I have been married for two years and my husband and I have a pretty good relationship but the one thing I find difficult is that he won’t tell me he loves me. He says he has a hard time saying it and it is just words, and that I should know he loves me without him needing to verbalize it.
While I do know he loves me, I still feel the need to hear it, and it hurts that he can’t say it, even when it means so much to me. Am I making a big deal out of nothing or do I have the right to want my husband say that he loves me? Need to Hear It, Arizona
Dear Need To Hear It:
The situation you mention is unfortunately all too common. It is true that certain people have a hard time communicating in general, and this is especially so when it comes to stating words of love. However, many women, especially need to hear the words.
It is a great start that you know your husband loves you, but as you state, it is a different thing altogether to be told it and to hear the words spoken.
Some men will show you instead of saying the words. Clearly it is better to be shown love and witness acts of love rather than being told words of love that are empty. But that still does not take away the need or desire to hear the words.
The concept of needing to hear words of love is a legitimate and real need. And one that needs to be met -- if at all possible. It is considered more difficult for a man to state words of love than it is for a woman.
This doesn’t mean that all men have difficulty verbalizing their feelings and for all women it is easy. The lack of verbal reassurance of his love is something that the two of you should discuss, as he needs to be aware of how difficult it is for you when he won’t say “I love you.”
On the other hand, you should be sensitive to the fact that it is difficult for him to verbally express himself. It is unfair to deny him words of love simply because he may not think to say them on his own. Hopefully by you saying them to him, it will remind and encourage him to share such words in return.