Post # 1
A friend just got engaged after dating for 12 years. They started dating when they were both already adults (it’s not like they started ‘dating’ at age 15 or anything…). The woman in this relationship has been loud and clear about wanting to get married for about…um, 7 years now.
What do you think of super long term dating couples? Why don’t they get engaged sooner? What are the implications (if any) on their upcoming marriage? How long will the engagement last?
I’m all about making this commitment when you and your partner are fully ready, and not rushing anything. So I have no preconceived judgements about long term dating without a proposal couples, but I am wondering if anyone else does? Or any experience?
Post # 3
My husband and I have been married a little over 11 months, but will have been together for 10 years in November. I think part of the reason he waited was b/c he was 19 when we met (and I was 23), so he needed more time. We were both happy the ways things were –I’m not sure what made him change his mind. (He had just turned 26 when he proposed.)
Post # 4
If both parties are cool with dating that long, I guess to each their own. It does make me a little sad though when the woman clearly wasn’t cool with it taking so long, says something about the power dynamic in that couple.
Post # 5
Honestly, life can get in the way a lot of times. And if you are going to spend the rest of your life with somebody anyway, why not just wait until the time is absolutely PERFECT? I would wait another 10 years if it meant that I can have everything perfect.
Post # 6
My FI and I started dating when I was 22, I absolutely would not have been ok with him waiting 12 years to propose to me. What are you not sure about? It cannot possibly take TWELVE years to know you have found the person you want to spend the rest of your life with.
Post # 7
I’ve known several long term (10 + years) couples in which both parties were not interested in marriage, and they finally tied the knot when they decided to have children. These relationships are quite strong, but in your specific case, it is quite troublesome that it took this couple seven years to meet the gf’s desire to get married.
Post # 8
I think it really depends on the couple’s situation, and whether they put off the marriage or just the wedding. FI and I have been considering moving our date because life is really getting in the way of planning a wedding for Jan 7 2012. But then it’s getting in the way for planning a wedding for the next ten years too, thinking about grad school and more grad school and moving and trying to locate jobs and so on. We are ready to get married now but we just can’t think of a single point in the next ten years when we’ll be able to plan a wedding without our work–work whose quality will decide the success of our futures–getting shafted. But dear god, I don’t want to have a wedding 12 years since we’d started dating and 10 since we’d gotten engaged! How anti-climactic and frivolous it’d feel, when we’d been living in every was as husband and wife for so long anyway. And we really, really, really do want a wedding, so I feel like we’re between a rock and a hard place. If the couple you’re thinking of had a situation like ours, I can totally empathise, though I think we’ll still find a way to go nutso and sleepless for a year to have our wedding, since we both KNOW we want it.
If it’s a couple that legit took 10-ish years to decide they wanted to be married even after living together, sharing finances, etc? Well, I really don’t get that. Maybe they’d been burned by previous relationships and just wanted to be absolutely sure? Maybe they felt too immature or like they weren’t in the right life place for all those years to be prepared for marriage as the institution’s meaning is in their eyes? But if it’s just the guy being clueless about proposals and dragging his feet on the whole deal for THAT LONG despite the couples having known for ages that they wanted to be married, I say, dear god woman, why don’t you just propose yourself. That’s what I did, because I know FI, as sweet and loving as he is, is clueless about proposal/marriage traditions/things generally involving the non-academic world , and it’d be an insanely long time before he took the initiative to figure it out even though we were very concretely planning our future together and talked often of “when we are married,” “when we have kids,” etc. There was no need to wait around and feel like I was about to enter crisis mode waiting for a proposal for years. I just did it myself, and wish more ladies in my situation did the same.
Post # 9
I think long term dating is fine, as long as both parties are okay without going on to that next step. However 7 years of wanting to be married is a bit much- I honestly would have packed up my bags and left, that’s too much emotional strain. I mean, they had been together 5 years before she voiced her wanting to get married…7 extra is a bit much- what was he waiting for?
Post # 10
To each their own if they don’t mind dating very long term before getting married. Although, I am curious to know why he waited to so long to propose, He must have known that your friend has been waiting in the wings for so long.
Personally I don’t believe I would’ve waited that long. Knowing that I want to get married, as an adult… I wouldn’t have waited past the 5 year mark. Time is a tickin’ and since I want to have a family and career, holding my breath and putting my life on hold is something I would not do (even if I loved the person).
Post # 11
It’s not so much the fact that they dated for so long that makes me wonder, but the fact that she’s been ready for marriage for 7 years. If both people are happy dating for so long, more power to them. But 7 years is a long time to be in a relationship with such uneven expectations/goals about the future…
Post # 12
ditto with what greenleafmountain said!!
Post # 13
- Wedding: May 2011 - Bartram's Garden
I agree that it’s not so much about how long they were dating, but for about how long they weren’t in agreement about marriage – 5 years!
But it’s no skin off my teeth if couples want to date for 10, 12, 20 years before they get married. Or not get married at all.
Post # 14
It depends on the couple. In my pre cana classes there was a couple that got engaged after 18 years of knowing each other and I was shocked!! FI and I dated for 5 years and I met him when I was 17. I love my FI but if by the time I was 25 there was no commitment from his part then I am sorry but I would have to walk away and at least take a break to think about where our relationship is really going. But different people have different opinions about marriage in general so I can see how some people would wait longer than others.
Post # 15
I would have been out that door many years earlier. Especially if we didn’t have any excuses why we wouldn’t get married.
Post # 16
my coworker and his ex were together for 15 years, bought a house together, he worked and paid for her to get her education and waiting for her to graduate and start working so he can finish his studies and get married. Year 15 came and she cheated on him with a classmate. He didn’t know of the affair (lasted a year), but found out through evidents left on their computer (she forgot to closed out of her email, oops!). He ditched her, lost the house and he heavily in debt. Since he was the only one working so he was the only one with the loans. People can still cheat married or not..but she would have shared some of the finacial burden…he definitely learned a major lesson and one i hope no one else has to learn. He’s such a great guy too…anyone single here? ;p