Like adults, some children want to be held, hugged, and kissed. Others want you to spend time with them doing their homework or playing a sport. For others, it’s about praises or appreciation, getting gifts and surprises or help with dishes.
Gary Chapman’s 5 love languages for adults and kids cover these expressions of love. They include:
· Quality Time
· Physical Touch
· Acts of Service
· Words of Affirmation
Have you been wondering why your teenager seems withdrawn no matter how much gifts you give? Do you ever get puzzled about how your son still doesn’t do well at school despite how often you pat him on the back?
Your gifts may mean little if they do not fit your child's needs.Every child has a love tank, and to be a great parent, you’ve got to keep that love tank filled the right way.
So, how do you help your kids to be motivated and excited about life? How do you ensure that they don’t struggle with being confident and remain optimistic about their dreams and goals?
Find out below if you know your child’s love language.
1. Quality Time
“Mom, you’re not listening to me!” If your daughter says this to you, then there’s every chance that she wants your undivided attention. As a matter of fact, infants spend more time with their toys but as they grow, they want time with you.
And they are not after the things you do together such as sports or bedtime stories. They just want that Mom/Dad and Me time.
2. Physical Touch
Babies love hugs and kisses. Teenagers do too. But what about reading a children’s storybook to your four-year-old son on your lap or spinning your daughter around till she laughs uncontrollably?
For kids with this love language, “I love you” means more with physical expressions like holding hands, a pat on the back or even a regular forehead kiss.
3. Acts of Service
If this is your child’s love language, then you have to be there for him/her. When your eleven-year-old son tells you about his faulty bicycle, it’s not because he wants you to fix it. He just really wants to know if you’re aware of his needs and will make effort to meet them.
You can fill your child’s love tank by being there at all times. And even when you’ve got to be away, they’ll understand.
4. Words of Affirmation
Chapman agrees in his book for adults that words are priceless. Words that express appreciation, optimism, admiration, and affection go a long way in making your child feel loved.
When you say “I care about you” or “You’re my very special gift,” you increase the deposits in your child’s love tank. Moreover, what can this cost you? But when you forget the endearments or even go harsh and negative, you may ruin your child’s self-confidence and response to life.
Do you believe wanting gifts is selfish? No way! If your child loves receiving gifts, think of it as their way of receiving love. This may even be your spouse’s primary love language. Besides, it never has to be something big and expensive. It could be a box of chocolates, a new hair ribbon, a customized wristwatch or that tiny trinket.
Now that you know better, I ask again “do you know your child’s love language?” If you think you have a grasp of it, the next step is to explore how you can tap into it!