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5 love languages of kids every parent should know and how to act upon it

Raising children is both a joy and a challenge. The joy comes from witnessing their unique personalities blossom, while the challenge lies in understanding their individual needs. One profound concept that has transformed the approach to child-rearing is the ‘love languages’. Delving into the love language meaning helps parents to communicate affection in a manner that resonates deeply with their child.

The theory of the 5 love languages isn’t just limited to romantic relationships; it extends to the bond between parents and children as well. In this post, we will explore the love languages list specifically tailored to kids and provide insights on how parents can act upon these love languages.

Also Read: 12 Tips for Raising Confident Kids

Love Language of Kids Meaning

At its core, the love language of kids pertains to the primary way through which they perceive and receive love. It’s the particular channel through which they feel most valued and understood. Identifying and understanding the dominant love language of your child can prove instrumental in nurturing a deep emotional connection.

Also Read: How to raise children who love learning: Tips and Advantages

The 5 Love Languages List for Kids

The concept of love languages was first developed by Dr. Gary Chapman in his book “The Five Love Languages”. While the original concept was tailored for couples, it has since been adapted to various relationships, including that between parents and their children. Understanding the love languages of kids can help parents better communicate their affection and support in ways their children will most resonate with.

Physical Touch

One of the most primal love language types, physical touch encompasses gestures like hugs, kisses, cuddles, and even a pat on the back. For children whose primary love language is physical touch, these gestures provide a profound sense of security and affection.

How to Act Upon It: Engage in regular cuddle sessions, offer hugs before bedtime, or simply pat your child on the back for a job well done. These physical affirmations will make them feel truly loved.

Words of Affirmation

Words have power. Compliments, words of encouragement, and verbal expressions of love mean the world to children who identify with this love language.

How to Act Upon It: Take a moment each day to express your appreciation. A simple “I’m proud of you” or “You’re special” can have a significant impact.

Quality Time

Time is one of the most valuable gifts we can offer. For kids with quality time as their dominant love language, undivided attention and shared activities are the key to their hearts.

How to Act Upon It: Set aside dedicated ‘us-time’, be it reading a book, playing a game, or taking a walk. The activity matters less than the focused attention you give.

Gifts

It’s not about materialism. For children whose love language is gifts, the act of receiving is a tangible representation of love and thoughtfulness.

How to Act Upon It: Give gifts, big or small, on occasions or just as a surprise. It could be a simple drawing or a toy they’ve wanted. Remember, it’s the thought and effort that counts.

Acts of Service

Actions often speak louder than words. For some kids, acts of service, like helping with their homework or preparing their favourite meal, are potent expressions of love.

How to Act Upon It: Pay attention to their needs and step in to help. It might be assisting with a school project or fixing a broken toy. These acts show you care.

Also Read: What Are the 5 Stages of Child Development and How to Foster Your Child’s Growth

Deciphering Your Child’s Primary Love Language

While it’s essential to express love in all the above ways, every child will have a dominant love language that resonates with them the most. To decipher it:

Observe Their Expressions of Love to Others

Often, children show love in the same way they desire to receive it. If your child frequently draws pictures as gifts for family members, it might suggest that ‘gifts’ is their primary love language. If they’re always hugging their siblings or friends, ‘physical touch’ could be their dominant language.

Pay Attention to Their Complaints or Pleas

Sometimes, the things they lament about can be hints towards their primary love language. If they frequently say things like, “You never play games with me,” it could suggest a need for ‘quality time.’ Or, if they often seem hurt by words or thrive on spoken encouragement, ‘words of affirmation’ might be their main language.

Test Out Each Love Language

Over a period, deliberately focus on expressing one love language at a time. Notice how they respond to each. For instance, spend a week where you focus primarily on ‘quality time,’ playing games, reading together, or just talking. The following week, centre on ‘acts of service,’ helping them with tasks or preparing their favourite meals. Their reaction to these focused efforts can give valuable insights.

Ask Open-Ended Questions

Engage your child in conversation about love and care. Questions like, “How do you know someone loves you?” or “What makes you feel the most special?” can provide direct insights into what they value most in expressions of love.

Reflect on Their Recurrent Needs

Does your child always crave cuddles before bedtime? Or do they treasure every small gift they receive, no matter how trivial? These consistent behaviours often align with their primary love language.

Seek Feedback from Other Caregivers

Teachers, grandparents, or other caregivers might have observed certain behaviours or preferences in different settings. They can provide additional perspectives that you might not have noticed.

Review Past Behaviour

Sometimes, looking back at past incidents can offer clarity. Think of moments when they seemed exceptionally hurt or exceptionally happy. What was the triggering event? Was it a missed school event (quality time) or perhaps a harsh word said in anger (words of affirmation)?

Stay Adaptable

As children grow and navigate various developmental stages, their primary love language might evolve or shift. It’s essential to remain observant and flexible, adapting to their changing emotional needs.

Also Read: How to Encourage Independence and Confidence in Your Kids

Understanding the love languages of kids is a transformative tool in a parent’s arsenal. EuroSchool believes that by tailoring parent’s expressions of affection to your child’s primary love language, you can foster a deeper emotional connection and ensure they feel truly valued and loved.

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