The Importance Of Embracing A Son’s Love Language

Learning children's love language

I love my son, Jakim, who is now 13yrs old; my how the time flies. I loved him madly before he was born, for he is our miracle baby. And though my love and how I expressed it was clear to me, I want to share how I came to learn and embrace my son’s love language for me, and how you can benefit by doing the same.

While living in Germany, I found myself pregnant with our only son. At 15 weeks, my water broke and I was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance. When we arrived that night, no one spoke English and I was terrified. Through the terror, I prayed for the life of my baby. I stood on God’s promises that he would live. He did live and arrived 6 weeks before his due date. In the NICU, I fed him from my breastmilk and he grew like a little weed. He stayed in the NICU for 10 days before I signed him out against medical advice (In Germany, they wanted him to stay until his due date).

Fast forward to February 2016 and my son is now reciprocating that love and care towards me. He loves hearing the stories of how I took care of him as a baby. He always tells me, he will take care of me just like that. He tells me how he has to “set kids straight” when they make jokes about me being bald. When he tells me these things, you can see the love shining from his eyes as my protector. Since he is taller than me now, he is always asking can he grab something for me from the top shelf in the pantry or in the linen closet. He now asks to wash my car or even make me a snack when he sees me working late into the night on my business. He recently started adding alarms on my cell phone to remind me to get up and go to the gym as well as alarms to unplug for the night, to read a book, or to get some sleep.

Initially I was annoyed and thought, “Why is this boy constantly trying to tell me what to do when I’m the parent?” I would tell him he was being too grown or that he was bordering on being disrespectful. However, the light bulb clicked on while I was driving one day. I clearly heard, “That is Jakim’s Love Language. Embrace it”. I was floored. I had no idea this was his way to show he loves me. I went to my son that evening and apologized for fussing at him for “telling me what to do”. I told him that I truly appreciate the fact that he is looking out for me. I think he grew an extra 3 inches tall in that moment. He graciously said, “It’s okay mom.”

Also Related: Do You Know Your Love Language?

Since that recent conversation, he has stepped up his game to show me he loves me. When he went to the mall with a friend and his friend’s mom, she said he searched every jewelry store for the perfect bead for me. I had no idea he spent his birthday money to buy me a beautiful bead for my Pandora bracelet. I wear that bracelet every day.

During this month, I want you to think about and even look for the ways your teens show their love towards you. It may be hidden in subtle things but they are still just as important and just as valid. Acknowledge and embrace your teens love language and watch your relationship grow.

Out of the 5 love languages depicted in Gary Chapman’s book (words of affirmation, acts of service, receiving gifts, quality time, and physical touch), which one have you noticed your child respond most to?

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35 Comments

  • Reply
    Christine St.Vil
    February 12, 2016 at 12:30 AM

    OMG Tanya, this post brought tears to my eyes. What an amazing young man you and your hubby have raised. My kids are young but you’ve encouraged me to start tuning into what their love languages are (although I think I have an idea). Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Reply
      Anitra Durand Allen
      February 12, 2016 at 12:56 AM

      There’s a book for kids and one for teenagers. There is also an assessment for kids online. I use this all the time in my coaching. It’s an awesome way to learn to parent your children as individuals. #parentingthatworks

    • Reply
      Tanya
      February 12, 2016 at 10:56 AM

      Thanks Christine! He is such a protector. Especially with me being bald, he wants to make sure he takes care of me even more. Thank you for letting me share his story.

  • Reply
    Anitra Durand Allen
    February 12, 2016 at 12:55 AM

    I love The 5 Love Languages. My girls are very different and it helps me to parent them effectively as individuals. My older daughter is very difficult to read, but I know touch is primary. She responds to touch positively, but she responds negatively to harsh words, so I know that’s a high one too. My youngest prefers praise and acts of service. That took a while to get adjusted to, because it presents as laziness or disobedience. Thanks for this post.

    • Reply
      Tanya
      February 12, 2016 at 11:02 AM

      Yes, I found it it is so important to know their individual ways of giving love and receiving love. My kids are 24, 15, and 13 so I learned real quickly that they each respond differently. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Millie
    February 12, 2016 at 2:03 AM

    This post made me cry. It is too sweet. My son is just 2 years old, but I know he shows me he loves me by planting surprise kisses on my cheek, and wanting to dancing around with me!This is a beautiful post!

    • Reply
      Tanya
      February 12, 2016 at 10:54 AM

      Yes, I love it. Baby kisses are the best kisses. They become sweeter as they grow up. Cherish every moment! Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    Kemkem
    February 12, 2016 at 4:19 AM

    I’m not a mom, but this post really touched me. You are so lucky to have such a caring and wonderful son. My junior brother was also a preemie and l remember my mum’s stories of when he was born. She said she actually steeled herself for the bad news, and of course she had to take care of the 7 older ones. Wouldn’t you know the little scrapper pulled through 🙂 and is still a pain in my butt at 48 :-). I wish more people would take time out to count their blessings instead of whining.

    • Reply
      Tanya
      February 12, 2016 at 11:04 AM

      AWW Kemkem, thanks hun! I do count my blessings because circumstance could have been another way. He blesses me everyday with his thoughtfulness. I am thankful I am allowed to be his mom.

