“I love you” – the three simple words we can say to our DOGS but not our FAMILIES

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April 10, 2019

Two-thirds of Brits haven’t told their parents, siblings or best friends they love them in the last year!

  • Pets and partners are the only ones we feel able to open up to
  • Feelings of embarrassment and worrying we’ll sound ‘cheesy’ hold us back
  • Personal gifts, cooking for us, sending flowers and making us a cup of tea are Brits’ favourite ways of being shown that we are loved

Two-thirds of Brits haven’t told their mum, dad, siblings or grandparents that they love them in the last year and one in three haven’t told their partner, research reveals.

Worries about how we might be perceived are the main thing holding us back, with the research of 2,002 people* revealing that the top reasons for not telling people that we love them are ‘it’s just not what we say’ (30%) and feeling embarrassed/awkward (20%).

One close companion that Brits don’t seem to have as much difficulty in saying ‘I love you’ to though is our pets. One in three (32%) have told their pet they love them in the last week, compared to one in four who have told their mums (28%) and one in five who have said it to their dads (18%). Only partners score higher, with 54% having told our partner in the last seven days. With sharing love known to stimulate ‘happy chemicals’ like dopamine, oxytocin and serotonin the research suggests that we are happy to say “I love you” more frequently to those we feel comfortable showing our vulnerable side too.

Since becoming an adult, one in five have never told their dad they love him, one in eight have never said it to their mum and almost half haven’t told their brother or sister that they love them since leaving childhood behind.

The research, conducted by Hermes, the parcel people, suggests that Brits are more comfortable being shown that they are loved than being told. Being sent a gift with personal meaning (49%) has been revealed as Britain’s favourite way to be shown that we are loved, followed by being cooked our favourite meal (38%) and, typical of Brits, being made a cup of tea (32%) beats receiving flowers (31%).

Rather than personal gifts, the survey found that we often rely on digital communication to show people we’re thinking of them. Some 46% say they tend to like people’s posts on social media as a quick way to connect and 57% say that they interact with people on social media but don’t feel close to them.

When it comes to receiving an unexpected personal gift from someone though, the research showed that it would lead us to think that the sender is a really nice person (44%), that they must really care about us (38%) and they want to make us feel special (34%).

The findings of the research have led Hermes to launch a campaign called #SendMoreLove, where they encourage Brits to show others they care with a personalised and thoughtful gift. The company, known as ‘the parcel people’, has a new letterbox friendly parcel sending service for small gifts and goodies such as t-shirts, notepads, teddy bears, sweets and more, providing an easier, more cost-effective and fully trackable way to send and receive those special presents.

“It feels like such a shame that many of us struggle to open up and tell those around us just how much we love them,” says Claire Phelan, Head of Hermes Send. “However, as the saying goes, actions speak louder than words and there are so many other ways to show how much we care than simply saying so.

“Our research shows that being sent a personal gift is Brits’ favourite way of being shown love and yet the survey reveals that very few people actually go to the trouble of doing that. Putting together a thoughtful present for someone you love is a great way to show you care. “With our new letterbox friendly service, the possibilities – or Possibilities – are endless, and we’re really excited to hear about the kinds of gifts and packages that people are going to send to their loved ones, to really show them that they care.”

For more information please visit the website here.

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