Parental Tips

Kids’ Love Languages: A Journey of Parental Connection

Have you ever wondered why your child lights up when you praise them but seems indifferent to your attempts at showering them with gifts? Or why does one kid crave hugs while the other prefers quality time together? It can be hard to work out how to best connect with your child, and it can even feel like you are failing when you miss the mark.

Welcome to the world of love languages for kids! Once you know your child’s love language it can help to understand how they both express and receive love. Here we will dive into this concept that helps decode what makes your child feel truly loved.


The Marvelous Five: 5 Love Languages of Children

love languages for kids


Just as adults have their distinctive ways of expressing affection, children too have their love languages. These languages, coined by Dr. Gary Chapman in his 1992 book, encapsulate the diverse ways kids perceive and communicate love:

  • Physical touch
  • Words of affirmation
  • Quality time
  • Gifts
  • Acts of service

The Crucial Role of Love Languages in Parenting

love language test for kids


At the heart of understanding love languages for kids lies the crux of parenting: creating unbreakable bonds and nurturing emotional connections. On the surface, these love languages can seem like whimsical phrases, however when you understand them and how they relate to your child they can intricately shape the parent-child relationship, influencing every interaction and molding the child’s emotional landscape.

Understanding this concept can help parents cultivate deeper connections and foster stronger relationships with their children.

By tuning into these languages, parents can establish more meaningful connections and ensure that love is not just felt but also expressed in ways that resonate deeply with their little ones.

Physical Touch: A World of Silent Affection

childrens love languages

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What Is It?

For kids, physical touch goes far beyond a simple hug or a pat on the back. It’s a language that whispers volumes of love without a single word. Physical touch communicates security, warmth, and love, forming an integral part of a kid’s emotional development.

How to Know If Your Child Prefers It

Children with this love language seek closeness through physical proximity. They might snuggle up spontaneously, crave hand-holding, or seek comfort in physical contact during play or conversation.

How to Act as a Parent

Engage in daily physical interactions—hugs, playful tickles, holding hands—that offer reassurance and affirm your child’s emotional security. These gestures might seem small, but they fill your child’s emotional tank abundantly.

What to Avoid

Be mindful of dismissing their need for touch. Even if it’s not your primary way of expressing love, your child might crave it deeply. Avoid denying or dismissing their need for physical closeness, as it can leave them feeling emotionally disconnected. If they come in for a hug, try not to be the first to pull away.

Challenges or Misconceptions

Parents might face challenges expressing physical touch due to misconceptions about its impact on their child. Some common misconceptions include concerns about gender identity, and assumptions about ‘spoiling’ or creating a dependence.

Clarifications and Solutions

It’s essential to understand that physical touch doesn’t align with any specific gender identity. Ensuring a healthy balance in physical affection is vital. Avoiding overindulgence while maintaining warmth and support is achievable through setting healthy boundaries and open communication. Recognize that a child’s need for touch doesn’t always equate to dependency but is a genuine way to express and receive affection.

Understanding physical touch as a love language isn’t just about hugs, kisses, and cuddles; it’s about creating an environment where your child feels secure and loved through tactile expressions of affection.

Words of Affirmation: Building Confidence Brick by Brick

5 love languages for kids

Evgeny Atamanenko/

What Is It?

For some kids, words carry immense weight, shaping their self-worth and confidence. Words of affirmation are like a magic wand, casting spells of encouragement, appreciation, and guidance, nurturing a child’s inner sense of value.

How to Know If Your Child Prefers It

Children who thrive on words of affirmation seek validation through verbal expressions. They might respond positively to compliments, seek reassurance frequently, or light up when praised for their efforts.

How to Act as a Parent

Offer genuine and specific praises, acknowledging their efforts rather than just their achievements. Take the time for affirming conversations, using encouraging phrases that uplift their spirits and reinforce their sense of worth.

What to Avoid

Avoid criticism or harsh words as they can deeply wound a child whose primary language is words of affirmation. Negative feedback or harsh tones may deter their confidence and self-esteem. It’s easy with the daily stresses of life to miss an opportunity for a meaningful connection.

Challenges or Misconceptions

Parents might struggle with providing words of affirmation consistently or might misunderstand their impact. There can be a misconception that constant praise might lead to complacency or dependency on external validation. If you focus on specifics, rather than generic praise it will be more meaningful.

