20 Signs He Loves You But Is Scared To Make The Move

Are you all in and wondering if he's in the same place? Here are 20 signs that he loves you but he's just too scared to tell you or make a move.

By Lindsey Ladd
20 Signs He Loves You But Is Scared To Make The Move

Does He Love You or Is He Checking Out?

We've all been there. We're in a relationship with a guy and we start to wonder if he's as "in" as we are. He shows signs that he loves us, but then there are times he shows signs of pulling away. So we wonder if he loves us or if we've made a mistake by falling too hard for someone who isn't falling for us, and maybe never will. He clearly likes to spend time with you and you have a ton in common. These things, among others, are running through your head constantly. You start to wonder, "Does he just like me, will he ever fall for me like I have for him?" Well ladies, here it is. Here are 20 signs that your guy loves you, but is too scared to tell you or make a move.

1. He Avoids Using Labels

You've been together and in this "relationship" for a few months. He acts like your boyfriend. You have given him plenty of signs that you want to be his girlfriend, but he just won't take the plunge and use a title. He won't introduce you to his friends as his "girlfriend". What does this mean? Well, if he's giving you signs that he's willing to act like your boyfriend then he may like the idea of being that person for you, but he's either afraid to put labels on the relationship at this point, or he's scared he'll get hurt again. Think about his last relationship - did he tell you he jumped in too fast? If so, he may be trying to keep himself from doing the same thing again and is just scared of labeling things at this point. If you've been together for a couple months, then give him the space. Look more at the signs he's giving you through his actions. Don't worry so much about a label right now as forcing him to commit to one at this point may just push him away.

2. He Loves Making You Laugh

Think about all the time you've spent together since you started dating. When you think about why you're falling in love with him, is one of those reasons because he makes you laugh? This is one of the best signs to tell that he is in and that he likes you back. When a man makes it a point to make you laugh, he is showing you that he cares. It's his way of showing you that he likes you and cares about making you happy. His desire to make you laugh and to brighten your day is one of the best signs that he is falling for you. Hang in there. He'll come around.

3. You Always Catch Him Smiling At You

You look over at him while you're watching TV and he's looking at you with that special smile. You know the one. Yeah, that one. You see it ALL the time! That's not a smile he gives just anyone. He reserves that smile for you, and he wears it A LOT when you're around. He's smiling this particular smile at you for one reason and one reason only. This is a smile of contentment. This smile is one of the simplest and sometimes the hardest signs to catch to know he's falling for you. This is the smile that turns into love, so don't give up hope. Hold on to that smile. That's the smile you've already fallen in love with.

4. He Invites You To Gatherings With Friends Or Family

You know how this goes, right? You are so confused because he invites you to all these functions and to go out with his friends. There are moments you wonder if he's giving you signs that he's just not that into you, but then there are signs like this that make you wonder if maybe he is. If he's inviting you to family functions especially, then things are fine. Actually they're better than fine. He wants you there by his side. If he wasn't interested in committing to you then he would never bring you around his friends, much less his family. If he is inviting you to Grandpa's 80th birthday party where the whole family is going to be there, I think it is safe to say that he is falling for you. He may be scared that he's falling in love. He may be scared of another commitment that could fail. The good news, as far as I see it at least, is that he is willing to commit enough to wanting you there. He wants you to meet Grandpa. He isn't afraid to have you be a part of something special with his family. Don't give up hope yet! He'll come around!

5. He Avoids Conversations About Commitment, But Gives You Signs That He Wants It

We have all had these conversations with men that we have dated. They tell us how they want a family, to be married, have kids, get a dog, etc. They will talk about "someday"; however, when you ask them about those things in regards to your relationship, they won't commit. They are afraid to tell you they are ready to be married, but they will tell you they want it someday. He likes the idea of you being that person, but he's just not ready to commit to it just yet. To help yourself out so you don't go insane, just be happy for now that you both want the same things. (If you don't, then why are you still trying? If you want kids and he clearly doesn't, is this a lost cause? That's for you to decide.) Don't give up just because he's still afraid to be specific about your relationship and commitment. He'll continue to give you signs that he sees you as a part of the bigger picture as he becomes less afraid of something going wrong.

6. He Will Make Plans With You, But Nothing That Involves Real Commitment

One of the best signs that things are going in the right direction are the conversations we have where he will make future plans! I'm talking about planning a vacation, planning for you to be there with him when he finishes his degree in 3 years or planning to get a new house and wanting your opinion throughout the process. If your man is making plans and is following through with them, then this is one of the best signs that he's preparing himself to have you in his future. If he's willing to plan a big vacation with you that is 6 months from now, then rest assured, that he is coming around. He may be scared to tell you he wants to get married to you, but making future plans that have you in them is a great step.

7. He Gives Mixed Signals or Goes Hot and Cold

I have to admit, this can be one of the most frustrating signs. Your man is all about you when he's with you. However, when he's not with you it's like you almost start to wonder if he's still in the picture. My boyfriend used to do this after big moments. I didn't hear from him for 3 days after our first time sleeping together. I thought I did something wrong! He also disappeared for a few days when we talked about moving in together. I'm convinced men do this to take a step back. To rein themselves in because they are scared or afraid of something. Give your guy time. If you push for answers, you'll only push him away.

