- 7 years ago
@Isilme: I’m so sorry you have been living in this turmoil. I definitely remember the feelings I had, watching friends meet and get married – all while Darling Husband and I were dating. I think it’s great that you understand your partner’s stance on marriage and the issues he has with it. If I were in your shoes, I’d ask myself, can I allow myself to be happy for the rest of my life, if I have no legal commitment to him. That’s something that only you can really know in the depths of your heart. I know you don’t want to give him any conditions (which I whole-heartedly respect). This is about YOU, not him, at this point. If you choose to stay in a relationship with him, then embrace that and choose to be happy. Don’t choose it and live in this state of continual misery because it makes you feel less-than. That sounds like a level of hell.
You mentioned that you’ve seen the progress he is making and the time to leave would have been in your 20’s. I spent my entire 20’s in a relationship with the most wonderful late-developer. I wanted to get married badly, but in the end, I had a handful of basic deal-breakers that he couldn’t follow through with (related to his employment, health, and eductation). In the end, I realized I wasn’t willing to wait around, until he got his act together. Now that we are closer to 40 than 30, he’s still getting his act together (or so I hear through the grapevine). He’s made progress (just as he was making progress before) – but his progress was so slow and most 20 year olds have probably acheived what he has to this point (he had a motivation / laziness problem). I guess I tell you all of this because just because the movement may be forward for him, it doesn’t mean that you need to wait around for him to catch up or that you missed some golden window to leave the relationship.
Your life is NOW. Choose to be happy and be ok with the decisions that you have made and continue to make. There’s no rulebook on how this should work – but you strike me as incredibly unhappy for the sake of a relationship that isn’t getting you to where you want to be. Your needs are just as important than his needs. You can decide to forgo those needs to be in a relationship with him, but realize that with it, comes the disappointment from not getting what you want. Take the time to mourn that and then make a game plan how you will emotionally deal with it when you have difficult days. HUGS to you!