There is no easy answer to this, because every woman and every relationship is different. Consider these five examples:
1. Imagine if a woman was in a previous relationship where those words were used in order to manipulate her. Odds are, she’d be suspicious of hearing them again.
2. Imagine if a woman was in a loving relationship where the words were used in a genuine way, but the relationship didn’t work out and she ended up broken-hearted. Hearing the words again might trigger fears of vulnerability.
3. Imagine if a woman was raised in a home where no one said “I love you.” She might be so unaccustomed to hearing the phrase that she might be frozen and not know what to say in reply.
4. Imagine if a woman only likes the man as a friend. Hearing “I love you” too soon might make her pull away before she’s able to develop similar intense feelings.
5. Or, imagine that she’s been waiting to hear those words from you!
As you can see, you need to consider a few things, based upon how well you know her, and how your relationship is going. For starters, consider how she would react if you said those three words. Do you think she’s heard that before from any guy? Do you think she’s waiting for you to say it? What’s your relationship like? How long have you been together? If you’re not officially dating yet, do you think she enjoys the simplicity of the friendship now, or do you think she may be itching for it to become a formal relationship? Either way, it’s a courtesy to take the initiative to talk to her about the status of your relationship, so that she doesn’t need to wonder.
If you’re not sure about saying “I love you,” there may be wisdom in waiting. You can always show that you love her, because actions mean more than words, anyway. This is a good policy, because if the feelings are mutual, then your thoughtfulness and actions can express your love. She’ll feel your love, which is more important that hearing it.