Gary Chapman

The one who chooses to love will find appropriate ways to express that decision every day.
– Gary Chapman

I am amazed by how many individuals mess up every new day with yesterday. They insist on
bringing into today the failures of yesterday and in so doing, they pollute a potentially
wonderful day.
– Gary Chapman

Love makes requests, not demands. When I demand things from my spouse, I become a
parent and she the child.
– Gary Chapman

What if your spouse really is the problem? And I say, “Ok. Let’s say that your spouse is 95%
of the problem. That would only leave 5% for you.” What I’m saying is, “If you want to
improve your relationship, if you want to see your spouse change, you start by changing
yourself. You deal with your 5%. Then the marriage is 5% better, you’ve demonstrated to
your spouse how to change, and it’s more likely now that they will change. But even if they
don’t, the marriage is 5% better.”
– Gary Chapman

Forgiveness is not a feeling; it is a commitment. It is a choice to show mercy, not to hold the
offense up against the offender.
– Gary Chapman

Love says, “I choose to do that because I wanna do something for your benefit. I’m gonna
give up what I was gonna do and I will do this for you.” That’s love. It’s giving away your life
to another person.
– Gary Chapman

We can request things of each other, but we must never demand anything. Requests give
direction to love, but demands stop the flow of love.
– Gary Chapman

We need not agree on everything, but we must find a way to handle our differences so that
they do not become divisive.
– Gary Chapman

Seldom do a husband and wife have the same primary emotional love language. We tend to
speak our primary love language, and we become confused when our spouse does not
understand what we are communicating. We are expressing our love, but the message does
not come through because we are speaking what, to them, is a foreign language.
– Gary Chapman

Some husbands and wives think they are spending time together when, in reality, they are
only living in close proximity.
– Gary Chapman

For love, we will climb mountains, cross seas, traverse desert sands, and endure untold
hardships. Without love, mountains become unclimbable, seas uncrossable, deserts
unbearable, and hardships our lot in life.
– Gary Chapman

Empathetic listening is an awesome medication for the hurting heart.
– Gary Chapman

What we do for each other before marriage is no indication of what we will do after marriage.
– Gary Chapman

People do not get married planning to divorce. Divorce is the result of a lack of preparation
for marriage and the failure to learn the skills of working together as teammates in an intimate
– Gary Chapman

We assume that whatever makes us feel loved, will make our spouse feel loved. But that’s
not true… If I’m saying to my wife, “Honey, you look so beautiful today… I really appreciate
what you did last night… I love you.. . You know, I love you…” But if her language of love is
acts of service, if what makes her feel loved is not words but my doing things to help her,
after a while I’m saying “I love you… I love you…” and she’s saying, “I’m sick of ‘I love you.’
You know, if you love me do something to help me.”
– Gary Chapman

Love doesn’t keep a score of wrongs. Love doesn’t bring up past failures. None of us is
– Gary Chapman

Love is the attitude that says, “I am married to you, and I choose to look out for your
– Gary Chapman

Love says, “I love you too much to let you treat me this way. It is not good for you or me.”
– Gary Chapman

Love is a verb.
– Gary Chapman

Love is something you do for someone else, not something you do for yourself.
– Gary Chapman

Togetherness has to do with focused attention. It is giving someone your undivided
attention. As humans, we have a fundamental desire to connect with others. We may be in
the presence of people all day long, but we do not always feel connected.
– Gary Chapman

You may also want to try giving indirect words of affirmation – that is, saying positive things
about your spouse when he or she is not present. Eventually, someone will tell your spouse,
and you will get full credit for love. Tell your wife’s mother how great your wife is. When her
mother tells her what you said, it will be amplified, and you will get even more credit. Also
affirm your spouse in front of others when he or she is present.
– Gary Chapman

Most of us have little training in listening. We are far more efficient in thinking and speaking.
Learning to listen may be as difficult as learning a foreign language, but learn we must, if we
want to communicate love.
– Gary Chapman

Don’t make the mistake of believing that the touch that brings pleasure to you will also bring
pleasure to her.
– Gary Chapman

Respect begins with this attitude: “I acknowledge that you are a creature of extreme worth.
God has endowed you with certain abilities and emotions. Therefore I respect you as a
person. I will not desecrate your worth by making critical remarks about your intellect, your
judgment or your logic. I will seek to understand you and grant you the freedom to think
differently from the way I think and to experience emotions that I may not experience.”
Respect means that you give the other person the freedom to be an individual.
– Gary Chapman

The object of love is not getting something you want but doing something for the well-being
of the one you love.
– Gary Chapman

If “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” maybe a compliment a day will keep the counselor
– Gary Chapman

Don’t be a victim of the urgent. In the long run, much of what seems so pressing right now
won’t even matter. What you do with your children will matter forever.
– Gary Chapman

People tend to criticize their spouse most loudly in the area where they themselves have the
deepest emotional need.
– Gary Chapman

