Post # 1
I guess I’m just looking for some opinions/advice on what to do about my upcoming wedding. My fiance and I were highschool sweethearts who lost touch for about 25 years. When we re-connected I discovered that he’d been looking for me for years. Once we were back together our relationship blossomed and quickly steamrolled into engagement and wedding planning. Now I’ve got enough distance both physically and emotionally that I’m thinking there are red flags going up all over. Between high school and reconnecting I married, had 3 children and diviroced. Now I have a career, I own a home, I’m getting ready to send my oldest to college and I have a pretty settled life. He is the complete opposite. He lives in a resort area and works as a chef which is something he is amazing at. Although we are both 45, he spends his workdays and time off of work with the 20-25 year old party crowd. He’s never been married, has no children and other than work has no responsibilities per se. He has also never dated anyone over the age of 30. We live 4 hours apart and while I spent the entire summer busting my tail to make sure I drove to his area for at least some part of every week (I teach and am off during the summers) once his restaurant closed and my work started back up he has only visited me 4 times. He has been to visit his mother repeatedly in this time as she is halfway between the two of us. He has flat-out refused to come the extra distance to stay with me on more than one occasion but is more than willing to repeatedly ask me to come down there.
Am I setting myself up for failure again? I cannot relocate to his area because of the economy and my children and my job. I’m afraid if he comes here to live he will wind up resenting me for taking him away from his party time. He is a binge drinker at times with his friends and while I am deeply immersed in my faith as a christian he doesn’t share that faith.
Sorry this is so long but I’d be interested to know what you all think.
Post # 3
Thanks for sharing with us! To me, it seems like this relationship is not fair to you. I’m glad you’re able to spot the red flags, and I think that’s a real sign that this is not the best place for you to be.
What jumps out to me the most is that you are a Christian, and he is not, and also lives quite a different lifestyle that he is apparently unwilling to change. To me, this is a very bad sign, because it is very hard to make a relationship work if two people are not on the same page.
I know the Bible says to not be unequally yoked, and that is very good advice to take to heart. It applies whether or not both people in a relationship are Christians or not. My fiance and I may be atheists, but I still consider us “equally yoked” because we both want the same things out of our relationship, and have many things in common.
I know this is very difficult, but I would do some serious soul-searching on whether or not this man is the right one for you.
Post # 4
I’m concerned that he is so into partying when he is 45. That is pretty immature on his part and if he marries you, he will have a wife and children to take care of and he shouldn’t be partying. I really think you need to reconsider this relationship (though it sounds like you are already rethinking it yourself).
Post # 5
It is hard for me to say, because I don’t know either of you. I agree there are red flags all over the place with this situation. It doesn’t sound like he is as invested in you as you are in him (refusing to come the extra distance to see you, only wants you to come to him). Is there any guarantee that he actually wants to re-locate? If he does want to re-locate he should be spending time getting to know your area, etc.
I think, at the very least you guys should have a deep discussion about what you both envision your married life together to look like. He needs to be honest with you and vise-versa, because I would not be surprised to hear that he isn’t sure he wants to give up the partying, and if you want someone more calm and settled, you won’t find it in him.
Post # 6
I think a serious convo is in order. Is there a plan for what would happen after the wedding? It sounds like you aren’t planning to move, is he? It doesn’t sound like he’s even willing to spend much time up where you are. I would let him know all of your concerns (his lifestyle, where to live after the wedding, him not being willing to put effort into visiting you on your turf) and see what his reaction is. Is he willing to work on things with you? To compromise? Honestly, the lifestyle differences could be a big stumbling block. Are you sure you both really want the same things out of life?
Post # 7
May I ask how long you’ve been together? You said that your relationship has steamrollered into your engagement and wedding planning. Like the other Bees have said it sounds like you’ve already started to question your relationship. Maybe you need to just put a hold on planning a wedding and concentrate on being a couple and seeing if you click?
Post # 8
I would at the very least postpone this. You are correct about the red flags. You need to have a serious conversation with him face to face and point blank ask him how he sees yours and his future together. If his answer doesn’t match up with yours, you are going to have to rethink this relationship; as hard as that may be for you.
