It’s easy to jump to the conclusion that being called “cute” is a bad thing.
It can feel…pandering. Toddlers are cute, so are puppies.
“But I’m a woman,” you say. You’re intelligent, mature, and sexy. You want to be called gorgeous, stunning, and beautiful. Not…cute.
You’re definitely all of those things, and so much more. And while, yes, being called cute all the time might get a bit old, the fact is that the word means different things to different guys. And it almost always means something really good.
When I call a girl cute, it’s never that condescending idea of being “cute” that you might tend to think it is. It’s something else entirely.
My compliment can mean a wide variety of things–depending on the circumstances, the reason, and the girl who I’m calling cute.
Not necessarily. While there are a wide range of things it can mean (and I’ll go through a handful of them), it is in almost every scenario a very good compliment. The guy is calling you cute for a very special reason.
Okay, so what do guys mean when they tell you that you’re cute?
Here are 12 big reasons why that cute guy just called you cute.
1) He’s smitten with you
“Cute” often tends to refer to more than just outward looks.
If a guy calls you cute, it could because he’s smitten with you. Every moment he spends with you he enjoys, everything about you he’s enamored with.
Some of the times I’ve called a girl cute, it’s for this reason. Suddenly I realized that I’d fallen a little in love with her, and felt overwhelmed with the need to tell her, in some way, how I felt.
And it came out as calling her cute.
2) He adores all kinds of things about you
Kind of along the lines of the last one, he could be calling you cute because he adores all kinds of things about you.
If it’s just your looks that he’s calling you cute for, it’s easy to see how that might be a little bit annoying, but it almost always means something more.
He enjoys every moment with you, the way you look, the way you move, the way you talk, the things that you talk about.
He likes the way you touch your hair, the way your voice changes when you get excited about something, or the jokes that you tell.
Here are some big signs he likes you but is hiding it.
When he calls you cute, he could be hinting at the countless things he adores about you.
3) He wants to protect you
When a guy calls a girl cute, it’s often a reflection of how he feels about you.
One tell tale sign of calling a girl cute is that he wants to be your hero.
Now, I’m saying he wants to don a cape and save you from a burning building. The truth is much more cute than that (pun intended).
There’s a new concept in relationship psychology that’s generating a lot of buzz at the moment.
It’s called the hero instinct.
Simply put, men want to be an everyday hero to the woman he cares about. He wants to step up to the plate and protect her.
I know it sounds a bit silly. In modern times, women don’t need someone to be their “hero” to save the day.
And I couldn’t agree more.
But here’s the ironic truth. Men do still need to feel like they are a hero. Because it’s built into their DNA to seek out a relationship with a woman that makes them feel like a hero.
If a guy is calling you cute then chances are you’ve triggered his hero instinct.
The best way to learn more about this fascinating concept is to watch this excellent free online video.
James Bauer, the relationship psychologist who first discovered the hero instinct, gives a terrific introduction to his concept.
I don’t often buy into popular new concepts in psychology or recommend videos. However, I think the hero instinct can be a game changer when it comes to love.
4) He thinks you’re really funny
There’s something undeniably attractive about a girl who is really funny. Constantly laughing and making people laugh. Humor, for both sexes, is an attractive trait.
He might find your subtle sense of humor really attractive, too. You might not tell jokes all the time, or try to make people laugh; that doesn’t mean he can’t appreciate your humor.
But he sees the little things you say, the wry commentary you have about things, and it drives him crazy.
He loves it when you make him laugh, and that could be a reason why he called you cute.
5) You’re enjoyable to be around
There’s nothing like good company, of either gender.
If he calls you cute, it could be an innocent way for him to tell you that he really just enjoys being around you.
Your company is a delight for him: the conversations you have, the places you go, the way you look at the world and interact with it.
All of those things are enjoyable for him to be around, so he can’t help but compliment you and tell you how cute you are.
In this respect, he could be saying it as a friend, someone who’s just admiring how incredible you are as a human being. It could be more, too, but if you’re enjoyable to be around, there’s no denying it.
6) He’s flirting with you
Calling a girl cute is a fairly low-key way to get the flirting ball rolling. If you’re concerned about why he called you cute, or what it meant, don’t stress too much about it. He could just be flirting with you.
If he’s someone you are interested in, too, don’t be afraid to flirt back a little bit, you might be surprised to see where it goes.
If you’re interested, calling him cute back or flirting with him in some other ways might just lead to some serious sparks.
If you’re not sure whether or not he’s catching feelings for you, here are some early signs.
7) He wants to say more but is too nervous
For the same reason that it’s easy to start flirting with someone by calling them cute, a guy might call you cute if he wants to say more, but is too nervous.
Calling you cute is a fairly low-pressure way to tell you that he likes you, is interested in you, and finds you really attractive. It’s a good starting place to tell someone that you like them and might be interested in more than just friendship
He might be too shy to say more. He might be a little bit intimidated by how incredible and amazing you are.
If he has any reservations about expressing how he truly feels about you, calling you cute might be the bravest thing he’s said so far.
And if you’re wondering why guys have a hard time approaching you, here are some good things to keep in mind.
8) He’s not just talking about your looks
When a guy is complimenting your looks, he’s probably going to choose words like “beautiful”, “stunning”, “gorgeous”, or “pretty”.
If he’s calling you cute, he’s probably referring to more than just your looks.
He could be talking about your mannerisms, the way you move, walk, talk, and exist. It’s not just a superficial way of complimenting how pretty you are on the outside.
Rather, it’s a way to describe something almost indescribable about you. A certain, “je ne sais quoi,” as they say in French. He’s a little bit overwhelmed by what to compliment first, or how to describe the way he’s feeling.
