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Is Avoiding Eye Contact a Sign of Love? What Science Says

Sophie Simons
February 7, 2024

It's a common belief that the eyes are the windows to the soul. But it turns out that the heart is also visible through the eyes. It seems that how you communicate with your eyes has a significant impact on finding love.

Throughout human history, love has been the subject of innumerable interpretations and analyses due to its complexity and multifaceted nature. A widely held notion is that making eye contact is essential for unlocking emotions that are hidden, especially romantic attraction. But is the idea that making no eye contact a sign of love true? Let's find out what science says about it.

Can avoiding eye contact mean attraction?

There are many ways of conveying attraction to someone. While there are apparent gestures like gifting cards and gifts, some of us are shy and show our attraction using body language. Body language often communicates a person's thoughts and attitude in unspoken ways.

Often, eye contact is the first way our body shows attraction to someone else. Eye contact is a powerful tool to tell someone that you're listening to them and make a person comfortable with your presence.

Making eye contact with someone communicates your intentions. You might be surprised to learn that when we see something we like, our pupils enlarge. So, it's not just in our head, but in reality, our eyes communicate a lot about how we feel for someone.

Though we don't like taking our eyes off someone to whom we are attached, some of us are shy and are unable to express our feelings to someone we are attracted to. This is more common in the initial days of the relationship when your partner can't maintain eye contact with you for long as they might feel nervous or self-conscious because of the feeling they have for you.

Therefore, while some people may find that avoiding eye contact indicates attraction, it doesn't always indicate love when someone tries to avoid eye contact with you. There exist numerous explanations for the other person's inability to meet your eyes during a conversation.

This may be the result of their general feelings of nervousness or shyness—not everyone is an extrovert. Additionally, maintaining direct eye contact is frowned upon in certain cultures where it is interpreted as aggressive or overly familiar. Therefore, if you know someone from such a culture, they might avoid making eye contact with you out of respect for you.

You should know that there is no single interpretation to avoiding eye contact as it is a complex behavior with many potential meanings. You should thus avoid jumping to conclusions based on this cue.

Why do women avoid eye contact? 

Eye contact plays a vital role in any relationship. You might be wondering if “she” making eye contact with you would mean something. So let me tell you - it might mean something, but it is not necessarily true. By now, you already know that avoiding eye contact can mean many things.

This goes the same for women. Researchers from the University of Geneva and the Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology at the University of Chicago discovered that when the subjects were shown photos of attractive people, the subjects tended to fixate on the faces of the pictures of people that elicited a feeling of romantic love and tended to fixate on the bodies of those that elicited sexual desire.

This is not necessarily true always, though not always does fixating eye contact mean love, nor is it necessary that avoiding eye contact means there is no emotion at all. It is very much possible that the person is socially anxious and is not able to maintain eye contact even though she likes someone. It is also possible that the lady becomes very conscious about herself in the initial phase of the relationship and is unable to maintain eye contact for long. 

Sometimes, it is also because of the social construct the girl comes from that she avoids eye contact with you, as it is considered disrespectful in some cultures to look into someone's eyes. Thus, she doesn't need to be in love with you if she's avoiding eye contact with you.

So, if you think “she” is in love with you just because she's not looking into your eyes, you may be wrong. You should try checking her body language when she's around you before jumping to any conclusion.

Why do men avoid eye contact?

Generally, it is considered that men are more extrovert than women. Thus, we expect them to maintain eye contact with someone when interacting with them. However, this may not always be true. Sometimes, even men can't look into your eyes due to many reasons.

It could be due to many feelings, such as guilt, frustration, admiration, or maybe even depression. When a guy avoids eye contact, he'll look everywhere other than your eyes when talking to you. 

Sometimes, this can be because the guy likes you but is unable to express his feelings, and so is unable to look into your eyes. Or maybe he's avoiding eye contact because he is angry at something and doesn't want you to see that rage. It is also possible that the guy feels intimidated by you, so he avoids looking you into your eyes. Or maybe he's just socially shy! 

Not maintaining eye contact can also mean the guy is not interested in you and just wants to avoid you. Or maybe he's hiding something from you. There can be so many things that avoiding eye contact can mean that it is not love. So, if you're wondering if the person around you has a specific feeling towards you, we’d suggest you try reading his body language or maybe talking to him directly.

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Sophie Simons

Sophie Simons is a leading psychologist with a passion for enriching relationships. Through empathetic counseling and insightful guidance, she empowers couples and individuals to foster deeper connections, resolve conflicts, and create lasting harmony. Sophie's expertise in relationship advice has touched countless lives, making her a trusted source for building fulfilling partnerships.

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