Saying, “I love you,” to your partner is one of the most romantic things when it comes to new relationships but knowing when to say, “I love you,” is also one of the hardest.

When you spend lots of time with someone and every time you’re about to see them, you experience the sensation of butterflies in your stomach, their presence feels like home and you can’t imagine living without them, it is normal to come to the conclusion that you’re in love with them.

And there is no greater feeling in the world than this!

But now comes the hardest part where you think and overthink about saying it to them.

All of a sudden, the uncertainty overwhelms you to the extent where you start doubting your own feelings.

You start asking yourself questions like: “Should I be the first one declaring my love or should I wait for them to do so?

What if they don’t feel the same about it and I get humiliated by saying ‘I love you’ too early?”

When to say, “I love you”?

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

When is the right time to say, “I love you,” for the first time in a relationship?

Is it after two weeks, after you have met their whole family or right then when you start feeling it in your gut?

The truth is, there is no perfect recipe or timing for when to drop the L bomb.

But there are some essential things that you should pay attention to that serve as rules and advice about when to tell your partner, “I love you”.

If you stick to them and if you’re being genuine and honest about your feelings, you will significantly increase your chances of doing so successfully and mutual reciprocity will be granted!

WHEN TO SAY, “I LOVE YOU,” FOR THE FIRST TIME IN A RELATIONSHIP

1. Go on at least five dates

The most important thing to remember when it comes to dropping the L bomb is to make sure not to say it too early or too late.

Too early would be the first one to four dates because you can’t really connect that much with your partner if you have just seen them three times in your life or you just started dating.

However, if you’ve been connected all the time via texting and you couldn’t go on dates like regular couples and now when you’ve spent some time with them in person you feel that your bond has become even stronger, then you know saying, “I love you,” is just the right thing to do.

2. Make sure that you’re really feeling it

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

Many people spend too much time thinking about when to say, “I love you,” instead of also thinking about how they feel about saying it.

If you just want to say it for the sake of declaring your love to your partner because you’ve been dating for a while now and because you think it is expected of you to say it, don’t do it.

Say it only if you’re one hundred percent sure that you’re really feeling it. Now you’re probably asking yourself: “But how can I be totally sure about it because no one can confirm it to me?”

Well, there’s one trick when it comes to this (that I found out a little bit too late) and that is: “If you don’t know why you love someone but you know that you love them, then you really love them.” (I guess it makes sense.)

3. Don’t wait too long and don’t overthink it

Just as it is important not to say it too early, it is also important not to wait too long to say it.

People often make this mistake due to overthinking and not being sure about their feelings.

They wait for the perfect moment to say it, only to realize that they’ve waited for too long.

The truth is that the longer you wait, the more you will overthink things and it will just go in circles for an eternity.

Once you’ve spent enough time with your partner and you feel that you should level up things, do not let your mind interfere with your decision all the time.

Don’t wait too long and don’t overthink it and everything will be just fine.

4. Wait until you’re bursting inside out to say it

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

Do you feel like you should say, “I love you,” but the feeling is not that strong within you? Do you feel like you could wait longer to say it?

If yes, then you should indeed wait because the best timing to say it is when you’re totally bursting inside out to declare your love to your partner.

Now, you’re probably wondering why. It is because love works on the principle of growth, like trees.

When you grow your love for your partner inside you and wait for its pinnacle, it will be more intense and therefore, more effective and genuine.

5. Don’t do it before, during or after sex

One of the worst things you could do is say, “I love you,” before, during or after sex with your partner. Why?

When you’re about to make love to your partner, your hormones go wild and you feel everything ten times more intense and that is why sometimes people tend to say those three words, even though in most cases they don’t really mean it.

They say it because their hormones are telling them to do so.

That is why you should never say it at that time and instead when you’re thinking rationally and when you’re not too intoxicated by their appearance or presence.

6. Make sure that you trust your partner completely

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

Do you trust your partner with your life? Has your partner ever betrayed you or made you doubt his loyalty?

Before saying, “I love you,” you should always first make sure that you trust your partner completely.

Trust is the base of every healthy relationship and if you are lacking it somehow, then you should never even think about saying those three words to your partner until you make sure that things have changed.

Also, trusting your partner means not being afraid of possible outcomes when you finally say it because you will not fear if they will run for their life or make you feel stupid about it.

7. You feel comfortable around your partner

Feeling comfortable around someone is a prerequisite for everything and especially successful relationships.

If you feel comfortable around your partner, it means you feel free to be who you really are with them.

You should never be something that you’re not when it comes to love.

If you’re sure that you can be one hundred percent yourself when hanging out with them, then it means your love for each other is genuine.

And only then should you say those three words.

You need to make sure that the feeling you have for your partner is not in any way fake because if it is, no matter how many times you say, “I love you,” to them, nothing will ever change.

8. You feel it in your gut

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

You’ve probably heard a lot of times so far that you should always listen to your gut.

If you’re not sure about something, just listen to that little voice in your head telling you what the right thing to do is.

And in the majority of cases, this is true. If you feel something in your gut, it means that it’s real because you feel it in your soul.

So, if you feel like you should definitely say that you love them, then you should not overthink too much.

Follow your heart and gut and I’m sure that everything will be just fine.

(Especially if you’ve already followed your gut before and convinced yourself of positive outcomes.)

9. Your partner has confessed their love with their deeds

When it comes to love, many people solely focus on words, thus forgetting to think about actions as well.

If you’re thinking about saying, “I love you,” to your partner first, first make sure that you’ve noticed little things that your partner does which mean their confession of their love to you.