So he calls you cute, as a way to encapsulate all the ways he’s feeling about you.
Does it seem like he’s fighting his feelings for you? Here are some big signs he is, and what to do about it.
9) He loves your smile and your laugh
I’m a big sucker for a girl’s laugh. Something about it always cuts through my toughest armor and makes my heart melt.
That and a good smile. Every smile is a good smile, of course. There’s something extra special when that special someone is the one smiling, and it inspires many guys to call a girl cute.
If you’re wondering what on earth it could mean when he called you cute, it could very well be that he’s fallen a little bit in love with your smile or your laugh.
10) He’s daydreaming about making you his girlfriend
While the two of you are hanging out, he might let it slip that he thinks you’re cute. Maybe it was out of the blue. Was it something you were doing that inspired him to say it? Was it something you said?
In the moment, he could have been a bit overwhelmed and let it slip out.
Or it’s possible that he could’ve been really intentional about telling you that you’re cute.
Either way, his head could have been somewhere else entirely, daydreaming about what it would be like to be your boyfriend.
The word cute might slip out while he’s busy thinking about how much he likes you. He let it slip while he realized just how infatuated he is with you.
Or just how much he wants to make you his girlfriend.
He called you cute because he was daydreaming about all of the cute things you could be doing together, all those dates you could be going on.
Those things could be filling his head while you’re spending time together, and he lets slip that he thinks you’re cute.
Here are 26 more signs he wants you to be his girlfriend.
11) He doesn’t want to lay things on too thick
He might be calling you cute because he’s got the feels for you hardcore.
It’s possible he’s already fallen head over heels for you and is hopelessly in love with everything about you.
But, he doesn’t want to scare you off.
So he calls you cute, in an effort to play it cool and hide how smitten he is with you.
Instead of telling you the thousands of reasons he’s hopelessly in love with you, he calls you cute instead.
What’s that phrase about overwatering your plants, again?
If he has any hope of furthering a relationship with you, he has to play his cards right. If you’re scared off too soon, who’s he going to tell is cute all the time?
12) He wants to get cuddly
It may seem insulting that he’s calling you cute, but remember that there are countless cutesy things that we all enjoy in a relationship, regardless of our gender or age.
He could be thinking about all of the ways he wants to get cutesy with you when he calls you cute.
Maybe he wants to make you breakfast in bed, cuddle with you in a blanket fort, throw paper airplanes off a tall building, or chase each other through the streets in the rain and kiss under a streetlight.
Who doesn’t want that?
I know I do. And if a guy calls you cute, he might just be planning out all the cute things he wants to do with you.
But what if he’s acting like your boyfriend and doesn’t want a relationship? Here’s a few important reasons.
So what should I say when he calls me cute?
How you respond to a guy who calls you cute depends entirely upon you, the way you feel about him, and what you want.
If the way he calls you cute makes you uneasy or offends you, don’t be afraid to snub his advances.
If you think he’s pretty cute, too, that’s a different story. Do you want to flirt back and see where it goes?
Here’s a few good responses if you do want to reciprocate.
That makes two of us. So he called you cute, and you’re not sure how to respond. Saying this is a quick, flippant way to tell him that you think he’s cute, too. It’s funny and witty, and he’s bound to find you all that much more irresistible when he hears you say this.
Means a lot, coming from you. Another great way to accept the compliment while also redirecting it back at him, saying this is both witty and clever. And cute. It’s a great way to put the pressure right back on him, giving him an even better compliment while accepting his.
You must be rubbing off on me. This one might be the cheesiest of the three, but it’s definitely–well–cute. If a guy hears you say this after he calls you cute, he’ll be flattered and maybe even a little bit flustered. At the very least he’ll think you’re even cuter than he thought possible.
But what if the guy who just called you cute is a guy that you’re just not interested in?
Or what if the way he called you cute just rubbed you the wrong way?
More likely than not, he’s just trying to be nice. So unless he’s being extra creepy or condescending, it’s okay to be nice back.
That’s not to say you need to be tacit, or accept his advances just for the sake of being “nice”.
People tend to confuse being nice with a certain kind of weakness, and that’s just not very healthy.
If a man’s advances make you uncomfortable, don’t be afraid to shut him down.
Here are some ways to respond if he calls you cute and you just aren’t interested.
Thanks, I get that a lot. A great way to show your strength and confidence, while still being thankful for the compliment. It’s a little bit flippant, but that can work well in your favor.
I know. This one is a little bit less polite but works well if you need to shut down an especially forward or upsetting guy. Acknowledging the compliment and moving on without playing along with his attempt to flirt is a surefire way to give him the message that you’re just not interested. Besides, you are cute, and you do know it.
Thanks, I actually showered today. This is a good option if direct confrontation is a little more difficult for you. The humor and unexpected nature of this one is a great way to accept the compliment and deflect his advances. It’s not something you’d expect to hear, which is why it works so well.
Understanding why a guy called you cute can be a bit of a daunting task. Make note of when he said it, what you were doing, and what was happening.
Context clues can give you a really good picture as to why he felt the need to call you cute.
The likelihood is that he meant something extremely flattering by it, even if your initial reaction to the word is negative.
Being called cute by a guy points to some level of attraction deeper than just the surface. Something intangible about your very nature compels a guy to call you cute.
It’s your looks, but it’s also more than that.
And if you’re unsure how to respond to a guy who just called you cute, remember that being nice is a good place to start, but not always the best option. Make sure to stick to your boundaries, and if he’s making you uncomfortable, don’t be afraid to shut him down and walk away.
While being called cute might not always be what you want to hear, at the end of the day it’s a flattering compliment.
Understanding why he called you cute could eventually lead to an exciting new relationship if that’s what you’re looking for.
The real reason why men pull away
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