Love, relationships and other stuff

The ABC does reality TV much better than the commercial channels. When I watch I don’t feel feel like I’m being patronised and having advertising shoved down my throat every second of the program.... Which brings me to Making Couples Happy a four show series that has just finished on the ABC (although you can still catch it on iView). The premise of the show is to counsel struggling couples and seek to improve overall happiness in their relationships. The show had some great one liners. I won’t detail them here but it’s definitely worth watching for that alone.

I’ve enjoyed it because it’s helped me think about my relationships. I found that it held a mirror up to some of my own behaviors showing the effects of engrained ways of thinking and acting. As the show went on I increasingly identified with some of the subjects.

One of the more helpful things was to do with Five Love Languages. If you haven’t heard or read about them before, it pays to check that Wikipedia link out. The basics are pretty simple and you don’t need to read the book to glean very helpful information, and while it’s a Christian-ish book, the principles are secular and universally helpful regardless of what you believe.

In short everyone has one of five different love languages. The theory goes that your personal love language is the the one that you use by default when interacting with others. For example my love language is Words of Affirmation, therefore in my relationships I offer words of affirmation to others.

The problems begin when (for example) my wife’s language is Physical Touch. So where I keep telling her I love her (words) she just wants me to give her a hug. On the flipside she just gives me hugs when I need to hear her say she loves me. Therefore when it comes to showing our love we actually miss each other entirely. Finding this out for the first time was a revelation. I can still remember thinking back over my past relationships and realising for the first time why some of them had hit the proverbial fan.

I’ve also found this sort of stuff doesn’t just apply to “partner” style relationships but relationships in general. To best express appreciation for a colleague friend or student it’s sometimes worth making sure you’re speaking their "love language"... of course you need to be careful here.

To summarise I found both the Five Love Languages and Making Couples Happy series very helpful. And you dear reader, might just find it helpful too.



Nick G said... 3/14/2013 12:32 am  

Wow brand new Jolly! First comment. No big deal. I saw a bit of this but found it quite awkward to watch – but it looked like it was doing good things.

mike said... 3/14/2013 2:04 pm  

Thanks mate. Just a quiet update. I also found it awkward but in a good way.

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