The 5 Love Languages

The 5 Love Languages

Love is patient, love is kind...
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I've recently started taking a class over the month of January at Messiah called The Foundations of Marriage and Family. Now when I tell people the title of my class, I get one of two responses.

A: the person looks intrigued and say something to the extent of, "That sounds interesting!" or B: they look at me strangely and ask if I'm preparing to get married and start a family. I've always been incredibly interested in different aspects of marriage and family life and how to improve my relationships and communication skills with others.

My class recently started talking about Gary Chapman's The 5 Love Languages. I discovered the 5 Love Languages website this summer when one of my friends suggested that we all take the test and find out what our love language was. The way this works is, you take a questionnaire and at the end, it ranks the 5 Love Languages (words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch) into the order in which you receive and give the best and most often.

Not only is this a fun activity to do with your friends or with your partner, but it is also super important when it comes to understanding any sort of relationship. People give and receive love so differently and sometimes we can make the mistake of thinking that someone is upset with us or doesn't love us as much as we love them. Most of the time this isn't the case, it is just the fact that the other person gives and receives love differently than you do.

1. Words of Affirmation

The first love language is words of affirmation. People with this love language need to be verbally encouraged. Compliments mean the world to these types of people. This person is empathetic and tries to see the world from their partner's perspective. Verbal acts of forgiveness are important to these people as well. How often do you tell those you love in your life how much you appreciate them? How about verbally apologizing and trying to make things right? Being an encouraging friend or partner is so important in a relationship and provides a sense of trust to all involved.

2. Quality Time

People who have this love language value meaningful time with the people they care most about. Making sure the time is focused and there are little to no distractions is key. It doesn't necessarily have to be doing an activity together. People with this love language are also a huge fan of quality conversation. Finding an activity that both you and your loved one can enjoy together is not only tons of fun, but healthy for a relationship.


3. Receiving Gifts

This love language puts a huge value on giving tokens of love. It is usually not the monetary value of a gift, but the sentimental value that is the most important to this type of person. Giving the gift of yourself and your time is another way to show love in the most effective way to this love language. Everyone loves to be appreciated and gifts are always nice. It is truly the little things that matter most.

4. Acts of Service

This one is actually my personal love language and I believe it is the most misunderstood. In many cases, people don't think of doing something such as doing the dishes one night or picking up something at the grocery store an important demonstration of love. But for the busy mom, dad, or college student, checking anything off of our to-do list would be hugely appreciated (and may even bring us to tears). Thinking of things you can do to make someone's day a little brighter is never a bad idea.

5. Physical Touch

Touch is a super powerful thing. It can be a great way of communicating feelings as well as love for each other. Touch shows faithfulness and commitment towards one another. When this person has a bad day, something as simple as a warm embrace can be a game changer.

http://www.5lovelanguages.com/

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Dukehart

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.
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Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.


Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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The Truth About Dating A Girl With An Anxiety Disorder

She knows how annoying she can be, but she just prays you love her regardless of her flaws.

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Anxiety: A nervous disorder characterized by a state of excessive uneasiness and apprehension, typically with compulsive behavior or panic attacks.

The definition makes it sound really daunting. Truthfully, there is no one way to describe generalized anxiety disorder if you have it. It is hard to live with, hard to cope with and unfortunately, really hard to date with.

Girls with anxiety are different than the average girl when it comes to relationships. That's just an honest statement, no matter how much it hurts me to say it.

We need the constant reminder that you love us, even though we know in our hearts that you do. We panic when you don't answer your phone, in fear that we did something wrong. We care about your feelings when you say that we don't need to worry and we need to be a little calmer. But it's so damn hard.

It isn't easy to love someone who worries about everything 24/7. Half the time, we know we shouldn't be doing the things we do. We know we shouldn't blow up your phone or ask just one more time if you are mad at us. But we can't help it. It says it right in the definition: compulsive behavior due to excessive uneasiness.

Being with a girl with anxiety is probably downright exhausting. It's exhausting for us to have our minds constantly running and worrying. But I promise it's worth it.

We come to you with everything because you are the one person who always knows how to make us feel better. When we are happy, you are the one person we want to be happy with. We all know the constant reassurance, reminders and the same old arguments get old. It gets old to us too.

There was never a time I wanted to have a panic attack because my boyfriend wasn't answering his phone. In my head, I knew where he was because he was usually in the same three places. I knew he wasn't mad at me because I didn't do anything to make him upset. I knew how busy he was with his classes and he was probably studying and I needed to give him space. But the little voice in my head always argued, "What if you did something wrong? What if he's ignoring you because he's angry? What if he's seen your messages and calls, but no longer wants to be with you?" And then I give in. I call, I text, I cry, I panic. Only to feel even worse 10, 30 or 50 minutes later because you answer angrily, telling me what I already knew after I did what I knew I shouldn't have done.

Having anxiety is almost like having a drug addiction. You know all the things that trigger you. You know all the ways to stay away from the bad places in your mind so you don't end up relapsing. But you do anyway and it hurts worse every single time.

Dating a girl with anxiety is as hard as it gets, but she will love you like no other. She is so incredibly thankful for all the things you put up with to be with her. Because she is worried about being loved, she goes the extra mile to always remind you how much you are loved. She always asks if you are ok because she cares about the answer and knows what it's like not to be ok.

The truth is that dating anybody with anxiety is difficult, but it isn't impossible. You get back everything you put in, even though you may not realize it. Trust me, she is sorry for being the annoying, crying, worried, naggy mess and it embarrasses her because she knows better and she wants to be better for you. But please love her. Hold her, understand her, listen to her, calm her, be there for her. In your heart, you know she would turn around and do all the same things for you in a heartbeat.

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