If you've ever found yourself falling in love with a man, there have probably been times when you've caught yourself wondering exactly how he's feeling in these early days of your relationship. Is he falling for you too? If so, how do these feelings manifest? Are all men totally terrified of love, as a lot of movies and TV shows would have us believe, or is that just an unjustified stereotype?
Well, according to some of the men of Reddit, falling in love is pretty similar for men to how it is for people of all genders. Hey, it's almost like we're all human beings who feel similar things regardless of our gender identity! Still, if you've been fed the whole "Women Are From Venus, Men Are From Mars" spiel for your entire life, it may be surprising to discover that men are often just as soppy and romantic as the rest of us. This doesn't make them "weak", or "feminine": it just makes them a human who's only gone and fallen in love! Here are just some of the incredibly relatable things that the men of Reddit do when they find themselves falling in love. Turns out romance can be challenging for people of any gender!
You know how it is: when you first start to fall for someone, all you want to do is spend more time with them. It doesn't matter whether you're at work, at school, hanging out with friends, spending time with your family...
You'll be secretly wishing that you were actually holed up somewhere with your special someone, totally ignoring the rest of the world.
This Redditor freely admits that the first flushes of love make him react in this way, and honestly, we relate:
"With some people, every moment you're with them leaves you wanting to spend more time with them... Falling in love with someone puts them in this category."
Love may be one of the most fulfilling and joyful emotions out there, but it can also be deeply terrifying on a number of levels, as this Redditor notes:
"Love is the most frightening thing in the world... It's exhilarating and terrifying."
Are you really going to open up to a person fully and completely? What if you share your feelings with your love, but they don't reciprocate? What if it all goes wrong? There are so many things to be scared of — especially if you're falling in love for the first time. Don't worry, though: love is usually totally worth all of this terror in the end!
To be honest, this element of love probably applies to all human beings, regardless of gender. They say that love is blind, but it also seems to be deaf, totally oblivious to reason, and completely stupefying too.
When you're caught up in all of those heady emotions, common sense and rational thought often seem to fly out of the window.
Hence why outsiders, such as our friends and family, can often see red flags in your partner way before you can.
This Redditor gets it:
"Love quickly compromises your common sense values and lets you get dragged into the stupidest situations."
It's a harsh truth, but an accurate one nonetheless.
According to Reddit, one of the universal actions of a man in love is showing off and "peacocking" as much as humanly possible. It doesn't stop when you actually land the partner of your dreams, either:
"Even when you know she's already yours, and you're already hers, you'll still want to impress her in every moment."
In their passionate attempt to capture the heart of their loved one, they will try to showcase all of their talents and skills in the least subtle ways possible. It's basically a way to say "look how awesome I am! Love me! PLEASE LOVE ME!" Everyone's been guilty of this behavior at some point, even if you didn't realize it at the time.
Now, striving to become your "best self" is by no means an objective that should be reserved for when you're in love. You should always want the best for yourself, whether you're single or in a committed relationship! However, this kind of self-improvement is easier said than done, especially when we all lead such busy lives.
It often takes something like finding a partner to really set it into motion.
Here's what one Redditor has to say on the matter:
"I loved a girl once and because of that love, my laziness melted away and my procrastination was handled immediately... In men, we all have that primal instinct to prove ourselves."
It's an interesting take on this subject, for sure!
Surprising as this may seem, some of the men of Reddit genuinely believe that falling in love with someone actually improves their cooking habits. In a way, it kind of makes sense!
Take a look at this Redditor's perspective:
"When I cook for myself, I don't really worry about the food's content or its presentation. When I have a girlfriend, dinner looks like a picture from a fancy restaurant's menu."
He's not the only one who's experienced this phenomenon, either: loads of Redditors chimed in to say that their eating habits transform in the same way! It's clearly an extension of the whole "doing anything to impress their love" thing, but hey — at least it's a positive change!
