Love Languages: Physical Touch

Who used to jam out to this song growing up?

“Does he love me, I want to know
How can I tell if he loves me so
Is it in his eyes?
Oh no! You’ll be deceived
Is it in his sighs?
On you! He’ll make believe
If you want to know if he loves you so
It’s in his kiss
That’s where it is”
Shoop Shoop, Betty Everett

Nobody?? Just me…well, that’s awkward!

I think it’s safe to say, Betty’s Love Language is Physical Touch! She’s straight up telling me, the way I know if my husband loves me so is in his kiss – in his physical touch. And seeing as this is my #1 Love Language, I’d have to agree with good ol’ Betty.

PHYSICAL TOUCH

Before we delve any further, I’m issuing a PSA – physical touch does not have to mean sex & only sex. Oh Lordy…I can’t believe I just said. My parents read this thing ya’ll… But seriously, it’s usually the first thing you think of when you think of physical touch. And while that’s GREAT & super vital for a healthy marriage, that’s not what I’m going to focus on today because…well my mom & dad read this!

In my non-professional opinion – this is the MOST POWERFUL Love Language. When it’s communicated well, it speaks VOLUMES & when it’s communicated poorly, or not at all – it can be so devastating. As humans, we are built for interaction & touch. When we’re deprived of that – our minds literally go haywire. Physical touch or the lack thereof will either communicate your love for your spouse or your hate for your spouse.

The Power of Touch

I love the way Dr. Chapman says it, “all touches are not created equal.” If Jordan gives me a pat on the back, it’s not going to communicate the same thing as if he were to give me a big hug & a kiss on the cheek. If you’re unsure of what your spouse perceives as a loving touch, just ask them! Seriously – I’m sure they’ll be more than excited to tell you. Poor Jordan, he can’t get me to STOP telling him…”Will you play with my hair? Will you rub my feet? Will you hold my hand? Will you tickle my arm?” I legit never stop. I guess I’m just needy like that – but hey, the first step is admitting you have a problem!

Not everything needs to be a big to-do either…I love when he holds my hand while we drive in the car or walk into a store. While I’m not huge on PDA, I don’t hate a small touch or kiss here and there. That can be a big issue with a lot of people, so maybe clear it with your spouse before you plant a wet one on them in front of their friends and family.

Crisis and Physical Touch

When my Grammy passed away in 2014 & my Aunt Stephanie in 2015 – almost exactly one year apart, I was devastated. My family is EVERYTHING to me & losing two inspirational, loving & kind women so close together, it was absolutely awful. Jordan was out of town when my Grammy passed & it was so hard without him there. I’ll never forget when he finally made it home & hugged me – I collapsed into his arms. He was there for me in one of the hardest losses of my life. For weeks after she passed away, I would cry myself to sleep & he would just silently hold me & pray. In those moments, our marriage grew so much stronger than I could have ever anticipated. In those moments, nothing mattered more to me than having him there comforting me.

And again, one year later when my Aunt Stephanie passed away. It was gut-wrenching to see my cousins lose their mom & my dad lose his sister. It still wrecks me to think about it. But I remember Jordan sitting on the couch with me in my Aunt Steph’s living room & holding me as I sobbed. Losing family members or friends is awful, just absolutely awful, but when you have a loved one there to hold & comfort you, it helps to ease the pain, even if it’s just a tiny bit.

So after reading this book, what have I learned? Love is something you do for SOMEONE ELSE, not for yourself. And like Dr. Chapman says, “When an action doesn’t come naturally to you, it is a greater expression of love.” Relationships take work. Marriage takes work. It may not come easy or natural to you or your spouse, but the time they invest in you and the time you invest in your marriage – it will reap GREAT rewards & GREAT benefits. It’s a choice you make each & every day. It’s not a one & done type of thing. Loving your spouse & loving them well is a choice you will make over & over & over & over again!

Tidbits if Your Spouse’s Love Language is Physical Touch*

*For the most part, I’m summarizing what they say in the book. If you want more in-depth examples, get yourself a copy!

  1. Hold your spouse’s hand – walking into a store, driving on a road trip, worshipping in church – the options are endless!
  2. What’s more loving than purchasing a gift for your spouse that will feel good to the touch? Maybe that really soft throw blanket she’s been eyeing, or those fluffy house slippers!
  3. Make a point to make a point of touching them. Stop him/her while he/she’s cooking dinner & look them in the eye. “I love you & you are amazing” & end it with a big hug and kiss.
  4. Much like #1 – holding hands while you pray. Whether it’s in church, at the dinner table or in bed at night.
  5. Mom, dad….stop reading & move on to #6!……….Sex. That’s a pretty obvious one right there!
  6. PDA – but in a tasteful & respectful way!
  7. If you’re away from your spouse for long periods of times because of work or deployment, handwritten letters go a long way! Send them a photo of you & the kids, something they can look at often.

Resources:

Words of Affirmation Blog
Quality Time Blog
Receiving Gifts Blog
Acts of Service Blog
Rise Together Podcast with Dr. Gary Chapman
Quiz
Book

 

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