12 Reasons You’re Going To Be The Guy To Finally Make Me Say “I Love You” First

Sometimes a relationship feels like a contest to see who can hold their breath longer, so to speak. Although you both have things you want to say or do to take it to the next level, no one wants to give in first. I’m usually a champ at waiting, but with you, all those old strategies are obsolete — so I’m jumping the damn gun. Here’s why I’m ready to say “I love you” and see where it takes us:

  1. I feel so certain of it. I’m usually slow in developing feelings, but with you, there’s a deep, calm certainty I’ve never before experienced. Parts of myself I’ve never felt matched in a partner are lining up effortlessly. Rather than terrifying me or making me roll my eyes, the idea of knowing you to the depths of your soul excites me. It’s not just the charming stuff that appeals to me. I even like your obnoxious side. Let’s please keep finding new ways to amuse and annoy each other for a long time to come.
  2. I’m not afraid. I know I won’t lose ground in our relationship by fessing up first. You’re not playing games. When we’re together, I feel safe being myself, being vulnerable. I trust you. Moreover, I trust my own maturity. If I thought anything you might say could destroy me, I’d protect my heart, but I’m tough enough for any response.
  3. I want to show you that I can take a risk. I sometimes hide behind smartass banter, but never underestimate my willingness to take a chance on the right thing. I won’t regret sharing this with you. It’s good to push the boundaries. After all, no risk, no reward, right?
  4. It doesn’t feel like a huge risk, anyway. From the number of times you’ve teased me about getting married one day, told me you love spending time together, love how we connect, love waking up beside me, and asked me to schedule time for romantic getaways… I feel reasonably confident you’re not gonna freak out when I spill the beans.
  5. I can take control of my emotions. I’m not playing “he loves me, he loves me not” here. This is a thoroughly considered feeling, which I’m prepared to articulate very directly. The need to express it isn’t an act of desperation, just a desire to be as honest with you as I can be. You deserve that, always.
  6. I don’t really need to hear it back. Of course, I WANT to hear it back — I can’t pretend to be completely chill. Still, if you’re not ready, I’ll understand. This isn’t about rushing you; we all have to do things in our own time. And while my pride will take a hit if you don’t reciprocate immediately, it won’t change the fact that you’ve really gotten under my skin in the best way.
  7. We love being together, but neither of us is crazy clingy. You don’t suffocate me. I know you won’t misconstrue my words as a demand for lifelong attachment, or worse, become some needy, over-the-top romance monster. You respect my independence, I respect yours. That’s exactly how a great relationship should be.
  8. I know it’s not a binding contract. I’m not revoking my license to feel all kinds of things for you. I can tell you I love you and still get frustrated with you. I can love you and, if the time comes, say goodbye to you without worrying that I wasted my heart on you. No matter how our story turns out, it’s okay to live in the moment and say what I’m feeling right now.
  9. Yes, I can imagine spending the rest of my life with you. When a guy scoots too close, I’m usually looking for a way to demarcate my space. It’s different with you — I want you as close to me as can be. I’m not just marking time with you, I’m evolving with you.
  10. You’ve shown me you’re worth itThis isn’t something I’d blurt thoughtlessly. I’m not swept away by hormonal responses. Well, kinda. But even though the chemistry is working on me, it’s not the only component involved. I see who you are and why you’re special. It touches me to my core. You put in the effort to be with me. You take my feelings seriously. You show me appreciation in a hundred small ways.
  11. I suck at subtle. Charades has never been my game. I haven’t mastered the perfect coy expression to convey this and I’m kind of glad about it. Speaking the words aloud is the only available option if I want you to know what’s on my mind.
  12. It wants to come out. Like a burp after a beer, the declaration is just ready to pop out every time I’m near you. I don’t know how much longer I can hold that in, and I’d rather manage the message on my own terms than let it slip on accident.
Jackie Dever is a freelance writer and editor in Southern California. When she's not working, she enjoys hiking, reading, and sampling craft beers.