Post # 30
My wise mother told me that in romantic relationships, there are strings attached, it’s not unconditional. For example, they have to be able to meet your emotional needs. I would put this more on you though, it sounds like you have issues trusting him not to be a drain on you, intentionally or unintentionally.
In marriage, anything can happen. Your partner can get sick or disabled, and most people would say that you should be prepared to support each other even then. If you can’t imagine yourself doing that, you are NOT ready to get married yet because you don’t fully trust and love each other.
There is a power imbalance here though, and you are definitely the one with the advantage in this situation. Unfortunately, you guys should have discussed prior to his decision what would happen if things did not work out.
Would you consider getting legally married with a pre-nup to get more time for you both to adjust? This is not to be taken as legal advice at all! 🙂 But a friend of mine was in this situation and they chose to marry while with the *private* understanding that they were still figuring things out/”dating” and would legally divorce if things did not go as well as hoped. They fully committed to one another and invited their friends to a ceremony a few years later (they kept it rather quiet before then) when they decided to make things official.
I know some people may have strong opinions on this, but this is about finding a solution that may give some peace and the best of intentions. I don’t consider a good faith effort to be the same as one where it’s a transaction for a green card.
Post # 31
You have a lot of pressure on you to be the one to make this decision, but I think you need to hear that it is OK to decide now is not the time to marry him. Don’t make a hasty decision because his visa will expire, or he gave up a job, or you introduced him to your family. Love worth marrying for is not the same as guilt, obligation or feeling that someone is “familiar” to you and kind.
He has learned English, and computers in the IT world. Watching YouTube videos in order to gain a better understanding of the oven model and how to cook in it, and watching demonstrations on how to pump gas are simple things he can be doing himself to become more independent. I agree with other Bees that he doesn’t seem to be displaying much self initiative in adapting to his new environment and that would factor into someone’s feelings for a partner in MOST relationships.
I think you may be learning a few new things about yourself during this process and I encourage you to explore your thoughts and feelings. You may be a woman who, though you can do everything yourself, finds someone being a “caretaker” or “handyman” appealing. Admitting that you aren’t sure, your feelings changed, or you just feel like you deserve more than a few months to decide on something as serious as marriage are perfectly OK things to do for yourself. I know that it is sad for him, and you don’t want to make that decision because you care for him, but it really sounds like you are reaching out for permission not to marry in a few months. You don’t have to do this just because it was planned.
Post # 32
If I were you, I’d sit down and have a talk with him. Tell him you want and need him to become more independent. Get his feelings on the move. Maybe he is too overwhelmed. Maybe he is lazy and just doesn’t want to try. But you have to have a chat with him because you are obviously stressed out and it is effecting your view of him in your relationship. It happens. Talk with him and just say you need him to start learning these things. If you guys can sit down and work on a plan as to how to get him to be more independent and he takes more initiative, then this is just a rough patch and an adjustment period. If you can’t come to a compromise, and he doesn’t start holding up his end of the deal, then you need to rethink this relationship.
Moving in with someone is hard enough, much less when it is a whole new culture you have to learn. When I first moved in with my fiance, it was stressful, and bumpy. I moved into his house, and he felt like I was invading his space. I was further from all of my friends and activities, and lonely there. I am severely independent, and wasn’t used to having someone else do little things (dishes, taking out trash, cooking, etc.) so I constantly felt like I was invading his space – he wasn’t good at hiding that feeling! -and he was “taking care of me” like I couldn’t do things on my own. It drove me up a wall and I was ready to break up and move out! Instead we sat down and had a talk. I told him how I felt, he told me how he felt and we moved forward stronger than ever. But had we never had that chat, I would have been out of there. It was actually after the talk that I was more excited than ever to marry this person. Because we could work things out together!
Post # 33
feel incredibly sad at the thought of him going back and waiting another 2+ years to be together again
To be blunt, I don’t think this is an option. He’s uprooted his entire life for you, giving up his job and moving to an unfamiliar country. You can’t expect him to pine for you indefinitely and try again later if you reject him now. Either you commit to him or you set him free to find someone else. It’s unfortunate, but “wait and see” just isn’t an option in your circumstances.
