Starting a new relationship can be exciting, but also a little awkward. When you’re trying to get closer to someone, you might worry about saying the right thing. You might even hold back from expressing how you feel because you’re afraid of how they’ll react.
Even after you’ve been dating for a while, you may worry that you’ll sound overly sentimental or silly, but maybe you still want to inject a little more affection into your relationship.
The truth is that most men like to hear words of affirmation from their partners. If you’re looking to take your relationship to the next level or stay out of a relationship rut, there are plenty of ways you can let him know how you’re feeling.
If you’re nervous or feel stuck about what to say, we hope this guide will help you feel more confident and figure out the best ways to let your boyfriend know how much he means to you.
- Pet Names
- Ask Him Questions
- Tell Him How You Feel
- Some Sweet Talk to Try
- Sweet Words and Sweet Actions
Once you start developing a sense of intimacy with your partner, first names can feel too formal. That’s what everyone calls them, but you’re not part of everyone anymore. Most couples have nicknames they call each other for this reason.
You can test out some classics, like babe, honey, and sweetheart, but you can also develop your own based on their name or other characteristics. Even inside jokes from your relationship can turn into a pet name.
Instead of just throwing a bunch of nicknames out there, you can ask them their opinion. After all, we don’t get to choose the name our parents give us, but we have some control over what people call us as adults.
People can have strong opinions about pet names, so you don’t want to keep calling them something that annoys or even offends them. A discussion about what nicknames you’d like to use with each other can cut off any possible problems before they start.
Often, we hear more criticism and negativity in our daily lives than positivity and support. Our close friends and romantic partners should be a source of comfort and stability even when the outside world is unkind. You can do this for your boyfriend.
Affirmations can be simple things. Let him know how much you appreciate him and the things he does. Sometimes easily overlooked things, like being on time for your dates or being a good listener when you’re having a bad day, can actually take a lot of effort on your partner’s side of things. Let them know that you notice and appreciate it.
You can also let him know how much you enjoy being with him. Let him know if you have fun with him or feel safe with him. If he’s had a rough day at work or school, tell him you know how hard he’s working and that you’re proud of him.
This can help him feel less stressed, and it also creates a safe space where your boyfriend can feel comfortable being more emotionally expressive with you. He won’t have to wonder if you like him or are happy with your relationship if you let him know. This creates a more stable environment for both of you.
Ask Him Questions
While there may be hobbies and interests that you have in common, don’t forget to ask him about things he loves that you don’t. Taking an interest in the things he cares about shows him that you want to have a relationship with him, not just have someone cater to your every whim. He’s your partner, not the staff.
You can also ask him about the people who are important in his life: his family, friends, and coworkers. By really listening and remembering details about his life outside of you, you become a bigger part of his world.
Tell Him How You Feel
If your relationship is new, you might be hesitant to drop the l-word too early. It’s a big step, and some people don’t like to hear it too soon. Even if you aren’t ready to tell them you love them, you can still let them know you care. Tell him he’s important to you and that you love spending time with him, even if you’re not ready to say you love him yet.
Once you and your partner have told each other, “I love you,” it’s important to keep up with it. Make sure you tell them regularly that you love them and remind them that they are special to you.
Some Sweet Talk to Try
While it’s always best to make the compliments you give your partner and the things you say to them deeply personal, here are a few starter phrases you can test out and adapt. If you get tongue-tied when trying to express your feelings, some of these might help you.
I Missed You Today
If you see your boyfriend after a long day, or even call or text him in the evening, letting him know that you thought about him and missed him can make him feel good about himself. He will know that he’s part of your life even when you’re not physically together.
I Feel Safe With You
Being able to feel safe and comfortable within a relationship is huge. And for people who have potentially had bad experiences in the past, gaining that trust isn’t easy.
If your boyfriend has managed to break down your walls and help you feel safe and trust him, let him know. It’s one of the biggest compliments you can give.
You Look Great
Men like to be complimented when they put in effort too. If your boyfriend dresses up a little more than usual for your date or does something different with his hair, make sure you let him know that you notice and appreciate it.
You can get specific and let him know that you like his particular shirt, hairstyle, etc. Don’t be surprised if you start seeing it more often.
Can You Do Me a Favor?
Asking someone to help you with something might not come naturally. Most of us like to be independent, but letting your partner help you with something can make them feel valued.
You can ask their opinion on something, like choosing a gift for someone, or ask them to help you with something like putting together some Ikea furniture. Either way, working together to solve a problem or complete a task will help you become closer.
I Appreciate Having You in My Life
No relationship is perfect, but you can let him know that you feel like your life is a richer one because he’s in it. This indicates to him that your relationship is a priority, not a second thought, and that you’re not going to take him for granted.
While this may seem obvious, sometimes we forget to show appreciation to the people we’re closest to. But make sure to thank him for the little things.
I Love the Way You ____
Does your boyfriend make you laugh like no one else? Or do you love how they hold your hand or kiss you? Give them a specific compliment to let them know how much you love these little gestures. Once they know how much you like it, they may even do it more often.
You Bring out the Best in Me
The most successful couples are two complete people who encourage each other to be better. If his support and encouragement have helped you reach your goals and become a better person, let him know. He probably feels the same about you.
You’re Going to Make Such a Cool Old Person
Maybe you don’t feel ready to tell him that you’re already thinking about growing old together, but this is a way to subtly hint that you’re thinking about the future and give him a playful compliment.
I Love Spending Time With You
Even if you’re doing nothing much in particular, enjoying each other’s company is a big part of being a couple. Letting him know that you value his time will make him feel good and reassure him that you don’t have to be doing something exciting or expensive every time the two of you have a date.
You Know Me so Well
If your boyfriend makes the effort to get you a present or plan a surprise for you, you can go beyond thanking him by letting him know that he did a good job. Appreciate the effort he put into choosing something he knew you’d like and let him know that he really has gotten to know you and your taste well.
You’re My Best Friend
In long-standing relationships, it’s normal for your bond to grow. Your boyfriend can become the closest person to you in the world. After all, a solid friendship is actually a great basis for a romantic relationship.
You can let him know that you feel close to him and able to tell him anything because he is both your boyfriend and your best friend.
Sweet Words and Sweet Actions
While saying sweet things to your boyfriend can be a great way to make him happy and to deepen your relationship, don’t forget that actions are even more important. If you tell him that you care about him, but don’t make time for him or support him when he needs you, those words will ring insincere.
We hope this article has helped you consider some ways that you can show your love and appreciation to your boyfriend that maybe you hadn’t thought of before. But always remember that the sweetest thing you can say is the honest thing.