Ask A Guy: Why Won’t He Say I Love You?

does he love me

Why are these 3 little words so hard to say? | Source: ShutterStock

Hi Ethan,

I’ve been with my boyfriend for 9 months in July. He is handsome, smart, he has a plan for his life, and he treats me like a queen. But I have a hang up and it’s kind of a big one. He doesn’t love me. I dropped the bomb a few months ago and he wasn’t there yet, and he still isn’t there. He says he just needs time, but I’m beginning to think it isn’t going to happen. He put everything on the line for his last girl and she never said she loved him back. So now he’s hesitant. I’ve made it clear that this is a new relationship and that I am not his last girl, but I can’t help but think his baggage is weighing him down.

I love him and he’s such a great guy, but how long should a girl wait around before it’s not worth it anymore? :(

Ouch. Nothing hurts more than an unrequited L-Bomb. When I first told my girlfriend I loved her, it took her so long to respond that I began convincing myself I never said it in the first place.

Everyone moves at a different pace, so it might take a guy a little longer to reach the same emotional level as you because of his previous romantic experiences (or a lack of experience altogether). Try to allow emotional checkpoints to unfold naturally and give your guy some time to catch up. If you’re on different pages, the last thing you want to do is force the issue.

But seeing as you’ve already gone a few months with nothing but “I love… these pancakes!”, it’s time to take the relationship’s temperature. Calmly broach the issue with a mature, open discussion. Stay positive, avoid accusations or pressuring, and find out how he’s feeling about what you’ve already laid out.

Once you’ve discussed the topic with him, if it doesn’t seem like he’s at least headed towards Lovetown, you’ll have to pull the plug. Nine months is enough time for anyone to know which direction a relationship is moving, and you don’t deserve to feel unmatched for any longer.

However, there are no absolutes in dating, so there is no objective amount of time you should or shouldn’t wait around for a guy to fall in love. Those ladies confident of an eventual come around won’t let a one-way declaration stress them out, while others won’t stand for anything but immediate reciprocation. Ultimately, you need to wait for this guy for as long as it still feels good – and you need to walk when it just doesn’t anymore.

Good luck!
Ethan

Ethan Fixell is a writer and comedian from New York City best known as one half of comic “dating coach” duo Dave and Ethan. He is also the creator and editor of ActualConversation.com. For more on Ethan, visit EthanFixell.com…or call his mom, Robin.

Are you confused about a guy? Do you find yourself wondering, “What is he thinking?” Tell us everything in the comments! And if you have a question for Ethan, email him at askaguy@gurl.com!

 

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Posted in: Ask A Guy, Love Advice
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19 Comments

  1. avatarSarah melvin says:

    So, im having a lot of problems with my heart. Its kinda tearing me apart. I have fallen in love with one of my brothers best friends. He first held my hand about 2 months ago. We’ve been talking for about a year. And i want to go further with it, but were not even dating. We have to keep it from everyone else so my brother doesn’t find out. Is that healthy? He texts me a lot. But whenever he’s around all he wants to do is kiss. Ive said “i love you” and all he did was say thanks and explain to me how much his last girlfriend hurt him so he’s going to wait. I understood completely, but i feel like were on two different pages. Im in love with him, and he has feelings for me but hasn’t said i love you, and we’ve stopped texting like we used to. He hardly comes over anymore. Am i just his rebound? I dont know if i should end it now and save my heart some pain, or go on with it and take a chance of a broken heart. Hes not the one to leave, hes a sweet guy. But i never get to see him, and the “love” thing is getting to me. I dont want to let him go, but i feel as if i might. Please help. Thanks.

  2. avatarmorgan says:

    My boyfriend and I have been together a year and half now. I dropped the I love you before i truly meant it about a year ago. Then i forgot all about it as he only smiled and continued with his video game. Now a year later soberly and meaningfully i couldnt hold it in any more. He is almost a step dad figure for my 3 year old son. He tells my son he loves him once or twice. He says he loves me if we talk about it because he shows me everyday. Just becausE he doesnt say it doesnt mean he doesnt is how he explains it. There are times he is sitting next to me or pkaying with my son and i just want to yell out how much love i have for him. He treats me like a queen. We never fight. He is the perfect guy. But he is so laid back about life, never lets things bother him. I worry we could just be “passing time” or he could atleast.

  3. avatarRose says:

    I just went through this and it hurt hard core. The man was with me for 13 months and I fell in love with him for sure. At about the ninth month marker I asked —- are you in love with me? And he said I don’t know. That hurt because I knew that meant no because there was no reassurance behind that. Well, just a week ago he told me knows he doesn’t have those feelings for me and it has truly crushed me.

    Moral of this story: LADIES DO NOT DO LIKE I DID! If they do not tell you that they love you in six to nine months then LEAVE! Believe me..you will hurt like hell when he pulls that sudden cold breakup on you.

  4. avataranonymous says:

    I’ve been with my guy almost a year, when we first got together he was so interested. Would do nice things, and show me how much I meant to him. He’d constantly tell me I was beautiful, and how important k was to him. Now I struggle to even get him to show an interest. I don’t no if I’m doing something different, or whether the way he feels has changed. He never tells me he loves me or that im beautiful, and we never do anything together. Most of the time we argue :( I don’t no what to do cause I do really love him.

