How to Show Affection in a Relationship

Gabrielle Applebury
affectionate couple with bike holding hands

Showing affection in your relationship is an important aspect of maintaining intimacy. There are many ways to show your significant other that you love and care about them.

Different Ways to Show Your Love

Your affection style will depend on what you and your partner like. Sharing what you need from each other to feel loved is an important part of maintaining a healthy relationship.

Physical Touch

Show your partner some love by physically connecting with them. Touching boosts oxytocin and can make you and your partner feel bonded and in sync with each other. You can:

  • Give each other big hugs
  • Kiss every time you see them and when you part ways
  • Have a good make-out session
  • Have sex
  • Give each other massages
  • Cuddle on the couch
  • Hold hands at home and in public

Verbal Affection

Verbal affection reminds your partner that they are an important part of your life. You can tell them:

  • "I love you."
  • "You mean everything to me."
  • "I love when you (insert behavior you like)."
  • "Thank you for all that you do for me."
  • "I feel so lucky to have you in my life."

Love Notes

Love notes are a simple gesture that you can give to your partner whether you live together or are in a long distance relationship. You can say something short and sweet, or write a long love letter to them. If you'd like a love note once in a while, let your partner know so they can surprise you with one. Love notes can be written on a Post-it, a notecard, or in a card and can be placed on their counter, on the bedside table, or snuck into their lunch as a fun midday surprise.

Sweet Gifts

Gifts let your partner know that you are thinking of them and that you know what they like. Gifts don't have to be super expensive, just thoughtful.

Woman hugging partner after receiving gift

You can get them:

  • Baked goods
  • Flowers
  • Books or an e-reader
  • A throw blanket
  • A nice soap or lotion
  • Clothing

Lending a Helping Hand

Helping your partner out is a great way to show them that you care about them. This can include helping out with laundry, tidying up the house, running errands for them, planning a great dinner, or packing them a lunch.

Care Packages

If you are in a long distance relationship, sending a care package can help you and your partner stay connected. Fill the care package with little items or treats that will remind your partner of how much you care about them. This can include little nods to inside jokes, favorite goodies, and a sweet note.

Mini Video Date Night

If you and your partner are short on time together, or are in a long distance relationship, you can plan a mini Skype date. Carve out as much time as possible and chat with your partner over lunch or dinner. If you both like this, you can make it a regular occurrence.

Vacation Rendezvous

Planning a vacation together can be a great way to connect and spend a lot of time together. This works great if you both are super busy, or live in different places. Vacations don't have to be expensive, just focus on doing something you both will enjoy.

Keeping the Spark in Your Relationship

Let your partner know what type of affection makes you feel loved and ask them to share as well. Continue expressing how much you mean to each other with different types of affection.

How to Show Affection in a Relationship