Post # 1
My boyfriend and I have been together for 7 years I am 29 and he is 31. We rarely have serious fights and we’ve moved internationally 2x together. For the past few years, my boyfriend gets skittish when we talk about marriage despite talking about it at the beginning of our relationship. In 2018, we had a conversation about being engaged in 2019 that he agreed to… when it came up in August he claims he doesn’t remember the 2018 conversation. We’ve had MANY talks about this and I am finding resentment building and building. We agreed to not talk about it as of a month ago and work towards being in a place where we are happy to then get engaged. HOWEVER, I feel like I am who I am. There is nothing else for me to show? What can change between now and a few months from now as there are no other major things for us to work on. We are financially stable… settled… have lived together for 6.5 years. I have always been clear about marriage and he has always claimed to also want it.
I find with each passing week I resent him more and more. He knows all of this but hasn’t initiated a single convo about moving forward in this relationship. Having kids is important to me and I don’t want to leave it too late or have kids out of wedlock.
I am sick of feeling unworthy, not good enough, feeling out of control on my life. He gets time to think or plan but does nothing with this time. I’m so upset because I truly cannot see myself with anyone but him but I can’t help but feel unworthy. When do I know to walk away?
Post # 2
When do you know to walk away? You already know. You sound beyond ready to make that step. It won’t be easy but it will be worth it. There is someone out that shares your goals and that will be *enthusiastic* to build a married life with you.
Post # 3
At your ages and 7 years in, he is never going to propose. Especially since he avoids marriage talk and claims to forget conversations you had.
You have two choices:
1. Stay and find a way to bury your resentment while compromising your beliefs and values. But don’t consider yourself “waiting” for a proposal because it isn’t coming.
2. Leave, knowing the guy you started dating at 22 is not the man who is going to help fulfill your dreams of a family and marriage. You can’t picture life with anyone else because you started dating him at a very young age. There are tons of men out there who do want what you want and when you meet the right one, the relationship progression will be easy.
Post # 4
And please do not let the seven years thing deter you from making the choice to move on from a dead-end relationship. Look up “sunk cost fallacy”.
Post # 5
If he isn’t positive within 7 years, he never will be. Have one last discussion with him where you lay it out that you either get engaged and plan a wedding or you move on. That isn’t a threat; it’s a promise for your own future. If he says you’re trying to manipulate him, he is making excuses. If he says anything other than, “Will you marry me,” he is making excuses. Seven years is long enough to know for sure, and if he drags his feet, he doesn’t want to marry you.
I think you already know what the outcome will be. He doesn’t want to marry you or he would have asked by now.
Post # 6
I think you need to get clear in your own heart what you want for your life. Take him out of the equation. Pretend it’s just you and yourself making the decision. What do you want for your life on this earth? Because you only get one shot at it – there are no do-overs. This fact (the fact that we only get one life) is the reason we have to make hard choices in life.
So decide what you want for yourself – that will give you your answer about what you need to do, hard as it may be to hear. If you want to be married and fairly soon, then I do not think you can hand over the power to this man to decide that. Who does he think he is? Who do you think he is? Biding his time and humming and hawing, forbidding you from even discussing the matter? No, no, and no again.
He’s had 7 years, that is plenty of time, and it is high time he felt a little urgency. I also have to say that his conveniently “forgetting” our conversation involving 2018 would not fly with me at all.
Give him the chance to make good. Have one last conversation with him (whether he wants to talk about it or not) where you tell him calmly what you want and need out of life, that you want to get married. Tell him that he has every right not to be ready for marriage, but you are not willing to give up your dreams. Give him a timeline (or not, whatever feels right for you), but set one for yourself. Once that time is up (and I wouldn’t make it too long – 2 or 3 months at the most), pack up your things and move out. End the relationship.
As a PP said, there are a lot of good guys out there who want to get married just as much as you do, I promise.
Post # 7
Feels strange pre-texting this, but I’m a heterosexual man. Literally joined today after seeing many posts my wife sent me this past year. Anyway. Coming from another man’s perspective — your boyfriend does not sound in the least bit interested in marriage. Let me tell you something. And I say this to female friends too. When a man wants to “seal the deal” with you, he will absolutely let you know he wants to get married. Discussions about it (especially after being together for 7 years) should not bring about irritation to him. My wife and I began talking marriage after we were together for 4 years. We’ve been together for over 8 years now. Not far off from the span of time you and your boyfriend have been together.
