Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The languages of love - what is yours?

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I have come across this a few times, how do you want your partner to show love to you. There is even a book called the five languages of love. Read the scenario below and let's discuss...


Chioma and Obinna have been going out for six months. For Chioma, it's been a wonderful experience. Obinna is honest, attentive, caring, supportive and generous - a refreshing change from the lowlifes that she has dated in the past. Add to that that he is well-built, intelligent and good-looking, and she can truly say that he is the perfect person for her, except for just one thing...

When Chioma started going out with Obinna, she noticed immediately that he was not very expressive, quite stoic in fact. She didn't mind this at the time, especially because some of the guys she had been out with in the past had been smooth talkers - and where did that get her when she found that they had been using their silver tongues to get other girls on the side? So she was glad Obinna was matter-of-fact, their relationship had started after months of platonic friendship while working together.

But now it was beginning to get on her nerves. Chioma loves hearing expressions of endearment as much as she loves saying them. Hearing those three magic words "I love you" from someone that she really cares for never fails to light up her day. Obinna had only said it once, a day she had kicked up a fuss after a major disagreement. She decided they had to talk again about this. She told Obinna that oh, she didn't want to nag, but he knew that saying he loved her really made her happy. Maybe he could say it more often, send her some love notes or poems, even be more receptive of her public displays of affection.

Obinna responded by saying that she knew the kind of person he was when they started dating. Honestly, he said, he had never been the demonstrative kind of person; he grew up in an environment where such displays of emotion were discouraged or not practiced. He was not used to it, it made him uncomfortable and he preferred their affairs being private. Besides, he continued, it wasn't as if he didn't show her how much he loved her in other ways, like spending quality time with her, doing things for her when she needed help or support and buying her gifts.

Chioma said that she truly appreciated these gestures, but she didn't really understand how difficult it could be just to open your mouth and express how you felt or even write it down. So she didn't really think she was asking for that much. Obinna countered by saying that it wasn't fair for her to prescribe to him how he should express his love to her. How would she feel if he told her that she must wash all his clothes, cook for him all the time and clean after him to show how much she loved him? But she wasn't insisting, Chioma retorted...

The discussion did not end conclusively, and for Chioma, the issue still lingers. Obinna knows this, and has asked whether he should record his voice saying "I love you" so that she can hear that as an alarm ring tone on her phone when she wakes up, but Chioma thinks that is a sign that he is treating the matter unseriously. She doesn't know whether she should look elsewhere as Obinna doesn't look like changing his stance, or whether she should just learn to live with it...


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  1. 2nd

    i don't know men! don't know anything about love apart from what's in the bible?

    can she see herself with him 40 years from now?

  2. hmmmm....to be completely honest i don't see the big deal, only cos i'm like Obinna, i will do everything for you and might never say the word -i'm more open to saying it to friends than to the man i'm with, besides its been 6months, so whats the rush? he might get there naturally....i don't think its a make or break issue, and i will say pick your battles - but thats just me
    read the five languages of love, its pretty good and accurate i think

  3. Lol chioma is not serious..
    That's some serious insecurity, why should he say 'I love u' when it is obvious that he does??
    By making it an issue, anytime he now tells her he loves her she will start to question if he's saying it because it's a rule or if he's genuinely saying it

  4. Azazel,

    But is it really obvious?

    If I said "Akrouogho emele unghazi njibijibijibi"* to you, should I expect you to walk around with a big grin on your face for the rest of the day?

    *Means "You are the complete man to whom all other lesser men must bow" in the Ngubuta langugage.

  5. My love language is also words of affirmation. They mean a whole lot to me. Chioma has to exercise patience. She just has to communicate to obinna how much those words mean to her and he'll work towards it.

  6. I've read "The Five Love Languages" and it is a big deal. Everyone interpets love differently....and when in a relationship we should consider each other's "love language" and pratice it...for example one of mine is quality time...Yes I like gifts etc....but to me, having you taking the time out to sit down and spend a few hrs with me and just chill....means a lot to me....I truly think Chioma and Obinna really need to have another sit down and discuss the importance because it'll eventually cause a breakdown in the relationship sooner then later...

  7. im more like chioma and my cousin was like obinna. she just cudnt express herself to anyone...yet she argued she'd be different with her kids. I had a long talk with her though she didnt agree. I'd subtly drop hints about it and just continue being express with her...Now shes picked it up, still not much but a huge difference from before, shes expressive even when im not and in no mood to be lol :) i realise this is about lovers but bottom line same scenario.
    It is possible to get Obinna to be more expressive but in the event he is the exception well, she'd better get used to it fast.

