The 5 Love Languages
Gary Chapman
Contributed by Roseanne Meinecke
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Chapter 6

During Chapman’s studies as an anthropologist, he observed that the art of giving gifts is a universal trend among all walks of life as well as being part and parcel of married life. The author discovered that sharing or giving gifts is an act that transcends all cultural barriers and demonstrates a caring and loving attitude. The author elaborates on the importance of giving gifts by providing another account, this time revolving around Fred. Chapman tells the reader of how he visited the island of Dominica and met a young man named Fred. During Chapmans’ stay in the country, Fred gave him coconut juice as a gift, and when Chapman was leaving, he also gave him a cooking stick so that he would remember his experiences in the country. The author states that every time he sees the cooking stick, he is taken back to Dominica and remembers the beautiful Caribbean waves lapping on the sand.

The author describes a gift as a physical emblem that one looks at from time to time that inspires you to remember and truly think about someone that you care for. A gift is a symbol that not only shows that someone has thought about you, but also has thought deeply about what you may like. Chapman argues that the art of giving gifts is a symbolic sign of expressing love and he elaborates by providing an example of a child giving a flower to their mother for the first time. Gifts are the physical connotation of love towards the people we hold close. The use of rings in a wedding, is an example of giving gifts that symbolize eternal love to the newly married couple. The rings are symbolic of the bond between a man and a woman, a bond that should remain both physical and also spiritual.

Giving and receiving gifts as a language of love is fundamental to some people’s love lives as their specific language of emotional communication is attached to the physical gifts they receive. Not in a materialistic way, but more about what the gifts symbolize and represent. Some people attach immense importance to their wedding rings that they will never take them off after they get married. For a person who attaches great importance to physical gifts, as in the case of a wedding ring, they treat it with respect and care deeply about it. Wearing the ring gives them great pride. Chapman gives an instance of a man who felt torn apart after his wife threw her wedding ring at him and walked away. The man was crushed and wept endlessly seeing the ring on the floor, not having the strength to pick it up for two days. Chapman states that gifts come in various forms such as gifts bought with money and oneself as a gift to their spouse.


Gifting is a language that is taken seriously by particular individuals. It should be noted that the importance attached to gifts should be respected. Without this consideration, some people feel heartbroken. The reader should note that the gifts and choices one should not revolve around the amount of money used to buy the present, but instead the emotional value assigned to the gift.

The physical availability of a spouse is a symbol of love and a gift to their partner. Furthermore, the gift of one’s active presence in the marriage is the ultimate gift that a spouse can have. Couples should also communicate with their partners about their needs and not assume and wait for it just to happen.

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