Millionaire Matchmaker Trudy Gilbert Discusses This Essential Ingredient to a Happy Relationship
I was at a party at a close friend’s place over the holidays and got talking to another friend Amy. She was telling me the story of how things were tough with her husband’s business the past year with some major investments not paying off as expected. It had put some undue pressure on the marriage but as they are a pretty tight couple they were managing.
Her husband Jake is a great guy and everyone likes him. He’s that wise one in the group who you go to for advice and whom you would never go up against in Trivial Pursuit.
You Can Be Amazing and Still Not Get it Right
Even though it was a challenging year at work, Jake still made time to organise a family holiday and some gorgeous weekends away with Amy. He also had bought her this amazing necklace for her birthday. I was praising him to Amy telling her she was a lucky woman to have found Jake. Then she starts to tell me this story about how she had asked for a card on their anniversary and he didn’t write her one. Then more pleading but no card for her birthday to go with the necklace. She then made a demand to have him write her a card before the end of the year. When she went to bed on New Years Eve there was still no card. She got upset and wanted to know where her card was. Jake told her a weak story about knowing what to say but not having the time to find the right card blah blah blah. She lost it and said to him, “If I don’t wake up to a card by my bed you can move to the spare room because I’m filing for divorce.” I laughed at the absurdity but stopped when I realised she was serious. Through the haze of my second espresso martini, I realised what she was saying is that her love language is ‘words of affirmation’ and she needed that from him. Luckily Jake pulled his finger out and Amy woke to a folded A4 piece of paper by her bed with beautiful words of love for Amy.
Everyone expresses love a little differently, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Although it makes each partner interesting and new, it often means that two people can love each other deeply and attempt to express it, yet not feel loved themselves. How can that be? Clearly, what the world needed was a universal language of love and Gary Chapman, in his book, The 5 Languages of Love, took it upon himself to outline the different love languages which defined how each person felt adored.
The five love languages are:
Words of Affirmation
If your love language is words of affirmation, you probably cherish the memory of the first time your partner said the magic words “I love you”, and you’ve kept every card they’ve ever given you in a precious box. This love language is particularly common and can be expressed with compliments, declarations of love, or enhanced by a more creative expression like a poem.
Now, don’t mistake this one for materialistic. This love language sees anything gifted from the heart as sweet and romantic. If this is your love language, a gift from that special someone makes you feel appreciated and remembered, and it often means that if your partner forgets an anniversary or worse… your birthday, it stings that little bit more.
Acts of Service
I don’t know about you, but when someone says “I’ll take care of it” it makes my heart flutter. If your love language is acts of service, you also might have the motto “Actions speak louder than words” and little things like your partner fixing that old bench or cooking dinner without expecting anything other than your happiness, means the world to you. Acts of Service is the helping hand of love languages and can be satisfied by any meagre task performed with a smile. Keep in mind, how you perceive love is how you deliver it. So if you find yourself expressing love this way it means you look for it in your partner as proof of their love.
If you get thrilled about dates or even relaxing with your partner, quality time may just be your love language. Quality time can range from something as simple as cooking together, to the two of you taking a glamorous vacation. If this is your love language, setting up alone time for the two of you is what makes you tick and shows you that someone appreciates your company.
Does holding hands or a light brush over the shoulder make your heart skip a beat? Can you imagine nothing more comfortable than a hug? Then physical touch maybe your love language. Not just about sex or over the top PDA, people whose love language is physical touch value contact more than any word or gift and are easily reassured by a touch to the arm or a kiss on the cheek. If all that sounds like you, let your partner know that their touch is your favourite thing in the world.
Great. Now What?
OK, so you’ve found out what your language is. But what’s the point of that information? In his book, The 5 Languages of Love, Chapman suggests that although we respond, to a degree, to all languages, we have a primary and a secondary language that dominates. When you know your love language, it helps you to identify how you read love and how matched languages can make life much simpler and more contented.
So the easiest way, of course, is to find someone with the same love language as you. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to find someone who shares the same primary and secondary love language. So as a couple, it’s imperative to discuss what makes you and your partner happy and how you can cater to their love language. Even if their love language isn’t important to you, remember that it’s important to them. Just because you don’t care about gifts, doesn’t mean you can ignore birthdays when it matters to her… but hold on there gift lover… if your man responds to words of affirmation then don’t be surprised when he treasures the card you wrote for him over the Omega you just blew 15k on.
When you understand how you love you ultimately understand more about yourself. Your love language will teach you how you communicate, how you express yourself and how well you’ll connect in your next relationship. Even if you and your partner don’t share your primary love language, knowing what you need and what your partner needs may just kindle or save your next relationship.