  8. learning to speak ur mates primary love language is xtremely impt in a rlatnshp. i fink obinna shld put in mre effort. For me,i love quality time die. Even if we aint doing nada,jst having dat time 2geda does it 4 me.

  9. I don't think Chioma should be worried since he does other things to make her know he does.

  10. I struggle with this one because I think I'm more likely to be Obinna. I think I have issues with 'I love you' being too casual so hence I struggle to say it. I prefer gestures to be loving, but aish it's a tricky one.

  11. i dont think u can find "it all" in one man so if u have one that ticks off all the other boxes but the one that says punctuate evry sentence with i love u, i dont see what ur complainin abt.

    the last guy i dated was big on I love u's so much that the words began to lose meaning

    I love u, good mornin
    i just called to say i love u
    Ur fly is open, i love u

    Haba! i think u should save it small so that each time i hear it, it's special. Besides LOVE IS A VERB, so if Obinna is showing it, whats the issue

    PS: i'm stealing that expression in that language. Thank u!

  12. pps: my love language is GIFTS! ;)

  13. hmm, tricky, but simple.. she either accepts him or leaves.. its that simple.. you can't change tht kind of guy you just have to accept him that way or you both start having problems.. nice write up..
    please i need you attention on my post 'save our soul"its urgent.. thank you ever so much.

  14. My language of love.. hmmm say it and then do it... should not end with saying, I need to see the actions oh.. lol.

    But then again the language of love is usually actioned by imperfected people. No one is perfect, its more of can she compromise with the imperfections? hmmm

    Have a great week girl.. and well done with the book.. I am doing my quarterly book club book buying and this will be one of the reads.. yeeeah!

    Much love x

  15. Ahhh yes, i have read the book by Gary Chapman. However, i read the one for married couples instead of singles lol. But i loved it, it really made me open to appreciating the ways different people express their love to me. Mine is quality time!

  16. I like actions better..though words *cough* rarely assure me.

  17. she should accept d a;arm stuff 1st, its a step

  18. wow, food for thought! Just wanted to let you know I always appreciate your sweet comments :)

  19. What Atala said is on point. Understanding the way your partner receives love is KEY!! Doesn't matter what you're saying if i don't understand the language you're speaking.

    That said...it's been 6months. They are going to have to give and take. Chi should calm down small and Obi might have to learn to do better...

  20. "too much talking bring lies" is a yoruba saying. "actions speak louder than words" is an english saying

  21. I'm quit concerned that the above posters all echo the 'get used to it chioma' opinion

    It smacks of selfishness to me when a partner can't be bothered to make an effort for the one they claim they love.. love is a lot of things including compromise..it's not too much to make an effort to love your partner the way they appreciate love

    Granted, obinna isnt used to verbalising his emotions..he can learn, he can try..little steps over time..why is chioma expected to get used to not feeling loved? knowing it in her head is different, she's not receiving it..

    Bottom line is people receive love in different manners, it's no use asking one to receive love the way you think they should..

    Compromise in a relationship is not too much to ask..is it?

  22. I love a guy who can express their love for their woman anywhere both public and in private,my husband not excluded.

    I think Chioma should chill a bit, Obinna needs sometime and he would open up to her at the right timing.Some people are raised to love in secret, Obinna needs to open up more knowing he might lose Chioma in the long run if he keeps too quiet.

  23. Why is everyone saying Obinna needs some time? HE LOVES HER ALREADY, or so he said.

    The problem here is that he doesn't express it, at least in her opinion. I am annoyed so many of you are telling her to "deal with it". Really? Why can't he "deal" with the fact that she likes to hear it expressed?

    Some of you are saying its "only" 6 months...really? How many relationships have y'all been in? Do you realize that as time goes by the "shine" starts fading and the real work begins to maintain the relationship? If he's not saying it now when things are supposedly all rosy when the hell is he going to say it? 3 years from now?

    Mehn please.

    I am not saying he should say it every 5 secs, but if he cares about her as much as he supposedly does then he will TRY. The alarm clock thing has to be a joke. When I read that I laughed!

    I'm sure if she breaks up with him over this he will get pissed off and say she is being "immature" or something, but the truth is people need certain things. Breakups aren't just over "cheating" or "money issues". Little things matter as well!


  24. what happened,cat cut his tongue? he should talk something jo :-p

  25. @Remi, thank you very much! Please let me know what you think when you're done reading.

    On this topic, I think Obinna should learn the love language that seems to hold the greatest weight for his partner. Relationship is give and take, she doesn't have to force him but he should be willing to meet her halfway. Baby steps and being open to change are more important than trying to defend his position.

