I think it was exactly the way Cas said it this season - I love you as my adopted FAMILY. Even if Dean HAD said “I love you” instead of “I need you,” he would still have said it in the same breath as “We’re family.” And what upsets me most about all this is that THIS episode was, in CANON, about the tragic end of the romance between Cas and MEG, yet to hear hellers talk about it, Meg wasn’t even IN it.
Exactly, THEY just want to talk about the crypt scene, but Megstiel was blossoming all over the place. (x)(x)
I may have issues with Castiel and Meg2, but I will defend the canon of their love and to this day I want to know IF Castiel is aware that Meg2 was killed by Crowley.