He never said that he loves me

I love a boy who has been my friend for the past 6 years. All my friends say that he also loves me. But he has never said this to me. He talks to me very respectfully. I am very confused about whether he loves me or not?
Sagarika (14)

Dear Sagarika, love between two persons grows in an atmosphere of freedom and mutual respect, just as a flower needs water and heat to blossom. You have the right to love other people but also the duty to respect their feelings and privacy. Neither can love be demanded in return for one’s love, nor can it ever be imposed on anybody. If that boy never said to you that he loves you and talks to you “very respectfully” give him time to understand his feelings towards you and decide about his relationship with you.

Dr Anthony Grugni, MD

Dr Anthony Grugni, MD

Dr Anthony Grugni, MD, has a degree in medicine and is a professional counsellor. For the last 30 years he has been providing youth with practical advice to help them tackle urgent and troubling issues.
Dr Anthony Grugni, MD

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Dr Anthony Grugni, MD

Dr Anthony Grugni, MD, has a degree in medicine and is a professional counsellor. For the last 30 years he has been providing youth with practical advice to help them tackle urgent and troubling issues.