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In Love in Livonia

  • Posted on February 14, 2016 at 6:45 pm

Dear Christine,

“When is a good time in a relationship to say ‘I love you’??”

In love in Livonia

Dear in love in Livonia,

It’s probably easier to tell you when it’s NOT a good time to say those three little words! Like the first date! Or the second! Which also means it’s probably better not to rent that U-Haul either of those occasions. But when is a good time? Hmmmm. I imagine everyone you ask will have a different answer. Usually we are quicker to fall in love when we are younger, less experienced in heartbreak and are trying to figure out what, exactly, love really is. Love can be an amazing, overwhelming feeling! It feels just the same, and yet so very different from one relationship to the next. It takes experience and practice to understand what you feel when you love someone, and when to say it and when to hold back a bit. I guess telling someone “I love you” is a bit like when to have sex? If you do either one too early, it’s easy to feel all alone and vulnerable and perhaps make it difficult to develop a strong relationship with your beloved. In every relationship I’ve had, I’ve told that person “I love you” at some point. Some, it was way too early, before I really knew that person, and later I realized it wasn’t a lasting love, maybe just a little love psychosis (as the Japanese call falling in love). Others, I waited till the person I was seeing said “I love you” first, as that felt more secure. So, enjoy those wonderful physical and emotional feelings of love, as you consider the “right time” to share those words.

Christine Cantrell, PhD, Psychologist