The new season of "The Bachelorette" started back up this week, and, let’s just say, I’m addicted. (I could claim that I watch it for “work purposes,” but I’d be lying.) Now, why am I telling you my taste in reality TV?

It’s so I can relate the various Bachelorettes over time to “The 5 Love Languages,” created by Gary Chapman.

In case you’re not familiar with the five love languages, they are:

  1. Words of affirmation. This language uses words to affirm other people.
  2. Acts of service. For these people, actions speak louder than words.
  3. Receiving gifts. For some people, what makes them feel most loved is to receive a gift.
  4. Quality time. This language is all about giving the other person your undivided attention.
  5. Physical touch. To this person, nothing speaks more deeply than appropriate touch.

Each is not mutually exclusive, of course, but generally, people tend to gravitate to one as their primary “language.” In many past seasons, it seems most of the female leads strongly gravitate to No. 1: Words of affirmation. In order for the lead to know someone loves her, he has to say the words “I love you.” He can’t say “My heart is yours,” “I’m falling for you” or anything remotely sweet that does not include those three little words in that order.

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In almost every episode on any given season, the Bachelorette essentially holds her breath until she hears certain loving words from each of the bachelors vying for her attention and her heart. Even if one of these guys is doing everything he can to show her he cares, it’s not enough for her without the words she needs to hear to seal the deal.

In any relationship, whether on TV or not, it’s important to know two things: your own love language, and that of your partner. The men on "The Bachelorette" often seem to fit into a few of the other “languages,” yet all the most recent leads — JoJo, Clare, Tayshia, Hannah, Becca — have been consistent in their desire for the men to conform to their love language.

I’ll be curious over this season to see how Michelle Young, the new Bachelorette, both gives and receives love. Will she insist on the L-word at all costs, or will she pay attention to the actions and motives of the men … or a little of each?

Only time will tell. And if her love language, like the others before her is, indeed, “words of affirmation," then I hope she finds happiness with someone who can verbally express it. Otherwise, no matter how much love is there, they might never be speaking the same language.

Erika Ettin is the founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps others navigate the often intimidating world of online dating. Want to connect with Erika? Join her newsletter, eepurl.com/dpHcH, for updates and tips. ©2021 Tribune Content Agency, LLC