How To Decide When To Say I Love You - The Perfect Moment

Updated September 04, 2018


Three words have shaped humanity, and those words are "I love you." For couples, they are a constant reminder that the two of them care for each other. For two lovers on a date, these words are the official confirmation that the relationship has become serious. The phrase can be as genuine as possible or hold no meaning at all.

In the field of dating, these three words have been a subject of debate. When is the right time to say you love your partner? If you've had feelings for them for a while, you want to say it as soon as possible. However, your date may not know how they feel about you, and those words will turn them off.

Then there are those who aren't even on a date. Perhaps you've loved your friend for a long time, and wonder when to admit your feelings. If you admit them, they may not feel the same way, and there will be awkward tension. If you don't, you may end up losing a relationship that could have been.

It's so complicated, and it's something you usually don't learn in schools. That's because there is no straight time frame and it's entirely situational. In some cases, you can say it on the first date. In others, you may have to wait a while.

If you look up advice, you'll get conflicting results. This is because there is no answer. However, there are ways to figure out when the best possible time in. In this post, we'll discuss the different ways you can increase your chances of having an "I love you too" back.

The Importance Of Timing

It's impossible to tell when the best time to say I love you is, but one way you can increase your chances of it being successful is by having good timing. If you say those words when the moment isn't right, it can hinder or ruin your relationship. While there is no perfect timing, there are a few rules you can follow, including:

Wait, But Don't Wait Too Long

This is one of the most frustrating ones because it requires a happy medium between two extremes that aren't measured. If you have feelings for someone on the first date, admitting that you love them may creep your date out, or make them think you're trying to rush things.


However, if you wait too long, there's always the chance your date will find someone else, or lose all romantic feelings for you and just see you as a friend.

Finding that happy middle is important. For some, that will be after a couple of months of dating. For others, it may be longer or shorter.

Don't Say It During An Inappropriate Situation

One way to have good timing is not to say it when the situation isn't the best. For example, if your date is angry over something, admitting you love them is going to skew the results. If you're emotional, you may end up belching it out before the moment is right.

When you say it, you want to make sure that the two of you can handle it. Don't say it when either of you has strong emotions. Do not say it during sex or shortly before or after it.

Look For The Signs

One way you can increase your chances of saying "I love you" to someone is to see if the person you're saying it to has signs that they love you too. Some will display subtle signs through their body language, actions, or words.

These signs aren't the perfect indicator that they love you; some people may show signs, but they don't mean to, and they don't have a mutual feeling. Meanwhile, someone may show no signs at all, and may even come across as disliking you, but they secretly love you. However, by knowing the signs, you can increase your chances.

  • Eye contact is always an important sign. If your partner is always looking at you, then there's a chance that they have feelings for you. However, some people hate eye contact regardless of if they love you or not.
  • The person goes above and beyond to do something for you. Most people who don't have strong emotions for you aren't going to take the time out of their day to help you. If they do, there's a chance they have an emotional bond.
  • They always make an effort to talk to you. If you don't respond to them in your usual time, they may wonder if there's something wrong and worry for you.
  • The person who loves you can open up to you and express their deepest emotions. While this may also be a sign of friendship, combined with the other signs, it may be love.
  • The person buys you gifts or wants to take you out. This is an obvious sign of affection.

Don't Overthink it!


This may sound like contradictory advice, as so far, we've taught you different ways you can deduce whether or not it's appropriate to say those words to someone. However, the key is overthinking. Thinking about the right time to say the phrase, and the circumstances around it can be a good thing. However, by thinking about it too much, you may never say it. Your mind may look for one reason why you shouldn't say the words, even if the situation is good, and you will prevent yourself from saying it

Where is the line between overthinking and just right thinking? Again, there is no straight answer. Scrutinize your thinking a bit. If you feel like there's a point where you believe you're overthinking things, then you may be overthinking.

For example, say your date doesn't respond right away, and you start believing all sorts of different scenarios. Usually, the answer is simple. They got sidetracked or needed to charge their phone. However, by overthinking, you drove yourself into a panic.

What If They Don't Love Me Back?

Nothing stings more than mustering up the energy to say "I love you" to someone, only for them to sound uncertain or outright tell you they don't feel the same about you. It can be heartbreaking and cause you not to think straight.

What you should do depends on the response.

If They Don't Love You Back

If one doesn't love you back, it's a sad resolution to your romance, but one that happens to most people. It's natural to feel a slew of emotions, from sadness to anger, but you need to think as rationally as possible.

First, you shouldn't try to change one's feelings. Sometimes, feelings can change, but this happens organically. They aren't obligated to love you back, and if they don't feel that way, trying to manipulate them into doing so is no good.

Instead, move on. If the two of you can still be friends, that's great. However, being friends while one has feelings can be disastrous. Give yourself time to have some space and don't talk to them until your feelings have subsided.

If They Are Unsure


One of the more interesting responses is when you say you love someone, but the answer is neither yes nor no. Instead, they don't know what to say. They may be facing a slew of emotions as well and may need some time to process everything. They may love you too, but they may need to critically evaluate how the feel beforehand, or may need more time to see if they love you back.

Continue pursuing the relationship, but give the person some time and space to answer the question. If you're dating, continue to date. This may help the person figure out whether or not they love you. If your dates continue to go well, they may say yes. However, if they realize that it wasn't meant to be, they may say no.

How Counseling Can Help

If you're new to the dating scene, you may have many questions about when the moment to say I love you is right. While there is no correct answer, a relationship counselor can look at your situation and give their advice.


A relationship counselor is more than just a friend telling you their opinion about dating. A counselor has studied how people express love and will tell you whether or not it's the right time to say "I love you," and can help answer any of your questions you may have.

Love is a complex emotion, and one that has been the subject of studies, art, and it's one of the foundations of our society. It's no surprise that saying "I love you" is so complicated. There is no magic answer, but by knowing a few rules, you may have the better chance of that special someone saying "I love you too."

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