Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Physical Touch

Hugs, pats on the back, hand holding—all show “excitement, concern, care, and love” to someone who is Physical Touch (“The 5 Love Languages”). As I mentioned in the previous post, sometimes women jump to the conclusion that they are Acts of Service because they enjoy help around the house. I think some men assume they are Physical Touch because they like…you know: marital relations.

If Physical Touch is your love language, you desire for touch will go beyond sexual intimacy. You will find yourself hugging friends, patting people on the back, roughhousing with your kids, sitting as close as you can on the couch with someone special. One of the ways I know my husband really is Physical Touch is because he touches even his guy friends often: from hugs to shoves.

Dr. Chapman says it’s hard to pinpoint a child’s love language when he or she is under two, and that it is important to speak all languages to your kids as they form their language. Still, Jack (my two-and-a-half-year-old) has been obsessed with physical contact since he was born. The colicky baby needed to be held close, bounced, and whacked slightly-beyond-gently on the back for most hours of the day and too many hours of the night. These days, he adores hugs and kisses: from family, friends, strange babies, and even “beautiful girls” he doesn’t yet know but wants to. (I’m already praying God puts purity high in this boy’s heart!)

Once I was talking about this love language in a class. A student and I were both wondering why, scoring so high in Physical Touch, we are often reserved. We wondered if, mixed with our introvert status, we were naturally more cautious. She explained she held Physical Touch in such a high regard that it took someone being quite dear to her (“in my inner circle”) to get her love in that way.

A discussion with your spouse or some time thinking over how you treat a friend is in order if you aren’t both Physical Touch.  Any time you are speaking outside of your native tongue, you will find you have to make a concerted effort. Physical Touch is no different. Rethink where you sit as you watch television together, hold hands when you say grace, hug when he comes home from work, kiss when she has washed the dishes. With Physical Touch, distance can bring resistance, and nearness can mean dearness. 

 Jack hugging his best friend Malachi

 sweet brothers

 giving his Nana Sugie and unsolicited hug

 one of my mom's favorite photos of Jack randomly kissing his cousin Charlie

an old favorite of Jack and Jonas
Before bed each night, Jack and I snuggle in my bed and watch cartoons.

Chapman, Gary. The 5 Love Languages. Chicago: Northfield, 1995. Print.

“The 5 Love Langugages.” The 5 Love Languages. Moody Publishers. n.d. Web. 11 May 2012.

this post is linked up with


friday favorite things | finding joy


  1. I haven't read this book yet and I really need to do that! Great post! :)

    Mindy @ New Equus - A New Creation

  2. Ahhhhh. Love the pictures. Both my guys love to cuddle. Part of it is their need for pressure (both have autsim) and the other part they just love to cuddle and kiss. I really need to get this book out.

  3. Loved this book! I think I need to revisit it! Over from Finding Joy, thanks for linking up!

  4. Appreciate you linking up for Faithfully Parenting Friday....still need to get this book! never thought about love in these ways...