    As for Chioma, I think she is right raising the issue, (and six months is not only, people get married after less time) better she does so now than swallow it. Then after the honeymoon period wears off, she can't bear it anymore. Communication is very important and I like that she brought it up in a non-confrontational manner.

  26. i am with omobolanle and EDJ

    i am a girl that expresses love fully by writing ans saying and in character
    i expect that in return
    there is nothing like the assurance that ur loved ones has no qualms in expressing his love to u anywhere anytime
    its a comfortable feeling
    and just hearing i love u from his lips can heal a whole lotta hurt

    love is about give and take
    obinna shud try to give a little
    am sure if he evens show a lil effort she'd be happy....

  27. So many comments...I'll say like myne..that communication is extremely important. Its good that she brought it up and not assumed that its his style of expression and she has to live with it.

    However, Obinna really needs to understand his woman's love language becos she wont feel loved until it has been expressed in that way. For love's sake, he has to "find a way" to come out of his shell...It can be gradual, maybe not saying it first...He could send her text messages and write simple stuff untill he gets comfortable to say it. At least it gives her the feeling that he's making the extra effort.

    The love language thing is a big deal o...it has destroyed relationships and even marriages.

    I'll just say they should both sit down and talk about it...maybe even read the book if they have not.

    Myne...you rock!!

  28. i dont even know what to type cos anything about love get me confused noawadays

  29. Omobolanle and EdJ are right on point. Love is all about compromising. Compromise is only bad if you veer to far from your values.

    Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;

    It does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. It's in the Bible.

    You can't have a meaningful relationship if one person feels like there is something missing. Obinna needs to consider opening a bit more to satisfy Chioma. It's the little things that matter. Saying it once in awhile takes nothing away from him. If chioma loves him truly, she should talk to him kindly and express how much it matters to her. If he still doesnt listen then she needs to bounce.

  30. nice piece, myne.
    my comment: no no no! she shouldn't continue with what she's only tolerating ... cuz honestly, tolerance (and patience) has its own elastic limit too! i - for one, am a totally expressive person and it can be such an ouch! when my 'i love you-s' are followed by ... silence?! what da ...?! hellz noz! thanks, but no thanks. guys should learn to speak our language (in words) while we follow suit (in actions, innit?) fair enough? regards ...

  31. a friend of mine was in this shoes for a long time, guy wouldn't even have some endearment for her , meanwhile, she's a die-hard romantic..it wasn't easy o but she learnt that expressing herself to him in those ways led him to believe and understand that that's what she loved and gradually he changed..

    so i wld only say..Chi, nagging isnt gonna solve nada, just show him what you mean and he's most likely to reciprocate..

  32. This comment has been removed by the author.

  33. @histreasure

    I am going to generalize a bit, but MEN are not like women. They DO NOT understand "subtle hints". IF she doesn't say anything he will probably NEVER see something wrong until the day she can't handle it. Then he will say she is being irrational and ask where "all this is coming from?".

    Ladies, if you will listen to anything else I've written. NEVER EVER assume that he will see something like this just because you are doing what you expect him to do. TELL HIM. TELL HIM.

    Have that conversation. Don't assume eventually he will change. In fact I'm going to write a blog post about this and share my experiences.

    Chioma is not nagging because she brought up a legitimate request. This is something important to her.

  34. lol @ obinna suggesting putting 'i love you' as her ringtone. dude has a sense of humor. lol

    personally, chioma needs to stop worrying. dude loves her, she should learn to accept him as he is. it's going to be tough sha - am still struggling to come to terms with my own husband's love language.

  35. Hi.. please I need to discuss with you privately.. could you send you email add to fit2bimi@yahoo.co.uk
    please.. I really I'm waiting for your reply, thank you so much

  36. Hi Myne!!!

    My two pence worth is that you need to appreciate the guy you started dating. If you know he was likethis when you entered, why kick up a fuss now? Some guys really can't be verbally expressive but if he shows it in other ways can't she try and understand? I think it would be hard to break up with someone over this one issue.

  37. For those of you who say that Obinna should learn to say 'I love you' to Chioma, does it matter HOW he says it?

    I mean, must he look dreamily into her eyes with a hint of a smile and whisper it seductively to her?

    Or is it OK if he just blurts it out so that she just manages by luck to catch it?

    I don't quite see why the 'alarm clock' idea is seen as a joke. After all, people do send each other pre-recorded messages through cards - it's not as the messages are any less valuable because they are not being written at the time of reading.

  38. This has cast my mind back to the days of watching TBN with Mumsy in Naija... Joyce Meyer used to preach about this! Brainwave... Myne, if you don't mind, I would love to do a post about this... Permission to steal???

