Have you ever heard of the Five Love Languages? Basically the idea behind them is that there are five primary ways people show and receive love. I had a couple of friends in college who were kind of obsessed with them and so we'd always diagnose each other...because they who doesn't enjoy finding out more about themselves?
There are supposed to be certain ones that you identify with more than others or one that you do. To be honest, I don't know how much I really buy into it because now they've written a ton of books for people in every stage of life but if it's a love language shouldn't it apply across relationships? Also, I don't know, like I used to think mine was quality time (I probably still do to be honest), but for example once a roommate bought me this necklace for my birthday. And we'd traveled together throughout the year and we'd done a lot of shopping together and I'd been looking for one...a cross necklace. And she bought me one after we were no longer living together and it was purple (my favorite color) and it made me feel SO KNOWN and so remembered. So like even though "gifts" might not be my primary love language I completely received love through that gift if that makes sense. And then with acts of service, like I'm terrible at doing things for people but if someone does something for me, something that really troubles them I'm often really touched. But maybe the book addresses all of this, I've never read it! Just discussed it at great length.
I was thinking about it this past week, because I would guess that words of affirmation is my second language*. And it's not only because I thrive on kind words or compliments, but also because of how much negative words impact me. Also I am really super gushy with people to the point that I probably make them uncomfortable.
I read something online last week that wasn't even really about me. I'm not going to link to it, because I don't want to derail this post but it was sort of related to me or something that I contribute to. And at first I just brushed it off, but then I realized that it got under my skin and I could not stop thinking about it. I think part of the reason for this is that this person managed to use the one word that strikes at my own insecurities about my life right now and my work and what I do on this blog. I never would have guessed before, either, that it could bug me so much. I totally understand why they said this and to be honest they are probably right. But it made me think...maybe I just need to accept that there is actually very little of value that I'm contributing to the world right now. It's not actually a bad thing, because if I hit a sort of ground zero I'm going to be forced to really evaluate my life and my choices. Maybe I've been hanging onto things from the past just because they were there. And wow this got a bit more personal than I intended.
I've been thinking about this even more in terms of the blogosphere though, where words are our primary method of communication. We only know each other through our words and so many other elements are stripped away. And the thing is that words can be like little missiles that lodge inside of you. They have a sort of power in the way they work at you, slowly undermining your confidence and self-acceptance. You can never unread harsh words. You can even go back and read them again and again and what everyone else thinks about them too. And that can be really hard.
There's really no answer to this I guess, it was just something that I've been thinking about. The way words which can be so lovely can also be so hurtful.
*I took the assessment and I scored highly in quality time, words of affirmation, and gifts, with quality time being the highest. You should take it too and tell me what your love language is!
Links of Goodness
I liked The Hunger Games film but I also enjoyed this collection of everything the film left out from the book and this post about one of the best lines from the book that was left out. (HT Read React Review)
Yes I have noticed the abundance of book titles which seem to describe the main character by her parents so I thought Emily St. John Mandel's post at The Millions was interesting. To be honest, I find this to be an incredibly generic way to title a book.
Teresa's recent post at Shelf Love about how we need different kinds of heroines in our books and stories also struck a chord. I think this topic is endlessly fascinating. Today I actually didn't retweet something the TV show Nikita that I would have otherwise because of the terminology strong females. Which...I mean Nikita and Alex actually are physically strong but they are such great characters for other reasons as well, which I will now talk about...
TV -- Nikita
I made the mistake of starting to catch up on Nikita's second season. It's a mistake because this show is so good and is most likely not going to get a third season. I just was bored and decided to watch and ugh. I had forgotten how flawless I thought the final five episodes of the first season were and the stakes have been raised in the second season and I just love both Nikita and Alex and their relationship is the kind that gets me. I remember being annoyed last year when I first read the spoilers that there would be some friction in their relationship but the angst is so delicious! It's better than any romantic relationship--it's a friendship pseudo-mother/daughter relationship that's allowed to be complex and interesting. And Nikita is a great heroine to watch, she tries to control things and she's guarded but she's still really WARM and loving and she makes a lot of mistakes but she really thinks she's doing the right thing. And Alex is so driven by revenge and righting the past and she's confused because she's been lied to so much but she still has a heart in there. I am thought about writing about some of the themes and ideas they engage on the show but alas another reason I started watching was because I wanted to watch a show where I could just turn of my brain and consume it like candy but apparently that's impossible for me. But anyway this is my gush fest, you should consider watching the first season if you can (it's on Netflix Instant). To be honest, it's good but doesn't get GREAT until the final episodes. But this second season is amazing.
Tuesday, April 3, 2012
Posted by Amy at 11:21 AM