Why Won't My Son Say I Love You? | Me, Myself and Kids

Why Won’t My Son Say I Love You?

Kids Parenting


“I Love You’.  Three very easy words to say, no? Apparently in my house, it isn’t so easy.

My kids are super cuddly and very loving. But when it comes to saying the words I love you, it is harder for some than others.

My youngest, who is 4 years old, will tell us ALL OF THE TIME. He will say it randomly, no matter where we are or what we are doing. He will announce it to the world if he could, he’s that vocal about it!

But then there is my oldest. My 7 year old, who for whatever reason, just won’t tell me he loves me. He used too when he was little. In fact I think it was one of his first full sayings. We would say it every morning and every night before bed. No problem. But then, it stopped. I’m not exactly sure when he stopped telling me, but I can honestly say it has been A LONG TIME. Can you believe it? I don’t understand it, he doesn’t explain, he just won’t say it. I know he feels it, and I know its not because he doesn’t love me, but the words won’t exit his mouth.

Could it be because he’s a shy kid? It sometimes takes him a while to warm up to people, even to say hello to his grandparents when they come over. And saying goodbye is another thing…that takes an arm and a leg to make happen too.

He’s very loving. He’ll give me random hugs, wrap his arms around me, cuddle with me on the couch or in bed, snuggle and say “mama” like he did when he was smaller. It’s as if he wants to say it, but won’t. Is he embarrassed? Does he think its taboo to tell share feelings with his mom? Does he think that he’s too old to say I love you to his mother? God help me when he’s a teenager if he won’t tell me things now!!

Tell me I’m not alone 🙁

Even my husband says it doesn’t happen often…a few times where he’s jokingly asked “do you love me?” and he gets a “yes”. Even after my husbands accident in May he hasn’t really said it often.

Is there anything I can do to get him to tell me? I’ve bribed him (don’t judge you would too if all you wanted was to hear those 3 little words), I beg him, I will repeat myself over and over until he can’t stand hearing me anymore…“tell me you love me, tell me you love me, tell me you love me…”

Nothing works. So now it’s almost like a running joke in the family. And I guess I’ll let it go…for now. All I will say is, he better not tell his dad before me!

Do your kids say I love you? And if not, what do you do about it?



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For the last 7+ years I have immersed myself in the "mom life". My blog, appropriately named Me, Myself and Kids is my life; the challenges, the laughter, and the tears. But I also offer my own version of motherly advice. In doing so, I’ve designating myself as an MD or “Mom Doc”. Not because I know it all. Don’t get me wrong. It’s an open perspective; my learnings shared so you can take the good, bad and ugly and adapt it to your own family life. So please join me as I share all of the crazy and overwhelming thoughts and experiences of the mom life with Me, Myself and Kids.


  • Marie March 1, 2017

    My 10 year old son will NEVER say it back anymore and my 7 year old barely ever says it back. I have to kind of ask them tell them to say it back “what do you say?” Because I know they live me and and not saying it back to me just seems rude and hurtful. My 4 year old ofcourse she’s says it back. Not sure what happened or w

    • Debbie Akerman-Davidov March 1, 2017

      My 7 year old will hug me every night and I know it’s his way of saying it. Though I’d love to hear it. It does hurt he doesn’t want to but I also know he does.

  • How Do We Get Our Kids To Do The Right Thing? | Me, Myself and Kids July 12, 2017

    […] my son has always been the shy, more quiet kid. This is the kid that still won’t tell me that he loves me. He’s not good at sharing his feelings with his dad or I. We don’t force him because if […]

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