Love need not evaporate after the wedding, but in order to keep it alive most of us will have
to put forth the effort to learn a secondary love language. We cannot rely on our native
tongue if our spouse does not understand it. If we want them to feel the love we are trying
to communicate, we must express it in his or her primary love language.
– Gary Chapman

Verbal compliments are far greater motivators than nagging words.
– Gary Chapman

In the security of love, a couple can discuss differences without condemnation. Conflicts can
be resolved. Two people who are different can learn to live together in harmony. We discover
how to bring out the best in each other. Those are the rewards of love.
– Gary Chapman

Sex is the joining of two bodies; love is the joining of two souls.
– Gary Chapman

It takes the power of God to love someone who’s unlovely. And let’s face it – some people
are married to a spouse that’s unlovely. They’re harsh, they’re mean, cruel, they’re self-
centered and to love that person is not natural. What’s natural is to stay away from that
person or to wish them ill. But with the love of God being poured out of our hearts by the
Holy Spirit the Bible says, we can love a spouse who is unlovely. Because God loved us when
we were unlovely. And when you do that, you are doing the most powerful thing you can do
for that person. Because they desperately need love. And when you give it to them, you’re
the source of love and they’re drawn to you and they’re more likely to come back and treat
you with some love, kindness and respect.
– Gary Chapman

The latent potential within your spouse in his or her areas of insecurity may await your
encouraging words.
– Gary Chapman

I think the tingles are important. They are real, and I am in favor of their survival. But they
are not the basis for a satisfactory marriage. I am not suggesting that one should marry
without the tingles. Those warm, excited feelings, the chill bumps, that sense of acceptance,
the excitement of the touch that make up the tingles serve as the cherry on top of the
sundae. But you cannot have a sundae with only the cherry.
– Gary Chapman

Most of us have more potential than we will ever develop. What holds us back is often
– Gary Chapman

Something in our nature cries out to be loved by another. Isolation is devastating to the
human psyche. That is why solitary confinement is considered the cruelest of punishments.
– Gary Chapman

Encouragement requires empathy and seeing the world from your spouse’s perspective. We
must first learn what is important to our spouse. Only then can we give encouragement. With
verbal encouragement, we are trying to communicate, “I know. I care. I am with you. How
can I help?” We are trying to show that we believe in him and in his abilities. We are giving
credit and praise.
– Gary Chapman

All of us blossom when we feel loved and wither when we do not feel loved.
– Gary Chapman

Love doesn’t erase the past, but it makes the future different. When we choose active
expressions of love in the primary love language of our spouse, we create an emotional
climate where we can deal with our past conflicts and failures.
– Gary Chapman

Recent research has indicated that the average individual listens for only seventeen seconds
before interrupting and interjecting his own ideas.
– Gary Chapman

The manner in which we speak is exceedingly important. An ancient sage once said, “A soft
answer turns away anger.” When your spouse is angry and upset and lashing out with words
of heat, if you choose to be loving, you will not reciprocate with additional heat but with a
soft voice. You will receive what he is saying as information about his emotional feelings. You
will let him tell you of his hurt, anger, and perception of events. You will seek to put yourself
in his shoes and see the event through his eyes and then express softly and kindly your
understanding of why he feels that way. If you have wronged him, you will be willing to
confess the wrong and ask forgiveness. If your motivation is different from what he is
reading, you will be able to explain your motivation kindly. You will seek understanding and
reconciliation, and not to prove your own perception as the only logical way to interpret what
has happened. This is mature love – love to which we aspire if we seek a growing marriage.
– Gary Chapman

Love is a choice you make everyday.
– Gary Chapman

We are trained to analyze problems and create solutions. We forget that marriage is a
relationship, not a project to be completed or a problem to solve.
– Gary Chapman

I dream of a day when the potential of the married couples in this country can be unleashed
for the good of humankind, when husbands and wives can live life with full emotional love
tanks and reach out to accomplish their potential as individuals and as couples. I dream of
day when children can grow up in homes filled with love and security, where children’s
developing energies can be channeled to learning and serving rather than seeking the love
they did not receive at home.
– Gary Chapman

You cannot force someone to accept an expression of love. You can only offer it. If it is not
accepted, you must respect the other person’s decision.
– Gary Chapman

Our natural tendency in the middle of winter is to avoid the elements as much as possible.
When the weather turns frigid, we retreat inside for survival and wait for it to warm up or for
the season to change. In a winter marriage, there may be a similar tendency to “avoid the
elements.” Spouses may withdraw within themselves, hunkering down and trying to ride out
the cold season, hoping for spring but not taking any positive steps to move their marriage
toward spring. However, unlike the natural seasons, the seasons of a marriage do not
typically change without some positive action – unless it’s a change from bad to worse.
– Gary Chapman

Quality time does not mean we must spend our moments gazing into each other’s eyes. It
may mean doing something together that we both enjoy. The particular activity is secondary,
only a means to creating the sense of togetherness. The important thing is not the activity
itself but the emotions that are created between both.
– Gary Chapman

Love is the fundamental building block of all human relationships. It will greatly impact our
values and morals. Love is the important ingredient in one’s search for meaning.
– Gary Chapman