If love is a language, then teach your family members to become conversant. According to Gary D. Chapman in his book, The Five Love Languages, people experience love in five ways. We experience love through words of affirmation, by spending quality time together, by receiving gifts, by performing acts of service, or through physical touch. According to Chapman, every person on earth has a primary “language of love.”
“Mommy, keep the hall light on,” my six-year-old reminds me as I tuck his beloved blanket securely around his slender frame and lean over to kiss him good night. I’ve plugged in a night light in his room and another in the adjoining bathroom. The orange glow of the street lamp outside bounces off the wall over his bed. He already seems bathed in light, but I flip the hall light on anyway. 10 minutes later, I’m rewarded with the sweet, even-keeled breathing of a child asleep.
Without the benefit of body language, which can help soften or defuse tense conversations, online discussions are ripe for misunderstandings and heated exchanges. How can we make social media a kinder place for the healthy exchange of views?
As a mother of six children, many times I have found myself comparing one child to another. Even though I know physical, emotional, and intellectual development will progress at a rate that is unique to each child and each will have their own strengths and weaknesses, when you are in the middle of a two-year-old tantrum over a seemingly trivial problem, it is hard not to think: ‘Your sister never did this.’
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