The Five Love LanguagesHow to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your MateBy Gary Chapman; Northfield Publishing, 1995During courtship and dating, you(as a couple) act as if you had been“stoned in love,” fascinated by thethrill of each other's persona andenergized by the idea of apromising relationship. You arejust “so into the other person,” andwhen you are together, nothingelse matters. Nothing also evergoes wrong, save for some pettyskirmishes that do not persistbecause you simply cannot standthe thought of hurting your lovedone and not being able to seehim/her. You find your self morepatient, more tolerant, more giving,more understanding, more attunedto the other person's needs. For thefirst time, you find your self lovingright, and before long, you two arebound for the altar.Yet after several years (some onlymonths), you find a gaping hole inyour marriage and see each otheras totally different individuals. Theexcitement, the sweetness, theenergy, the magic, the loveallseemed to have dissipated and lefttwo people “strangers-again.” Yousuddenly ask, “What went wrong?”Gary Chapman explains that thisis so because couples havebrushed aside each other'semotional love language. Explicitand heart-warming in his writing,Gary Chapman slots in a tinge ofhope in your waning married lifeand reminds you that therelationship can be rectified andrevived, if you only know thegenuine language of love.BOOK OF THE WEEK:read the summaryINSIDE THIS SUMMARY:– The Big Idea– On Loving and Being In-Love– Beyond Complacency: IntersubjectiveMeanings in Marriage– Love Language # 1: Words ofAffirmation– Love Language # 2: Quality Time– Love Language # 3: Receiving Gifts– Love Language # 4: Acts of Service– Love Language # 5: Physical Touch– Revive Your MarriagePublished by BestSummaries.com, 3001-91, 11010 NW 30th St., Suite 104, Miami, Florida 33172 2007 BestSummaries.com. All rights reserved.No part of this summary may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, photocopying, or otherwise, without prior noticeof BestSummaries.com.
On Loving and Being In-LoveThe dating phase puts the couple in a rather hazystate of being in-love, that almost magical feeling ofbeing with someone whose, in the words of GaryChapman, physical characteristics and personalitytraits create enough shock to trigger your love alertsystem. As you spend time with each other, youdesire to know the person more, and quitesurprisingly (or gallingly for that matter), everythingyou see is positive. In your eyes, he/she is theparagon of fineness, and with this person youanticipate countless possibilities, all of them equallyoptimistic. There is no doubt that you are caught upin inflated euphoria and delusion; you have neverbeen this much happy and never been this muchvibrant, and you feel like you will never be your oldself again.As romance progresses, you become moreemotionally obsessed with each other. You stay upuntil the wee hours of the night just thinking abouthow it would be like to have him/her close. You wakeup in the morning and get an intense rush with thefirst thought of that person. When you hold hands, itis as if yours was made to fit his/hers perfectly, andwhen you are both locked in an embrace you neverwant to let go. A minute or two of not being togetheris almost like a year of waiting. You started watchingbasketball because it was his favorite pastime. You,on the other hand, suddenly got into classical musicand ballet shows because it was what exhilaratedher. There is so much fun, so much fit, so muchcontentment.ABOUT THE BOOK:Author: Gary ChapmanPublisher: Northfield PublishingDate of Publication: 2005ISBN : 1-881273-15-6No. of Pages: 203 pagesThe Five Love Languages by Gary ChapmanMost couples enter marriage through this socalled in-love experience and were made tobelieve that it will last because, “We were in-love.”If you are one of these couples, you might harborthe conviction that everything can be conqueredand nothing can ever go wrong. This may provetrue, perhaps throughout the honeymoon stage orthe first few months of married life, where the twoof you still have either that “climactic hang-over” orthat fairy tale-like reverie you never want to wakeup from. Unfortunately, the belief that the in-loveexperience in dating will be carried on exactly thesame in marriage is utterly erroneous. More likelythan not, couples contend with the acrid opposite.Citing Dr. Dorothy Tennov, a psychologist, GaryChapman indicated that the average life span of aromantic obsession is two years. If it is a secretiveaffair, it may last a little longer. Eventually,however, we all descend from the clouds andplant our feet on earth again. This is the murkyreality that many couples do not know of, if nottotally refute. In your rather delusional state ofmind, you fail to