  • Reply
    Donna Shana
    February 12, 2016 at 11:53 AM

    Awhhh, this was so sweet. You know we talk and hear about spouses love languages, but who ever considered knowing it for your kids. Definitely something to keep in mind for everyone that we love! Thanks for sharing

    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:10 PM

      Absolutely! We are growing them up to be adults. I want my kids to be effective communicators and to be able to love freely. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jay | Relaxed Thairapy
    February 12, 2016 at 1:26 PM

    This would be a great read for my friend with 3 sons.
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    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:11 PM

      Please share! Boys love way differently than girls. Acknowledge and embrace!

  • Reply
    Marcia Shannon 52
    February 12, 2016 at 5:44 PM

    Wow! Just the other day my daughter told me about that book. I wish I knew this when my children were younger ( they are all adults now) but it is never too late. Thank you for such an inspiring blog post!
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    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:25 PM

      They have a series for various relationships. I love the marriage books, which all 4 made me cry when I read them.

  • Reply
    Porshia La'Shae
    February 12, 2016 at 6:39 PM

    This is an awesome post and I can relate with having 2 teen boys (ages 19 and 17). It is such an amazing feeling to have wonderful young men. Thanks for sharing your story of you magnificent son.

    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:38 PM

      Yes and AMEN! We have to uplift and encourage our sons to love and express love. I tell my son real men wear pink and they cry. I love that your boys are just as awesome as mine! My prayer is that God will bless them fully for being good sons.

  • Reply
    Shantel Collins
    February 13, 2016 at 9:14 AM

    I don’t have a son but I have nephews and living with them I’ve come to learn how they express love and emotions. I’m going to share this post with my sister.

    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:40 PM

      Awesome! I have come to realize that we sometimes get caught up raising kids but not actually taking the time to parent them. I hope she enjoys this blog also.

  • Reply
    Mimi "MimiCuteLips" Green
    February 13, 2016 at 1:27 PM

    This post speaks to me 100%. My son is 11 and we are so in this space right now. I didn’t like him for a minute because of puberty and age. He is maturing a bit now and our relationship is growing and I so love and appreciate the place that we are in right now.
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    • Reply
      Christine St.Vil
      February 14, 2016 at 10:00 PM

      That’s awesome Mimi! I can’t believe my son will be there in just a few years so I know that time will go by really quickly!

    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:42 PM

      Amen Mimi! I love our space too. He is still “ALL” boy but his love language is so tender and worthy to be cherished. Enjoy your little man!

  • Reply
    Jamila
    February 14, 2016 at 3:35 AM

    I’m not a parent yet, but this was a great and touching read.
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    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:45 PM

      Thanks Jamila! Oftentimes, we overlook our teens but they should always be on our radars. If they don’t receive and give love at home, they will search in all the wrong places. I want my kids to know I love and appreciate them.

  • Reply
    Kara
    February 14, 2016 at 11:14 PM

    What a loving young man. This post touched me. I have a 10 year old and although he still whines a bit I see how much he’s maturing.
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    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:47 PM

      Kara, he still whines every now and again but he is definitely growing out of that. I make a point to acknowledge even the smallest thing he does and it makes his self esteem inflate. I love it. Enjoy your lil guy!

  • Reply
    femi
    February 15, 2016 at 1:48 AM

    This was such a touching post. My daughter is almost two and all I can ever think about is how I realized I was pregnant, praying for a healthy baby and having a stressful labor (3 days!!!!). All the same, I love her to pieces. It’s amazing how we watch our children grow.
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    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:49 PM

      Femi, I know! That love continues to grow as they grow. I have 3 kids(ages 24, 15, 13) and I love each of them just as hard but in their language. It took time for me to figure out each ones but it was so worth it.

  • Reply
    Kim
    February 15, 2016 at 10:51 AM

    My husband and I, when we first started to date read this book together, and categorized our love language for each other. our daughter’s Love Language(s) are definitely Quality time and receiving gifts.

    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:51 PM

      Kim, I actually read the series when my marriage was in a bad place. I laughed and cried while reading them. I learned so much about myself too. May your love for your hubby continue to grow. Blessings!

  • Reply
    Valerie Robinson
    February 15, 2016 at 2:30 PM

    Learning love languages is so Life-changing! This post gave me the feels!
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    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 15, 2016 at 3:52 PM

      Awwww, thanks Val! My goal was to get moms to think and reflect on their child’s love language. It takes effort and time but is so worth it. I’m so happy this post moved you!

  • Reply
    Tyra
    February 19, 2016 at 11:27 AM

    This is such an amazing post! I am so glad you realized this. I just got this book and I am going to be reading up on all of this. It sounds like your son is quite special!
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  • Reply
    Christine in Progress
    February 23, 2016 at 3:23 PM

    This is a fantastic post! Thank you for sharing such an intimate part of yourself with the world. Our daughters are as different as night and day, I try very hard to stay tuned in and listen and respond accordingly. I do my best to love them they way the need to be loved individually and I work hard to remove my self from the equation constantly reminding myself, what I receive as love is not the same as what they receive as love.

    • Reply
      Tanya B
      February 23, 2016 at 6:17 PM

      Thanks sis!You are absolutely correct about the different love languages of our kids. I just learned yesterday how my 15yr old daughter gives love to me in this current state in our relationship. Isn’t that crazy?? I am learning it also changes as they mature and grow. When the lightbulb hit, I was so relieved. I love being a mom to my kids. Enjoy them!

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