Tuesday, February 22

Me & Love Languages: Quality Time

Quality time is the love language that requires simple, undivided attention and a willingness to just be there. People with this love language thrive on being with others - in their presence - with the ability to do things together or simply hold a deep conversation. The worst way to act around someone who is quality time? Don't give them the time of day.

This is my love language. For me, nothing says "I love you" like being there for me, and wanting to spend time with me even when you have other things to do. In my case, it's not a question of having undivided attention (I'm okay with people who divide their attention between multiple facets) - it's more a question of being kind, open, honest, and sincere in conversation and activity. Playing sports, giving service, and hanging out are nice ways for me, but, for me, the core of a loving relationship is open, heartfelt conversation (usually about the gospel and its applications to life).

This could be one reason why I have a hard time feeling like the guys in my life love me. Most of them wouldn't feel comfortable just sitting, having a personal conversation with another guy about the things that make them tick, their dreams, and the things that face them in life. One reader mentioned that I was looking for social relationships "with a level of emotional intimacy deeper than what many guys have with anyone - even their wives." And as I've looked, I've realized that her comment is probably accurate. Stereotypes exist because they are at least partially true - because I want good guy friends with emotional maturity higher than the cultural norm, they're hard to find.

On the negative, it's really easy for people to show a lack of love to me, whether on purpose or not. Never be available, specifically un-invite me to things where you will be, tell me you never want to talk to me again, and ignore me except for a curt greeting when social norms require it... without ever telling me why. If I had anything invested in the relationship - romantic or just to be a friend - that's a sure-fire way to break my heart.

Receiving: Primary - if you spend time with me and open your heart and mind so I can understand you, I feel like I'm on top of the world. It's why I love when people tell me their stories, share their testimonies of the gospel, or ask for help in facing life.

Giving: Primary - the way I show love to others is by being there for them. Being available if they ever need anything. I'd drop everything in my life for my friends, members of my family, even random strangers on the street. The best way to show I love someone is to help them solve their problems and gain a greater testimony of the gospel.

Different with guys? No - it's just harder to feel loved and show love in a society that encourages men to bottle their emotions and forgo real thought and spending time with others.


  1. I'm assuming that I share the quality time love-language. Most of my friends who've read that book say that. I suppose that's why I can sometimes become bored with people, because I feel under-stimulated. If I had my way, every activity would just be sitting around somewhere talking. Spending time doesn't have to be "productive" in my mind in order to be enriching. That's one reason I never do clever escapade dates. Generally, we just do something that facilitates conversation.

    As for guys not being able to show love in this way; I'm not so convinced that's the norm. I suppose it depends more on regional culture than gender. For instance, the Singles Ward I'm currently apart of has far more open and emotionally mature guys than girls. The girls want to repel down a mountain while making out with jake Gyllenhaal, then slam dunking a basketball made of molten lava. The guys? We just want to talk. We're pretty unconventional in that regard.

    I've lived other places where it's quite different (Utah), and where it's fairly similar (St. Louis). Just know there's hope beyond your current social reality.

  2. You feel this way because deep down you want a relationship with a man and not a woman. Please, do your "future wife" a favor and don't try to find her, let alone marry her! (I've no doubt that your real motive in finding a wife is so you can check off that "box" into the Celestial Kingdom anyway, as you seem like the typical stuck up mormon who knows he's going to the Celestial Kingdom cuz he did XYZ, etc. I don't care if you are gay or straight, you are a stuck up mormon from what I read on your blog.) I assure you, marriage is hard enough without having a husband who's really attracted to other men!

  3. GDub:

    It just takes time for me to develop the relationships with guys, when I seem to be able to immediately make friends with girls. But there are good guys here - lots of them. And as time goes on I realize that I am developing good friendships that will hopefully last, or at least have the strength to help me in my life.


    I am sorry for the pain you are feeling right now in your life. Whatever the circumstances, I'm sorry that you have been hurt, and that your marriage is going through hard times. But the reason I want to be happily married isn't tied directly to wanting exaltation - it's because, deep inside, I know that theresous girl out there who can and will complement me and make me whole. It's not a checklist - it's a desire to make her happy and to find happiness myself, that will extend into eternity. It's not a personal decision - it's a promise that God has made me and a goal He has given me towards which to devote my efforts. And I choose to believe Him, and to follow Him.

    Marriage is rough, and my marriage will be no exception. But happy marriages are not instant even when true love strikes. They are developed with sweat and tears and pain, built on hard work, love, and the principles of the gospel - and I am striving to prepare for that - to develop the traits I will need, and to be worthy of the girl I find someday. Together, we'll grow into the peopleand parents we need to become - stronger for the trials that face us, stronger because it takes more strength and faith to come through on top.

    I pray that your life gets better - and that the Lord is able to strengthen you and give you peace. Thanks for being here.

  4. If it is talking that you are looking for then maybe you are actually Words of Affection. Talking helps you feel emotionally connected. I am not a quality time person at all, but my friends who are tend to want people close to them to pay attention to them but it can be doing things together. As long as they set aside that time it makes the person feel loved. Playing a game, going to a movie, going out to eat, talking can all be a part of it.
    Perhaps you are split between quality time AND words of affection.
    I am Words of Affection AND Acts of Service. One of my kids is Quality time. She often comes to me and says we haven't spent much time together and would I please .......

  5. Just a random comment:

    For some reason I've gotten a handful of comments recently that claim I'm a hateful, horrible person for wanting to marry a girl. Other comments have said that I'll never be happy unless I'm with a guy.

    The pretense of my cruelty is this: I would be marrying someone while withholding information about who I am, not be in love with her, she wouldn't be my absolute best friend, I would share the most intimate details of our relationship with other guys... etc.

    Um... I'm not sure where this comes from. Marrying someone I'm not in head over heels in love with was never my goal or even an option in my book - my previous posts are very forthright in that. And I've posted on the importance of open, honest communication. And I would think that it would be apparent that, once happily married to my sweetheart, I would follow the counsel of the scriptures and "cleave unto her and none else."

    I guess I just assume that people have read all the back posts and understand everything that goes through my mind. Sorry for being judgmental on that aspect.

    Right now, I just haven't found the right girl, I haven't experienced the miracle I'll need to love her unconditionally, and I'm also trying to partially fill my need for love by developing better platonic relationships with guys. I'm learning how to navigate the conflicts of life better, I definitely don't give off the vibe of being "needy" and I take relationships (friendships and romance) very slowly so that people realize what they're getting into. And, as far as needing a guy, I've survived this long without one in my life - why can't I live happily for the rest of it? Right now, as far as relationships go, I am in a mess. But God loves me, and because of that I feel loved and I love my life. In the long run, I trust that God will help me work it out. For all of my life He's been the One who truly speaks my love language, and over the years, I've finally learned to listen and feel loved. 


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