Post # 1
I think I’m having the worst case of cold feet in the history of all time. I’m not considering NOT getting married and I’m sure that everything will work out but I am so annoyed at my FI since we got engaged!
We have been together for over 5 years and although we’ve had a couple conversations about the permanence of the relationship, we never explicitly discussed getting married or a timeline. I definitely wasn’t anxiously waiting for an engagement ring. I figured we’d just date forever or until something drove us apart but now I’m coming to terms with the fact that I’m signing up for being with him NO MATTER WHAT and it’s a difficult adjustment. I legitimately did not think he wanted to get married and I really could go my whole life unmarried and be perfectly content.
Before our engagement in December I was getting questions weekly from people asking when we would get engaged. I often said that I felt like after 5 years of dating we were in this really good place where we were moving apart as a couple and regaining some of the independence we had sacrificed in the earlier years of the relationship. Now that we’re engaged I have this false sense that we should be moving back toward each other emotionally, spending more time focusing on each other and our relationship. I’m trying to read everything I can about marriage but he thinks I’m a crazy person and that I’m overanalyzing everything.
Now we’re fighting way more than we used to. I think in my panic I’m addressing every little thing that bugs me whereas before I didn’t see a need for our relationship to be hashed out since I didn’t view it as a permanent thing. He’s laid back, I’m freaking out. I think he’s getting annoyed because he probably expected me to be super excited and the fact that I seem to be freaking out is probably not exactly an ego boost for him.
Is this something that any of you struggled with? If you were expecting an engagement do you think the adjustment was easier because you had time to prepare emotionally?
Post # 3
My situation is a bit different from yours. I’m an encore bride. But I did want us to get engaged. We had been together for 5 1/2 years before he proposed. The proposal was a surprise. I was in shock and having panic attacks about it for about 6 weeks afterwards.
We are very happy. I love being engaged. I feel more confident of his feelings. And we are happily making wedding plans. We have a venue, I have bought my shoes and dress. But I am still terrified of actually being remarried.
We have lived apart for all of our relationship due to his 50-50 time with his children. The idea of sharing my house and losing some of my independence is terrifying me. And the fear of another divorce terrifies me… not that I think we will end up divorced.
Post # 4
For me, I really, really wanted to be engaged. I was surprised when he proposed because we had argued a little that it was too soon so I stopped expecting it…so I knew it was coming but I didn’t know it was coming so fast, lol.
I definitely had a hard time adjusting to being engaged. I felt just like you do…like our issues had to be addressed now before we’re stuck with each other forever. Every little thing that I would normally not care about suddenly seemed huge. I started to worry about things that were hidden in my past that would change the way he viewed me if he ever found out about them. I worried about how attractive I was to him and to other men…I worried that I was less attractive to him because I’d be the only woman he’d have for the rest of his life, I worried that other men would find me less attractive because I’d be someone’s nagging old lady, I worried that I’d be attracted to other men a few years from now …I put myself through hell worrying about all the possible scenarios.
At first it felt like these feelings would never go away. I was always mad at FI for his tiny imperfections (that I was originally in love with, that I’m STILL in love with) and I even considered leaving him, haha! Then the feelings kind of faded, then they came back, and it kind of ebbed and flowed for a few months. Those feelings are completely gone now! I hope they are gone for good. We’re getting married in June, after an engagement that will be a little more than two years, and I’m not worried at all.
Soooo…I think you’re ok. I think that if you were happy before you were engaged, then you don’t need to be closer to him emotionally. You guys were doing what worked for you and it doesn’t have to be any different now!
Post # 5
Oh thank God! I thought I was the only one. Yes I struggled pretty hard–and I knew myself well enough to know that before getting engaged, which is why I wanted a long engagement. Now I feel totally normal but the first couple of months were really weird for me.
Post # 6
Do you want to get married? There’s nothing wrong with being in a committed relationship and not getting married.
Post # 7
@gettin_marrid: I didn’t, but what you’re feeling is a normal reaction to that sudden feeling of permanence. It passes for most people. (“Cold feet.”) I’m not sure what to suggest but trying to keep calm and wait it out is probably the best.
Post # 8
@BrightSide: The independence thing is part of it for me, I think. I just bought my first house and FI isn’t on the deed or the loan. I love that I’m able to care for myself completely and I wonder if part of this is because I won’t be able to just throw up my hands and say I’m out. I actually had a friend in her 30’s who said the same thing to me: that she struggled with wanting to get married because she was so stable and independent that she didn’t want to commit. I wonder if the financial stability part of it is a bit of why it always seems women are pushing men to get married and not the other way around. My BFF told me she thinks I’m the man here lol!
@boogiewoogies: I’m worried that what worked before won’t work now because my attitude before was, well we’ll date until it doesn’t work and then we’ll split. When we get married that option is off the table. We’ve also been lucky to have not had a lot of issues come up in our relationship but I’m afraid that something big will hit us in marriage and we won’t cope. Or something. I think I’m just freaked out!
@MsRealityTV: The weird thing is that right after we got engaged I was totally cool. Now about 6 weeks later I’m booking venues, photographers, etc, and it’s really starting to hit me!
Post # 9
@gettin_marrid: I recently got engaged, quit my job, & moved to a different state to be with my fiancé! I was stressed for a month before moving because I didn’t know how hard my parents were going to take it and if I was going to be homesick. I’m happy to report that I was ready for all this. I moved in with my fiancé and we are now more secure because we are a family And we want the same things in life. We don’t fight like we used to because so much of our communication was over the phone. I think if you’re really stressed you need to ask yourself are these things really a big deal or not? Do I think I’m getting bugged because this is a huge life changing moment and I’ve put him under the microscope for no reason?
