Everything you need to know about the 5 love languages (2023)

The five love languages ​​describe five ways in which people conceive and receive love.express lovein a relationship. These are words of affirmation, quality time, physical contact, acts of service, and receiving gifts.

Knowing your partner's love language and sharing yours is one way to help both of you feel loved and valued. Author and pastor Gary Chapman describes how to use these love languagesShow your partner that you carein a way that speaks to your heart.

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the five love languages

Chapman's book The 5 Love Languages ​​was first published in 1992. Before writing the book, Chapman noticed patterns in the couples he counseled. She recognized that couples misinterpreted each other's needs.

This led him to develop five love languages, or ways that people express love in relationships. They are:

  • words of affirmation
  • Quality time
  • physical contact
  • official acts
  • receive gifts

words of affirmation

"Words of Affirmation" is approximateexpress affectionthrough spoken words, praise or appreciation. If this is someone's primary love language, they delight in kind words and encouragement, uplifting quotes, love notes, and sweet text messages. You can make that person's day.congratulateor point out what they do well.

Quality time

Someone with this love language wants all the attention. They make you feel loved when you are around and you focus on them when you are together. That means hanging up the phone, turning off the computer, making eye contact, andactively listening.

People with this love language look for quality over quantity.

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physical contact

A person who has physical contact as their primary love language feels love through physical affection. Beyond sex, they feel loved when, for example, their partner holds their hand, touches their arm, or gives them a massage at the end of the day.

This person's idea of ​​a perfect date might include curling up on the couch with a glass of wine and a good movie. They just want to be physically close to their partner.

acts of service

Acts of service are nice things you do for your partner that make them feel loved and appreciated, such as:

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  • Help with the dishes
  • warrants
  • vacuum cleaning
  • refueling in the car

If your partner's love language is primarily service, he'll notice and appreciate the little things you do for him. You also tend to serve others and be kind.

receive gifts

For someone who uses and responds to this love language, giving gifts signifies love and affection. They appreciate not only the gift itself, but also the time and effort the recipient put into it.

People who enjoy receiving gifts as part of their primary love language don't necessarily expect large or expensive gifts; What counts is the effort and attention behind the gift.

Taking the time to select a gift especially for them will show them that you really know them. People with this love language can often remember every little gift they have received from their loved ones because it has a huge impact on them.

Food is the quintessential Asian love language

How to identify your love language

In a relationship, you feel most loved when your partner:

  • Does he say "I love you" or praise something you've done?
  • Surprised you with a significant gift?
  • Are you planning a trip just for the two of you?
  • Running errands or doing laundry?
  • Holding hands when walking?

Answering these questions could give you a clue as to what your love language might be. You can also try to remember the things you ask for in a relationship or think about how you express your love to your partner. Chapman also offers an online serviceQuiz with 30 questionsto help you determine your dominant love language.

Your partner's love language may not be the same as yours. When couples have different primary love languages, misunderstandings are inevitable. However, if your partner learns to speak their love language (and you theirs), you'll likely feel loved, valued, and ultimately happier in the relationship.

How Love Languages ​​Promote Relationships

We all express and receive love differently. Learning and understanding these differences can have a significant impact on your relationship. According to Chapman, this is one of the easiest ways to improve your relationships. Here are some other ways that learning your respective love languages ​​could be beneficial.

Love languages ​​promote selflessness

If you commit to learning another person's love language, do so.focuses on their needs and not yours. This is the central premise of Chapman's theory. Couples should strive to learn their partner's love language instead of trying to convince their partner to learn theirs. Ideally, both people want to express love in a way that is meaningful to the other.

The whole purpose of exploring your love languages ​​together is to learn to love your partner in a way that matters to you.

Love languages ​​create empathy

As you learn more about how your partner experiences love, learnempathizewith you. It helps you step outside of yourself for a moment and take a look at what makes another person feel important and loved.

(Video) Dr. Gary Chapman on The Five Love Languages

When couples commit to learning and using love languages, they increase their loveemotional intelligenceand learn to put the needs of others before your own. Instead of speaking their own love language with their partner, they learn to speak in a language that their partner understands.

Love languages ​​help maintain intimacy

By regularly talking about what keeps your love tanks full, you can develop a greater understanding and ultimatelyprivacy- in your relationship. You will not only learn more about each other, but you will also connect in deeper and more meaningful ways. When that happens, your relationship feels more intimate.

