How to Get My Boyfriend to Be Romantic

France, Paris, young couple outdoors, man holding flowers behind back

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A 2004 survey sponsored by TV personalities Phil McGraw and Oprah Winfrey found that 94 percent of people polled believe romantic gestures, such as holding hands or giving flowers, are central to their definition of love. Some men, however, might not be romantic to begin with, or their penchant for romance might drop off over time. Getting your boyfriend to be more romantic requires being forthright and direct about your wants and needs, and then forging a romantic relationship together.

Talk to your boyfriend and express your needs. Let him know that your relationship has become humdrum, and that you’re looking for more romance, intimacy and excitement. Don’t blame him; rather, use “I statements.” When you begin a statement by starting with “I feel” rather than stating “You always…” or "You make me feel…” a listener is less likely to get defensive or argue, according to

Describe the things that are romantic to you, and be explicit. If your idea of a romantic evening is sharing a bottle of wine and eating a meal he’s prepared for you, let him know. If snuggling up on the sofa and watching a classic horror film warms your heart, tell him. Write a list and post it on your refrigerator so he’ll have a reminder of what you find romantic or sweet.

Alternate planning romantic nights. While the idea might sound hokey, set up a schedule and stick to it. You’ll both be less likely to put romance on the back burner. One night your boyfriend can join you for a stroll on the beach, and the next you can take him out for an elegant dinner. Encourage romance by making it a priority in your relationship.

Plan romantic activities together. If you’ve always wanted to make love on the beach, book a vacation to Florida with him. If your boyfriend longs to skinny-dip with you in a natural hot spring, find a romantic couples retreat. Create romance by planning cozy evenings, day trips and intimate one-on-one vacations together.

Act spontaneously romantic. Leave your boyfriend a sweet note on his pillow, write him a love letter, bring him breakfast in bed or buy him a gift just to say “I love you.” If you increase the frequency of your romantic overtures, chances are he’ll follow suit.

Show your appreciation. He might burn the pot roast, or buy the wrong wine, but at least he made the effort. When your boyfriend takes the time to create a romantic ambiance, or does something sweet and unexpected, let him know how much it means to you. Doing so might encourage him to make more romantic gestures.