Post # 34
Based on your updates, it sounds like he really is being a man child. 16 year olds learn to pump gas in one or two trips to the gas station. 12-14 year olds learn how to start an oven. That’s concerning.
I’d still talk with him & see how he’s feeling. Is he overwhelmed? Does he tend to shut down when overwhelmed? Etc. Based on that conversation is how I would decide to move forward.
As other bees have said, do NOT marry him out of guilt over sending him back. He’s an adult and made those decisions to be with you, leave his job and country, etc.
Post # 36
This all sounds like cultural differences. Just because he seemed to have it all together in India can not be compared to here as a married couple. He was hosting you in India. In India culture, the wife does do most of the house work… have you two talked about what married life will be like?
I have to agree with others, it seems he making an effort. However, it seems you may be realizing you two are not on the same page going forward. Only you two can talk this over.
You stated you knew him for 10 years… but only seen each other a few times… soo really you do not know each other. His culture may be that you get to know each other during marriage, your culture may be that you know each other before marriage…
Post # 37
Most of the guys from India that I know (gross generalization but with some backing in experience) expect the wife once married ( even if they’ve been independent previously) to handle laundry and cooking. I’d have a serious conversation about what he expects the work load balance to be once married. Are you aligned with that and it’s just a matter of time to adjust?
That said, if it still feels wrong, don’t do it. Better safe than sorry. Sucks about his job but better that than a bad marriage you regret for a decade.
Post # 38
He has given up everything to come to America to be with you. His job, his skills at doing things, his friends. If you are a skilled professional, emigrating without a job is always incredibly difficult because you literally do not know how things in your new country work, and the local people around you expect you to be able to adapt immediately (not because they’re being mean, but because they have no experience of a similar adjustment).
Moving the US and giving up his work visa has probably damaged his professional life in a way that can’t be undone. Normally I would say if you’re not sure, don’t with marriage, in this case I’d lean the other way round and that if he still wants to marry you and live in the US and you are merely unsure then marry and give it time to see if it works out. You don’t have the luxury of being able to wait and see and then marry. You either marry now or split up permanently. If you are sure the second of those is what you want then please do let him go home quickly and try to salvage what he can.
Post # 39
Hi Bee! Wanted to check in on you and ask about how everything worked out for you?
Post # 40
I am late to the thread.. but I just want to say sorry for your hard time.
Cooking lessons, his ability to chew less like a rhino, and his laundry folding skills are not the issue. You are frustrated because you’re unsure if this will be a mistake.
I think you need to speak to a professional, unbiased psychologist. I was in a long distance relationship for 3.5 years, and 15 years later he is still my best friend.. but I lived with him for a few months, he would come here for a month, I would go there for 3 months etc etc . The most we spent apart in those 3.5 years was 6 weeks. You don’t know someone in 4 or 5 visits. You living there for even 6 months was a long holiday.. it isnt the stress induced normalcy you’re now facing. You also claim you havent been in many relationships and the ones you were, were a nightmare. Wanting it to work because he has left his country, or because you just really want love.. is not a reason to marry someone. Marry someone because in spite of how they chew or how their breath smells in the morning you cant picture yourself with anyone else.
Does it suck if he has to go back.. yep.. know what else sucks? A loveless marriage where two people grow to resent each other and bicker in front of a kid just learning about relationships. He is in his 30s not 17, he made the choice to give it up and take a shot. You didn’t make him. There was no force. Your first priority should be you and your teenage son. He has seen your marriage to his dad not work.. dont let him see you marry because of guilt and be around a marriage that isnt ideal. If you have doubt, hold off.
Good luck. This cant be easy for you *hugs*
Post # 41
Has he met your child yet? Will your child be comfortable living with a stranger? Will he accept your child? My first concern would be my child. If they don’t have a good relationship, then my relationship with him is not going to work. My child must also be happy with him. My child comes first.