A 2016 review published in theGlobal Journal of Health Sciencescame to the conclusion that the improvementcommunication skillsIt can promote intimacy in a marriage.

Love languages ​​support personal growth

Focusing on something or someone outside of yourself can lead to personal growth. Love your partner in a way that isout of your comfort zoneit forces you to grow and change and look outside.

Love languages ​​help you share love in a meaningful way

When couples begin to speak each other's love language, the things they do for each other become more conscious and meaningful. They say "I love you" in a way that makes sense to their partners, who then feel acknowledged, fulfilled, and valued.

Languages ​​of love in everyday life.

According to Chapman, love languages ​​also apply to relationships between parents and children, between colleagues, and between friends. For example, if your child's primary love language is words of affirmation, he may want to hear verbal praise or "I love you." It is very individual: a colleague may feel more valued if he uses one love language rather than another.

Your love language may also change from time to time. For example, if you were having a bad day at work, you might prefer a hug from your partner to a word of encouragement.

The key is to communicate and ask regularly.what your partner needsto feel valued, heard, valued and loved. So put this into practice.

Criticism of the theory of the language of love

Although learning love languages ​​helps many people communicate better with their partners, there are limitations to the theory and the way people apply it to their relationships.

Many people abuse languages

Some people get a bit competitive when it comes to using love languages, which can actually strain a relationship. For example, partners could start tracking all the times they use their partner's love language and compare it to how often their partner uses their language.

Love languages ​​can be a wayopen communicationand compassion, but you should not use them as a game or weapon against your partner. Some people continue to use their own language (instead of their partner's) to show they care, and that's okay.

You may be in a relationship with someone who does not share your love language. Try to be understanding and open. You can recognize and appreciate your partner's actions, even if they don't perfectly match your own language.

They do not solve other relationship problems.

The five love languages ​​won't fix all of yourscouple problems; They are just one tool among many that you can use to improve communication with your partner.

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Research shows that couples who use each other's love language feel happier in their relationships when they also use self-regulation tools to manage their own emotions.While the love languages ​​were a tool, the couples' accountability for their emotions and behavior changes contributed more to their overall happiness.

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Your love language can also change. It is important to accept and hope that love languages ​​can change over time, especially givenlife stressorsor have big changes as children.

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They can put pressure on partners.

Many people talk about love languages ​​in the context of a committed relationship or marriage. Remember that learning and understanding your own love language is an important tool for you to practice self-love.

You should avoid putting too much pressure on your partner to constantly express their love language to you.

One study found that the biggest obstacle for couples using each other's love language was that the recipient often didn't realize their partner was trying to use their love language.It's crucial that the recipient recognizes their partner's efforts, even if they don't live up to expectations.

Press play to get tips on how to cultivate self-love

This episode of is hosted by Editor-in-Chief and Therapist Amy Morin, LCSWThe Verywell Mind Podcast, starring actress KJ Smith, explains how to cultivate self-love. Click below to listen now.

Everything you need to know about the 5 love languages (1)

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They perpetuate heteronormativity

Chapman's original model focuses on heterosexual couples, although the theory can be applied to any couple regardless of sexual orientation.If you are reading "The 5 Love Languages". and you're not in a heterosexual relationship or not heteronormative, being left out of the text can be frustrating.

What is heteronormativity?

heteronormativityit is the assumption that all people are heterosexual and that romantic and sexual relationships are always between a man and a woman. It assumes that heterosexuality is the default sexual orientation and that it is the only normal or natural way to express sexuality and attraction.

A word from Verywell

Once you and your partner know each other's love language, you can both benefit from it. However, speaking your partner's love language can take a bit of effort and intention, especially if it's different from yours. Remember that healthy relationships are not born; They develop through attention and effort.

The good news is that you can improve your relationship by learning the love language of your partner and putting it into practice. And when you both commit to loving each other in a way that appeals to both of you, you'll not only fall more deeply in love, but find yourself in a happy and fulfilling relationship.

frequent questions

  • What are children's love languages?

    In 1997, Gary Chapman wrote with Dr. Ross Campbell's book on how the five love languages ​​can be applied to children.In it, he outlines methods for observing what love language your child can appeal to. There is also a test that a father can take for his son. It is available in theSitio web de Five Love Languages.

  • How can I recognize my partner's love language?

