Post # 1
One of my friends is asking me for advice, and I sometimes have a hard time being objective with friends, so I thought I would ask the hive. My friend and her boyfriend have been together 3.5 years. He is super nice and fun, they have lots in common, and I really hope they get married. She is 29, he is 33. Both are well-established in their careers. They don’t live together and aren’t having sex (both are opposed for religious reasons), but spend about 5 nights a week together. Most of our friends were surprised (me too!) that FH and I got married first since we haven’t been together as long, nor were we able to spend as much time together. I think he is a bit committment phobic- he bought his house after looking for four years, and he was in a previous relationship for 6 years. I don’t know what he is waiting for- my thought is with that much time together for that long, he knows her well enough to make a decision. Another friend thinks he is gay. She is asking me whether I think she should stay or go, and obviously no one can tell her what to do, but I don’t know how to answer. Bees, what do you think?
Post # 3
It obviously depends on how she feels and where she thinks the relationship is going. I’m not one for waiting around quietly for years, wondering if he will propose. She should talk to her boyfriend and see where he’s at. Figure out what he’s thinking, how he feels about marriage, and what any obstacles are to getting married. She needs to know that in order to make a decision. If he wont talk about it at all, or isn’t ready to commit after 3+ years, then she has to decide if she’s willing to wait around indefinitely or look elsewhere. This is coming from someone who is waiting- I just feel confident, based on what he has said, that his intentions are to propose within an acceptable time period. So waiting in itself isn’t terrible, but waiting without an end in sight is.
I also have recently been reading “His Cold Feet” which is basically about women wanting to get married and what causes men’s reluctance. Maybe you should suggest that book to her.
Post # 4
I agree w/ pinkbubblegum – it really depends on whether she’s had serious discussions with him, and if so, what his response has been. If they’ve never even really talked through it, that would be the first step.
It does sound a little “off” to me that they’ve dated 3.5 years with no sex and he doesn’t seem to be displaying any momentum towards getting married. Is he not that interested in having sex?
You’re probably onto something with the “commitment phobic” thought. The previous 6 year relationship could be a bit concerning if he ended up leaving her for ambiguous reasons at the end… he’s capable of being w/ a woman for that long without it going anywhere. Could it have ended because the old Girlfriend got fed up and told him to shit or get off the pot? (Of course there could be other reasons for it ending that would not reflect poorly on him at all – such as if she cheated on him or something).
Some guys are just slow to make any major decision. Not necessarily a cause for alarm. But in any case, at their ages and station in life, after 3.5 years, I think they should be openly discussing their intentions for the relationship… or even better, a mutually agreed general timetable for when things will be happening.
Post # 5
I can’t add anything to what the previous posters commented, except that I agree with them. I wish your friend the very best. I hope she can get it worked out.
Post # 6
As far as their conversations, she says he talks about the future, but it’s somewhat vague. She wasn’t very forthcoming with more details.
I talked to FH who knows both parties and is very perceptive. He really thinks he is gay but can’t admit it to himself. He says a guy won’t wait for 3.5 years without sex without at least pushing the relationship in that direction. I don’t want to tell her, “Oh, maybe he’s gay,” because that could be really hurtful, especially if I am wrong. What do you think?
Post # 7
It seems to me as if she is at that point where she needs to have an honest conversation with him… She might need to just be honest with him and say, “Are we getting engaged any time soon” and if the answer is no and he cant get her a reason WHY not, then he has just given her the answer that she had better move on.
It is hard though… as her friend, I wouldn’t push one way or the other too much – if it goes pear shaped you could end up with her blaming you. Good luck
Post # 8
FYI- we aren’t super close, she is on the border of friend/good acquaintance. My friends consider me the “Relationship Guru,” so I think that is why she asked me.
Post # 10
i second Cupcakelove.
I would just be a supportive friend. She needs to think about what she wants in life, and if he cannot provide it, then she should move on. She shouldn’t force him into marriage, especially if some people think he’s gay. She deserves someone who will love her and actively wants to be with her (everyone does). But as her friend you just have to be there for her and let her decide for herself.
Post # 11
Just to put another thought in the mix (and confuse your poor friend even more!) – there is every possibility if they are having relations of an intimate nature other than sex (even as much as kissing) that he may be asexual or have a very low libido and not worried about having sex. I think that if the opposition is for Christian religious reasons she should suggest that they look at the advice of Paul in his letter to the Corinthians – he’s not being single, nor is he being married and for someone so devout, that seems somewhat hypocritical.
Post # 12
I agree with Scribbles, I think he’s not only being hyprocitical but unfair to her. I definitely can understand the concept of waiting but with the idea of a marriage soon ahead. If at 33, stable career, 3.5 years and it not making any serious progress in that area I would RUN!
I don’t really think he’s gay, but there’s definitely something wrong. If she loves him and has faith in the relationship she should sit down with him and try to get to the bottom of this. If he can’t give her a legitimate answer of why things doesn’t seem to be heading in that direction, she should cut her losses and just walk away.
Post # 13
Hm, ok let’s look at the objective facts here:
1. Deeply religious.
2. Won’t have sex before marriage.
4. Been together for 3.5 YEARS
5. Has made no steps whatsoever towards being able to have sex with his girlfriend, guilt-free.
My gay-dar is going NUTS right now!!
Seriously though, something is not right here. At all. Three and a half years is a long time to go without sex, especially when you’re dating someone and have that temptation in front of you all the time. If he was a straight male and attracted to his girlfriend, you’d better believe he would’ve taken SOME steps thus far to get some. Even if it’s just a conversation about marriage. If other people that know him are thinking he’s gay? I think your friend may be in for some heartbreak. 🙁
Post # 14
Oh dear. Yes I have to agree that being together for that amount of time, at a time in your life when there are none of the normal marriage obstacles (college, career, age, etc.), it is verrrry unusual that a Christian couple would not be marching on a path headed straight for the good ol’ chapel at this point. I am Christian and I literally have never heard of anyone over the age of…22 who seriously dated anyone for over 3 years if they are waiting on sex, let alone 4 or 6 additional years of serious relationships! If you are a fundamentalist Christian saving sex for marriage, you just don’t date that long, unless you are too young to get married. That’s realistically what it comes down to, just as Lezlers (hilariously) pointed out. I don’t care how committment-phobic you are, from a strictly hormonal perspective, men cave at some point. Somethin’s up here. I hope she gets it figured out!