Depending on his answers and commitment factor, it can work. I am also an older encore bride that went through a similar situation in some ways with my Fiance. We have been together for just over 9 years now. If you need a shoulder to cry on or someone to bounce ideas off of, please pm me.
Post # 9
I don’t know you nor am I qualified to give relationship advice, but if you are having doubts, don’t rush into it. Take a step back and evaulate what you really want. There is nothing wrong with postponing a wedding to make sure that it is what you and your Fiance really want.
Post # 10
Thank you all so much for your thoughts. We have been back together now for a year. I agree so much with your views of not rushing into this which I think we have already done to a certain extent. I have asked him about how he sees our married life and he is reluctant to talk about this. He says, “We have plenty of time to talk about it.” I will take all of your advice to heart and I welcome any other thoughts you may have. At the very least, it is comforting to have affirmation of what I’d already been thinking.
Post # 11
His reluctance to address your concerns is a bit scary … he should at least be able to discuss it with you. I would suggest you listen to your what your gut is telling you.
Post # 12
I second this, and this sounds eerily similar to the situation with my mom, who is engaged to her hs sweetheart (jerk) after my dad passed away 10 years ago (they got engaged last month).
Red flags are there for a reason. They are beacons to tell you to have caution.
Have you gotten the opinion of a professional or a cousnelor on this?
I’m 40, and have a young son and am also divorced, but Ihave friends from 20-50. I’m also grounded and know who I am and what I want out of life and my fiance (43) does as well. I think possibly having some couples’ counseling might bring alot of this to the surface.
Time can change alot of things. That nostalgia may be there still, but you need to make sure this is a good fit as you’re not only marrying him, but you’re a mom and your kids will be around him too.
Wish you the best and alot of hugs.
Go check out the encore board, as there are others who have gonet hru similar situations themselves!
Post # 13
I agree with others that you need to take more time with this. Maybe stay engaged but postpone the wedding indefinitely. What you need to find out is what your married life would look like—and that’s the one question he doesn’t want to answer! Sure you have more time but there also shouldn’t be anything holding you back from embracing a life together.
You need to know where are you going to live, what are your daily routines going to be, what will he do for work, how will you spend your leisure time, how will you handle your finances, and so forth. Frankly this is the sort of thing you can discuss in the theoretical but you never really know until you’re living it. For now you are forced to extrapolate from what you do know, and that is that he is unwilling to go the extra mile for you while expecting you to do so for him. That’s a bad sign, but not necessarily a condemnatory sign.
I think you need to see a more firm commitment from him before you should marry him. You have a lot of responsibility and he seems like he has avoided responsibility. My aunt (who turned 50 this year) dated throughout her 30s and 40s and she always says that she will not date a man who had never been married by his 40s. They always ended up having commitment issues, were immature, and couldn’t settle down. I hope it’s not the case with your fiance, but it’s imperative you put a little more time in before marriage to find out. Having a conversation about this is one thing but what you really need are behavioral changes before you can be sure. I hope things go well!
Post # 14
Kudos to you for being so brave to admit there are red flags. Too often, women sweep them under the rug, in their quest for true love. While it is such a sweet story of “long lost love,” and he does sound like a sweet & successful man….I would recommend at least postponing it.
You both have extremely different lifestyles….and the difference in faith is definitely disheartening for a Christian. I hope you two can find some common ground, and hopefully he will grow up soon.
Post # 15
I have to agree that you should heed the warnings of the “red flags” and that feeling that you seem to be harboring that this may not be a good relationship. It definitely sounds like you and he have some serious decisions ahead. If he is not willing to talk about them or make them together, that, to me, tells you a lot about his commitment to the relationship.
I hope all works out well for you.
Post # 16
There are definitely a few flags and its very brave of you to acknowldge them and not brush off! Trying sitting and discussing these very real and valid concerns. It is possible that during the initial sparks of reconnecting you two moved at lightening speed. There’s no harm in slowing down a bit