    The easiest way to determine your partner's love language is to let them take the quiz. You can also consider what you most want or do in a relationship. Do they often bring you thoughtful gifts? Or tell you that he loves you? This could be a clue as to what your love language might be.

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Everything you need to know about the 5 love languages? ›

The Five Love Languages are the way you experience and show love. There are 5 love languages: Word of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch. Learning to speak your partner's love language can help you understand how to express love.

What are the 5 love languages answer? ›

What Are the Five Love Languages? Everything You Need To Know
  • Quality Time.
  • Physical Touch.
  • Gifts.
  • Acts of Service.
  • Words of Affirmation.

What are the 5 love languages FAQ? ›

The Five Love Languages are the way you experience and show love. There are 5 love languages: Word of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch. Learning to speak your partner's love language can help you understand how to express love.

What are the 5 love languages short summary? ›

The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate is a 1992 book by Gary Chapman. It outlines five general ways that romantic partners express and experience love, which Chapman calls "love languages". They are acts of service, gift-giving, physical touch, quality time, and words of affirmation.

Can one person have all 5 love languages? ›

Each love language exists on a spectrum, and it is possible to learn all five languages. Your primary love language will likely be connected to how love was expressed in your family of origin. Telling your partner how you prefer to love can increase your ability to feel loved and appreciated.

Am I in love or not? ›

When you start thinking about someone else's desires and needs as much as your own, it's a pretty good sign that you are in love, Shaffer says. "You may not necessarily want the same things but when you are in love, you start thinking of the other person's perspective just as much as your own."

How do I tell what my love language is? ›

How do I know my love language? To figure out what your love language is, consider the way you express affection to the people you love—whether friends, family, or romantic partners. Do you tend to cuddle with them on the couch? Or do you like to shower them with compliments and verbal affirmation?

What is the strongest love language? ›

We showed survey takers a description of the five love languages and asked them to rank the languages from the way they most prefer to receive love to the way they least prefer to receive love. The love language preferred by the most people is quality time: 38% rank this as their top love language.

How to practice the 5 love languages? ›

How do I practice the 5 love languages?
  1. Words of Affirmation. If this and other verbal expressions make you feel loved or you love saying them to people, then words of affirmation might be your love language. ...
  2. Acts of Service. Actions speak louder than words! ...
  3. Quality Time. ...
  4. Physical Touch. ...
  5. Receiving Gifts.

What are the most compatible love languages? ›

Quality time and words of affirmation

Quality time and physical touch are two love languages that are extremely compatible in terms of showing affection and physical attraction. While one person craves the touch of their significant other, the other partner can have their quality time needs met.

What are the 5 A's of relationships? ›

The 5 "As": Acceptance, Affection, Appreciation, Approval, and Attention: The Journey to Emotional Fulfillment.

How do you explain physical touch in love language? ›

Physical touch is one of the five love languages, and it refers to expressing and receiving affection through touch, physical closeness, and other forms of physical connection. Kissing, hugging, holding hands, and sex are all ways of showing love through the physical touch love language.

How do you explain acts of service in love language? ›

Acts of service: This love language centers on doing activities that make life easier or more enjoyable for the other person, such as running errands, picking up the dry cleaning, doing the grocery shopping, or other household chores.

What are some examples of acts of service? ›

12 Acts of Service Examples
  • Clean the house unprompted.
  • Get their car washed and filled with gas.
  • Help with their computer problems.
  • Look after the kids and give your partner the night off with their friends.
  • Make them a cup of coffee first thing in the morning.
  • Pack them a lunch for the day.
  • Pay the bills.
Jul 15, 2022

What are the 5 acts of service? ›

  • Acts of Service. For these people, actions speak louder than words. ...
  • Receiving Gifts. For some people, receiving a heartfelt gift is what makes them feel most loved. ...
  • Quality Time. This language is all about giving the other person your undivided attention. ...
  • Words of Affirmation. ...
  • Physical Touch.


1. The Five Love Languages || Gary Chapman || Full Audiobook
2. Understanding "The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts" with author Dr. Gary Chapman
(WKYC Channel 3)
3. The 5 Love Languages with Gary Chapman: Quality Time Strengthens Relationships | Praise on TBN
(Praise on TBN)
4. 5 Ways To Work With Your Partner's Love Language
5. The 5 Love Languages Summary (Animated) | Gary Chapman | Finally Understand Romantic Relationships
(Four Minute Books)
6. The 5 Love Languages


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