They theorized that when men said it first, before having sex, it was a way to gain their partner's trust and thus ease the way to sexual activity—an impulse that the men may not even have been conscious of. “The decision to say they feel love first can make sense strategically,” Ackerman says.
Who should say 'I love you' first? Either partner can say “I love you” first. If you're feeling it and want your partner to know, it's OK to be the one who takes the plunge. In 2011, a study on relationship commitment among college students found most of them believed women generally say “I love you” first.
The happiest way to reply when you hear these words is to be able to genuinely say "I love you, too" right back. Don't worry if it sounds trite if it's how you really feel. The person put themselves out on a limb for you, and it's your job to support them out there and let them know that you're feeling the same way.
What do men think when women say I love you first? This depends entirely on the man. Some men might consider it excessively needy, while others might be flattered and respond accordingly. However, it is usually wiser for the woman to wait until the man uses this expression first.
For many men, this first love is also the first time they have been in the sort of relationship where they are asked to make a series of compromises. More accurately, it may be the first time they really wanted to make those compromises, because they valued the relationship.
While early relationship feels (and hormones) can be intoxicating, relationship experts warn that it might be a red flag if you or your partner is too quick to say, “I love you.”
Men usually say it first, and it's for the reason you think
A 2011 study published in the Journal of Sociology Psychology found that, while both male and female college students believe women tend to say “I love you” first, it's actually men who fall in love faster and say the L-word earlier.
According to one survey, men take an average of 88 days to tell a partner "I love you," compared to a woman's 134. Moreover, 39 percent of men say "I love you" within the first month of dating someone, compared to just 23 percent of women.
According to a large 2022 study, men tend to say “I love you” more quickly than women. It takes men an average of 108 days (about 4 months) to confess love and women an average of around 123 days (about 4 months).
For others, saying "I love you" means, "I'm offering a commitment. I'm going to be here to do things for you." For many men, love is expressed through action, so these words are a promise of what is to follow. Simply by saying these words they feel they are agreeing to be there, to give to her and support her.
Should you say it first? In general, if two people love each other, it doesn't matter who says "I love you" first. If you're not sure whether your partner feels the same way you do, you can still tell them how you feel—just be mindful of why you're doing it.
Sometimes, a guy's harmless, premature professions of love may just be the result of excitement and over-enthusiasm. At worst, they're from a guy who will do and say anything just to get something from you *like affection for the over-eager clingy types, and sex for the pervs looking for a quick fix for their libidos*.
In fact, researchers found that men thought about confessing love six weeks earlier, on average, than women. The general consensus among studies on love is that men fall in love faster than women.
Takeaway. In many ways, men may fall in love in a way that mimics the female experience. The early stages can involve an infatuation with someone else, which can slowly deepen into trust, compassion and deep attachment. Men may also fall in love quickly and feel a strong need for affection from their partners.
He really loves you, and he means it completely when he says those three words. He could say it on the very first date or a few months down the dating lane, but he still means it with all his heart and sees you as a long term lover in his life.
Case in point: An 2018 survey of 1,000 British men and women found that while more than half of them take over three months to say, "I love you," 32% of women and 29% of men say it in one to three months—and 10% of women and 14% of men say it in just one to four weeks.
The average time for men to fall in love is 88 days, while those same feelings of true love take women 134 days. Another dating site, Elite Singles, did a poll in 2017 and found that 61 per cent of women believe in love at first sight, while 72 per cent of men do. These surveys focused on heterosexual relationships.
The question of when to say “I love you” in a relationship is a contentious one. In the many conversations I've had on the topic, the consensus seems to be that three months in is the sweet spot.
Saying “I love you” too soon could impact your relationship.
However, if someone is on the fence about the relationship, is perhaps a bit emotionally immature, or is negatively triggered by those words, it could scare them off,” says Mann.
“A green flag is when a potential partner is considerate and aware of your boundaries, asks for clarification on them when they are unclear, and does not push them,” she says. Let's say you ask to meet at a bar or the park on the first date and have expressed that you're more comfortable meeting in public places.
The best way to tell for sure that a man loves you is by watching his behavior. If he invests in you, prioritizes you, and takes action in life to demonstrate his affection and desire for you—then his desire is likely real.
And, according to the findings, the average age you'll find your partner varies from gender to gender. That's right - the research found that the average woman finds their life partner at the age of 25, while for men, they're more likely to find their soulmate at 28.