Clarifications and Solutions

Consistent and genuine affirmations build a child’s self-worth and confidence. Avoid over-praising by focusing on specific actions or efforts rather than generic compliments. Encourage intrinsic motivation by praising efforts and resilience rather than mere outcomes.

Encourage and support your child through verbal affirmations, understanding that your words hold incredible power in shaping their self-perception and confidence.

Regardless of the love language you speak with your child, one thing remains universal: the desire to protect and safeguard them in every situation. With the Findmykids app, you can do this even from a distance. Keep track of your child’s location, receive notifications about their movements, and stay connected to what’s happening around them. Try it for yourself!

Quality Time: The Precious Gift of Presence

five love languages for kids

Evgeny Atamanenko/

What Is It?

Quality time isn’t just about being in the same room; it’s about being fully present, giving undivided attention that tells your child, “You matter, and I cherish our moments together.”

How to Know If Your Child Prefers It

Children craving quality time desire your focused attention. They might seek one-on-one moments, ask for shared activities, or open up more when given undistracted moments.

How to Act as a Parent

Prioritize dedicated moments with your child. Engage in activities they enjoy, actively listen, and create special rituals or bedtime routines fostering closeness.

What to Avoid

Avoid distractions like phones or multitasking during these moments. Canceling plans or not honoring promised time can deeply disappoint kids who value this language.

Challenges or Misconceptions

Busy schedules and commitments can make quality time challenging for parents. There might be misconceptions about the nature of quality time, thinking that it requires elaborate activities or extended periods.

Clarifications and Solutions

Quality time isn’t solely about duration but about undivided attention and meaningful interactions. It can be simple daily routines like bedtime stories or shared meals. Prioritize and schedule regular moments of undivided attention to foster a strong emotional connection.

Investing time with your child isn’t just about being physically present; it’s about being emotionally available, building bonds that last a lifetime.

Gifts: Tokens of Thoughtful Affection

kids love language

Monkey Business Images/

What Is It?

Gifts as a love language transcend materialism. They’re heartfelt tokens expressing love, thoughtfulness, and understanding of your child’s interests and desires.

How to Know If Your Child Prefers It

Children valuing gifts might show appreciation for even the smallest gestures. They might enjoy creating or giving gifts, treasuring these as symbols of love.

How to Act as a Parent

Offer meaningful, thoughtful gifts aligned with their interests or surprises that convey love. Ensure they’re not bribes but genuine expressions of affection.

What to Avoid

Avoid substituting gifts for emotional connection. Overindulgence might lead to a sense of entitlement. Instead, emphasize the emotional value behind the gifts.

Challenges or Misconceptions

Parents might worry about spoiling their child or using gifts as a form of manipulation. There could be misunderstandings about the significance of gifts, assuming they always need to be materialistic or expensive.

Clarifications and Solutions

Gifts symbolize love and thoughtfulness; they don’t necessarily equate to materialism. Encourage meaningful and thoughtful gift-giving, focusing on emotional value rather than monetary worth. Ensure a balance between gifts and other expressions of love.

Acts of Service: Filling Emotional Tanks through Actions

love languages of children


What Is It?

Acts of service involve actions that show care, support, and assistance. These gestures communicate love and affection, fulfilling needs beyond material or verbal expressions.

How to Know If Your Child Prefers It

Children valuing acts of service might appreciate your help, assistance, and involvement in their tasks or activities. They often feel deeply loved when parents actively participate in their lives.

How to Act as a Parent

Engage in tasks that resonate with your child’s needs, providing support and assistance without being asked. Ensure these actions come from a place of love, not obligation.

What to Avoid

Avoid using acts of service as a bargaining chip or a means of control. Overstepping boundaries might lead to dependence or a lack of independence in your child’s actions. Always maintain a balance.

Challenges or Misconceptions

Misconceptions might arise about fostering independence or unintentionally fostering dependency by providing acts of service. There could be concerns about children taking these gestures for granted.

Clarifications and Solutions

Acts of service foster a sense of security and care. Encourage responsibility by involving children in these actions without creating expectations. Teach the value of reciprocity and gratitude by expressing thanks for the services offered.