recognize the other person'spersonality or attitudinal flaws. Inside themarriage, and in trying to sustain a semblance ofmarital bliss, you overlooked his propensity forverbal abuse or her penchant for vanity. You havenot anticipated that he could be withdrawn anduncaring, or that she could be high-strung andsuicidal.What you've both dreamed of throughout the inlove phase does not entirely replicate in the realworld of marriage. At this point, intimate loversturn into the worst enemies and since then startedrepudiating married life. In addition, the raptureduring the in-love phase has given both of you theillusion that you have achieved a certain level inyour relationship that qualifies marriage. Little didyou know that the in-love experience is not what isvital for a marriage to work but “real love.”Dr. Dorothy Tennov and psychiatrist, M. ScottPeck, have concluded that the in-love experienceis not “real love” for three reasons:1. Falling in-love is not an act of the will or aconscious choice. Often, we fall in love atinopportune times and with unlikely people;2 of 7
2. Falling in-love is not real love becauseit is effortless. What we do in the in-lovestate requires little discipline or consciouseffort. The instinctual nature of the in-loveexperience pushes us to do outlandish andunnatural things for each other;3. The one who is in-love is not genuinelyinterested in fostering the personal growthof the other person. Our purpose when wefall in-love is to terminate our lonelinessand perhaps ensure this result throughmarriage.Because the aforesaid reasons paint a rathersinister picture of being in-love, does this meanthat you'd rather not go through this episode?Does this portend only a miserable life withyour spouse? Gary Chapman argues that thisshould not necessarily be an austere case. Hisadvice is to recognize the in-love experience asan ephemeral stage, what he dubs as “atemporary emotional high,” after which you arecalled to pursue “real love,” one that goesbeyond emotional obsession, a love that isspurred by reason, act of will, and discipline,and recognizes the need for the other person'sgrowth.obsession had died out will (always) find appropriateways to express that decision. But how could thatbe? How can you meet the emotional needs of yourspouse and at the same feel loved yourself? Howcan your “love tanks” be constantly filled to the brim?Beyond Complacency:Intersubjective Meanings inMarriageAs married couples, your most important task is toavert “love expiry”to keep the emotional love tank fulland make your spouse feel incessantly secure inyour love. Most couples find themselves at a sort ofstalemate; they seem to be two different peopledevoid of any intimate connection whatsoever.There are those whose marriage climate had beenso laid-back, almost to the point of insensibility.Couples tend to do or say things “on the surface,”without much thought of the deeper yearnings oftheir spouse that they used to easily respond towhen they were still dating.With “real love,” you love because you see inthe person something worth loving. Thatrecognition alone requires heartfelt effort, tounderstand, to accept, to appreciate, and to becontinually moved by the mystery of finding outmore about the other person. In GaryChapman's words, “Real love is the choice toexpend energy in a desire to benefit the otherperson, knowing that if his or her life is enrichedby your effort, you too will find a sense ofsatisfactionthe satisfaction of having genuinelyloved another.” This means that real love isselfless, even when the in-love experience hasrun its course.Sadly after marriage, the shooting stars and themagic of it all seemed to just fade away. The couplescease to think love, talk love, and act love in thesame “wavelength” as before and oftentimes, thisleads to fights whose consequences are irreparable.This is so, because couples have different “lovelanguages” that need to be understood and met inorder for the marriage to work. It is so much like youspeaking Chinese as your primary language, andyour spouse, Greek. No matter how hard you try,even if you learn quite a portion of the otherlanguage, one way or another, there would bejunctures when intersubjective meaningswhat youhave taken to mean for one thing is the same aswhat your spouse have construed orinterpretedcannot simple materialize.In the absence of the in-love feelings, youbecome more mindful of the shortcomings ofyour spouse. Yet if in such absence, youchoose to be kind, understanding andgenerous, then that is real love. That kind oflove begins with an attitudea way of thinking.The one who chooses to love after the in-loveWith that, Gary Chapman brings to the fore, the 5Love Languages in order to help resuscitate amarried life on its last legs. Though not, in itself, apanacea, Gary Chapman's work proffers practicalsteps that would aid married couples in finding the“real love” they thought they already lost and in livinghappily ever after.The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman3 of 7