If they are always there for you, helping you with things, making sure to make you feel special, surprising you and genuinely taking care of you, then you can be sure they love you but they probably haven’t gathered up the courage to admit it to you yet or they are just like you, waiting for the perfect moment to do it.

10. Don’t say it when you want to make up for something or reward your partner for something

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

Don’t use those three words as a reward for your partner or for making up to them when you fuck things up.

You don’t want to say, “I love you,” in those circumstances (believe me) and there are two major reasons why you definitely shouldn’t:

a) If you say, “I love you,” just to reward your partner for something nice they have done for you, then it means you’re probably not even feeling it but you’re just doing it for the sake of rewarding them.

b) If you say, “I love you,” just to make up for something you fucked up, it means your relationship is not healthy because there are other ways to apologize and make up for things instead of saying those three words; loving someone has nothing to do with being sorry for something.

11. If you’re not one hundred percent sure, don’t say it first

While the best bet is always to wait for your partner to say it first, this should not be the rule.

Also, some people think that men are those who should always declare their love first but this is not true at all.

Love is not picky and it doesn’t have the ability to choose between genders.

We all feel insecure when it comes to dropping the L bomb for the first time and there shouldn’t be specific rules about it.

Especially if you’re not one hundred percent sure, there is nothing wrong with waiting a little bit longer and not saying it first, regardless of whether you’re a man or a woman.

Just listen to your mind and body and what feels right!

12. Don’t say it when you’re overly emotional

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

Have you watched a sad or happy movie together, where the story ends with a ‘happily ever after’ and now you can’t help but want to declare your love to your partner as well?

While it may seem like the right thing to do on so many levels, please don’t do it when you’re overly emotional.

You see, emotions can be tricky.

They have the ability to lift you up to the sky and down to the ground you in seconds and that is why you should be careful when it comes to saying, “I love you,” because you need to say it when you’re totally chill and not under other influences in your surroundings.

13. Say it after your first fight or two

I know it may seem weird to you but yes, you should say, “I love you,” after your first fight or two.

You should do so because fights are like testers of how strong your love actually is.

It is easy to love someone when everything is perfect in a relationship, when the sun is shining, the birds are chirping and you’re having a great time with each other.

But when the storm comes (and there will be many in your together future), only the strongest love survives.

You know that you really love your partner when you know how to agree that you disagree, when you know how to respect their wishes and compromise.

And that is when you should definitely say to them that you love them!

THE TOP 5 MOMENTS WHEN YOU DEFINITELY SHOULDN’T SAY, :I LOVE YOU,” TO YOUR PARTNER FOR THE FIRST TIME

The worst that could happen to you when you decide to drop the L bomb is if you do it at the totally wrong time and in the wrong space.

Your partner might feel the same way but if you do it in the wrong timing, you will ruin the whole, “I love you,” thing.

Apart from not saying it before, during or after sex, or when you’re overly emotional (as stated above), there are more rules for when you should definitely not say, “I love you,” to your partner for the first time!

1. Don’t say it when you’re drunk

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

When you indulge in plenty of alcohol, your body and mind start doing things you usually wouldn’t do when you’re sober, which means you should never, ever say that you love your partner for the first time when you’re drunk and you’re fighting to keep your balance.

If you do that, the chances are that you’re not even feeling it but the alcohol has forced you to say it or, maybe even worse, you are feeling it but despite that, the alcohol will ruin all the romance.

So, it is always better to keep your mouth shut when you’re loaded with alcohol so that you don’t regret your actions when you wake up tomorrow and realize what you’ve done.

2. Don’t say it at the first wedding you attend together

We all know that weddings can be really emotional and there isn’t a single soul who can be indifferent when it comes to watching two people tying the knot and deciding to share their body and soul with one another.

And no matter how hard it would be for you to endure the wedding ceremony without feeling the urge to admit your own feelings to your partner (to say, “I love you,”) just try to keep yourself from doing so because it is not the time or space for such doings and because you’re probably just overly emotional.

3. Don’t say it at dinner with your/their parents

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

If you say, “I love you,” to your partner while you’re at dinner with your or their parents, I can guarantee you that you will make them feel uncomfortable and, let’s say, ruin the dinner.

You should always say those three words first when you’re alone with your partner and not with your family around you because saying, “I love you,” is not the same thing as proposing or similar.

4. When you’re in a fight

If you ever were tempted to use those three words as a pacifier during a fight, do not do that.

Don’t say to your partner that you love them just because you want to stop fighting and make them feel better.

There are other, healthier ways to end the fight and saying, “I love you,” is definitely not one of them.

5. After they say it to you (if you’re not feeling the same yet)

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

If you’re really anxious about how to respond when your partner says that they love you but you don’t want to hurt their feelings, you should never say something that you don’t really mean.

If you do this, you might hurt their feelings and make things even worse.

It is always better to say that you really like them but you simply cannot say yet that you love them, which doesn’t mean that you will not eventually be ready for it.

It just means that you need more time because not all people experience love at the same pace.

When To Say, “I Love You,” For The First Time In A Relationship

Martha Sullivan
Hello everyone!I'm a former English language major, copy typing freelancer and between the two I've always enjoyed drawing (abstract art), singing and writing. Yes, I'm an artistic soul that always wanted to make the world a better place. Today I'm lucky to be the writer on this site and to share my deepest thoughts with you and support you through your daily struggles. I hope we're gonna get along and I'll give my best not to disappoint you. XOXO
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