8 subtle ways to show someone you love them without saying it

Saying “I love you” can, unfortunately, become meaningless when you’ve been with someone for years and years and years.

Even though it was so exciting hearing it at first from your significant other, the more time that passes, the less rousing those three words become.

And the more it can become something said out of habit, rather than an explosion of emotion.

Some people prefer actions over words, and even though experts tell us that saying the words is important in a relationship, the impact of it can wear away over time.

If you want to express your love for someone, showing it in small, subtle ways is a good way to keep the spark alive in a relationship.

Check out these 8 subtle ways to show someone you love them without saying it.

1) Ask them to text when they arrive OK

It’s nice to know that someone cares about whether you get to or from somewhere safely – especially if you’re traveling alone or it’s late at night.

Saying the words, “Text me when you’re home” or “Let me know when you arrive” shows the other person that you care about whether they’re safe.

Neglecting to say these words doesn’t mean that you don’t care about them.

But it probably means you’re not thinking of them and their safety.

And that you don’t worry about their whereabouts (which can be a good thing in relationships so long as it’s a small amount of worry).

Asking them to text when they arrive OK takes little effort on your behalf, but will make a big difference to your partner in letting them know you care.

2) Do something nice for them

Doing nice things for someone is a simple and subtle way to express your love.

It could be anything – from asking whether they want a drink from the kitchen to cleaning their car for them.

Either way, it’ll be something that’ll make them smile, (hopefully) say thank you, and fall more in love with you.

3) Think about ways to surprise them (and follow through)

According to relationship experts, one of the best ways to revive (or maintain) excitement in a relationship is to keep surprising each other.

If saying “I love you” just doesn’t cut it anymore, find big or little ways to surprise your significant other now and then.

Like checking out all the items in their online shopping basket as a surprise. Or cooking them their favorite meal before they get home from work.

Keep a little list of all the ways you can keep surprising them – and follow through on them as often as possible.

4) Buy them something they like, just because

It doesn’t have to be anything big. But buying someone you love something you think they’ll like is a small gesture to show you care.

Like if they mentioned that they like your toothpaste better than theirs, buy them it.

Or pick up their favorite chocolate bar the next time you’re in the shops.

If you want to spend a little more money, buy them *that thing* they’ve been talking about wanting for a while. Or a big bouquet of flowers – if you think they’ll like that!

Whatever it is, spending your hard-earned money, even small amounts, is a nice way to show someone you care.

5) Stare into their eyes when they’re talkingsigns that someone isnt as emotionally intelligent as they think 1 8 subtle ways to show someone you love them without saying it


Another subtle way of showing you love someone without saying it is to stare deeply and intently into their eyes when they’re talking to you.

Or even when they’re not!

Like over dinner, hold their gaze slightly longer without saying anything. Or watch them do something from a distance and keep eye contact for a while.

According to new research, prolonged eye contact actually releases phenylethylamine, a chemical that makes you feel attracted to someone.

It’s also been thought to release oxytocin (i.e., the “love” chemical) that makes you feel feelings of love, commitment, and bonding with the other person.

6) Text them good morning and goodnight

Another subtle way to show you love someone is to let them know they’re on your mind.

Speaking from experience, when you’re truly in love with someone, it’s pretty difficult to go a day without speaking to them.

Time without them (or time not speaking to them) seems to stretch on endlessly.

But when you don’t love someone, it’s pretty easy to go hours – even days – not replying to their text or sending the first message.

Messaging someone you love when you wake up in the morning and before you fall asleep at night tells the other person that you’re thinking about them.

And it’s a pretty easy and subtle way of showing them just how much you care – without having to say it.

7) Remember little things they tell you and follow up about them

As new research tells us, the need to be heard is one of the most powerful forces in human nature.

We all want to feel listened to. And having someone remember the things you say makes you feel like your feelings, actions, and intentions truly mean something.

When your partner tells you a story about how Jenny and Pam are both going for a promotion at work, follow up about what happened a few weeks later (if they don’t tell you).

If they mention that someone in their distant family is sick and in the hospital, ask how they are the next day or a few days later.

Or if they tell you they’ve got an interview coming up, make note of the date and drop them a quick “Good luck” message the morning of.

It’ll show that you listen to the things they say and is a subtle way of expressing just how much you love and care about them.

8) Take them on a date and plan the entire thing

As the old saying goes, actions speak louder than words. Don’t just tell someone you want to take them on a date.

Actually take them on a date and plan the entire thing.

Put some real thought into it and show them how much you love them with your attention to detail.

Like if they’ve said before how much they like burgers, take them to the best burger restaurant in the city.

And if they love sunsets, book the table just before the sun sets and ask for a seat by the window.

It’ll mean a lot that you’ve put so much effort into making them feel special and (most importantly) loved.

Final thoughts

The longer you’re in a relationship, the easier it is to let the spark fizzle out and die.

Saying “I love you” often is important when you’re in a long-term relationship. But nothing beats showing you love someone.

If those three words don’t make you feel like you’re doing enough to express your adoration for your partner, these subtle ways of showing love are way better than saying it all the time!

Did you like my article? Like me on Facebook to see more articles like this in your feed.

Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

Enhance your experience of Ideapod and join Tribe, our community of free thinkers and seekers.

Related articles

Most read articles

Get our articles

Ideapod news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.