Love Language # 1: Words ofAffirmationmake matters worse. But if you reciprocate angerwith compassion and understanding, you becomegenuinely loving and reconciliation is not too far off.Ÿ A Compliment Speaks a Thousand Words.Admiring comments come from almosteverybody around youyour superior andcolleagues at work, your friends, your parents,your children, and more. Yet at sundown, it isyour spouse's flattering remarks that willessentially complete the day's “high.” Yes,other people's praises do serve as launchingpads that send you higher in attitude andperformance, but your wife's/husband'scompliments touch you and motivate you in a(special) way nobody else can. A life withoutyour spouse's accolades is like bland food,missing out on that single ingredient but youcannot yet decipher what it is.In addition, most married couples are prone toconflict caused by bringing up past “issues.” Reallove does not condemn the person for what he/shehas committed in the past. It goes with theacceptance that you and your wife/husband are notAs you see in your mind's eye and observe withyour heart, you would know relatively what isimportant to your spouse. If you see himembarking on a small business, express yourapproval by telling him what a brilliant idea hehas. If you know your wife has the potential forwriting, encourage her to submit her works tonewspapers or magazines because there isalways the possibility they might get published.If your husband is vying for a promotion, ease hisanxiety by letting him know that he can make itand that you will be with him no matter what. Ifyour wife is trying out a weight-loss program,inspire her more by telling her that she canachieve whatever she sets her mind on.Gary Chapman avers that, “Most of us havemore potential that we will eve develop. Whatholds us back is courage. But a loving spousecan supply the all-important catalyst.”Ÿ Control That Cutting Tongue. As a lovingspouse, you must be cognizant of thedestructive might of unkind words. When yourwife/husband has wronged you, you dissolveanger with forgiveness and practice generosityof spirit. And just as you do not keep a record ofwrongs and forgive the flaws of your spouse,you, too, must also be quick to admit yourwrongdoing and ask forgiveness for it. A furiousrejoinder in the midst of a fiery argument will onlyThe Five Love Languages by Gary ChapmanABOUT THE AUTHOR:Gary Chapman has traveledextensively around the worldchallenging couples to pursuehealthy, growing marriages. His firstbook, Toward a Growing Marriage(Moody, 1979, 1996), began as aninformal resource he gave tocouples with whom he wascounseling. Once officiallypublished, this book became a blessing to thousandsof people and helped launch Gary’s popular “Towarda Growing Marriage” seminar.Since 1979, Gary has written more than 15 books. Hisbook, The Five Love Languages (NorthfieldPublishing, 1992, 1993), has sold 3 million copies inEnglish alone and has been translated into 34languages including Arabic and Hindi. He has alsoappeared on several television and radio programsand has his own daily radio program called “AGrowing Marriage” that can be heard on more than100 radio stations across the United States.In addition to his busy writing and seminar schedule,Gary Chapman is a senior associate pastor atCalvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, NorthCarolina, where he has served for 35 years. Gary andhis wife, Karolyn, have been married for 45 years,have two adult children, and two grandchildren.Gary Chapman is a graduate of Moody Bible Instituteand holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in anthropologyfrom Wheaton College and Wake Forest University,respectively. He received M.R.E. and Ph.D. degreesfrom Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary andhas completed postgraduate work at the University ofNorth Carolina at Greensboro and Duke University.To know more about the author, go to:http://www.garychapman.org4 of 7