Like you said. It’s not like a few months are going to change anything. That makes no damn sense. A grand majority of the time, this type of situation ends because as it turns out, the dude wasn’t ready to marry his longtime girlfriend. He usually wants to test the waters and see what else is out there. I’ve seen guys do this who I know personally; and obviously similar type of guys are doing this to women who post on here. The guy eventually tries to find a way to make the girlfriend look like she’s the problem. Will justify his discontent by saying the girlfriend has become “too needy” or “won’t give him any space” because of marriage talks. Bro. SEVEN YEARS TOGETHER IS A LONG TIME. You have every right to feel upset if he’s trying to downplay marriage talks. But not only that — him getting irritated about discussing it is cause for concern. You guys are financially stable too? Pssh. If he wanted to marry you, he’d start talking about it. I think your boyfriend has been slowly checking out of the relationship. He doesn’t know how to go about moving on just yet. Only a matter of time before he becomes more distant. Then blames you as to why things aren’t working out.
Post # 8
You’ve answered your own questions. Time to move on. Yes, you CAN do this. Will it suck for a while? Sure, but so would looking back at your life with regret, and that’s much more permanent.
Good luck to you.
Post # 9
You know what most of us bees regret? The amount of time we wasted trying to prove to ourselves that this was the right dude when clearly he was not and everything in his actions and words proved that in such an obvious way.
Bee….choose yourself…stop wasting your time.
Post # 10
Men don’t respond to nagging about marriage. They respond to your absence. So bounce first, if he can’t take your ABSENCE, then he’ll propose. You’re losing your dignity by being there when he knows you want marriage.
Post # 11
littleswordfish : negotiate from a position of power. You want kids, and you want to be married first. If he can’t give that to you, you need to be clear that you’ll be leaving to pursue that goal. And if he falls short, you will need to remember the higher goals you have (family of your own), and follow through.
I’m really sorry to say this, because I don’t know either of you; it sounds like he’s lacking the courage to take the next step towards a bounded life together. He doesn’t have as much pressure to ” get it together ” as quickly. He could father children into his 80s
Post # 12
Nice to have a man’s perspective. This is a very common topic. Thank you for weighing in. Hope you will stick around.
Post # 13
Seven years and he wants to work towards getting to a place where he is happy to get engaged? Seven years and he doesn’t want to talk about it?
I am continually amazed and astounded by the number of women who post on these boards that the man they are with for 2 years, 5 years, 7 years or more responds to their attempts to discuss THEIR future together with “I don’t want to talk about it”. Wtf? They don’t get to dictate that. He has a right to respond whether he is ready and willing to get married or not, but he doesn’t get to decide if you will even talk about it. And if he is refusing to even discuss it, he is in fact saying he is not ready or willing.
Girl, you know the answer to your question. Yes, you should walk away.
Post # 14
Math is not my jam, Bee, but if my calculations are correct, you moved in together after only six months? What was that about? I am very interested to know how this relationship got started.
*Rarely fighting* is not a sign of a healthy relationship. It means feelings are being stuffed and resentments are stockpiling. It can also signal a low investment.
He talked about marriage early on. Lots of them do. They don’t mean it. They’re picture painting to win you over or just trying it on for size. Hmmm, does she seem like someone I could marry someday?
Maybe ryo828 can back me up or correct me on this, but, men don’t like change. If it ain’t broke . . . and if the relationship is 80% of what they want without major drama they’ll hang around.
One day they’ll decide it’s time to settle down, go out and find Ms 100%.
It has *nothing* to to with you not being *good enough*. Your self esteem is being chipped away.
You *could* be with a man for whom *you* are the 100%er. He would be giddy at the thought of being able to make you his wife. The guy won’t believe his good luck. He’ll be the happiest guy on earth standing at that altar, waiting for you.
Unfortunately, you can’t find him while you’re tied to your boat anchor.
Post # 15
Bee, I think the time is now.
I was in a 6 yr relationship that went no where and talks of marriage were always vague and avoided. I was not his future wife, and he was my default because we’d been together so long. Every relationship step seemed like I had to drag him through it.
I can tell you there is hope! My current SO was open to talks about about marriage very early on. We are not engaged yet but I made it clear early on marriage was me end goal and I would not wait more than 6 years for engagement (we are grad students so our time line is likely longer than average). He wants the same thing and from time to time inquires about timelines and ring preferences. You can find someone who wants that future. I’ve promised myself never to plead or ask for someone to marry me. He needs to want me as his wife.
give yourself the freedom to find the person who will guve that to you. Breakups are hard, but you only have one life and it should be spent on pursuits that bring you joy