when blair and chuck first started out they both needed to hear the other one say I love you. they used it against each other, they used it as leverage almost but for whatever reasons, hearing the “three words eight letters” was very important. and when chuck couldn’t say it to blair, she left him. when blair couldn’t say it to chuck, he left her.
but with dan, blair just knows that he loves her. he’s never said it, he’s never even come close to saying it but she just knows because his actions reflect that. she doesn’t need to that affirmation, he doesn’t have to say it and she doesn’t have to say it. it’s all just unspoken and there’s something so great about that. dair isn’t the couple with the big dramatic “meet me at the empire state building” scenes, they aren’t about putting on a show or grand declarations. the way blair acts around dan it’s almost like she’s at peace, with him and herself and them and everything else in the world falls away and she’s loved and she’s safe.
I think in the canadian promo when blair is talking to chuck part of the dialogue might be missing, it would make more sense if chuck says he loves her and then blair says she loves him too, but that doesn’t mean she’s IN love with him. I think that’d be the most powerful thing she could say to him, it would show that she really gets it, she gets the difference between being in love and having love for someone. because she’s put so much of her life into being with chuck, into trying to fix him there will obviously always be love there. but I don’t think she’s been in love with chuck for a while, probably since season 3. the past 2 seasons all their interactions just feel like they’re on repeat, blair got so used to the idea of loving him she couldn’t break free of that, it was like a habit. now being with dan and finally accepting her feelings for him is opening her eyes to the truth of it. she probably notices how she gets butterflies whenever dan is around and she doesn’t with chuck anymore. maybe every time her phone rings or her elevator dings she hopes it’s dan. maybe when she shuts her eyes she thinks about dan. maybe she cracks a smile just thinking about him. maybe he makes her want to dance around her room and scream into a pillow. he makes her happy and gives her hope for the future. and she’s realizing that someone can love her for her, can love her the right way and that she deserves that.
point is, the words don’t need to be said with them. I’m sure they will be said at some point, but not because they have to be. they’ll be said because it feels natural to say it. I could see one of them slipping it out while they’re cuddled up on the couch at the loft, or just randomly dropping it in the middle of a conversation without even meaning to.
I’m gunna stop talking now before I make myself cry, this ship I swear.