According to the best-selling book The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts there are five different ways in which people like to give and receive affection towards their loved ones. These languages are categorized in ways that every person expresses and receives love: Physical Touch, Quality Time, Acts of Service, Receiving Gifts, and Words of Affirmation. If you want to make them feel secure and happy and express how you feel about them, you should hold their hand when you walk together, rub their shoulders while they’re working at their computer after a long day, caress their arm while you drive somewhere. Sexual touch in a relationship is a given, but casual touch is not.
Here are some ways to love those with a Physical Touch Love Language.
1. Kiss them hello and goodbye
This is a standby of most relationships, but for those who value physical touch, kissing hello and goodbye allows your partner to feel the love as soon as you are together and as soon as you separate. This is one of the best ways to love those with a physical touch love language.
2. Give them a neck rub or back scratch
It’s sad that certain touches tend to be associated with sex. You could them give amazing back rubs. Just a few minutes of physical affection helps your loved one relax.
3. Hold their hands when you can
Hand-holding is a subtle way to express affection. In a formal dining situation, you can gently reach beneath the table and take your girlfriend’s hand. You don’t have to be high on the PDA spectrum when loving someone in this way. Just grab his or her hand every once and awhile while walking into a store or from dinner. This will instantly ease your partner’s emotions and instigate intimacy.
Give your partner unconditional and nonsexual time to cuddle. Take away phones and other technology and find the time to just embrace your partner with your touch. Try not to make this overly sexual and just allow your partner to feel secure.
5. Give them a lot of hugs
Sometimes in a romantic relationship other more advanced ways to be intimate with your partner overshadows the hug. However, taking the time to hug your partner will signify care and closeness.
6. Initiate touch
It’s no fun to constantly tell your partner how you want to be loved; sometimes you wish they just knew. Make an effort to touch your partner frequently. You don’t have to be hanging on them constantly, but an occasional light brush of the arm or a shoulder squeeze can go a long way.
7. Plan dates around opportunities that get you close
When you make plans for Saturday, try to pick activities that enable you to show physical affection. If you’re going out to dinner, make reservations at a restaurant where you know you can sit on the same side of the table. Of course, all dates provide ample opportunity to get close, but sometimes try and explore some options where physical touch is inherent—as this can make it easier on you if physical touch isn’t your motive.
8. Slow down, and be in the moment.
It might surprise you to learn that, much like those who need Quality Time, a consideration of how you use time is actually a critical element for the physical touch love language—but you only need a bit. Looking for the right moments to show love through touch takes some practice and intentionality.