Relationship expert shares three psychological ways to know if you are actually 'in love' - how does your relationship compare?

Is it love, lust, or just a crush?

Couple touching noses
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A relationship expert has revealed three psychological ways to help you decipher whether or not your are 'in love' with someone and the questions she asks are sure to get down to the root of your feelings. 

Relationships can be tricky to navigate at the best of times. There's so many ups and downs. One day we're trying to search for the right words to de-escalate conflict in a relationship and trying to learn how to combat the behaviours that spell disaster for any relationship, then the next we're spicing things up with a partner and all is well again. 

The ups and downs are normal. But that doesn't mean they don't have us questioning whether or not we're actually 'in love' and TikTok's viral 12-question test that claims to reveal if you and your partner are meant to be can only settle the questioning for so long. But now a relationship expert has shared the three psychological ways to know if you are actually 'in love' - and just in time for Valentine's Day too! 

Taking to TikTok, dating and relationship expert Kimberly Moffit told her whopping two million followers, "There are three psychological ways to know if what you're experiencing is love and, as a relationship expert, I know that these three things are true."

The first thing? Take note of where your eyes are resting. Moffit says, "Have you ever noticed that you just can't stop staring at their face?

"When it's true love, we actually spend more time looking at this person's face than normal. In cases that aren't true love, like lust, we actually spend more time looking at their body as opposed to their face."


♬ original sound - Ask Kimberly

Next, ask yourself why you do things for your partner. "Have you ever found yourself going out of your way or making a sacrifice for them, not because it'll make you look good but rather because you just can't wait to see the look on their face?," Moffit asks.

She uses the example of buying a 'flashy' gift that will suggest to your partner you've spent a lot of money on them, comparing that will buying a 'less flashy' item that doesn't cost as much but better fits with what your partner likes. Which would you choose? Impressing them with how much you've spent, and therefore how good you look as a person, or bringing them joy with a sentimental item? Maybe it's time to rethink those Valentine's Day gifts for him or get a Valentine's gift for her that she'll actually love.

The third and final thing to uncover is whether or not you're using a partner for validation, trying to be the best person you can be around them rather than just relaxing and being yourself. "Have you ever noticed that when you're infatuated with someone, there's a lot of overwhelming, negative emotion at times. You can feel anxiety, nervousness and insecurity.

"If it is really true love, you're not currently experiencing any of these things because you see them less as a source of validation and more as a real life human being."

If Moffit's questions have left you questioning your relationship, our wellbeing news homepage is filled with relationship advice from Relationship therapist reveals 6 small things happy couples do to The 6 questions to ask your partner for a relationship check-in, as well as a bunch of self-care tips to help you wind down including 30 of the best self-care ideas to boost your health and manage stress – and they’re all free.

News writer

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is a news writer for Goodtoknow, specialising in family content. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with BBC Good Food and The Independent.