8. Any Signs of PDA Are Avoided, Especially Around Friends

When you're alone he holds your hand, touches your leg, kisses you and so on. He is giving you those signs through physical touch. However, when you're out in public he's a bit more careful. It's not that he acts like you aren't together, he just avoids the PDA. You may notice this especially when you're around friends. I know how this may seem. He goes from giving you signs that he wants you, to signs that he may not. We think he's sending mixed signals. Why is he so scared to show affection when he's around his friends? This tends to be subconscious. Men aren't planning when they will show you affection and when they won't - at least, not most of them. If they are avoiding labeling your relationship or anything with the phrase "commit", then they are going to be careful of showing affection around friends or family. They are the ones who are going to drill him about your relationship status. They are the ones that are going to call him out. So, to protect himself, he doesn't show the same affection as he would when you're alone or out as a couple. I've lived through this exact scenario. I even talked to my boyfriend about it and he had no idea he was doing this. They aren't planning to give mixed signals. It's just what they do when they are afraid of moving too fast. Be patient. Enjoy everything he has to offer. It'll get better.

9. His Jealousy Of Other Guys Is A Clear Sign He Likes You, Or Is Scared To Lose You

Jealousy isn't all bad. It can be, don't get me wrong. However, the right amount of jealousy is one of the clearest signs that he loves you. If your man is a little jealous when you chat with the bartender when you're out or if another guy smiles at you, then he is definitely thinking long term. He doesn't want to lose you and his jealousy is a sign of how much he cares. If a man is only in a relationship for one thing, and you know what that one thing is, he isn't going to be jealous. If he is, he isn't being honest with how he really feels about you. He's probably even lying to himself. If he tells you that you're just "dating" and things aren't serious, but is also jealous of you talking to other guys (if you aren't already in a monogamous relationship) then he's probably just afraid of being hurt again.

10. He's Protective Of You

Men are protective of what they hold dear to them. If your man is protective of you then he clearly cares about you and loves you, even if he's too scared to admit it. When a man gets defensive of his woman, it's typically because she is his priority. It is their nature to protect you and that's one of the best signs that he loves you. If a man is still scared because he was hurt in the past, he may be reluctant to jump into another commitment and tell someone he loves them. If he's protective of you, he can't control that. He can control his words and stop himself from saying the "L" word, but he can't control that instinct to protect what or who he loves.

11. He's Been Hurt In Past Relationships And Mentions It Often

Honestly, we're all guilty of this. If we have been hurt in a relationship before, we tend to think about it when we are in a new relationship. If you know your boyfriend was hurt in the past, don't be surprised if one of the signs you start to see is this. He will start bringing it up in conversation more and more. As women, we tend to think that he isn't over her, that he is still wrapped up in that past relationship. This isn't necessarily true. The more he begins to fall for you, the more likely he is to start reminding himself of what happened in the past. Talking about it and bringing it up is something he's doing subconsciously. The more we start thinking of things from his point of view, the easier it will be to see this. Take a breath. Have a glass of wine. Listen to what he has to say about the past and how he was hurt. This will be the key to why he may be scared to tell you he loves you. This may also open your eyes to other signs.

12. He Tries To Ignore The Signs That You're Falling For Him

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Men do this all the time. They try to act like they don't know you're falling. They try to act like they have no idea that you're all in... but they know. And if your man is falling too, then he will have a hard time hiding it too. When your man loves you, he can't help but notice you're falling for him. He can't help but want to be closer to you and continue to fall for each other. Here's a perfect example of this: my boyfriend and I avoided using labels or admitting we were even dating for about 3-4 months. We were friends, with benefits, and I even referred to him regularly as my "neighbor". About 2 months in, he started coming over to spend the night EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. We lived in the same apartment complex and he would come over and sleep next to me every night. I refused to call him my boyfriend at the time. He refused to call me his girlfriend. But we spent every night together. He couldn't help but notice the more I wanted him there, he wanted to be there too. The more I fell for him, he couldn't help but fall too.

13. He Chooses You Over His Friends

Men don't always put their girlfriends first. If they're out with their boys, then they are on "bro time". Don't mess with that. Respect that. However, if your man is choosing you over his friends, you know he loves you. If he's out with his guys but is texting you the whole time, he's in. If he is out with his buddies and you ask to see him and he leaves.... he's committed. He may not use that word, "commit", but he is IN! Men don't text random chicks that they are just casually dating if they are out with their boys. They don't bail on their boys to go spend time with a girl that they are just sleeping with or that they don't see a future with. If your guy is putting you first and he chooses you in little ways, without being asked, over his buddies, then he loves you. He may be scared to admit it. He may be tainted by a previous relationship, but don't let it get you down. He's falling for you, trust me.

