around the lack of romantic gifts from our partners by surprising each other with flowers! I think I cherish it just a little more because she understands how special that thought is, and that it will make me feel loved and cherished. And you are right, gifts are more special and appreciated if you don’t feel guilty about demanding them of someone!

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    i love this post! i’ve been thinking about love languages recently, and thought about reading a book on the topic. my husband and i sound similar to you, i am more of an actions person, but he is thoughtful and caring in an understated way.

    also love that quote, “comparison is the thief of joy.” these days of social media all over, i have to remind myself of this!

  • 76. Oleah  |  April 6th, 2013 at 12:11 am

    i think i’m probably a mix between words of affection & physical touch. i admit i’m a bit coy when i’m talking with a guy that i’m attracted to. i’m not afraid to compliment him or encourage him. i feel like wanting to uplift a person comes naturally for me. i also like to give a bit of physical contact, as in holding hands or lightly brushing against his arm or something. as for a guy, i think i need them to be genuine & honest with me. they also need to be understanding when i need space & comforting when i’m feeling down. & of course, respectfulness & manners when we’re with my family & friends is a must.

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  • 77. Amelia  |  April 6th, 2013 at 5:53 am

    thank you for this bri. it’s a nice reminder for me, arian reminds me alot of my boy & you remind me that there is no one right way to love

  • 78. Anathalia  |  April 7th, 2013 at 2:53 pm

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  • 82. Nicola  |  April 8th, 2013 at 11:58 pm

    Your man shows love exactly the way mine does. And yes we also used to fight about him not being romantic and buying flowers etc. I totally relate to your article! Thanks!

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