perfect. Yes, you cannot erase the past. Somevestiges of it may still be heartrending up to this day.But because you choose to love genuinely, yourepair your brokenness with forgiveness, and withthat, intimacy can be restored. As Gary Chapmanputs it, “Forgiveness is the way of love.”Ÿ Dispel Dominance. Real love makes requests,not demands. When you tell your spouse whatneeds to be accomplished and do so by lashing outover-assertive words, even if you mean well, youinexorably make your spouse feel “stupid” and yourwords seem to belittle his/her know-how. But if youmake a humble request to your spouse, you areaffirming his/her worth and abilities. In the words ofGary Chapman, “you are in essence indicating thathe/she has something or can do somethingmeaningful and worthwhile to you.” Thus, a gentlerequest becomes an expression of affirmation andreal love.Love Language # 2: Quality TimeŸ Being Close Does Not Mean Being Together.Two people sitting close to each other in a room areproximate, but they are not necessarily together.Togetherness involves a more intense connectionbetween you and your spouse, a jiffy where youreyes speak volumes and you never have to say, “Ilove you,” because your actions say it all. However,togetherness does not mean you have to consumeall of your time gazing dreamily into each other'seyes. Togetherness means that you two are doingsomething in concert, giving your full, focusedattention to the other person. You can engage inseveral activities that avow your enjoyment of eachother's company. Spending time in a commonpursuit indubitably communicates love andstrengthens your “bonding” as husband and wife.Ÿ Talk Less. Listen More. You and your spouse'stogetherness may be enhanced by once in a whileengaging in quality conversation, or what GaryChapman calls, sympathetic dialogue. This is anopportunity for you and your spouse to share yourThe Five Love Languages by Gary Chapmanthoughts, experiences, feelings, and desires in adeeply personal, welcoming, uninterrupted context.Quality conversation is about giving your spouse fullreign of what he/she wants to express, and you, inturn, would listen with your heart and give him/heryour absolute understanding.Most of the time, couples find it hard to listen to eachother. When a wife bewails her woes in theworkplace, a husband will more likely dispensepieces of advice, telling his wife that she should dothis and that and ending it with a rathercondescending statement, “If you will do what Iadvised you to do, you will not come crying to meagain.”As a result, the wife is even more disheartened. Shewanted to tell her husband about her problems atwork and she expected him to listen and not add toher anxiety. On the other side of the coin, thehusband really meant well. Because men aretrained (and expected) to be more objective andless emotional, the husband's immediate responseis, “Okay, here is what you're supposed to do.”Gary Chapman stresses that quality conversationgoes beyond the exigencies of hearing what yourspouse has to say. It involves considerate orsupportive listening, something which awife/husband must learn in order to keep the lovealive.Love Language # 3: Receiving GiftsŸ Gifts: A Remembrance, a Symbol of Love. Notsurprisingly, there are some husbands/wives whosespouses' primary love language is receiving gifts.With gifts, you make your spouse feel important,cherished and sweetly remembered. Recall thatintimate moment when you brought flowers for yourwife even if there were no occasion at all and sheexclaimed in happiness with tears in her eyes. Howabout that birthday when you surprised yourhusband with the watch he has been eyeing on formonths? How about sending him food for lunch, orbuying her new pots for her kitchen? In all shapesand sizes, and notwithstanding the cost, gifts are5 of 7
gestures of real love, and your efforts for getting themare priceless.Ÿ The Gift of Self. What could be better than your giftof self, especially at times when your spouse needsyou to be physically and emotionally present? Thereare ones-in-a-lifetime event in your life and there isno other person that you wish to be on your side butyour spouse. It is during these times that real love istested as well as your conviction to choose yourspouse over whatsoever activity that equallyrequires your presence. Choosing to be with yourspouse instead of attending an important meeting atwork, or partying with your boss, is one ultimate proofof real love. It is a pure attestation that your spousematters to you more than any other person orhappening in the world.Love Language # 4: Acts of Service In Everything You Do, Do It For Love. Isn't ituplifting when once in a while you see your husbanddoing the laundry, or seeing your wife struggling toget a busted water pipe fixed? Isn't it so sweet wheneveryday your wife has the breakfast table set withscrumptious food so you could get a good mealbefore you go to work, or having your husband take aday-off so he could bring the kids to school, mow thelawn, repaint your sunroom, and go to the grocery?The list could go on with so many things that you dofor your spouse and vice versa, dubbed as “acts ofservice.”When you know that acts of service form yourspouse's primary love language, you also know thatwhatever you do for the house, or for the kids, or forher, would be appreciated and you, in turn would beloved in the most unimaginable ways. These simpledeeds signify loads of