14. He Continues To Remind You Of How Scared He Is To Jump Into Another Relationship

Maybe it isn't a past relationship, or maybe it is. It might be hard to tell, but what you do know is that he is constantly mentioning how scared he is to jump into a "serious relationship". Maybe he got burned. Maybe he hasn't ever really had a serious relationship. Maybe he is just surprised by how well things are going and how much he likes you. Either way, you have noticed this, among other signs, and it's got you wondering. From my experience, he is doing this because it's almost like he can't believe it's really happening. He's afraid to believe he could have feelings so fast for someone that he is reminding himself not to fall too quickly. If he's justifying how "scared he is", it isn't that he is trying to back off. He simply doesn't want to lose you and is asking you to be patient. He likes you. It's his way of being honest about where he stands while still letting you know he wants to be with you. If he wasn't interested, why would he make this effort to communicate with you?

15. He Ignores Comments About Commitment Or Defining The Relationship

I get how frustrating this can be. Ladies, we fall in love quickly and we can be ready to plan a wedding, but guys don't work as quickly as we do. They may avoid conversations about commitment because they aren't ready to admit they want that. Men think that engaging in these conversations automatically means they are ready to commit to us. Don't take it personally. If your man ignores these comments and conversations it doesn't necessarily mean they don't want to ever want to commit, they just may be afraid to commit right away. Super love is dangerous. As women, we decide we want to be with this man and we go all in. Men don't do super love. Most men will pump the brakes like crazy if you have only been dating a couple months and you bring up anything that could imply you want them to commit. Relax. Breathe. They aren't ignoring these comments because they don't want you; they avoid it because they are scared to admit they do or they just aren't ready.

16. He Pays Attention To The Little Things

This is one of the sweetest signs he may be giving you that he loves you, even though he's too scared to admit it. If your guy pays attention to the small things, he really cares and is in love with you. He may be scared. He may have been burned in a past relationship. He may say he "likes" you very much. Blah. Blah. Blah. But if your man pays attention to the little things, he is all in! If he knows what lipstick you wear, what perfume you love, the way you like your eggs, or exactly how to make your coffee in the morning then he WAY more than just "likes" you. These little things are the things people only notice when they are really paying attention. I've dated guys who didn't remember my birthday, much less what my favorite drink at Starbucks is. When a man takes the time to pay attention to the tiny details he's all in.

17. He Keeps Mentioning The Things He "Loves" About You, But Won't Say He Loves YOU

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I love your eyes. I love your lips. I love the way your hair smells. I love how passionate you are about your work. Has he made comments like these? Will he go on about what he loves about you, but he hasn't taken the plunge to tell you he loves you? He does. He's trying to avoid using the actual words, but he does love you. Maybe he is scared that he likes you more than you like him. Maybe he was hurt the last time he fell in love. Maybe he thinks it's "too soon". It doesn't matter. This is one of the clearest signs that he is really into you, but he's just not ready to go so far as to tell you. Reassure him however you can and appreciate these things. He's telling you exactly what you want to hear, just in a different way than you're used to hearing it.

18. He's Always Finding Different Ways To Compliment You

How many times have you tried flirting with someone, or liked a guy, and didn't want to say, "Hi. I really, really like you. Will you like me back?" What did you do? You gave them a compliment. Guys will compliment us women in strange ways because they are awkward and know what they want to say, but are too afraid to say it. They want to say, "You're amazing and I love you." What you get instead is, "I really like your eyes... and cake. I love cake and I love your eyes." Men try to use a compliment as a filler to show you they care and it's one of the great signs that they are trying. They may be afraid to be too honest too soon, so they rant and rave about how amazing your food was. Or how great you did on a project even though they never saw the finished product. Or they compare how they feel about you to silly things like, well, cake. It's sweet. It's endearing. It's awkward. But appreciate it and be reassured that it will lead to what you really want to hear soon enough.

19. He's Scared To Be Hurt, So He Pulls Away When He Feels Too Close

I have observed over the years that men pull away for two reasons. 1. They just aren't that into you. 2. They are really, really into you and are scared out of their minds to admit it. By now, if he wasn't into you, you would probably know it. But if you have a weekend together and you feel you are moving forward in your relationship, but then he pulls away a bit; he's not done, he's scared. Guys seem to self-check too often. They will pull away and try to put up walls, especially when they feel they are getting too close too soon. If your man was hurt in a previous relationship or has mentioned he's scared of moving too fast, this may be what's going on. He wants to be with you. He's just keeping himself in check so he doesn't feel like he's rushing into things and making mistakes he's made before. As women we have a hard time not putting the blame on ourselves. Try to see things from his point of view and show him that you are understanding and patient. It will pay off, trust me.

20. He Tells You He Wants To "Take It Slow"

I've said it through this whole article - your guy is doing all these different things and saying he is scared to jump, or he's afraid to move too fast. If he tells you he wants to take things slow, then listen. Don't bring up conversations that will drive him into a corner and force him to commit to you. Don't read too much into it and get frustrated, it will cause you to force the issue. Just listen. There are reasons he wants to "take things slow". Usually, if a guy wants to move slowly he wants to be with you. He is basically saying he knows where your relationship is heading but I can't get there in 6 months, I may need a year. Moving slowly isn't the worst thing. It could be the best thing for your relationship, especially if he really likes you but is still getting over having been hurt. Don't see wanting to move slowly as a negative thing. Embrace it.