It’s not necessary to have perfectly matched love languages with your partner but it is important to be receptive to and communicate in the ways that give you each the warm and fuzzies. The pronouns are interchangeable, but these signs that you’re not on the same page are unambiguous.
It drives you crazy when he breaks plans and he does it all the time.
He doesn’t do it to be a jerk—he’s legitimately committed to a work or family event—but what bothers you is that he doesn’t value the time together as much as you do. If quality time is one of your primary love languages, you need your partner to honor commitments with you and make it a priority to spend time together. If you communicate this need and he doesn’t change, make it your priority to move on.
There’s nothing that irks him more than a cell phone on the dinner table.
Except when you look at yours every four minutes. If QT is one of his top languages, it’s important that you recognize that undivided attention is what really lights his fire. He wants your focus on him and the good news is that he’ll be focusing on you, too. Text your friend back later about which Rent-the-Runway dress she should get and focus on that tall glass of water across from you. He’s happy, and you’re happy that he’s happy. It’s a win-win.
To you, his love for morning cuddling is only slightly less suffocating than being buried alive.
Spooning is right below “quicksand picnics” on your list of activities that make you feel trapped. He’s affectionate by nature. Hugs and hand-holding are his ways of showing love. If physical touch is one of his love languages, but it sends you into panic mode, you may need to cut your losses. If you can figure out how to deal with extra affection and show him a little PDA, Dr. Feelgood still might have a shot.
Physical touch makes you weak in the knees but his knees are pointed in the other direction.
You love when he affectionately strokes your back in public but he still doesn’t get the *cough* subtle hints that you want him to cop a feel. It can feel very cold and unsafe for someone like you to be with someone who doesn’t read a touch on the arm as a sign of caring. Physical affection is crucial to you, and if he neglects this way of communication, the effects could be detrimental to your relationship.
You say “I love you” half as often as your partner and he’s hurt by your indifference.
Those who need words of affirmation to interpret the language of love find comfort in hearing the specific ways in which you care about them—and often. If you’re not comfortable using your words to tell your partner how much he means to you, get comfortable or get moving.
Words of encouragement aren’t his strong suit, and it makes you feel undervalued.
Words speak louder than actions in this case. You want to hear that he is proud of you when you get that promotion or stand up to your bitchy boss. You need to feel supported and nurtured in pursuing your passions. Words of criticism hurt more and last longer for you. If he doesn’t understand how to verbally communicate affirmation to you, you may need to disembark from the love boat.
Your last fight was when he needed your help babysitting his sister’s kids but you took a personal day.
He’s not looking for an assistant. He loves spending time with his nieces, but he had a big project due at work that Monday and needed an extra hour to focus on it over the weekend. It would have made him feel loved if you’d considered that, and offered to help with the pip squeaks. “Acts of service” is a misunderstood love language. It’s about taking care of something because you genuinely want to ease a burden for your partner, not because they’ll nag you if you don’t.
He hasn’t picked up the vacuum without you reminding him since you moved in together.
You don’t want a butler, and this isn’t about gender roles. If ‘acts of service’ is one of your main LL’s, you see this as your partner valuing and loving you. He takes care of a burden for you because he wants to rid you of stress, not because he feels obligated. Give me clean floors, or give me peace.
He doesn’t bring home flowers just because and you’re not impressed.
It’s the thought that counts, really. Valuing ‘receiving gifts’ as a love language doesn’t make you shallow. When he brings home a thoughtful gift for no reason at all or puts a lot of time into finding the perfect birthday present, you see it as considerate and unselfish. He’s putting effort into finding something special for you. It’s hard to stop and smell the roses if they’re not in your vase.
He was upset that you didn’t bring him a souvenir from your trip; you were upset that he expected one.
It’s not that he expected you to spend a certain amount on him to prove your love. A small token from the trip would have shown him that you thought about him while you were apart, and put energy into finding something you knew he would have enjoyed. Go the extra mile (or spend the extra dollar) for this guy, but only if the thought behind it is genuine excitement that he’ll enjoy what you bring him.
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