7 signs someone in your life genuinely cares about you, according to psychology

We sometimes include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Read our affiliate disclosure.

We all crave strong, supportive relationships. 

But in our busy lives, it can be easy to question the depth of a connection when we rarely see the person.  

Not to mention how social media has warped the idea of friendship, and sometimes, you don’t know if someone really wants you to be their friend or just follow them on Instagram.

People don’t always say what they mean, and while they may feign caring about you when the weather is good, they might not be there when the sh*t hits the fan. 

Have you ever wondered if someone truly cares about you?

In this article, I’ll dive into 7 signs that someone in your life genuinely cares about you:

1) They celebrate your victories (big and small)

Life is full of milestones, big and small. 

A genuine friend or loved one won’t just be there for your shoulder to cry on during tough times. 

They’ll also be your biggest supporter during your moments of triumph.  

They’ll remember your job promotion, be genuinely excited about your new apartment, and celebrate even your small wins – like finally mastering that tricky recipe.  

Your success should genuinely touch them as if it were their own.

Having someone who cares about you is the opposite of having someone who just wants to compete with you. 

It’s not about one-upping you – their joy is fueled by your happiness.

When someone truly cares about you, they’ll be there for all your major life events. 

2) They’re there: Not just when they need you

True friends aren’t fair-weather companions. 

They show up when you need them, even when it’s inconvenient.

You might be facing a tough decision or going through a personal crisis and need someone around you for support. 

Who usually shows up first? 

And who always seems to have an elaborate excuse for why they can’t be there? 

Someone who genuinely cares will make time for you, listen without judgment, and offer support however they can. 

It’s a two-way street – they know you’d do the same for them.  

They might not have all the answers, but their willingness to listen can be a powerful form of support.

3) They actively listen and remember what you tell them

In an increasingly self-focused world, active listeners are becoming harder to come by. 

We’ve all had those conversations where someone seems to be on autopilot, or just waiting anxiously for their turn to speak. 

But someone who cares takes the time to truly listen to you. 

They ask follow-up questions – showing they’re engaged in what you have to say. 

They remember the details you share and show genuine interest in your life, your dreams, and your struggles.  

A 2015 study found that friends who reported feeling actively listened to by their peers experienced greater feelings of 

  • Closeness
  • Intimacy
  • Social support 

This suggests that active listening isn’t just about politeness; it’s a crucial ingredient for building strong emotional bonds.

4) They respect your boundaries (even when they don’t agree)

Healthy relationships require respect for boundaries. 

A true friend won’t pressure you to do things you’re uncomfortable with or try to control your decisions.  Even if they disagree with your choices, they’ll still respect your right to make them. 

This builds trust and fosters a sense of security in the relationship.  

For instance, a friend who respects your boundaries might suggest going to a different restaurant if you’re not comfortable with loud environments.

5) They offer honest feedback 

Constructive criticism can sting, but it’s often the most valuable gift a friend can give.  

Just last year, I was pouring my heart and soul into this freelance writing project. I thought I’d absolutely nailed it, but when I sent it to my friend Maya for feedback, her response was…well, let’s just say it wasn’t what I wanted to hear.  

She pointed out some glaring weaknesses in the structure and flow and even some factual errors I’d completely missed.  Ouch.

But Maya wasn’t just tearing it down to hurt my feelings.  

She offered specific suggestions for improvement and even helped me brainstorm some new ideas.  

It wasn’t easy to swallow my pride at first, but Maya’s honesty pushed me to refine my work and ultimately led to a much stronger final product.  

That’s the thing about true friends – they want you to succeed, even if it means giving you some tough love sometimes.  

Their honesty comes from a place of caring, not trying to knock you down.  

They know a little constructive criticism can go a long way in helping you grow.

One study found that couples who reported higher levels of honesty in their relationship also reported greater feelings of trust and intimacy.

This suggests that open and honest communication is essential for building strong emotional bonds in friendships as well.

6) They make you feel safe and supported

There’s a certain ease that comes with true friendship, a feeling of safety and acceptance that makes you want to shed any facades you might normally wear.  

Genuine connection fosters a sense of safety and security. 

You know you can be yourself around this person, without fear of judgment or ridicule. 

They make you feel accepted and understood, for all your quirks and imperfections. Being around them feels like a warm hug – a safe space where you can relax and just be you. 

They create an environment where you can be vulnerable and share your true self, without fear of rejection.

7) They make an effort to stay connected

We all know life gets busy, but someone who genuinely cares makes an effort to stay connected, even when miles or circumstances separate you. 

They reach out to see how you’re doing, send a quick text to check in, or make plans to get together – even if it’s just a virtual coffee date.  

These small gestures show they value the connection and want to keep it alive.  

In the age of constant digital connection, a genuine friend might put down their phone and give you their full attention when you’re catching up.

Connections that truly care

Do you see these signs reflected in the people around you? 

Take a moment to appreciate those who show you these signs – they’re the ones who truly enrich your life! 

In a world where networking and superficial connections often reigns over connection, it’s worth appreciating the handful of people in our lives who really matter to us. 

Marie Lamb

Marie is a writer with an academic background in psychology and neuroscience. She’s also a qualified yoga teacher with more than 10 experience in Eastern practices. When she’s not writing about psychology and life, she’s reading and crafting stories, poetry, or prose.

8 signs you never really loved each other, according to psychology

8 phrases manipulators casually use to exploit your emotions, according to psychology