The Semantics of I Love You

(Excerpted from The Path, by Michelle Devon, Copyright 2006)


What did you think I meant when I told you I loved you? Did you think I was asking a question that needed a reply? Did you think that I was making a promise to you?

Why does saying “I love you” have to mean anything more than an expression of a feeling deep inside?

If I say I love you, I do not expect this means you will love me back. If I say I love you, I am not promising you that I will never fail you. I am not telling you that I want anything in return. I am not even asking for your acceptance of that love.

Love comes in so many forms. A parent loves a child and a child loves a parent—this is a feeling of unconditional acceptance—a ‘required’ love, but it is often stronger than any other love one can ever witness.

  • Love can be an emotion.
  • Love can be an act.

One can be in love, feel love, show love, make love. But in the end, it’s just a word—a word that holds little meaning when said too often or too little. A word and nothing more, because it’s the actions that make the emotion real, and the emotion that you feel—not the words that are spoken.

So when I tell you that I love you, please don’t feel you must reply. When you hear me say those words, try to keep the fear from showing in your eyes… I don’t want you to say it

back, unless it’s how you feel. I don’t want you to thank me for loving you. For I’m not asking you to love me.

It’s not a promise that you must keep—it comes with no obligations—you don’t have to do anything.

It’s just some words I say to you, expressing how I feel. It’s not the words that really mean anything. It’s the actions that will show the love is real.

So, let me say ‘I love you,’ because I say these words for me… and maybe some day you will understand how special the feelings behind those words can be.

You see, I don’t love you for you. I love you for me.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...



2 comments to The Semantics of I Love You

  • Angela Young  says:

    Interesting. Why is it we always feel like we have to respond in some way? I guess, if you can’t say ‘I love you too,’ you panic and wonder how you’re going to keep from hurting the other person. I like that you feel like there is no response needed:)

  • Beth  says:

    Absolutely excellent!

Leave a reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>