Discovering Your Child’s Primary Love Language

children's love language


Understanding your child’s primary love language is pivotal for effective communication and connection. Here are a few steps to help you work out your child’s unique language of love.

1. Observation is Key

Look for signs in how your child naturally expresses affection, whether it’s through words, gestures, or their behavior towards you and others. Their interactions can offer valuable clues.

2. Pay Attention to Their Actions

Observe how your child interacts with friends, teachers, or siblings. How they express care or affection towards others might reflect their preferred love language.

3. Listen to Their Requests

Pay attention to what your child frequently asks for. Do they often request your time, physical closeness, or express a need for verbal affirmations? Their requests can hint at their desired love language.

4. Engage in Conversations

Speak with your child about what makes them feel loved and happy. Ask them directly about their feelings and preferences when it comes to expressions of love.

5. Experiment and Observe

Offer various expressions of love using different languages—this can be a wonderful way to test their reactions. Your child’s response can help pinpoint which language resonates most deeply with them.

Understanding these cues can guide you in discerning your child’s primary love language.

Read also: What Are the 4 Types of Parenting Styles and Which One is Right for You?

Can Your Child’s Love Languages Change?

what is my child's love language

Mladen Zivkovic/

Understanding that as a child progresses through childhood, their primary love language might change due to various factors. Children grow, learn, and adapt constantly.

Similarly, their love languages might evolve too.

Flexibility in Love Languages

  • Age-Related Changes: As toddlers grow, their personalities evolve, impacting their ways of expressing and receiving love. Their primary love language might shift with age.
  • External Influences: Life experiences, social interactions, and new environments can influence a kid’s love language preferences over time.

Addressing Concerns

  • Consistency vs. Evolution: While a child might exhibit changes in their primary love language, aspects of the initial language might still linger, creating a blend or a shift in priorities.
  • Parental Adaptation: As a parent, remain adaptable to these potential changes, keeping communication channels open to understand your child’s evolving emotional needs.

Love languages are not fixed; they can shift and evolve over a child’s growth journey. Staying attuned to these changes allows parents to adapt, ensuring continued emotional connection and support for their children. Understanding that these shifts are part of a child’s development is crucial for nurturing their emotional well-being.

This understanding fosters deeper connections, allowing parents to embrace and support their children’s changing emotional needs.

Bottom Line and Parental Advice

child's love language


Navigating the world of love languages with your child requires sensitivity, patience, and adaptability. Here’s a summary of what we’ve covered and some advice for parents.

Bottom Line Insights

  • Diverse Love Languages: Each child communicates and receives love uniquely through physical touch, words of affirmation, quality time, gifts, and acts of service.
  • Impact on Parent-Child Bond: Understanding and speaking your child’s love language fosters deeper connections, building self-esteem, and nurturing emotional well-being.
  • Fluidity in Love Languages: Children’s preferences may evolve over time, influenced by growth, experiences, and social dynamics.

Advice for Parents

  • Leveraging Technology: Enhance your parenting toolkit by incorporating apps like Findmykids. This allows you to not only observe your child’s location but also stay connected and informed about their activities, ensuring a holistic approach to their safety and well-being.
  • Observation and Engagement: Continually observe your child’s behavior and engage in open conversations to discern their evolving emotional needs.
  • Balanced Approach: While recognizing their primary love language, maintain a diverse expression of all five languages to offer a well-rounded emotional connection.
  • Flexibility in Parenting: Be flexible and adaptable in adjusting your expressions of love according to your child’s changing preferences.
  • Unconditional Love: Assure your child of your unwavering love regardless of their expressed love language at different life stages.
  • Encourage Openness: Create a safe space for your child to express their emotions and discuss their evolving needs openly. Understanding and respecting each family member’s preferred love language fosters stronger connections and harmony within the family unit.

Let’s continue nurturing these precious connections with our children by understanding their unique love languages. Share this knowledge with fellow parents and caregivers to help them build stronger, more empathetic relationships with their children.


what are children's 5 love languages

Ground Picture/

How do I tell my child’s love language?

Observation, engagement, and paying attention to how they express affection can provide clues.

What is the most common love language for children?

It varies, but physical touch, words of affirmation, and quality time often top the list.

At what age will a child express their feelings with words?

It varies; some children start expressing feelings verbally around 2-3 years old, while others may take longer.

The picture on the front page: Ground Picture/

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