I recently read the book The Five Love Languages by the renown marriage counselor Gary Chapman. In his writing, he discusses how the ways we love one another are expressed through languages, being Words of Affirmation (i.e. verbal praise, compliments, reassurance, etc.) Quality Time (self explanatory), Receiving Gifts, (not necessarily expensive jewelry, but even cards, flowers, sentimental tokens of affection which might not cost anything), Acts of Service (doing favors for each other, such as making dinner or doing the dishes), and Physical Touch (which is not necessarily sex, but hugging, kissing, holding hands, massages etc.) Chapman elucidates that we all have a primary love language in which we wish to receive love, and it is important that in a relationship, the partners are aware of each others' love language and communicate effectively in order to have a lasting, healthy, and happy commitment. It's a very eye-opening, moving, and insightful read.
|A MUST read for anyone in a relationship!|
While dating, I became so vulnerable. Whenever I received non-sexual, "Physical Touch" from men, if there was chemistry and I felt comfortable, I became obsessed. I immediately fell in love with them and became addicted. I craved more and more. And when those brief interactions ended, and I never spoke to them again, I felt abandoned and broken. I went through withdrawals. I was so deprived of proper love and affection that I sought it from strangers who ended up leaving me and damaging me even more.
I had to close myself off to shield myself from the pain of becoming close, getting attached, and losing it all, again and again. Until I found the right person, gained trust, felt safe/secure, and knew it was viable. But of course, that took time.
I'm a big girl, now. I'm a capable and successful adult. But I can't forget where I came from and who it made me. The ramifications of abuse are residual. Even though a child grows into their own person and leaves their abusers behind, the abuse itself stays with them, buries itself in the depth of their psyche and remains a part of them. So I forgive, but I do not forget. I have overcome many obstacles, but I am still healing, with time.