Five More Love Languages
Reflections by Michele O’Mara
I consider the five love languages, described by Gary Chapman in his book, The Five Love Languages, to be good information for all couples. Yet, something is missing. Read on to learn about five more languages that will help you communicate love.
When my dad died, I spoke at his funeral. He was my hero and I was his pumpkin.
His generous spirit and capacity to uplift others made him extra, extra special. When it came to love languages, he was a multilingual master, which you can read about here. However, these five love languages are not enough to convey the magic of communicating love. In fact, I believe the 5 love languages discussed in Chapman’s book create a helpful recipe, but having all of the right ingredients is not enough. You must also understand know when and how to use them, adapting as necessary to changing conditions.
Sometimes, you can speak the precise language your partner has taught you to speak, yet without the right dialect (cooking methods), it’s as if the message does not register. The same exact ingredients can create different outcomes, depending on how much of each ingredient you use, when and how you include them, the temperature and cooking technique used, and so on..
I love softshell crab rolls. But only when they taste the way I like.
Similarly, I love touch. But only when it feels the way I like.
Love is a feeling. What feels like love to me may not feel like love to you. If we both agree that touch is our love language, there is no guarantee that we will agree on when, how and kind of touch that ultimately conveys love. Touch is the strategy, love is the goal. What is missing from this formula is the thing that connects the strategy (touch) with the goal (love).
To simply touch her, talk to her, do things for her, spend time with her, or give her gifts – these feel like ingredients that are designed to create a feeling, to communicate love. Without the heat, the food isn’t cooked. Without patience or timing, the food can burn or be undercooked. Without balance, the taste can be overbearing or underwhelming. Just as, when we behave in certain ways, the separate ingredients used to communicate love, whether we touch, talk to, do for, give to, or be with her, we may need heat, we need spice, we need timing, patience, and balance.
When I think about the most powerful language of love, I think of energy. Food is energy. People are energy. Love is energy. This energy is part of who we are. Therefore, the language of love has to do with how we treat, manage, hold, express and exchange this love-energy, and how we mix and blend this love-energy with the others.
Ultimately, we partner to feel a certain way.
Rather than focusing on a behavior (touch, talk, gifting, etc.) spend time understanding what the experience of love feels like to you and to her.
What is the feeling you hope to experience by being in love with another?
It isn’t the action, the gift, the words, or the touch that we crave, it’s how we anticipate those things will make us feel that we desire. It isn’t the clean house, or the heartfelt card, or the passionate kiss, it’s the way these things make us feel.
Therefore, the important question to ask the one you love is:
“How do you want to feel?” and “What makes you feel that way?”
For example, I want to feel understood, accepted, alive, inspired, worthy, playful and connected. What makes me feel this way is not easily found in the five love languages.
I feel loved when someone expresses genuine interest in knowing me. I feel loved when she “get’s me,” and feeling accepted, and I need to experience the positive energetic and chemical connection that can only be felt, not described.
The magic of love is that it’s experienced so intensely, it can inspire and fulfill dreams, create hope, give birth to and save lives, soothe the soul, and so much more. Love is like energy; we can not see it, instead we experience it and the effects it has on us and others.
Just as energy is inseparable from who we are, love is inseparable from the lover, the one who loves. I’ve come to see love as a part of the energy that makes us who we are. Just as we can not see the energy of who we are, we only see the physical form that the energy takes and the impact or outcome when we express of our energy.
“How can we grow love?”
If I were to write a book called 5 More Languages of Love, I would describe these languages as personality characteristics; not strategies or behaviors, rather ways of being. I would use the 5 Languages to describe the lover, the one who holds the energy of love, and how that love is experienced, expressed and grown.
Because there is no one way to love or feel loved, we all end up being responsible for teaching others how to speak our unique language of love. After some thought, here is the dialect of my personal language of love. I hope by reading this, you are inspired to consider your own language, as well as the languages of your important others.
For me, the most powerful love languages are less about what you do, and more about who you are, how you are, and the way you express the energy of love.
Here are five more languages of love:
To me, curiosity is the engine of love. It encourages engagement, sparks interest, and fuels an active desire to know and understand the one you love. Curiosity is an openness to one another that does not base understanding
Allowing is how I imagine the sky is to clouds. The sky seems so graceful and accepting of whatever the clouds may do – always a steady backdrop, creating room for what unfolds, and never can I imagine a time when the sky would say to the clouds, “you look a little too puffy today.”
Because we are human, we are certain to make mistakes. Forgiving is the safety net of love. It is like a trampoline of sorts, offering a kind landing if we should falter, and just enough oomph to help us back up. To be forgiving is to ensure there is enough wiggle room to make mistakes, learn how to do it better next time, and feel better for having had the opportunity to learn.
The sentiment I am trying to capture here is hard to put into just one word – it’s probably a concept that does not yet have a word, and yet it’s one of the most important languages to me. I feel most loved when I am in a positive, kind, playful, environment with laughter, silliness, vulnerability, and ease. It’s an energy, for sure, and like love, it’s much easier to feel
The one ingredient that seems to capture the essence of this part of love languages for me is a basic human kindness. Kindness is the sort of energetic vibration that radiates out to all beings, and it is consistent and true. Where there is kindness, oxygen seems to fill my lungs more easily, interactions go more smoothly.
Kindness is a form of gratitude, a gentle appreciation for all that is good by tending to the energy we pour into the world around us;
For some, the sentiment I’m reaching for here is talked about in terms of loyalty, fidelity, honesty, or even commitment. While related, they are not the same. To me, the characteristic of being true means that you are true to yourself, that you know and understand and love yourself, TRUTH IS ABOUT AUTHENTICITY. In the words of Oriah Mountain Dreamer, “I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself.” When you are true to yourself, I know you can be true to me. The feeling this provides is safety and security. If you know yourself, and you know how you feel, and it is deeply true to who you are, then I can trust that when you extend your love to me, it is true. This gives me the feeling that, no matter what happens, I am safe with you. The emphasis isn’t on ensuring that you stay, or knowing that you’ll never lie to me. The emphasis is on knowing that you will live a life that is true to who you really are and that your first commitment is to you so that the