As I was growing up my parents didn't say "I love you" to me. I knew that they did love me, but they never said it. They divorced when I was very young so I didn't experience them saying it to each other either. I grew up thinking that just being there and showing up everyday meant that you loved someone.
I have been lucky enough to meet a man that tells me everyday that he loves me. Everyday of our marriage (almost 9 years now) he has told me that he loves me. This is the example that we have shown to our children. I tell my kids that I love them. Even when I am mad at them or they are mad at me I tell them that I love them.
I have learned that it makes a difference! I have teen and young adult boys and they are not afraid to say "I love you" to their girlfriends or us as parents. Love is one of the greatest gifts that a person can ever give and I hope that we have shown our boys that love is something that it is okay to express.
I don't pine away wishing my parents told me that they loved me or any of that garbage, but I wonder if I would have thought differently of things if they had said it or shown it differently? I am glad that I didn't repeat the cycle and do the same to my children, if you love someone you should tell them. Words can make a difference even if it doesn't seem like they do.
Just a few words can make a difference and those can be the inches that change an attitude toward life in general.