Dr. Gary Chapman, internationally respected marriage and family life expert and author of The Five Love Languages, which has helped countless numbers of people communicate and understand love better. The consistent New York Times bestseller has sold more than five million copies, been translated into 38 languages, and has revolutionized relationships. This Valentine’s Day, we took a moment to reflect on the 20 year legacy of his revolutionary ideas.
JM: What’s your take on Valentine’s Day?
GC: Well, I think it gives an opportunity for the nation to focus on love, and in that sense, I think it’s positive. I know, there’s a lot of down sides, people say, but, I still think it’s nice that we have one day in a year that we can focus on expressing love to people, so I’m positive on Valentine’s Day.
JM: Looking back at your book The Five Love Languages, what do you think the lasting legacy of this monumental book will be?
GC: My hope is that it will continue to do in the years ahead what it has done in the past, and that is help couples learn how to connect with each other emotionally and keep emotional love alive in the marriage relationship. And, when I say marriage relationship you understand that I apply this to all human relationships, but I originally have that focus because my counseling has primarily been marriage counseling.
So many couples have said over the last number of years, “You know, we were struggling in our marriage, someone gave us the book, it was like the lights came on when we read it and we realized what had happened and how we’d missed each other emotionally. And we tried it, we tried speaking each other’s language and it changed the emotional climate of our marriage.”
So, my hope is that that will continue to happen in the generations to come because I think it’s a timeless concept. We all desperately need to feel love, and if you’re married, the person you most like to love you is your spouse. And, if you feel loved, the world looks bright and if you don’t feel loved, the world can look pretty dark. So, I’m hoping that it will continue to help couples stay connected and also help parents learn how to effectively love their children and their teenagers.