If you are losing sleep and need help figuring it out why not see a therapist? You could go solo just to share your thoughts and fears and maybe after a few sessions ask your fiancé to join you.
Post # 10
@AlwaysSunny: My FI was horrified when I told him I just expected we’d date forever. He was like, “who does that??”
“I don’t know, my esthetician has dated her bf for 15 years and they like it!”
I think that not getting married would be a dealbreaker for my FI and actually as I’m getting used to the idea I’m liking it myself. I’m looking at divorce risk factors and conflict resolution styles and he thinks I’m a total crazy person because for him I think it’s just the natural progression of things and it should be an easy transition. And for me it’s like, I wouldn’t buy a car without carfax’ing it so why would I devote the next 50+ years of my life to something without doing my due diligence investigating the pros and cons?
And THAT, I suspect, is where I’m freaking myself out.
Post # 11
@gettin_marrid: Haha I would give it some time. Like I said before, if you don’t want to get married, that’s fine. But maybe you’re just having some trouble adjusting to the idea. I know sometimes it can be scary. Yesterday it was annoying that he threw his socks on the floor. Today you have a meltdown because there are going to be socks on the floor FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE?! I think we’ve all been there, it’s a big change! Try not to freak yourself out, give yourself the time to think everything over and let it all sink in. Put off wedding planning for now. You’ll know what’s right in time.
Post # 12
I think it’s good to go in with your eyes wide open, rather than all dreamy, thinking that everything is going to always be perfect and a bed of roses. I seem to be mixing my metaphors…
It’s okay to have a little freak out. As long as, at the end of the day, you want to be with the man you are engaged to for the rest of your life.
My FI and I both own our own places, and will largely keep our finances separately, with prenups etc. As I said, we are an older couple. So that gives me a feeling of independence, i guess. My problem is that circumstances have led me to be a person who has spent a lot of time doing things by myself. It is going to be challenging to have a husband around all the time again…
Post # 13
@Jinjubee: I actually think this is really good advice. I feel like we need to get into premarital counseling or something. I’m having a hard time getting this set up because we’re not religious. I don’t know of any secular premarital classes and I don’t know if we should hit up couples counseling or if that’s the wrong venue since we don’t have huge issues to work on. I think I would feel a lot better if I knew we were on the same page with things.
And as I mentioned, I just bought a house. We’re both full time students but I work and he’s supposed to maintain the house and make meals. After the move I feel like I come home and things are still in boxes and I feel like he’s not pulling his weight so there are definitely things we could address in counseling. My traditional method of dealing with it would have been to just ignore the issue and do it myself. That’s not going to work for marriage. I keep bringing up marital questions with him (sex, finances, division of labor) and he looks annoyed like we got engaged and now I’m being really demanding trying to address all this major stuff. My reaction is like, well you’re the one busting through doorways with rings and stuff, why am I the one doing all the legwork to prepare for getting married??
I will say that right after I read the last part of your comment I got an image of a guy telling his best friend, “I really love my girlfriend but she really wants to get married and I don’t know if I’m ready,” and then having the friend say, “well, I think you have commitment issues, have you thought of therapy?” How ridiculous would that scenario be? I feel like there’s this huge double standard for women and men on marriage and we’re supposed to be over the moon about it and my FI thinks I’m weird for not being that way!
Post # 14
@gettin_marrid: ha! I’m new to weddingbee and didn’t see your full message. Sorry! Well, I will say that something I’ve learned from relationships is that “the way you say things will either help the relationship or not.” I would just say, “honey, I’d appreciate it if you organized a few boxes when you have time this week” something of that nature. I don’t know if you’re hoping he’d read your mind 🙂 or if he’s used to you doing everything. You’ll just need to train him and when he does something praise him for it! Sounds corny, but it’s true…. Guys love praise!
And yes, double standards when it comes to therapy! Haha… Girls love to share!!
Post # 15
- Wedding: October 2014 - UK
@gettin_marrid: I really struggled with getting engaged, I had an awful lot of anxiety about it and I felt really quite sick.
I’d had absolutely no warning it was coming, it was a complete surprise, and honestly it was the relationship equivalent of having a piano dropped on me.
But I got over it in a couple of weeks when I realised that nothing had changed between my FH and I – our relationship was still exactly the same, so I was able to settle back into it.
Post # 16
@gettin_marrid: I figured we’d just date forever or until something drove us apart but now I’m coming to terms with the fact that I’m signing up for being with him NO MATTER WHAT and it’s a difficult adjustment.
Have you ever asked yourself why you were so okay with the idea of ending the relationship at some point? Maybe you’re having this freakout because you don’t actually love him, and therefore you have no desire to share your life with him?
Also, it sounds like you were preparing yourself to end the relationship when he proposed, based on the following sentence:
I often said that I felt like after 5 years of dating we were in this really good place where we were moving apart as a couple and regaining some of the independence we had sacrificed in the earlier years of the relationship.
It seems that you two are on completely different pages as to where the relationship is going and where you are emotionally. If you do end things with him… at least you will have learned the valuable lesson of discussing these things before the relationship gets serious. Whilst some people are okay with just dating forever without any serious commitment, that’s not the case for the majority of people.