I wish I had read The 5 Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman a lot earlier in the game of marriage and raising children. Have you heard of this book? If not, it's a self-help book for relationships... Chapman's theory that there are 5 different languages in which we show love and receive love. Finding out your love language but more importantly your spouse's/child's love language can help relationships immensely.
The 5 Love Languages are:
Words of Affirmation....you need praise and compliments to feel loved...or you give praise and compliments to show your love.
Quality Time....you need to spend a lot of time with your significant other to feel loved...or wanting to be with them all of the time is how you show your love.
Receiving Gifts...you love receiving gifts or you're a gift giver.
Acts of Service....I love you when I see you folding the towels! Or let me help you clean up...because I LOVE YOU so much~!
Physical Touch...touching, hand holding....uh....this one needs no explanation.
You can go to this site and take a test to find out your primary love language. I already knew mine, but I took the test again just to see what it would say and BINGO! Mine is ACTS OF SERVICE.
Both showing love and receiving love. I'm sure Chuck's is Physical Touch. I suspect most males fall in this category.
Way before I heard of this book, I knew I felt a huge surge of love for Chuck whenever he just got up and helped me with a chore, a child's bath, a run to the grocery store. And I knew he needed all of that physical stuff to feel loved by me. We had 2400 square feet in our first house and he had to sit right up against me while watching t.v. And if I hugged him when he got home, he took that to mean he was going to be one lucky guy that evening. Physical Touch....the category I scored lowest in...ha.
I need to study up on my children's languages. If I had to guess, I'm off a little on them. I know I show my love to them through Acts of Service. Like cleaning their apartment that they just moved out of. But perhaps they receive love by Words of Affirmation.. "Like wow...this apartment is really not that dirty" instead of "oh, my gosh....this place is filthy! When is the last time you cleaned it?" Which then sends me in to over time on Acts of Service (scrubbing, cleaning, vacuuming, mopping, loading up the last few things left around the place and hauling it to the car....).
When all they really wanted from us was to hang curtains in the new place. But we had to go to the old place to spackle the holes left from taking the curtains down and get the ladder that was left there. And you know, I couldn't leave the place until it was completely empty and spotless. Thought I was doing someone a huge favor...showering them with my love. Don't you feel the love? Can't you tell I love you more than life when I'm cleaning your toilet? And sticking my hand down the dirty sink disposal is like my love to the inth degree.
But you see, it's just as important to know how they RECEIVE it as it is to know how you SHOW it. Because if they aren't the same, well then.....you know......moods sour. And by the time you haul all of those last loads to the new place, the curtains aren't going to get hung because....you know....no one has eaten, people are tired, moods are knee high to a grasshopper.
I love my children. And am ordering this book tomorrow. Or maybe this one.
Or maybe it's not about our love language at all. Maybe it's just downright stubbornness. And once the child is too big to spank or put in time out...it gets messy.
The trouble with having a stubbornness contest with your kids is that they have your stubbornness gene. ~Robert Brault
On another note, we went to a fun wedding yesterday. Took a turn in the photo booth. Spent a lot of time choosing our props. Then no time reading the directions. When the screen says Cheese...you should be still and posing and looking up at the camera...apparently. We never quite got it.
Then a couple of turns with my friends. Props and poses...