caring and love for youspouse. They also reinforce your connection witheach other and thus bring about a contented andpeaceful married life.The Five Love Languages by Gary ChapmanLove Language # 5: Physical TouchŸ Hold her when she cries. Some men cannotbear to see their wives breaking into sobs. It'seither they walk out of the room to smoke, let out asermon, or go the fridge for an ice-cold drink. Butthe husband who is genuinely loving, will donothing but to hold his wife in a tight embrace, runhis fingers through her hair, kiss her head, strokeher hand, and make her feel safe in the power ofhis arms. Most women feel the overflowing love oftheir husbands through this comforting act, thetouch alone assuring that everything will be fine.According to Gary Chapman, “a physical touchcan make or break a relationship. It cancommunicate hate or love.” At the time of crisis,nothing speaks of your love but to hold her closeto your heart.Ÿ Touch as if it's always the first time. Thephysical touch of your spouse is a great emotionalbooster, in the same manner as it is an indicationthat the flames of lovethe passion, theexcitement, the heatis kept ablaze even afteryears of marriage. When you husband comeshome from a stressful day at work, a soothingback massage could be the perfect antidote.When your wife also comes home from a roughday in the office, massaging her head in betweenkisses in her eyes would surely ease the strain.Physical touch is also a very important factor priorto sexual intercourse. Some women tell tales ofmore powerful orgasms because their husbandswere very intense in their touch. Similarly, menyearn to be touched in specific areas of their bodyand wives adept at doing so make husbands feeltruly loved. Hence, to touch is also to convey love,comfort, and security. To break away fromphysical touch is tantamount to severing theemotional connection between you and yourspouse.6 of 7
Revive Your Marriage: Know Your(and Your Spouse's) Love Languageand Make it WorkThere may be so many other ways by which you letyour spouse know how much you love him/her, butthe 5 love languages proffered in here are also ofgreat merit and can right away be included in your listof “remedies.” However, it must be remembered thatknowing what your spouse's primary love languagetakes great time, effort, understanding, andemotional openness. Some couples took months.Some took years and have only realized their lovelanguage with the marriage at the brink of extinction.For you, there is no better time than now. Start beingmore attuned to the needs of your spouse. Take noteof what generally makes him/her happy and whatdisappoints him/her, and tell your self that you will doeverything in your power to try speaking the lovelanguage of your spouse as this will make themarriage happier and more secure.With love, nothing is impossible. This is an old adagethat to this day, affords couples with results betterthan ever. Yes it is true. As mentioned earlier, reallove is a choice. You choose to be more patient in themidst of a stifling argument. You choose to be moretolerant even if dirty socks are all over your room.You choose to be more emotionally responsive evenif you disdain crying. You choose to be more givingand more humble because you do not want themisunderstanding to escalate into a looming divorce.Whatever it is, you simply become a better personwhen you love genuinely.Begin listening with your heart and opening yourmind for cues. The love language of your spouse willnot be very difficult to detect. For once you chanceupon whichever of the 5 love languages thrashed outwith your spouse glowing with more appreciationand love, you know that you hit it right and hit it well,and you also know that from then on, you will neverlet go.ABOUT BESTSUMMARIES BestSummaries.com is a book summary service. We provide abridged versions of top self-help,motivational and inspirational books, where you can learn--in minutes-- what it takes to live life and live it well. With BestSummaries,you will know the guidelines and helpful tips to a happy and balanced life. BestSummaries offers easy-does-it tips in structuredoutline for easy reading and comprehension. Summaries are available in PDF, PDA, audio and print formats.DO YOU LIKE THIS SUMMARY but not a member yet? Subscribe now and learn what it takes to live a happy and fulfilled life.Simply go to http://www.bestsum.com/offer01.htm.The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman7 of 7
vital for a marriage to work but real love. Dr. Dorothy Tennov and psychiatrist, M. Scott Peck, have concluded that the in-love experience is not real love for three reasons: 1.Falling in-love is not an act of the will or a conscious choice. Often, we fall in love at inopportune times and with unlikely people; On Loving and Being In-Love