7 signs a man has fallen in love but won’t admit it, according to psychology

Love comes in many shapes and sizes – so loud you can hear it from the rooftops, so colorful you can’t help but stare at it, or so subtle and slow that you don’t even realize it’s happening to you until you’ve fallen head over heels right into it.

But if some people struggle to admit to themselves they’ve fallen in love, how can you – someone who can’t see into their head at all – know any better?

Let’s find out.

These are the 7 signs a man has fallen in love but won’t admit it.

1) He takes every opportunity to spend time with you

According to psychology, one of the most important signs a man is in love is that he actively wants to spend time in the company of the object of his affection – even if it includes hobbies or activities he isn’t necessarily passionate about.

As an example, I once told a guy I’d been dating for a month or so that I was planning to go on a solo trip to a nearby city.

He was surprised at my choice of destination, saying it wasn’t a nice place for a trip at all. Despite his opinion, though, he asked if he could come along because he wanted to spend some quality time together.

If a man places himself in situations he wouldn’t really be in on his own, there’s only one other reason why he does it: your company.

Of course, there’s always the chance that he just wants to be your friend, which is why it’s important to read the signs on this list as one whole picture rather than nit-pick individual sections.

2) He acts protective over you

Research suggests that men are less self-protective than women.

Whether this is rooted in biology or sociocultural forces isn’t relevant right now – for the purposes of this article, all we need to know is that a man who’s fallen in love may be more likely to act protective over you, even if it goes against his own self-preservation instincts.

For instance, he might:

  • Lend you a jacket when you’re cold (although he’ll be cold as a result)
  • Walk you home at night (although he could run into danger on his way back)
  • Stand up for you in a group setting (although he’ll have to face conflict)
  • Make you a nutritious meal after a long and exhausting day (although he’s tired, too)

Again, though, it’s important to take this with a grain of salt. Even male friends can be protective over their female friends from time to time.

Try not to make these signs feed into potential delusions – instead, use them to objectively gauge the situation at hand.

3) His body language speaks volumes

Okay, now we’re getting somewhere.

Did you know that our body language makes up an incredibly large percentage of all communication?

Every second, our bodies communicate for us – we just don’t realize it.

This is why a man’s body language might very well be the door to his innermost feelings even if he refuses to admit them to himself.

Here are a few body language signs that tend to accompany feelings of sexual attraction or romantic love:

  • His pupils dilate when he looks at you
  • He maintains eye contact for longer stretches of time than usual
  • He gets easily flustered, nervous, or fidgety around you
  • He displays an open stance (his arms and limbs aren’t crossed)
  • He’s leaning toward you when you’re talking
  • His facial expressions are in tune with what you’re telling him
  • He seems to pay a great deal of attention to what you say
  • He lightly touches you here and there (for example, he touches your upper arm when he’s laughing or your lower back when you’re moving through a crowd together)

4) He keeps looking at you, but when you ask him what’s up, he says it’s “nothing”

Speaking of body language, another huge sign a man has fallen in love with you is that he keeps staring at you. And staring. And staring some more.

But when you ask him what’s on his mind or if you have something stuck between your teeth, he just gives you a mysterious smile and says, “Oh, it’s nothing.” Then he changes the topic.

Infuriating, right?!

Well, luckily for you, it probably means he got so lost in the mesmerizing beauty of your eyes that he lost track of thought and then quickly tried to wave it away.

Something’s going on. And it very well may be of a romantic nature.

5) He drops everything just to help you out

Many men bond with their partners through acts of service.

If you need him to run to the shops, he’ll head out at the speed of Sonic X.

If your fridge has broken down, he’ll drive over just to fix it for you.

And if you need picking up after a party at 1 AM, he’ll be there to make sure you get home safe.

A man’s love for you can be measured by his willingness to make your life easier. It’s how many men express their affection – by ensuring you’re safe, healthy, and happy.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that a man in love is a pushover. He’s not. But if he has a healthy amount of confidence, he will know how to both look after himself and care for you.

He will understand the importance of balance.

6) He avoids labeling your relationship

He’s in love, which means he obviously doesn’t want to be friends.

But if he struggles to admit his feelings to himself or the outside world, he may not be comfortable with the official “relationship” label yet, either.

The result?

He’ll try to avoid talking about such matters altogether, at least until he gets to a place where he feels confident and certain enough to tell you he’s in love with you.

How you respond to this sort of behavior is completely up to you.

If you’re slowly falling in love as well, you might feel comfortable waiting for a bit before you cement this whole thing.

If you’ve been in love and stuck in limbo for ages, though, waiting to see when he finally picks up the courage to ask you to be in a relationship with him, I’m sorry to tell you but you might have accidentally landed in a situationship.

And this leads us to the next sign…

7) He may send you mixed signals

Finally, it’s important to get to the bottom of why the man in question won’t admit he’s in love.

If he’s waiting for the right moment, if his feelings are slowly developing but aren’t quite there yet, or if he’s worried you may not feel the same, it makes sense that he finds it difficult to come clean about his true feelings.

But other factors may be at play, too.

Perhaps he has an avoidant attachment style. Perhaps he’s too scared to be honest and authentic. Perhaps he is afraid of vulnerability, and his love for you terrifies him and therefore pushes him away from you rather than toward you.

Whatever it is, it may result in mixed signals. One day, he sends you lovey-dovey texts or plans a future trip with you; the next day, he doesn’t even say good morning.

But as life coach Michelle Elman says in her book The Selfish Romantic, the term “mixed signals” is a misnomer because “it implies that there are both positive and negative signals when actually the whole signal is just inconsistency and unreliability.”

While the man in question may very well be in love with you, the question is…

Is this someone you want to be in a relationship with given your individual circumstances, context, and values?

That is up to you.

Lucas Graham

Lucas Graham, based in Auckland, writes about the psychology behind everyday decisions and life choices. His perspective is grounded in the belief that understanding oneself is the key to better decision-making. Lucas’s articles are a mix of personal anecdotes and observations, offering readers relatable and down-to-earth advice.

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