The 5 Love Languages
Gary Chapman
Contributed by Roseanne Meinecke
Chapter 8

Physical touch is the major love language through which most couples communicate their feelings and emotions towards each other. Chapman verifies the need for physical touch by giving an example of a study that concluded that a healthier emotional life is developed from infancy through holding, hugging and kissing. The study also states that babies who go for long periods of time without being held and without any physical contact have their emotional health affected. Chapman argues that the wisest parents in any culture are those that touch and engage with their children. He demonstrates the importance of physical touch by retelling the story of when Jesus Christ asked his disciples to let him hold the children who were presented to him by their parents, emphasizing the need to hold and touch as forms of affection.

Chapman states that physical touch is the most crucial aspect that communicates marital love in marriages. For instance, kissing, cuddling, embracing, holding hands and sexual intercourse are all examples of physical ways of sending affection to your spouse. With physical touch such an influence on many people’s lives it is understandably the primary language for some individuals in understanding and experiencing love from their partners. Through touching and various forms of physical contact, a person can keep their love tank full, leading to a sense of security in marriage

Chapman says that the concept of physical touch as an emotional language can make or break a relationship. He illustrates this by stating that when someone’s primary language of love is physical touch – a message communicated by an embrace or a kiss can be stronger than any words or gifts. For a child who communicates their love in this manner, slapping or smacking the child can be very detrimental and even have devastating repercussions. However, this can also work the other way with a hug to such a child communicating love stronger than in any other way.


Chapman shows the importance of physical touch not only as an emotional love language but also as a way of communicating for all married couples. However, some people prefer physical touch more than any other ways of expressing affection with such people having physical touch as their primary language of love. The kind of people who love and need physical touch do not shy away from public displays of affection such as holding hands in public, kissing or holding their partner. Chapman also advises that couples should learn all about their spouse, determining how and where they would most like to be touched.

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