“I love you.” Some may cringe at these three words, while others go to great lengths trying to find someone who will say those words to them—and mean it.
But words can just be words, right? And it’s truly the actions that count. How do you know if the man you’re with, your boyfriend, is really, truly, and madly in love with you and not just treating you as a casual fling?
Find out the answer as you read through our list of signs to tell if your boyfriend is really in love with you.
18 signs your boyfriend really loves you
It may be difficult for some men to express their emotions or even voice them, but once he says “I love you,” you may still be wondering if those words are true.
#1 He stares. Men are visual creatures, so you know they like something when they stare. If you catch your boyfriend staring at you all the time, that means he just loves what he sees.
And if he’s staring at you in secret and you catch him in the act, that just makes it better. Just wink, smile, and bask in all that love he gives you. [Read: 35 not-so-obvious things your man adores about you]
#2 He feeds you. The road to a man’s heart is through your stomach, too. You may just be on too much of a strict diet to really bother or notice.
But seriously, a guy who really loves you will buy you food you like without him even noticing he’s doing it. When he thinks of food, he thinks of you too and that part of him that wants to care for you will just come out as he buys you your favorite organic potato chips and artichoke dip.
#3 He makes you laugh. Another sign he’s madly in love with you is if he is comfortable enough around you that he takes off all his macho charms and makes a fool of himself. Aside from that, he just loves to see that smile on your face, so he’ll do what he can to bring it out, especially when you’re feeling down.
#4 He just can’t keep his hands off. And not just in the naughty, bedroom sense. Being in love with you, he just wants to be near you.
He loves to be close to you and touch you, so you’ll find him always touching you in different ways, like stroking a stray hair off your face, guiding you into a room with his hand at the small of your back, holding your hand, and just touching you, without even trying to turn you on. [Read: 14 undeniable signs he wants to spend the rest of his life with you]
#5 He imitates you. Since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, he does it to the point he isn’t even aware of it. This imitation is actually called mirroring, and it is prevalent in mates throughout the animal kingdom.
If you sit a certain way and he does the same, or repeat the words you said, that’s a sign that he is physically and primally attracted to you.
#6 He cuddles. If your boyfriend loves to cuddle you without even trying to have sex with you, then you know he loves you a lot and you’ve got a keeper. A guy who loves you likes to get cozy with you without expecting any happy ending. Just the idea that he’s close to you is enough for him—but, of course, he doesn’t mind if sex comes afterwards.
#7 He spends. Being in love with you puts you on top of his priorities, so he will definitely spend not only his money, but also his time, on you. Of course, he doesn’t mind this, because spending his resources on you makes him happy too.
He enjoys taking you out to dinner, buying you clothes, taking you on vacations, or just going out for a stroll at the park with you. [Read: Does he love me? 20 really easy ways to read his mind in no time]
#8 He tells you his secrets. A guy who loves you will be comfortable enough with you that he opens up to you. He will tell you things he won’t even dare tell his closest buddies. And what’s great about this is, it comes naturally because he knows you will not ridicule or make fun of him.
#9 He calls your name often. A guy who loves you and is not just treating you as a fling knows your name. In fact, he knows it and he likes to say it, even if he’s not even aware of it. This has something to do with how men are wired.
A dead giveaway is if he uses a softer tone when he calls your name, and you love to hear him say it too.
#10 He gets a little jealous. A man who is emotionally attached to you will want to keep you for himself. So a little healthy jealousy is natural because he has strong feelings for you.
Whether you are making him intentionally jealous or not, the fact he displays even the subtlest irritation at another guy staring at you is a sure sign of his love for you.
#11 He has nothing to hide. Men tend to be very mysterious and sketchy, especially if they’re up to something, like monkey business on the side. However, a man who is truly in love with you will not even think about cheating on you and has nothing to hide.
You know all his passwords and all his social media and email accounts, and he wouldn’t even mind if you go through his stuff if he can’t find his keys. [Read: 25 more signs he’s madly in love with you even if he doesn’t say it out loud]
#12 He pauses his video game to talk to you. Actually, whether it’s mobile, PC, or console, there’s something about games and guys that are just inseparable.
The world goes by and they won’t even notice as long as they’re hooked onto their favorite game, so if he pauses his game or altogether foregoes game night just to accommodate you, you’re one lucky girl.
#13 He no longer flies solo. If before he’s a lone wolf, he’s now a lovebird. He just can’t move without you in the picture. There will be times he’d prefer to spend time with you instead of his buddies, and even on his free time, he’d rather hang out with you.
#14 His place is transforming. Into your place, that is. His sacred man cave is dramatically getting some female touch, even if it means an addition of your toiletries in his bathroom. For a guy, his territory is precious to him, so he wouldn’t just let any woman share it with him, unless that woman is really, exceptionally, special. And surprise, that woman is you. [Read: 10 subtle ways your man tries to say “I love you” without using words]
#15 He makes plans that includes you. Ever heard him talk about making plans for the summer and that’s still eight months from now? That’s because he sees you as part of his future, and not a lot of guys do that—unless the girl really means a lot to him.
When he makes short and long-term plans that include you, he intends to keep you around, and he’s serious about you.
#16 He introduces you to his friends. If a guy is serious about you, chances are, he may have talked about you with his friends on one of his boys’ nights out. Actually, he is just brimming with excitement to show you off to his friends for them to see just how amazing you are, which is roughly how he describes you to them.
#17 He introduces you to his family. Not all girls get to the stage when the guy they’re seeing introduces them to his parents. This takes the relationship to a whole other level and not many guys are ready for that—unless they’re really in love with you.
If he invites you for dinner with his folks or holidays in his hometown, that’s it, you bagged a keeper. [Read: 11 sure signs the guy you’re dating is a real keeper]
#18 He asks for your advice. Another thing about a guy who really loves you, is he respects and cares about what you think. In fact, he may even really want to please you.
So if there comes a time he needs to make a decision, he lets you weigh in on it too. The more important the decision he asks you for advice on, the more important you are to him too.
[Read: 14 ways to know if your man really means his “I love you’s”]
There are no specific ways to tell if a guy is really in love with you because at the end, it’s up to your own feelings and instincts. However, these tips can help guide you so you know what to look out for in your man beyond the “I love you’s” he keeps saying.
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