Is it ever too early to tell your significant other you love them?

Dear Reader,

You asked a very good (and challenging) question. I have thought a lot about this over my years in the dating game. At this point, I have yet to develop any real conclusions. It seems as though every relationship is unique, and these big moments come at different times depending on the lovers.

I can’t think of another phrase in the English language that holds the power that “I love you” does. Think about it.

The phrase is packed with passion, clarity and positive vibes, but the context of the speaker and the listener is what determines how the phrase is understood. When someone you love says that they love you, the elevated sense of joy you receive is indescribable.

Photo by: William Wrobel

Photo by: William Wrobel

To love and be loved is one of the greatest experiences in life; however, when somebody that you do not love says those three words, a shudder runs through your bones and suddenly a little frog inhabits your throat. It is amazing what drastically different experiences the phrase can evoke depending on the context.

Consider this when you decide to share your “I love you.” I do encourage people to say the phrase. It is the kindest thing you can say. Why would you hold back from expressing utter adoration?

Putting out positive vibes is always rewarding, even if the response is not a reciprocation of your feelings, I am certain that your words will still mean a lot. Remember though, that the person you tell might not say it back.

I think that is the most important thing to consider if you are contemplating whether to be the first to say it in a relationship. While it is important to be honest, it is also important to think about how you would feel if your partner does not say it back. If you think that you would be hurt by them not reciprocating the line, then maybe it is not quite time. With that being said, I’d argue that, if you truly love a person, you wouldn’t care if they do not say I love you back.

When we are dating, there are a lot of things that go unsaid. Many feelings and thoughts whiz by before we ever share them with our partner. In my experience, if an idea recurs, I share it.

So if I think of saying “I love you” on more than one occasion, I say it. I use this same approach when deciding if it is time to cut ties with a partner. If I think of ending a relationship more than once, I recognize the pattern and follow my intuition and end things.

So if the words “I love you” are on the tip of your tongue when you are with someone, trust your gut and be honest.

When in love, say it. Life is short. Unexpected things happen, and it would be a shame to live with a regret such as not telling someone how you feel.

I hope they love you too,


Arline Votrubca can be contacted at

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