I luh-luh like you?
You’re sitting there with your significant other. They are doing something simple, ordinary, or even mundane and all of a sudden you feel it—it hits you head on. It’s like the simple action of tucking a strand of hair behind their ear is the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen. Your heart tightens, and there it is—love. You feel it in every sense of the word, but you don’t know how to say it, or perhaps more significantly, when to say it.
The feast of St. Valentine on the 14th of February each year, commonly known in today’s society as Valentine’s Day, is one that evokes a wide range of emotion. As flower shops profit widely, wallets cry silently and glitter seems to be absolutely everywhere, people find themselves nurturing various feelings for their significant other. But wait, is it just a liking, a fondness, an infatuation, lust or is it ~love~?
While there are so many things to think about before you say the big “ILY,” we must pause and ask ourselves why love is such a taboo topic in relationships? Especially in a college setting, some people fling the topic of love around as if it’s just another way to get with someone.
“People say they love someone after just one week,” says freshman psychology and English major Yolanda Castaneda.
And while sometimes it may seem too soon to express or even admit to such heavy and definitive feelings, there is never really an appropriate time to utter those three powerful words, made up of eight letters that express that one thought, “I love you.”
There is no “right” time to say it
We have all heard dreaded love advice such as, “don’t say it first; never echo it back,” and even “you have got to have been on at least ten dates.” Others say you need to have been together for at least three months before even considering such feelings. While it may not always be best to say “I love you” for the first time before, during or after sex, when you feel it, you feel it.
“I don’t think there is a universal appropriate time,” says freshman communication studies major Riley Hamilton. “But you feel it. That’s really the only way to describe it, unfortunately. You just feel bright and whole and uplifted.”
Actions speak louder than words
Love doesn’t always have to be a spoken declaration. Sometimes proving your love for someone is as simple as paying attention to the little things. As actions do speak louder than words, one of the best ways to tell your significant other you love them is by demonstrating your feelings in all that you do with or for that special someone. If you don’t think you’re quite ready to say it, show them by supporting them, being there for them and making them a priority.
“Love is proven just by how you treat someone,” says public relations major Marissa Jacobs. “It’s not about material goods, but about how you care for that someone.”
It is entirely up to you
As cliché as it may sound, when it’s the right time to say how you feel is strictly up to you. Love doesn’t always grow at the same pace. If you’re worried, your S.O. doesn’t feel the same way but you are absolutely bursting to tell them how you feel, let them know that they don’t have to say it back.
“Telling your significant other that you love them is one of the greatest parts of being in a relationship,” says business major Kendrick Painter. “You are being one hundred percent sincere. It’s also one of the scariest parts because you don’t know if they feel the same way.”
Some say that being in love is one of the most satisfying feelings, but many are apprehensive because it makes you vulnerable. If you are in love with someone, tell him or her, but do it at your own pace. If you feel it, you simply feel it, and there is no point attempting to fight that feeling for too long.
Photo by: Abby Pfaff