By acts of service, I mean doing things you know your spouse would like you to do. You seek to please her by serving her, to express your love for her by doing things for her.
Note: This appears to be Tom's primary love language that he speaks. I always have appreciated this, but need to remind myself that he IS showing lots of love in this way when I feel my "tank" is running on fumes... and speak back to him in his language by finding more things I am capable of doing for him and make a habit of doing them as often as possible; make him feel appreciated, important, and loved & taken care of by me.
What we do for each other before marriage is no indication of what we will do after marriage.
Note: I am working on wishing for "Wooing Tom" to return less than I have in the past. That part of him is mostly gone because the courtship period of our relationship is over. I do need some of the "Old Tom" back because I am a very romantic & sensual person and DO need these things on a regular & long term basis... but I need to keep a more balanced perception between how things used to be and how they are now and/or will be in the future. He *has* taken me for granted in certain ways, but no longer wooing me daily is not one of them; that is simply a reality in love as it grows and changes... instead, we need to grow & change *with* our love.
Physical touch is also a powerful vehicle for communicating marital love. Holding hands, kissing, embracing, and sexual intercourse are all ways of communicating emotional love to one’s spouse. For some individuals, physical touch is their primary love language. Without it, they feel unloved. With it, their emotional tank is filled, and they feel secure in the love of their spouse.
Note: Though I thrive on all five love languages in this book with fairly equal importance, romantic/intimate physical touch usually speaks louder to and fulfills me more than even verbal communication. This definitely includes sexual intimacy, which is extremely detrimental to my feeling truly close to Tom on all levels... physical, emotional, and spiritual. I was raised with a lot of physical affection: my mom not only hugged me a lot, but also caressed and massaged me very often. I grew up with an abundance of physical displays of love, and it indeed formed much of what I need to give and receive... what makes me tick, so to speak. She also taught me how deeply two people share themselves when giving their bodies to each other; to this day, when I make love I am sharing my body AND soul, whether it is tender love making or passionate sex. Sex is not love, but for me a relationship without quality and a decent quantity of sex (as well as other forms of physical intimacy such as cuddling & kissing, etc.) leaves me feeling that the giving and receiving of love is sorely lacking and I am left feeling empty, unwanted, and unloved. I outgrew my "wild" days long ago, & no longer am able to separate sex and love. (Not that I ever did; I simply [foolishly] convinced myself that I could & did.) Of all the love languages in this book, I have been in the most need of frequent intimate physical touch with Tom... from simple hand holding to close cuddling to kissing to sex. The more I feel fulfilled affectionately & sexually, the more I am able to give and receive love in other ways... though all forms of sharing love are deeply important & fulfilling to me, physical intimacy fills me with such loving feelings that I need to receive AND give.
If your spouse’s primary love language is physical touch, nothing is more important than holding her as she cries.
Note: Tom used to understand this about me and rarely failed to give me physical comfort without my ever needing to ask, but this stopped when he came home from Iraq. Even with all the progress we've made the last few months, he still pulls away from me both physically & emotionally when I am upset and need him to hold & comfort me the most. If I cry or otherwise show upset emotions, he quickly looks away and starts doing his own thing such as TV or computer; he has even left the room entirely. Then I am left feeling alone... without comfort, and certainly without my lover OR my friend. Strangely, it seems like the less my upset has to do with him or our relationship, the more he does this... so it appears as if he needs to feel personal guilt or direct responsibility for my upset in order to feel compelled to offer me comfort. One of the things that made me fall in love with Tom was his ability and willingness to comfort me with a few soothing words and wrapping his arms around me. This isn't something that stopped when the courtship phase was over; he continued being a reliable source of comfort until after Iraq. For 14 years, one thing for which I always praised him was his uncanny ability to help me feel better about myself with a few simple kind words and the most comforting of hugs. For the last year, however, it seems to have become the rare exception. I so need the feeling of utter safety wrapped in his arms when I am upset... which in turn renews my own strength, enabling me to better be there for him in his times of need.