Despite being in a stable relationship, you may not feel ready to hear and respond to those wonderful – but sometimes complicated – words that are part of a couple: “I love you.”
The complexity of the situation is that in most relationships there is one who finds it very easy to express his feelings openly.
While the other feels with the obligation to reciprocate to get out of the way, and must resort to “I love you too”, even when he still does not feel it, in his eagerness to avoid hurting the partner or making him doubt the affection that yes feel.
So how do you respond to “I love you” when you still don’t feel the same way? Here are some of the alternatives you can take to get out of that situation without necessarily hurting the other.
1. I guessed it!
Although it seems a somewhat ironic phrase, and even egomaniacal, affirming that you already imagined it accompanied by a passionate kiss will leave your conquest so convinced of your affection, that they will hardly notice what you said.
2. There are already two of us!
Let’s imagine the situation: the two of them are embracing in a very romantic place, where they can meet each other’s eyes and declare their passion. And then someone says: “I love you!”
Rather than froze and let an awkward silence grow that is often immediately misinterpreted, you’d better respond quickly: “There are two of us already!”
It is a simple phrase, which does not require you to declare feelings that you are not ready to express.
3. I love myself too!
It can be very good to respond, “I love myself too!” Only if your partner has a good sense of humor. Otherwise, do not try, because you can look very bad or even hurt the other person.
In my personal experience, the first time I responded in this way they stopped talking for several days (I think it sounded like a mockery), but in the following opportunities I learned to express it with subtlety, while adding a wink of the eye, a smile and a warm kiss.
They never claimed me for responding with that phrase.
4. I thank you
Just think about it, if you were the one who says “I love you” and the other person responds “I thank you for it”, it means that they appreciate your love and are willing to be by your side because the feeling is reciprocal. This is what anyone who is in love wants to hear!
Thanks is synonymous with retribution. It is equivalent to being there as a demonstration of equality, because only in the company of that special person can you feel complete. Perhaps it is not literally an expression of love, but it is quite close to it.
5. I prefer stocks
Saying I love you in these times can be insignificant, due to how common the phrase has become.
So you can choose to tell your partner that you simply do not like cliches and that you prefer to show love with actions, rather than with the same words.
Let him know that you are in a relationship that represents a lot to you and that fulfills you emotionally, so you don’t need to hear or say those exact words to know how both of you are feeling.
In any case, you can speak frankly about the importance of actions over words. Or as the saying goes: “Loves are works.”
If you saw the movie Ghost: the shadow of a love , you will remember that in several scenes the protagonist tells her boyfriend “I love you”, but he always answers “ditto.”
In the film there is no doubt that the character loved her, because for something is that his soul remains wandering without rest after he was murdered. However, in the movie – and for many in real life – there are other ways to show or verbalize love.
Perhaps you are afraid of commitment or that you will be hurt emotionally, so it may be that saying “I love you” is more difficult than usual.
Ditto, by meaning, is a response that expresses “the same.” So technically you are acknowledging your love, but without using those dreaded words, that can help you take down the pressure you may be feeling in that moment a bit.
7. I miss you
It can be very useful in your case that every time you notice that your partner approaches with that expression of love in his eyes, you kiss him and say “I miss you!” Before he declares his love
This is a tactic to divert your attention from the conversation because you will have to respond to something else, at least momentarily.
Even if he has already told you the phrase you were trying to avoid, telling him that you have been missing him is still a way of showing affection.
But don’t be confused, this strategy only works a limited number of times. You cannot avoid feelings forever.
8. Me more!
Just hug him tight when he shows you love you and say “me more.” You will surely feel satisfied and happy because your feelings are rewarded.
But if you’re not really sorry, look for another option on this list. This is an original way of answering, but if you care, the relationship should never be false.
9. I feel vulnerable
Responding in this way is a gesture of love in itself, because you are honest with your partner. Do not tremble when your boyfriend or girlfriend expresses emotionally, respond in the same way if you feel it.
As you inevitably know that at any moment he is going to tell you that he loves you and you feel that that worries you, the next time explain to him that you feel vulnerable with his words, that every time he expresses his feelings to you you feel your heart shrink and your mind is blank.
There is nothing wrong with saying this to him, because it does not mean that you do not want him but that perhaps those expressions of affection cost you a little more. If so, explain that you’ve never met someone so special who expressed their love so clearly.
10. Explain it to me
This can be an expression that gets you out of trouble easily. The next time he says “I love you” or “I love you,” hug him, look directly into his eyes, and say, “Explain to me why.”
It is very likely that the anxiety you feel when someone tells you that they love you comes from the fact that you do not value yourself enough or that you are surprised that they can feel those emotions for you. It is normal and it happens a lot.
So by asking him to explain his feelings to you, you give your partner the opportunity to express his affection honestly, but it is also an opportunity for you to reflect on his words and your own feelings.