Hello Kris! Let me start by saying that every piece I read is an opportunity to expand my ideas and reconsider different points of view.
In my experience, I have found that with different people I tend to gravitate towards different love languages as well as in different moments I may need different love languages from the same person.
How is this? Sometimes you need someone to get out of your main language (let’s imagine it is acts of service). Oftentimes when you’ve been with someone long enough and they understand your love language, that becomes kind of the everyday thing and soon it gets lost because we’re used to that. So when they use a different one (let’s say gifts and they bring you flowers for no particular reason) you will stop and “see” the person in their expression once again.
On the other hand, if your language is physical touch, you will love to be hugged and held in all circumstances. But then let’s say there’s a horrible day at work and you come back home feeling like crap. Hugging is fine, but what you may really need is someone to reassure you and tell you that you’re awesome and valued and hear you in your expression and just say those words of affirmation that you so desperate crave after a day of being crushed by the universe.
It’s also important to remember that looking at the love languages and “judging” that one is better than other is just staying in the surface. The need for the different languages gets born in our childhood and words of reaffirmation may be the way that someone can process better the attention from their partner or friend.
I have noticed that some people have a difficulty with acts of service and their partners because if their primary language is words of reaffirmation and their partner doesn’t value that, then the one doing the act of service will end up disappointed because they needed the words of appreciation and the acknowledgment of their partner.
Also if physical touch is important, that becomes restricted to the “love/partner” circle (or your female siblings if you’re a woman) as adults usually don’t go around being hugged and held by their friends or family to express their love. It’s wonderful when you have kids because that will be an endless source of “touch” -at least until they turn 11 or 12 when they will avoid it saying ewww that’s gross!
And quality time!!! Well if you’ve been in a relationship with a love avoidant you may have noticed this being the source of endless conflict. The needs are so different and the perception is that anything that’s more than what the avoidant naturally wants to give is “my partner is clingy”.
In sum, Kris, I think that saying that one language is better than other is frankly missing the point of our diversity and more importantly the opportunity to use the love languages to express appreciation in the language that your partner / family / kids need to receive it.
My two cents! Ooohhh and I am forever grateful for all the conversations you start. It’s on these exchanges that I am able to gain a better understanding of the topics.