Post # 1
I’m looking for a little insight, hopefully something to help improve my patience with the situation. I’ve been with my SO for 2 years, and I love him very much. We were very close friends for about a year before we started dating, and it seemed when we got together that we both knew each other well and exactly where the relationship was headed. In the first couple of months, he commented that he was so happy he was “done”, satisfied that he had found “the one” already. He actually sat back in his chair and said “isn’t it crazy that we’re going to get married someday?”. All in the first couple of months. I swear, the first year we were together, he talked more about marriage and weddings than I thought any guy ever would.
Year two was different, we’ve not been as “obsessed” with each other as we once were and have tried to focus on spending time apart with friends. The talk of marriage and weddings and all the other future stuff calmed down quite a lot. Then he started making negative comments about marriage and having kids. But he still says he wants to get married and wants kids and always has. Every few months he will say something that makes it sounds like he is planning to propose, possibly soon. At the beginning of the year he made many comments about saving for a ring. A few times, we visited jewelry websites together. He told me to pick my favorites so he could choose from them and get something he knows I will like. I started to feel like I was being strung along. I’ll get these negative remarks all the time and when I start to feel like it may never happen, he brings it so close I can taste it. Then nothing. I finally told him how I felt about this, it’s all talk and no action, and I’m on an emotional roller coaster with his back and forth attitude. So he told me I can’t be mad about what he does next, and said it looks like I’d be getting a really nice Christmas present this year. Needless to say, like many times before when I thought a proposal was near, it did not happen. It’s so hard to hide the disappointment and be happy for what you do have sometimes.
He’s 28 and I’m 31. I absolutely will not have children after the age of 35. My perogative; I feel like I have reasons and a right to make that decision. He’s not waiting on money (I know this for absolute sure) or waiting to get ahead in his career (again, positive). But I’m in a job I don’t love and will have to move to get back into the career path I want. I feel like I’ve been putting that on hold because starting a new job and moving would push all my personal life goals back and maybe make them impossible. Then I risk not being able to even reach my career goals (because the longer I’m out of that field, the harder it is to get back in). I’ve explained all of this to him, he knows how I feel. He acts like/says he’s ready for me to sell my house and move for a new job, but I’m not ready to make that kind of commitment if he can’t even commit enough to put a ring on it.
I know it’s only been two years, but I’m not that young anymore and I’m tired of waiting since we’ve agreed about what we want. The emotional roller coaster I’m on from his extremely negative to extremely positive comments are becoming too much, even after I’ve told him what this does to me. i feel like my life is in a holding pattern. I’m just ready to move forward. Any thoughts on how I can deal with my own feelings? It doesn’t seem he understands, even though I’ve come right out and said it.
Post # 3
@azgirl08: I would ask for a timeline. State your preference; there’s no harm in simply letting him know when you would like to be engaged by.
What he’s doing to you is not right – he’s basically stringing you along and taking his sweet old time about it. Shet or get off the pot, I say (sorry for the crudeness, but I have no patience for guys who do this).
Post # 4
I feel fairly similar to you in a lot of ways. I have been with my SO about the same amount of time as you have been with yours. My SO also was EXACTLY like yours at the beginning of the relationship. He’d say that he found his dream woman and knew we’d be married and he talked about it ALL THE TIME. Then, after about six months or so, it kind of cooled off. He got very hot and cold about the idea of getting married. And he will also do and say things from time to time that make me feel as though he might propose soon. And then everything completely changes. It is literally an emotional roller coaster and I 100% completely understand how you feel. It’s very frustrating and heartbreaking at times.
I agree with the above poster….you need to have a discussion with him. I don’t want to do it myself, but I need to have a discussion with my SO too. We need to let them know that we want to get engaged and when we want to get engaged by. In my case, I moved in with my SO and I kind of regret it. He claimed that living together was the final ‘test’ to see if we would be compatible for marriage, but I am starting to look at it as another stall technique. He’s just not ready and it sucks. So, sometime after the new year, I will be having a convo with him to see if we are still on the same page about getting married and to see if I can somehow get a timeline out of him. I’d suggest sitting your SO down and doing the same. I think it’s important that both partners have a clue how the other is feeling.