Once again, this aspect of being in love isn't exactly unique to any gender, but hey — it's still interesting to know that men feel this way too! We've all been there: as soon as we start to fall in love with someone, they begin to occupy our thoughts in every waking moment (and sometimes in our dreams, too)! It becomes difficult to concentrate on anything else, whether it's work or play.
All you can think about is your love, and how wonderful they are in every way.
This Redditor is pretty honest about his experiences of love:
"When I first start to fall for someone, I become totally dumb and unable to think about much other than that girl."
Anyone else having flashbacks to awkward moments around people you secretly liked right now? Looks like we're not alone. Becoming totally flustered and unable to use words around someone you have feelings for is definitely a common experience!
As one Redditor notes, he frequently ends up kicking himself after chatting absolute garbage to the object of his affections:
"If I'm smitten with someone, I usually have trouble putting words together in a cohesive sentence."
We've all been there, my friend. If you're lucky, the person you're talking to will find your nervousness endearing, rather than strange or annoying! If not, don't beat yourself up about it: literally, everyone goes through this at some point.
There seems to be a common stereotype out there that suggests men are more reluctant to settle down than women. The thought of marriage or kids must automatically send guys running for the hills — at least, according to this weird societal standard.
As it happens, this is total nonsense, and a lot of men do consider spending the rest of their life with their love:
"I know I love a woman when I can imagine having children with her and the thought makes me happy."
Of course, not everyone wants to marry and have kids, and that's fine!
However, the split between those who do and those who don't isn't gendered, as society often tries to tell us. It's just down to personal preference.
As we all know, being in love with someone isn't all sunshine and rainbows. Choosing to spend your life with someone doesn't mean that you'll be blind to their faults for all eternity!
In reality, the exact opposite is true, as this Redditor notes:
"When you're in love, her quirks that were once endearing become slightly irritating — but you don't even care, because you want to be with her regardless."
This is the thing: love doesn't mean ignoring someone's negative aspects. It means seeing them, accepting them, and choosing to stay with the person anyway. None of us are perfect, after all!
A lot of people assume that once love begins to grow, it remains steady forever without either partner having to work on or put effort into the relationship. This is simply untrue!
Cliché as it sounds, relationships are hard work — if you ignore that fact, then you're probably going to end up heartbroken.
One Redditor summarized this aspect of love incredibly well:
"Love isn't just the warm fuzzies you feel when you think of that person. It's willfully choosing to love them, day in, day out, no matter what life throws at you."
If you're willing to make that choice, well, you've probably got a long and happy relationship ahead of you!
Now, love isn't always about putting the other person's happiness above your own. Prioritizing others over yourself is okay to an extent, but it can quickly reach unhealthy levels when you start to ignore your own emotional wellbeing. Putting someone's happiness at the same level as yours, however, is a much healthier way to act when you're in love!
Here's how one Redditor put it:
"When you love someone, you realize that your own happiness is directly related to her happiness, and you embrace that."
Sure, the happiness of both partners is interlinked, but it's not totally co-dependent. You can be happy without them feeling joyful too — but it helps if they are!
We all know that in the early stages of a relationship, lust is a feeling that very often overtakes love. You want nothing more than to be intimate with that person all the time, thanks to "the honeymoon phase."
Of course, for most people, a bit of lust needs to remain in the relationship long-term for it to be a success.
However, according to one Redditor, you know you're in love when other aspects of your partnership start to become important too:
"I knew I was in love when rather than just wanting to "get intimate" all the time, I started thinking about what a wonderful person she is and how I just want to go through life with her by my side."
See, everyone — romance isn't dead!
This may sound like the cheesiest, soppiest expression of love out there, but hey — we can't deny that it's kinda true. When you're in the first flushes of love, any romantic song or love-themed TV show you come across suddenly relate to you and your special someone. You're definitely the happy couple that your favorite artist is singing about! Just like Monica and Chandler, you're basically couple goals!
