It is one thing to feel love and it is another to show love.
If you show love but don’t feel it, you’re being deceitful. If you feel love and show it, it’s a huge sign of a healthy attachment.
And if you feel love but don’t show it, you may either be afraid, shy, or you could simply have your own little ways of expressing how much you value the other person.
Want to know if a man genuinely loves you even though he doesn’t always make it apparent? These are the 7 subtle signs to watch out for.
1) He prioritizes your relationship when it really matters
Let’s say you’ve just had a really bad day at work. Your friends are all busy, you feel like you’re falling apart, and all you really want is for your partner to offer you a shoulder to lean on.
Your partner was about to go to the pub with friends – nothing special, it’s just a regular twice-weekly hang-out – but when he sees you crying, he decides to cancel and stay home with you.
It may seem like a small thing, but this little action says a great deal about his feelings for you.
It means he wants to be there when you need him. It means he would rather spend the evening listening to you vent, cuddling you, and making you a nice meal than have fun with his friends.
That’s a big sign of love right there.
2) He’s all about small acts of service
Ever heard of the five love languages? If not, here they are:
- Words of affirmation
- Quality time
- Physical touch
- Acts of service
The fact that your man has decided to stay home with you and console you could be classed as an act of service – it’s something he does in order to make your life a little bit better.
He may not give you compliments every day or shower you with gifts, but you can count on him to show up for you.
He might pick you up from a night out at 2 AM even though he has work in the morning, wash the dishes when you’re very tired (even though it’s your turn), put a glass of water on your nightstand so you’re not thirsty during the night, build you a bookcase, or make you coffee every morning.
Are these grand gestures of love?
Are these subtle signs your partner genuinely loves you?
3) He remembers the little things you tell him
I was once dating a guy who always took notice of the little things I mentioned and then acted on them, making me feel like he truly cared.
When I flippantly mentioned a book that meant a lot to me, he’d buy it for me in a foreign language I was learning so that I could read the story from a new perspective.
When I said I didn’t like receiving flowers but I loved house plants, he’d gift me a house plant the very next day.
When I spoke about my childhood friends he’d never met, he would remember their names.
In other words, he listened. He paid attention. He took notes. And he went the extra mile to show me how much he cared.
If a man remembers the little and seemingly inconsequential things you tell him, it means… yep!
He probably cares about you a great deal.
4) He likes to be in your presence
Sometimes, love exists in quietude.
It lingers in the silence that spreads between you as you both work on separate tasks in the same room and as you take delight in each other’s presence without necessarily focusing on one another.
One of my exes used to love being in my presence while he read books, played games, or worked – he said it would calm him down and make him feel comfortable.
Frankly, I enjoyed it, too. There was something beautiful about sharing the same space without any need to concentrate on one another.
We could just… be. And that was enough.
If the man you’re dating is very introverted, quiet, or shy, he may struggle to voice his love for you. But that doesn’t mean he isn’t in love.
It just means he expresses his feelings in other ways – such as the desire to simply be around you.
5) He takes your concerns seriously
Listen up. This is a big one.
Want to know what’s a bulletproof way to recognize whether a man genuinely loves you?
Bring up a certain issue within the relationship. Maybe you feel that he’s not paying enough attention when you speak or perhaps you’d like him to make more time for you throughout the week – whatever it is, share your concerns in non-accusatory and respectful terms.
And then watch how things unfold.
See, the truth is that someone who genuinely loves you will always take your concerns seriously.
Because they respect you. Because they truly want to see you thrive. Because they don’t want to hurt you or upset you in any way.
There will be no gaslighting, no “You’re overreacting” or “Just chill out”, no guilt-tripping or twisting the narrative or picking fights.
When you bring up your concern, a man who loves you will listen to you. And then he will change his behavior.
6) He asks you for advice or emotional support
Speaking of respect, your opinions matter a great deal to him.
When he’s struggling at work, he will come to you and share what’s on his mind.
When he has to make a big decision, he will consult you about it and genuinely care about what you have to say.
When you offer him your input or support, he will accept.
Again, it might seem like a small thing, but when paired up with the other signs on this list, you’re basically looking at a glaring green flag that screams, “Hey! I love you! I value you!”
Of course, this isn’t to say that you should immediately bury all your incompatibility concerns just because this man seems to have genuine feelings for you.
Sometimes, it’s not enough for someone to love you – if they don’t make the effort to speak your love language, it’s a completely valid deal-breaker.
Just because he loves you doesn’t mean you feel loved by him.
7) He is always gentle and respectful toward you
He doesn’t cross your boundaries. He respects your wishes and opinions. He would never raise his voice at you or say a bad word about you.
This is because his love for you is so gentle, so tender and pure, that even when you argue, he still holds you in high regard.
This is important to remember.
A man who insults you or constantly pushes your boundaries?
That’s not genuine love.
Infatuation, a desire to possess, a game, an unhealthy situationship… it could be any of those.
But it’s not love.
As the author Lundy Bancroft writes, “Genuine love means respecting the humanity of the other person, wanting what is best for him or her, and supporting the other person’s self-esteem and independence.”
Don’t settle for any less.