Post # 5
I would feel frustrated in your situation, and possibly strung along. That is not a good feeling to have. It would hurt your relationship, so you should definitely bring it up with him and share your thoughts. I hope the two of you come to an agreement on a timeline.
Post # 6
Thanks, MoonlitMagnolia. I should have an open conversation with him, and ask for a timeline. It’s been hard because the women around me seem to have a different opinion. That societal thing telling women that we have to just wait patiently for the man to decide what our futures will be and when. The having kids thing is important to me, and I’ve told him I feel like I’d have to get started trying by the end of ’14 (I don’t want to have just one, he says he wants 3!). I guess I assumed in telling him this that he’d get the hint and realize that he needs to get a move on. Guys apparently don’t get anything if you don’t just come right out and say it, haha.
Kandykane, I’m sorry that you’re going through these same feelings. It’s so foreign to me – I never thought I would be THAT girl. I guess I’ve shied away from having those conversations because his response sometimes feels like it’s a crapshoot. I feel so torn down those times that he says negative things. I guess I’ve just tried to avoid it. Then if he does say something good and makes it seem like it will be soon, I’m just left on edge for what feels like forever until it becomes clear that it’s nowhere in sight. It’s hard to understand how he was already so sure almost two years ago (this guy was my best friend and worked REALLY hard to “get” me, as he puts it). I also live with my SO, and wonder sometimes if this was a big mistake. We’re very comfortable and live like we’re already married. So why would he want to change anything when he’s got everything he wants? In retrospect, I wish we hadn’t moved in together, but at the time a lot happened and he had to find a place to live and living together seemed to be a solution. He was able to take care of ALL of his debts and could have easily gotten a ring. It seemed like a priority to him back then, I guess now he’s just gotten too comfortable.
Post # 7
When I think about it, I guess part of the issue is that I’ve supported him and he’s benefited quite well from what I’ve done for us in our relationship. I’ve made it pretty clear that I want to at least be engaged very soon before moving forward in any other regard. But though I’ve given him everything I can to support what he wants, he is apparently unwilling to give the one thing he knows I want.
Post # 8
@azgirl08: I feel for you. I’m in a little bit of the same situation, where marriage/proposals will be brought up, then shot down, then brought up… It’s a terrible emotional rollercoaster and I completely understand. It feels like our future is in their hands and their decision, and that sucks – to the point where, in my mind, I’ve even thought, hell, why get married anyway! Perhaps I’ll withhold it from HIM and see how he feels when he really wants it :p
Because I know full well that he wants kids in the next couple of years and he understands I won’t have kids before marriage. Men are just terrible with timelines and don’t understand that engagements and weddings take time. And then sometimes you’d like to be married for at least a little while before kids come along. They don’t get any sense of urgency…
I think a good conversation with him along the lines of ‘I really love you and this is what I want out of life. I’m going a little crazy with the ups and downs of not knowing what you want and exactly when you might want it… could you give me a timeline of when you think we might be engaged by? Just so that I know what to expect’
I think I need to have this conversation with my SO soon so you’re not alone
Post # 9
Do you live together? If so, there’s your answer. If not, I would demand a timeline. You’re fight, at 31 you’re not getting any younger and you deserve to know what his plans are.
Post # 10
@adayoruba: I already owned a small house, and circumstances came up where the best solution seemed to be for him to move in. I kind of thought this would help him get in a better financial place (which it has) and save for a ring faster. We started living together about a year and a half ago and we’ve undertaken a lot of improvement projects since then, got a dog, a new car and car insurance together. Our finances are completely intermingled, and we’re doing well. I always had reservations, but some of those were necessary at the time or just made financial sense. I’m regretting it all as I’ve seen how comfortable he’s apparently become.
