He hasn't said "I love you", should this bother me yet?
I've been dating a guy for almost 8 months now. This is his first relationship ever, and my 2nd serious one. After repeated failures with relationships, I've decided I want the guy to take the lead, and this includes him saying those three words first. I know stereotypically women say it first because they're more open/in tune with their emotions, and then guys will follow suit when ready...but, is this unreasonable for me to expect?
My boyfriend and I have lately been talking about love in the general sense. He scoffs at his cousin who has been with his girlfriend 2 months and they already say "I love you" to each other frequently. My beau thinks love should be more important than this, that it's the "first step" to true commitment, bringing a couple closer to engagement, marriage, and life together. He says being in love means being able to put the other person before yourself, and you just know it when you know it.
His definition is great, and I really appreciate how much thought he's put into it. But I'm wondering, after the time we've been together, when will he decide he loves me? He's never said it, and it's clear he's not ready to. Is there something I haven't done yet, or something we as a couple haven't done yet to bring him to this next stage? I'm not expecting the whole marriage/lifetime commitment thing, but at some point I'd like to know if this relationship is progressing forward.
I'm wondering, am I letting this get to me too soon? Is 8 months still the beginnings and I should be more patient? Maybe because he's never been in a relationship he doesn't want to jump the gun. Or maybe he's just so selfish he can't put me before himself and therefore be in love with me. Then again, maybe he would be in love at this point if he were with some other girl. I don't want to find myself just waiting around to hear him tell me he loves me. Other than this though, there aren't really problems in our relationship at all, and I like him a lot.
I don't want to say I love you first because of my self-guideline (which maybe I should just throw out the window), and also because I don't want it to just pressure him into saying it before he means it, or having the awkwardness of him not saying anything back. Plus, if he doesn't love me, can I truly be able to love him? Why should I put him in such high stature if he won't do the same for me?
Please help. Any and all advice is much appreciated (even the kind that tells me I need to seriously rethink my life, haha).
- Asked by A Thinker, Female, 26-28