Learning from the Past and Moving Forward
When you are facing a divorce or are amid separation, often all you can think about is it being over. This is a time of self-reflection and learning from mistakes, so that future relationships do not falter in the same ways and can hopefully be more successful. If you didn’t use the principles of love languages during your marriage, they may be useful in finding areas of improvement, and figuring out where things may have gone astray on both ends.
If you are facing a divorce, let us help you reach a resolution without the stress of going to court. Recover faster, reach outcomes without the court battle, and move on with the help of our team of lawyers at Alternative Divorce Solutions.
The 5 Love Languages and Your Divorce
If you are not familiar with the concept of love languages, it is a way for couples (married, dating or divorced) to understand how they give and receive love and how their partner does the same. Created by Gary Chapman, The 5 Love Languages books and workbooks took the marriage counseling and seminar world by storm. Understanding the love languages helps to provide a new view of separation, to learn from your mistakes, and the mistakes of your ex-spouse.
How the 5 love languages may have been missing in your relationship:
- Words of Affirmation: If this is something that went the way of the wind in your marriage, and it is either you or your ex’s love language, the mental connection in your marriage may have been lost. We are a language driven species and although there is something to be said about enjoying silence together, words help us to know what our partner is thinking. Words of affirmation let partners know that you are mentally connected and can help build security.
- Acts of Service: If your partner considers acts of service one of their receiving love languages, then anything you did, or didn’t do, to help around the house would be noticed. If one partner was home with children and the other worked, even picking up milk on the way home could be considered a display of love if the primary love language is acts of service.
- Quality Time: Spending focused and undivided time with your spouse is important in all relationships and it is often lost in the hustle and bustle of life as a marriage progresses. Unfortunately, this can cause a substantial divide between partners if time is not set aside to reconnect. Quality time is one love language that can require substantial effort, but luckily, a little goes a long way. Even 15 minutes of undivided attention may be enough to help keep a relationship alive. Sometimes, if too much time passes, the connect cannot be fixed.
- Giving Gifts: If gift giving/receiving is one partner’s love language and not the other’s, it is often a point of contention in relationships. For some, tangible symbols of thoughtfulness and effort are extremely important while for others they may just seem like a waste of precious funds. If this was an issue in your relationship, knowing that you or your spouse did not understand the link between showing love and giving or receiving gifts may help you in your recovery process.
- Physical Touch: This is sometimes mistaken as sexual touch, which is important as well, but it is actually a non-sexual touch that reinforces the presence and care between spouses. It can be displayed as holding hands in a crowd or placing a hand on the shoulder of your partner as an act of empathy during difficult times. If the only time you touch is when you are in the bedroom, that physical connection almost always diminishes. Cuddling and hugging are proven to boost the immune system and foster security in humans of all ages, so it is no surprise that a lack of physical touch can be highly damaging to a relationship.
When looking back on your marriage, think of what your ex’s love languages may have been and how they differ from your own. Did he or she do what you needed and did you, in turn? If not, it may be helpful to talk about love languages with future partners, so you know up front how you can help to keep the relationship alive.
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