I’m unwilling to make any more of these commitments without more of a commitment from him. I need more than him making “forever” comments once in a while (later making snarky remarks about marriage and everyone who’s getting engaged and married around us). Deep down, I believe that he IS committed. But I’m not okay with just living like this forever. I will definitely need to sell my house and get something bigger in order to expand my family. I’ve also wanted to move back to my old career. But I’m not moving across the county with him, buying a house with him or having children until we’re married. I feel like I am putting everything on hold and I’m in limbo. When I explain that all these things are so far off that it’s hard to stay motivated (because I have to wait on him to move forward), he goes off saying how he doesn’t understand why everyone’s in such a rush because everything takes so much time anyways. It’s frustrating! I need to talk with him, I know that I should soon. And have a walk away date in mind (I’m thinking my 32nd birthday). It’s just so hard because I feel like I have to walk on eggshells when I talk about marriage because his responses can be so variable. It’s so nice to have a place to vent all of this – I always feel like I’m being unreasonable or just a brat because all of my friends have been happily married for ages and never went through this!
Post # 11
@azgirl08: I’m sorry you’re going through this! It sounds like he’s stalling. But I think worse than waiting to be married to someone who isn’t ready is actually being married to someone who isn’t ready. It comes down to whether you’re willing to wait for him, and that’s such a difficult decision.
I wouldn’t talk marriage to him, it sounds like that’s not the major problem. The bigger problem is that you’re putting your life on hold for him, and that you’re unhappy doing so. A ring won’t magically change that. Do what you need to do in your life to be happy, and if he can’t support that then that might help you to make a decision. Best of luck!!
Post # 12
@azgirl08: I don’t understand how selling your house and moving to a new place for career advancement involves your SO.
But I don’t really have to understand it, I will just say that if you are putting your life goals on hold (marriage, children, career) and those goals have deadlines that will not be met due to SO’s inaction, you’ve got to get out of this relationship.
But not yet–give the guy a chance to understand the deadlines–biological, career, etc–and step up.
Post # 13
@jennmariee: This is really good advice!
Post # 14
@azgirl08: Question- what did he get you for Christmas this year?
Is it possible he’s waiting for a new year’s proposal? Or that maybe he just doesn’t want to do it on or around an actual holiday?
The first year is always the most exciting- it’s a scientifically proven fact. Then all the newness wears off and the hormones drop a bit (for most), and for some, it seems like more work than it was at first. You have to learn to like the person you love.
This is no excuse for him, but do you think that maybe he just got comfortable and that’s why he doesn’t propose? I’m not going to lie- getting married, is in some ways- a chore. I know a lot of people might read that and think I’m horribly negative for saying that—- I don’t mean it exactly like it sounds.
It’s just a really big event– there’s a lot of work, a lot of emotion + and a lot of money that come into it. Inevitabley, there’s usually some stress involved (if you plan on having a whoile wedding and not just eloping). Is it worth is? Yes, absolutely. I’m just saying- if your SO has sat down and thought about all that comes with getting engaged, maybe he just wants to avoid it for awhile….which is not a good reason, not a good excuse.
It just doesn’t sound like there are any bad things in your relationship– so maybe that’s all it is?
If I were you, I’d just sit down and talk to him- ask him WHY not a proposal yet? And go from there?
Post # 15
@FauxPas2012: To get back to my old career, I’ll have to make a huge geographic move. Part of my issue is that I’m not really willing to make that big of a move with him in our current situation until we’re at least engaged. The other half of that is seeing how far back a big move like that might push having children. I’d really rather get married and have kids before moving out of the cushy job I have now.
I’m comfortable with where our lives are now and am would plan to stay here for years and put my career aside for a while. But if this isn’t moving towards marriage, I’d like to know now so I’m not just waiting around making it harder for me to eventually move toward my dream job.
Everyone’s comments have been so helpful – I realize I have to focus on me and perhaps imagine where I will be in the future if he’s not there, and make sure that future is the best it can be for me. With the new year coming (and our anniversary a few weeks later, which he can’t ever remember the date), it is possible that he has something planned. But I’ve started to plan out a path for me. If we’re not engaged next month with all those occasions coming, I will try to put it out of my mind and give it 8 more months. I’ve mentioned to him over the past few days how I plan to focus on some of my separate finance stuff and I plan to focus on taking care of me. I can’t be going this crazy for the next 8 months! 🙂 It seems like it got him started on talking about other future plans, so maybe the wheels are finally churning?
Post # 16
@azgirl08: I think that your point of view is very reasonable. And I TOTALLY agree, good lord, don’t make a move as a career move and drag him along with him making no committment. nope.