You might not notice it, but the little things you and your partner do around each other can be extremely telling of your relationship. Does he constantly try to walk next to you when you move around? Or does he keep a distance between you? Maybe she makes frequent eye contact when you have a deep conversation, or she does the opposite.
All of these things can mean different things, and here we decode them and help you figure out where your relationship stands with your partner.
Body language. Whether you just started dating or you’ve been together for years, your body language can say a lot about your relationship with your partner. You may think you have your partner figured out but his body language may be showing the opposite of what he’s saying out loud.
Crossed arms. This is usually never a good sign, regardless of whether or not you’re in a relationship. When someone is seen crossing their arms, it usually means they’re upset about something. If both you’d your partner have your arms crossed, it means neither of you are willing to back down.
Insecure. “If its on first date, that could show that someone is really insecure, not sure if the other person likes them—it says something about the couple or the person in general that there are some insecure feelings,” couples therapist Terri Orbuch tells Women’s Health.
Hand holding. If your partner is one of those people who needs to be touching you at all times to feel close to you, then this is a good sign. Holding hands for example, can mean this person feels a close bond towards you and a surefire sign they deeply care for you.
Intimacy. “This isn’t something all couples do. Touch symbolizes intimacy, emotional closeness and happiness in a relationship. Most people have a radius of about a foot and a half around us that is our personal space, and if you let someone into that it indicates intimacy,” continues Orbuch.
Long kisses. There’s nothing better than a kiss from your partner after you’ve been apart for some time. Maybe they’ve been gone for days, even weeks, or maybe they’ve just come home from work. Either way, if your partner is kissing you long and hard, it can only mean one thing— they’re happy to see you.
Hand on back. Many people will do this with their partner if they are trying to lead them in a certain direction or simply walking next to them. According to Orbuch however, this move can have several different meanings.
Power move. “Some people think this is a power move, where the person placing the hand is showing they have more status and power in the relationship. But it can also be a sign of caring, comfort, and emotional closeness. You’re reaching out to that person and symbolically helping them up or into a room in a positive way,” Orbuch tells Women’s Health.
Body. The way you move your body around your partner can also be telling of how you feel about them. You might not even be aware of it, but oftentimes couples will mirror each other’s moves and adjust when their partners do.
Angles. “Even if a happily married couple is sitting at opposite ends of the couch, they still keep in touch with frequent glances, and their bodies will tend to be angled toward each other. If one crosses a leg, the other is likely to cross the opposite leg, forming a circle,” expert Julius Fast tells Redbook.
Leaning on you. You’ve probably noticed at one point or another that your partner has the habit of laying on your chest or leaning their head on your shoulder while watching a movie or during dinner. It might be slightly annoying to you at times but rest assured it’s simply a sign of affection from your partner.
Gesture. “Laying your head on your partner’s shoulder or chest is a sweet gesture. By doing this, you’re saying ‘I feel close to you, I trust you, I want to be close to you.’ This motion can also occur in parent-child relationships, so that gives it an element of supportiveness, too. ‘You’re leaning on someone you trust and may want to be comforted by,” reports Women’s Health.
Walking ahead. If you’ve noticed your partner has the habit of walking significantly ahead of you, it means they aren’t totally in sync with you. Instead of waiting for your they are moving at their own pace, which could suggest they may want some more independence.
No connection. “If one spouse consistently walks several feet ahead of the other, it can be an expression of hostility, or at least a lack of connection. They’re not tuned in to each other, and they don’t particularly care,” says expert Stella Resnick, as reported by Redbook.