The men of Reddit aren't immune to these kinds of feelings, either:
"You know you're falling in love when you listen to stupid pop songs on the radio and they make you think of her."
Yup — you don't even have to like the song in question for it to make you feel all lovey-dovey. N'awwwww...
This might seem like a fairly obvious side-effect of falling in love, but don't take it for granted. As we all know, there are plenty of people out there who can claim to love one person, but secretly be dating someone else behind the scenes! Fidelity isn't always a given — and monogamy isn't for everyone!
However, if you are someone who prefers to be with just one person, realizing that you no longer want to date anyone else is a pretty big moment!
You've done it: you've found The One!
As one Redditor neatly puts it:
"When I'm in love, I've got no room for thoughts about dating anyone else — or sports, games, or food for that matter. It's all her."
When you find that person that you want to spend the rest of your life with, you feel like you can talk to them about pretty much everything. In fact, they often become the first person you want to turn to when something notable happens in your life! Had a bad day? Time to rant to your loved one about it! On the flipside, if something really amazing has happened to you, the person you adore is usually the first person you want to tell about it.
One Redditor gives an amusing example of this:
"What is love? When you have a dream of winning the lottery and can't wait to tell her about it."
Imagine the excitement if he actually DID win the lottery...
Disclaimer time: being totally unable to imagine life without your loved one in it isn't exactly healthy. You never know what's going to happen in life, and you need to be prepared to survive and thrive even if your special someone isn't around anymore.
However, it's totally natural to really hope that the person you have feelings for is in your life for the rest of your days!
This Redditor has found the perfect balance:
"While I enjoy time without her from time to time, I can't imagine my life without her."
His future plans now include his special someone, and while he's able to be apart from her, he hopes their relationship stands the test of time.
As much as we might hate to admit it, there are times when the person we love is going to see us in a totally disgusting situation, whether it's medical, drink-related, or a pure accident. Yes, it's embarrassing. Yes, in an ideal world, we'd be able to keep these situations to ourselves.
However, it's easier for everyone involved if you just accept that your S.O. will probably see you poop at some point. True love is being able to help your partner through these tough moments, no matter how gross they truly are.
For example, one Redditor made this pledge to his love:
"I swear to stand by you and hold your hair back when you puke for the rest of your life."
Hearing somebody saying negative things about you is a pretty upsetting and angering experience for anyone to go through. However, hearing someone put down the person you love is enraging on a whole other level.
One Redditor admits, according to Thought Catalog, that this is the thing that makes him realize he's in love:
"I can't stand the thought of seeing her afraid or in pain. Like, her pain becomes mine, if that makes sense."
Not only do you feel protective over your special someone, you also feel their pain pretty much as strongly as your own.
You'll do almost anything to prevent your love from ever feeling hurt, angry, or upset — and they'll do the same for you.
Everyone knows that to have a successful relationship, you have to become a master of the art of compromise. You can tell that you're really beginning to have feelings for someone when you're willing to do something that sounds like absolute torture, just because it's something they enjoy.
For one Redditor, that was taking his girlfriend to a restaurant that he hated, but she loved:
"I loved every second of the evening, simply because she did. I got such great joy from her happiness!"
You'll sit through that film that you detest. You'll go to the concert of a band you've never heard of. They'll listen to you chatting for hours about a hobby or interest that they know nothing about. That's love, folks!
Now, this comment was probably meant to be a jokey one, but it's probably true. How do you know that you're starting to fall in love?
Well, if you've started to ask yourself that question, then you're probably halfway there already.
As one Redditor succinctly put it:
"When you start to wonder if you love her, that's a dead giveaway."
Of course, if you're starting to ask yourself these questions years into the relationship — and after you've proclaimed that you love each other — that's a whole other story. If you're starting to have doubts after that long, it's time for some major self-reflection. But at the start? That could well be the sign that the first seeds of love have begun to sprout.