  39. I wanted to add my own two cents, but this topic I see it has already been thoughly analysed lol..I agree with Omobolanle *Compromise is key*

  40. Thanks for the comments, I loved the different ideas and opinions.

    @F, please feel free. I'll be coming over to read.

  41. Compromise is the key.

    I don't see the big deal why he must say I love you to her all the time especially as he shows he cares in several other ways. Actions speak louder than words. I personally think too many people get too carried away with all this "I love you" business. If it wasn't for that maligned phrase, a lot of people wouldn't be having their hearts broken left and right. She had better not make the mistake of leaving him just cos she equates "I love you" with truly being loved. What does it take? 2 seconds to type; 2 seconds to say. Anyone can say that!

    That being said, since it's a big deal for her to hear it sha and he truly loves her; then he can go ahead and incorporate "I love you" into his daily routine.

    We can't demand perfection at all times from other people. Understanding requires Chioma to also chill out. If the way to start is to accept "I love you" as an alarm clock, then so be it ..... even if he meant it as a joke initially. In conclusion, I somehow think Chioma is in a relationship while Obinna truly loves her. Spot the difference!

  42. I have read the book too as well as five languages of apology by the same author. I have come discover that there are languages that acceptable to different kinds of people.

    For a relationship to be successful, it requires work from both parties. Learning to be fluent in the love language of your partner is one of such works that must be put in should be looking for success in your relationship.

    Physical touch is my primary love language, followed by quality time. My lady's 'handy work (or smthn), we have both started learning how to ensure we are fluent in each others. This is believe is a pathway to success in a relationship :)

    - LDP

  43. Understanding your partner's love language is really important in the relationship and something that needs to be continually worked at.

    Mine is words of affirmation and physical touch, whereas his is quality time. So we both have to ensure that we are demonstrating our love in a way the other understands.

  44. I thought love was about compromise and sacrifice.

    Guys like that care, but never show it the way women expect.

    it shouldn't be an argument.

    They both have work to do, he can try a little and she should also look out for his own way of expressing his love for her.

    Especially for the fact that she met him that way.

  45. Obinna is so much like me, I'm not expressive and that does not mean I'm not in love with that person, she should just accept him for who he is as he can never change.

  46. Obinna is so much like me, I'm not expressive and that does not mean I'm not in love with that person, she should just accept him for who he is as he can never change.

  47. Love Love Love Wonderful Love. Hmm.

  48. I must say Myne, I've really been enjoying your love theme this month, have learnt a lot, keep it up!

  49. Hmm... this is food for thought. I don't think it's worth Chioma dumping Obinna for, especially since he's pretty much perfect.

    I think she should be the change that she wants to see: tell him she loves him, leave little notes and cards, send him little gifts, as well as loving him in his language. I think he'll reciprocate - it's human instinct, even if it is not his first (love) language.

    They can both become conversational in a second language even if fluent in their first language.

  50. Loving the amount of feedback support you are getting here, Myne!

    I encourage all your readers to go to Amazon.com once they've read your book. Review the book people! tag it, create listmania lists for this novel. This is something I need more of too with my book.

    Take Myne to the top. Make it happen by posting her book on your sites.

    Myne, I don't know if you've suggested these steps to your readers. Just in case you feel it is asking too much, feel free to post the steps on the left side of your blog with my name on it.

  51. Thank you so much Katlynne. I never thought of that but I will try it as you say and see what happens. I see your book is really moving up on Amazon, congrats.

    Thanks again.

  52. I think they both have points though, maybe he should be a little more affectonate, you know compromise.

    Lol @ the "i love you" recording.

    Anyway thats why we have romantic songs abi...she can listen to those ones.

  53. I feel chioma

    My primary love language is also words of affirmation followed by gifts, followed my quality time...before the rest

  54. I hope I am not too late to this party? Speaking the language of your partner is important as it keeps you both on the same page. Chioma wants Obinna to speak her love language but is she speaking his own love language? Telling Obinna she loves him with words might not do anything for him if that isn't his own primary love language. Badgering someone to speak your love language might come across as condemning them and they might think you feel their love is not enough and sometimes make them withdraw. Love stimulates love. Chioma should express her love for him in his own love language, regularly. After a while, they can visit that conversation again and I am very sure he will be willing to give it a try without her feeling like he is taking it lightly because he is feeling her love. It seems like his own love language is acts of service, she could try expressing her love to him in his own primary love language without it just being another chore. I speak English but that is not the only I speak or I am fluent at, same goes for love.


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