Emotional Security: Your Guide To One Of The New Love Languages

You've likely become familiar with the five love languages in recent years as mental health professionals on social media create a broader conversation around what a thriving relationship looks like. These love languages aim to help us understand both ourselves and our loved ones, zeroing in on how we can best express our care and commitment to them. The term was coined by marriage counselor Gary Smalley and is defined as: gift-giving, words of affirmation, physical touch, quality time, and acts of service.


But if you find that these five love languages don't sum up your needs when it comes to relationships, you're not alone. In 2023, we are seeing the addition of two new love languages that can hopefully fill in the blanks for those who feel underrepresented when it comes to the communication of love. Welcome, shared experiences and emotional security to the fabric of love languages. Let's take a closer look at the latter.

Emotional security is key for those with trauma

Emotional security is a foundation for us all, but particularly for those who are survivors of trauma. If your partner struggles with anxiety and constantly scans their environment for threats, chances are they aren't going to be able to enjoy any of the other love languages. Through healing, trauma survivors can find safety in the moment and safety within their relationship. 


It's also possible that you or your partner already have a secure attachment style and emotional security as a love language still resonates with you deeply. Some of us simply feel most loved when we are seen, heard, and understood in deep and close connection with others. If you find yourself craving an emotional outpouring from your partner about their dreams and fears — and can't help but offer up the same yourself — then emotional security could likely be your love language. Emotional security involves a deep need to experience no second-guessing or uncertainty about your partner's love and commitment to you.

Emotional security looks like deep conversations

So, in practical terms, what does emotional security look like as a love language? Deep conversation tops the list for the needs of someone who values emotional security. Exploring the ins and outs of your emotional landscape with a trusted loved one through intimate talk and pondering the bigger questions of the universe together is what this love language is all about.


While differing love languages can certainly work out in a relationship, this one may take a little more explaining than others since it does revolve around mutual vulnerability. Let your partner know that you feel most loved when they put their phone down while you're talking, that you feel more connected when there's reciprocity in your deep conversation, and that you need more than an "okay" or "sure" in response to some of your more sensitive questions. The feeling of deep safety and wellness you experience after a connected conversation with your loved one is one of the top signals that emotional security is your love language.

Be conscious of codependency

If you believe that emotional security is indeed your love language, then it's key to be able to foster a sense of safety in yourself without leaning on your partner too much — although it's perfectly natural to depend on our relationships for a certain degree of co-regulation when it comes to our emotional ups and downs. But, if emotional security is what you desire most in a partnership, try watching how often you reach for the phone to text or call your partner when you're experiencing a bout of anxiety. Could you self-soothe at this moment instead?


If you're in a relationship with someone who prefers acts of service or physical touch over deep emotional conversations — which could actually feel more draining than fulfilling for them — be conscious of establishing a healthy give-and-take. Ideally, your partner will understand that emotional security is a must for you and will be happy to help create that experience.

Once safety is established, other love languages may emerge

Emotional security is the foundation necessary for someone with this love language to be able to bloom in a relationship. Trust, deep understanding, and an intimate emotional bond precede just about everything else. So, if your partner's love language is emotional security and you'd love to see them comfortable enough to expand and be at ease, try setting time aside each day to let them share their heart — distraction-free.


Ask the deep questions and answer them too. Philosophize with them and don't be afraid to unpack some of the heavier details of your past together. The sense of closeness that emerges from shared vulnerability is the ultimate gift for those with this love language. Once a trustful bond is established, these individuals may be more comfortable exploring other forms of affection too. Over time, the need for external validation and reassurance may lessen as your partner grows more and more secure in their bond with you.