Love is one of those things that you really can't understand until you finally experience it. It's kind of like a Phish concert.
You might think you know what love is, only to realize years later — when you actually find love — that it had been only lust.
People who are together for a while become used to their routine. And that routine becomes synonymous with love.
However, when love is real, it's normally a lot clearer to see than lust is. It's also typically felt by both people in the relationship.
That said, love can still be tricky to gauge – especially when it comes to your significant other's side of things. It's not easy to predict exactly how your SO may be feeling.
Still, if you keep your eyes open — especially to your text messages — you might pick up on certain clues that scream "love."
Here are 10 text messages that we men send to our ladies when we're in love.
1. "I'm so proud of you."
Pride is a product of love. If something in your life is making us proud, there's a good chance we're consumed with feelings of love for you.
Think about it. Pride typically means feeling satisfied about one's own achievements.
So, if you're proud of another person, you probably consider that person's achievements to be your own.
2. "This would make a fun date night."
Let's be real here. Date nights are huge red flags for all things love-related.
If we're thinking about date-night activities well in advance, we're probably not plotting the quickest route to sleeping with you (or vanishing without even a text).
If your guy has an ambitious date night planned, I'm sure he also has ambitions for you two in a long-term sense.
3. An unsolicited “I miss/love you” text.
Random "I miss u" texts throughout the day are the real deal, baby. And if we're sending you these texts unsolicited, there's a good chance we also love you.
These types of texts mean we're thinking about you throughout our day, regardless of where we are.
If a guy is constantly telling you he misses you, it's probably because you're on his mind... constantly.
4. "Have you eaten yet?"
To the untrained eye, this would be a fairly innocent text. The sender could easily be a hungry, platonic friend.
But, please, I urge you to look a little deeper. If a guy sends you this text when you're in a relationship with him, it might be a sign of love.
This text is our little way of showing you we would like to provide for you — in the same way a mother bear feeds her cubs.
5. "You don't need to go to the gym!"
This text is our way of telling you that we want you just the way you are. Love has a knack for making all the little things you used to worry about feel obsolete.
Sure, we might have once paid attention to your outfits or exercise habits. But once we're in love with you, those concerns will suddenly seem unimportant.
6. "I'm watching this movie/reading this book/listening to this song, and it reminds me of you."
Once you fall in love, everything during your day will remind you of the one you love. If we're texting you throughout the day to tell you about different things that reminded us of you, I'd call that love.
(ESPECIALLY when these things happen to be completely f*cking random.)
7. Anything with the word "cuddling."
While I'm not positive that saying "cuddling" over text is a universal code for love, I'm certain that it's not fueled by lust. In the game of love, it's in the right ballpark.
If we're inviting you to come and cuddle, there's a realistic chance that we do harbor intense feelings for you — and that we enjoy your company beyond the prospect of sex.
8. "Let's stay in tonight. Just us."
Nothing spells out "I'm in a committed relationship" quite like staying in on the weekends.
If we're particularly enthusiastic about watching our social lives slowly deteriorate, it's probably for good reason.
On a serious note, if the guy you're texting is looking to stay in with you, that means you're his first priority. He values alone time with you above all else.
9. "I wish you were here."
If we're wishing you were with us, we're probably in love with you. Love has the ability to control the mind, and by telling you that "we wish you were here," we're telling you that thoughts of you control the rest of ours.
True love involves constant affection. If the dude you're texting is out doing his own thing — but really wishing you were with him — I'm sure he's coming from a place of love.
10. "My mom's bugging me about wanting to meet you."
Once moms get involved, you know you're dealing with love. We're men; we don't bother our mothers with trivial things. So if we're preparing to introduce the two most important women in our lives, we see a future for our relationship.
Put it this way: If your guy doesn't love you and is still urging you to meet his mother, you should probably head for the hills.
Bonus: "I want to duck you. Duck. Duck you, autocorrect."
Who the f*ck ever uses duck as a verb?