    • avatardenise j says:

      I found out recently that females are generally looking for a less physically attractive partner than themselves.. If he doesn’t come off as more insecure than she is.. She does not feel interested because she carrys the extra emotional baggage.

  5. avatarnitda says:

    I meet my boy friend for 10 month now ,and I really love him and I even say I love u first .but I feel so bad because he never say I love you back .and I can’t wait I ark him why ? And he told me that when he divorce he second wife he really heart broken. And may he never feel love ever agains.I am crying after hear that because I already fall in love with him.maybe I never have a change to have he love for me.and one day I tell him that I don’t know if I can hang around any longer .and he text me that I don’t know why ?just thinking that I never gonna see u against is very upsetting me .but he very nice guy when we spending time together we are happy .I am not sure what I should do ? Stay around or move on.because I am not sure if he be able to love me ?

  6. avatarchristina says:

    I’ve been seeing a guy for almost 11 months. We have a great time together. We spend quality time together and the sex is amazing. When we first started seeing each other he said we were just friends with benefits. The problem is his actions are telling me different. The way he acts out in public with me makes me think that there is something more. I have feelings for him and I’m afraid to tell him. He says that he likes our arrangement and doesnt want me to get emotionally involved because he can’t do it right now. Hes been raising 2 daughters and one is in college and the other one will be graduating this year. My question is: should I give him time because I know his children come first or ask him exactly what he wants?

    • avatarAlice says:

      He told you exactly what he wants: no commitment. He’s being honest, if that is not the type of arrangement you are looking for, find someone else. If he cares enough to date you, he’ll try to get you back after you leave and then YOU can decide if he’s worth it.

  7. avatarKimbr Stevens says:

    I met this guy in May. We dated casually for a couple of weeks but the chemistry, in my mind was really great. I decided I couldn’t just be one of many and decided to back off, but his reaction was to stop dating other women and just see me exclusively. I fell in love within a month and I was more happy than I’ve ever been in my life. A couple of months later he revealed we weren’t “right” for each other and he broke it off. I have always felt he treated me better than any man ever had, and that I couldn’t see why he didn’t want to be with me if he treated me like I was the only girl in the world. He was attentive, never late, always affectionate, and even as friends after the break up, he still texts me first thing in the morning, last thing at night and gives me every positive affirmation that a girl needs. Why would he do this if he isn’t in love?

    • avatarAlice says:

      He decided he missed sleeping with other girls. He keeps texting you, to string you along in case any of these other girls fall through. Cut contact now.

  8. avatarTracey says:

    I met this guy in August of last year and we dated till the beginning of July 2013. We were on and off from April 2013 till when I broke up with him in July because he wasnt putting any effort in the relationship, still on dating sites (including the one we met on) talking to and texting other women, and seeming very distant. I love him and he’s aware of how I feel about him but I’m always wondering where I stand with him. Because one minute he acts like he cares about me and wants me around then the next his mind is off somewhere else and acts like I’m not even there. The other night I asked him how he truly felt about me and that I deserved an honest answer because we had been going back and forth for a year and frankly I was tired of it. He said “I obviously like you or I wouldn’t be here” ….????? REALLY? After a year he just LIKES me? So as a joke, I sent him a text later saying “goodnight..I LIKE you”) and he replied goodnight ..I like you too ;) …….is that his way of telling me he loves me? I mean isn’t a year long enough for someone to know if they love someone?? HELP!

  9. avatarLynne says:

    Hi. I’ve been seeing this guy for about 3months now. We both agreed that we were not ready for a relationship. But we started hooking up and there were no strings attached. Later he realized he was getting attached and so was I. I told him I loved him. But he only used to tell me when we started to make love. I thought it wasn’t right so we had a talk about it. Then he started to tell me every now and then. He said he really loved me and that I shouldn’t doubt his love for a second. But he still hasn’t asked me out. I’ve met his mum and his family.. And they all think we dating. But it still isn’t official. I want to walk away and look elsewhere cuz I’m scared to get hurt. Should I stay and assume we are dating or I should walk away. Plus I used to date one of his friends. And he only recently got to know. I don’t know what that implies or if it’s a factor at all.
    I need advice cuz I’m loosing it and hv been avoiding him while I try to figure stuff out

  10. avatarAshley E. says:

    Hey Ethan,
    I’ve known this boy i like for about 2 years now. I really started liking him when a very close family member of mine died and he was there for me. Recently i’ve started to fall for him. We’ve talked about getting into a relationship and he says the choice is mines, but when i told him to choose he said he rather wait until i come back from basic training which in 9 months from now. I believe i’ve waited long enough for a relationship. What is taking him so long? The confusing part is when i said im leaving to find a relationship and told him to enjoy his life he says he wont because im not in it. What should i do? He is very nice and willing to spend money on me. He says he loves and cares for me so what’s the problem? Is he scared of getting in a relationship because of a past relationship gone wrong or is he leading me on? How should i take this?

  11. avatarchelsea patalinghug says:

    she never should’ve expected anything…. i hate guys like that >_<

  12. avatarAdama says:

    At least when he finally does say it, you’ll know he really means it!

  13. avatarjenn says:

    sometimes its better for guys not to say i love u so fast i think

  14. avatarSammi says:

    Only Sith deal in absolutes.

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