My latest column, 5 love languages for kids: love your child the way they need to be loved, was inspired by a book I had just recently read, entitled, The 5 Love Languages. This particular book is geared towards couples trying to show love or feel loved from their spouse or significant other. In it, the authors highlight 5 love languages:
1. Words of affirmation
2. Acts of service
3. Receiving gifts
4. Quality time
5. Physical touch
According to the authors’ new book, The 5 Love Languages of Children, these also apply to children.
I have been doing my best to love my children in the way they need to be loved. By carefully paying attention to their cues, I believe I have determined the primary love languages of my 4 older children.
Anderson: Quality Time
If I take even 10 minutes a day to go jump on the trampoline, play soccer or draw pictures with him, he is good to go for the day.
Aspen: Acts of service
After reading a Mother’s Day book she brought home from school, saying “I feel loved when my mom makes my bed,” I began to pay more attention to her love language. I found that when I would take time to straighten up her room, fix her hair –I even went as far ad to try cutting her hair in an A-line, with no formal training … which, by the way, didn’t turn out all that bad–she felt loved, and our relationship improved.
Ace: Physical Touch
If anyone knows this dude, they know that he is a “huggy” guy. Not only does he love hugs and kisses, but when he talks to you, he has to be in close proximity and he usually has his hand on your arm while he is doing it. He is the child who is always sitting on his primary teacher’s lap … bless their souls.
This has been a challenge for me, and believe me, I am still working on it. I am determined to do better.
Aussie: Words of affirmation
This little guy is constantly telling me that I’m “the best mom ever!” He also brightens up when I tell him he has done a good job. Another huge clue that I have found is that he is my “over-explainer.” Whenever he makes a mistake, he has to have an explanation as to why he did it. When I interject, and say “It’s OK. I’m not mad,” he lights up. All he needs to know is that he’s OK, and to hear that we love him.
Azure: Still figuring it out. Crossing my fingers for quality time
I really have learned so much about my children and about myself, since I have made this discovery. I still do my best to give them all time, physical touch, gifts … all of the other ways of showing love, but I do make sure that I cater to their individual love languages. I never want my kids to say, “My mom didn’t love me because she never________.” I want them to know for absolute certainty that their mom loves them.
Photo Credit : Mikki Grimley Photograpy