How men are more likely to say 'I love you' first (but the sentiment is probably more genuine after sex)

From fairytales to chick-flicks, it is a well-established idea that women are the more romantic gender.

But when it comes to love, it seems it is men who are more likely to confess their feelings first.

According to a new study, 70 per cent of the time
it is men who are the first to say 'I love you'.

Research shows that it is men who are more likely to say 'I love you' first - and prefer to hear it from women after sex, not before

Three little words: Social psychologists have found that in 70 per cent of cases, a man will say 'I love you' before the woman

The research conducted at the MIT Sloan School of Management in Cambridge, Massachusetts, studied people aged from their mid-twenties to their sixties.

The team of social psychologists also found that people were happier to hear a declaration of love after they had slept with their significant other for the first time than before.

They explained that this is the case because both sexes are genetically programmed to invest in a relationship where there
is a potential for pregnancy.

Josh Ackerman, who led the study told the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology: 'There are all of these underlying
factors that go into this kind of thing that we think is very amorphous
and can't be quantified, which is love.

'In fact, there are these very specific forces on the willingness to say “love” and how you feel when people say “I love you”'.

Timing is everything, however, as the study also showed that a man who says 'I love you' to a woman before he has slept with her is less likely to be interested in a long-term relationship.

'If somebody is
saying 'I love you' before sex happens, it probably does pay to be a
little more skeptical about it,' Dr Ackerman added.

'If someone says “I love you” after sex,
it's a better indicator of how they are actually feeling.

'There is no ambiguity that they are trying to get something
else out of it.'