Like a watch, out children’s brains are made up of so many tiny little mechanisms that work together to ensure that they function correctly. Each watch is made with a unique design and the parts that are used for one watch brand can differ from those used by another, although the end result is the same, at the end of the day, they all keep time. Children work much the same, the end result may look the same, but the parts needed to ensure that they function to their optimum level can be very different.
As parents our only goal is to raise happy, health, well balanced children. We all want emotionally mature children that are happy, well-adjusted and know that we love them unconditionally. We all do our best and provide what we can for our children, but have you ever thought about what really makes your child tick?
We have spoken about adults and the 5 love languages, but have you ever thought how the love languages affect your children and that even if you are giving them the world, if you are not speaking their love language you may not be fulfilling their needs.
I often wondered why a particular reward system works on some children and not others, and why some children respond to a certain form of discipline and others don’t. Well it is all linked to their love language and if you can determine what their love language is, you are well on your way to success.
I have often done something special for my kids and found myself really upset with their response or lack thereof. They seemed so unappreciative and It really got to me, until I realised that I was not speaking their language of love. You know those children who are always losing everything, well funnily enough, it is often because Gifts are not their language of love, and they have little or no regard for material things. If a child’s language of love is Words of Affirmation, putting them in a naughty corner will have a very small impact, but telling them how disappointed and upset you are with them will really hit home. The same goes for a child that values Quality Time, by taking away their toy or T.V is not going to make a difference, but putting them in a naught corner away from everyone will have a huge impact.
The negative side to not speaking their language of love is that if they feel deprived of what makes them feel loved, they can become emotional, anxious and stressed.
Regardless of their love language, all children need to feel loved, secure, and cared for. Their language of love will not necessarily do this for your child, but it will help to reinforce how much you really do love them.
Children like adults may have more than one language of love, so you need to listen carefully to their answers and possibly give them options to determine their language of love.
A child’s language of love can often appear before they can speak, by the way they react to different situations. For example, a child whose language of love is Quality Time, may suffer from separation anxiety. A child whose language of love is Physical Touch often likes to be held and carried everywhere. A child whose language of love is Words of Affirmation may battle to get rid of their dummy, bottle or blankie. A child’s whose language of love is Acts of Service, may be very needy and take up more of your time than other children. A child whose language of love is Gifts may take longer to ween of breast feeding, they may also need you to do things for them longer than other children.
I asked the following question to 3 Girls aged between 6 and 10 and 3 Boys aged between 6 and 10 and this is how they answered.
- How do you know that Mommy loves you?
- What does Mommy do for you that makes you happy?
Girl A. – Because she takes care of me.
She does nice things for me.
Girl B – She likes to cuddle me.
She is kind to me
Girl C – Because she is the best Mom
She gives me sweets & puts me to bed.
Boy A. – Because I love her.
She gives me hugs and kisses
Boy B. – Because I love her
She gives me treats
Boy C. – Because I know she does
She spends time with me.
HERE ARE THEIR LANGUAGES OF LOVE
Girl A’s language of love is Acts of Service
Girl B’s language of love is Physical Touch and Words of Affirmation
Girl C’s language of love is Gifts and Quality Time
Boy A’s language of love is Physical Touch
Boy B’s language of love is Gifts
Boy C’s language of love is Quality time
Some other things that children may do that you think is a little strange, but it is just their language of love.
Children whose language of love is Physical Touch, often like to rough house and play contact sport.
Children whose language of love is Words of Affirmation are often very sensitive to criticism and take it to heart when you tease or make fun of them.
Children whose language of love is Quality Time are often jealous of other people that are receiving your attention and act out when they are not the centre of attention.
Children whose language of love is Acts of Service often appear very needy and incapable of doing things for themselves.
Children whose language of love is Gifts, constantly requires a visual symbol of love, so you can talk till the cows come home, but unless they can physically see something, no matter how big or small, free or expensive, it just does not count.
By determining what your child’s language of love is, you will be able to let them know how loved they are. You will be able to reward them in a way that makes them super excited and happy. You will be able to discipline them in a way that hits home and they understand and you will be able to identify where their actions are coming from. By giving your child what they need to be truly happy will simplify your life tenfold. It really helps with parenting when we understand these weird yet wonderful beings that we are raising. So without wasting any time, find out what love language your child is speaking?
If you enjoyed this article then you have to read THE FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES OF CHILDREN by Gary Chapman, a lot of my research came from him, thanks Gary.