This blog is one in a series of six addressing the topic of SPEAKING YOUR ADULT CHILD’S LOVE LANGUAGE. We may have done this when they were young and now believe that speaking the love language of my adult child is not as important. But nothing is further from the truth. The first blog in the series Speaking Your Child’s Language explains why.
The test to determine what your child’s love language might be can be found at www.5lovelanguages.com
We never seem to have enough time to do the things we really wanna do once we find them….
Jim Croce, Time in a Bottle
All adults enjoys spending FUN, HAPPY, ENJOYABLE time with family participating in activities that they want to engage in! DUH!
But some of our adult children THRIVE on time with us and other members of their family EVEN doing activities they don’t care for! My personal love language is quality time. For years I rode in a golf cart just to be with Ted while he swung clubs at a tiny white ball that had not offended him in the least. I even swung a few of the clubs myself until I realized my love language was not GOLF…it was the time it took us to go from the first hole to the club house.
Currently, Ted and I ride our bikes to the lake every night that we are both home and watch the sun go down. The ride is only about a mile so we aren’t really allowed to count this as exercise, but it COUNTS big toward filling my love tank every night as we talk about the day before we ride home.
If your adult child’s love language is quality time, the time, not the activity COUNTS. Three of my adult children and two of their spouses have quality time as their love language. This means it is VERY important I learn to speak this language. Here are some ways I fill Rachelle’s love tanks:
- Schedule a mani/pedi (we recently did this and I had to bail because Ted took me away for a few days to the beach…. Thinking that he was filling my tank with quality time! It is a nice ‘almost win’ but it really doesn’t fill the tank if it doesn’t happen).
- When we have a conversation, I do not play on my phone or get distracted. I look her in the eye.
- Even if I can’t be present, I have video chat conversations about events in her life.
- Schedule a common place to meet for dinner—even if it is on the fly and on our way to other meetings,
- Make time for her to have time with her hubby and others who can fill her tank.
- Plan to come early and help set up for a family event so we can chat.
My son John’s love language is also quality time. He has a CRAZY busy schedule working as a legislative director for a great organization so having time together is tricky. He and his beautiful family live three hours away so spontaneity is out of the question. Some of the ways I attempt to show him love are:
- Calling and asking questions about work and his projects.
- Going to his town to hear him preach.
- Sitting on the sofa and listening to stories of his latest escapades.
- Going to the capitol and listening to him testify before a Senate hearing and other big events.
Once, at a big event I introduced myself as “John’s mother.” The listener responded, “I knew you were his mom from the look on your face while he was talking.” BE PRESENT IN EVERY WAY.
One event that I do every year that fills the tank of ALL the kids occurs over Thanksgiving Weekend. On Black Friday, the girls (that is ALL the daughters, daughters-in-love, and granddaughters) and I go for mani-pedis. We chat and laugh and spend a couple of hours sharing girl talk that is always WAY overdue. Then we go for lunch and a grocery run (with eight adult children, plus their spouses, and 16 grandchildren we ALWAYS need a grocery run!) and head home for the adults to pack.
My kids and their spouses pack up and head to a resort or local hotel to spend the next two days sharing sibling stories and making memories. The grandkids and my husband, Ted and I, start the PARTY! We have a scavenger hunt, obstacle course, eat too much sugar, and watch movies past EVERYONE’s bedtime.
The time flies by and the parents arrive to cousins who (although EXHAUSTED) did not miss them (much!).