Those Three Little Words: When's the Right Time to Say "I Love You"?

"After 7 months, if they do not say "I love you," they're not the one for you"  was what my best friend told me during our Snapchat conversation this week. I had asked if her and her military boyfriend of 6 months had said "I love you" to each other. Her response was like “duhhh, how could we not already?” and that I should have known better than to think they hadn't. I started to realize that we all have different views of love and more importantly, different opinions on when to say those three little words to one another.

I remember being asked “what does it feel like to be in love?” and I gave them a definition that could come out of Webster's Dictionary: “Love is that feeling when you realize how much the other person means to you. They are that person when anytime something good happens to you, you want them to know first. Love is when you only care about how that one person views you, and their opinion matters the most to you. Love is when you only want that one person in the world by your side through thick and thin, and good and bad times because you could not imagine being with anyone else."  But again, that is just my definition, and everyone has their own definition of love.

There are so many questions that surround the topic of love: How do you know you are truly in love? If you love something, should you truly let it go? What’s the difference between love and lust? And so much more! Some days, I wish it could be just like how it is in the movies from Hollywood - love at first sight. I can't help but wonder: “When did love become so complicated?”  

In today’s society, I feel like we are too quick to say I love you to each other. The first time a guy told me he loved me was in 8th grade, and he barely knew me. I finally said it back to him a year later. That relationship ended terribly, as we were on-again, off-again because he wasn’t serious enough to make it official with me and I knew I wanted more. My first for-real boyfriend said it to me after being together for two-and-a-half months, and I was so desperate back then to have a boyfriend that I said it back to him because I thought I had these feelings of love for him. For anyone who is wondering, I dumped him after being together for a year-and-a-half because just settling for a guy is never the move. Love will trick you by making you believe you are in love with somebody when you actually are not, and you have to realize that for yourself.

 But not only do we say it too quick, we put a deadline on it. One of my friends believes that after four months of dating is the right time to say “I love you”. Other people believe that after a year is perfect to say those three little words. But in my opinion, there is not perfect time to say  "I love you." You say it best when you feel like the time is right, and you know for sure that your feelings are true for the other person. Don’t look at other people’s relationship timeline and wonder why your own relationship hasn't followed their timeline. It will happen when it is supposed to.

I can’t tell you if you are in love with somebody, or if you should you say it first even though you don’t know if your boyfriend is ready, or any other questions you have about love. But I can tell you to follow your heart, and don't get too logical about it! Love is a feeling, not a thought.