(Closed) Are you the reason hes not ready?

posted 11 years ago in Waiting
Post # 17
1098 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

Maybe I’m missing something.  He is concerned about your self-esteem issues and your inability to deal with stress. I’m guessing those have been issues that have been there through all four years of your relationship.  But he says he plans to propose by the end of the year?  Does he assume these issues will just resolve themselves by then?  Or will they no longer bother him by then? (And for the record, I agree that self-esteem can really take a beating in the waiting process).

I don’t know.  It doesn’t add up for me.  I think for whatever reason, he isn’t ready.  That’s not to say the issues he mentioned aren’t legitimate issues he is concerned about, but to say they are are the reason he hasn’t proposed yet but then add he plans to propose within a year — without  any plan to address the issues, just doesn’t make sense.  It really sounds like he, for whatever reason, is buying time and using concerns he has about you as the reason.

Post # 18
3683 posts
Sugar bee

I’m sorry, honey, but I agree with PPs. I would not want to marry a man who didn’t love me flaws and all. I also have issues handling stress and low self esteem but my Fiance is willing to work with me on those. He tells me I’m beautiful and smart and everything he could ever want. That’s how you help someone’s self esteem. Not making it about them when it’s really about you.

Post # 19
8375 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

What if you go to counseling to work on these things? Not sure how you deal with stress, but if you have a mental breakdown every time life gets hard I could see how that would give him reservations, along with being with someone who has very low self esteem. If you want to work on these things, you certainly can, but at least your boyfriend was honest with you. These are valid concerns and if he doesn’t want to marry you over it, you can certainly choose to move on. Sometimes what isn’t a problem for a few years grows into a bigger problem when you’re talking ‘forever’.

Post # 21
4771 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

@Dollygold: Men and women stay in relationships for all sorts of wrong reasons. He’s being honest and saying these things make me not want to marry you. It’s not crap.

I read this to DH since we’re both sitting on the couch and he loves giving his opinions on all of us crazy ladies this is what DH said “He may just want you to break up with him but can’t do it himself because you’re so insecure he’s afraid it will destroy you.”

Post # 22
425 posts
Helper bee

First, I just want to say that I’m really sorry you are going through this. *hugs*

I hope you won’t consider my reply to be harsh, as I’m not trying to be. Just giving my .02 cents.

Now I know every couple is different, most definitely. Example: I’ve been dating my guy for almost 4 and a half years now, and we live together. His reasons for waiting have spanned from him saying he just wasn’t ready (he couldn’t think of an exact reason), to wanting a better job first, to wanting to be more “settled” in life before getting married. Then he said he wanted to wait 2-3 more years, this was back in July. Now, 6 months later, he tells me he agrees it’d be nice to be engaged by next year, and not to worry… I won’t be waiting forever, he “has plans.” This has all happened in the span of I’d say, maybe a year to a year and a half.

So my point on that example? Things can really change on a dime. Guys can change their minds/opinions on things on a dime. Especially with these reasons coming out in the heat of the moment, who knows what you or he will be feeling/thinking anywhere in the next week or 6 months.

As a previous poster said, it’s great that your SO was so incredibly honest. It’s a great trait, and who knows… maybe my SO had some of those thoughts in the back of his head also, but didn’t have the stomach to say it to me.

However, that being said, I can’t help but feel like your SO is dangling this next stage in your relationship in front of your face like a carrot. To list those things to you as reasons not to move forward, things that have to do with the very CORE of you as a person – and then to say ‘oh, but yeah… getting engaged… I’ll propose by the end of the year.” — not cool. Because although those things are valid concerns for anybody, the first thing you would think a loved one would want to do is help you in those areas, not blame you as the reason they don’t want to get married yet (especially after 4 years of dating… has any of this come up in the past?!). I feel like he either doesn’t want to say exactly why he isn’t ready, doesn’t know himself why he isn’t ready yet, so he reduced himself to give those reasons…and I think he may have added the last part to end the conversation. It breaks my heart, to be honest. He should want to marry you in spite of those things. No person or relationship is perfect.

Have you guys had conversations about this previously? If so, what reasons were given then? Because I’m astonished that these reasons are coming up now, this far into the relationship.

Getting engaged/married are huge steps in a relationship. Even though they are indeed joyous occasions, everyone involved has moments where it may hit them and they think ‘oh my god can I handle this forever?’… it’s totally normal! Yes, there are people who will say they never had those thoughts, and that’s fantastic for them. But it’s still normal for anybody to have those thoughts at times, it’s a really big decision that will affect you for the rest of your life.

But it worries me that he said those things as reasons not to get married, rather than just the two of you having a conversation together about your fears/concerns/dreams for marriage sort of thing.

Definitely keep us updated, sweetie. Again, I’m so sorry you’re having to go through this. 🙁 Especially having to go through the Waiting stages on top of that! *huge hugs*


Post # 23
326 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

It is up to you what to do but my fiance and I attended couples counseling and it really helped us work through his issues with marriage.  Not sure if this helps but I know it worked for us. 

Post # 24
65 posts
Worker bee

@LittlePenguin: First off let me say to you…..THAT’S A LINE OF BUNK,IT’S NOT YOU SWEETY!!!!! I have gone through the exact same thing only mine actually had the audacity to make me a hand written list of why he didn’t want to marry me now!!! Can you believe that! HE is the only problem here! He’s not ready and he’s manipulating the situation by throwing it onto you,really nice! I wish guys would just be honest and say ” I like how we are now,with no commitment” at least we’d know where we stand for crying out loud! See they have to tell us what we wanna hear so we dont’ leave their sorry butts! Make a plan B honey,that’s what I’m doing. Life is way too short to spend your time worrying over if he’s gonna ask you or not. He should be worrying if we’re actually gonna say YES after what they’ve put us through….JERKS! Sorry it hits a sore spot with me and I just get on a rampage lol! The nerve!

Post # 26
1443 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

@LittlePenguin:  I think I’ve heard every excuse that there is out there, and yes, I think your guy is making excuses and trying to make it not all about him being ready.

For whatever reason, he’s not ready, yet – he might want to be, but even when a man is happy in his elationship, the “M” word seems to strike some sort of primal fear in them.  I can’t believe every man out there avoids marraige as long as he can on the off-chance the Jessica Alba will need her tire changed one day outside his front door, and he wants to have a clear conscience for “anything” that might happen, but there are plenty who feel that way. Also, our society makes marraige out to be all gain for to woman and all sacrifice for the man (but seriuously, who washes whose socks in most cases, really?), guys with lots of single friends feel pressure to stay foot loose and “free”, and so on.

Maybe next time you’re able to talk about this you should ask him why you’re okay as a girlfriend, but not as a wife, and how he thinks you’ll be more assured and less stressed by the end of the year?  I think he needs to hear from you that one of the major problem you’re facing with stress AND self esteem come from him not being able to tell you you’re good enough to wear his name… no one likes being told they’re good enough for just right now.  I think he might be seeing you in your waiting-makes-me-a-sad-insecure-woman pahse, and he’s not connecting the dots between his dragging his feet in making that official committment and your self doubts.  He’s aware that his not proposing is making you upset, bt I don’t think men usually understand HOW is makes you upset.  They just see it as another thing you want them to do for you… and so, when you have “M” word talks, no matter how well you try to handle it, they want the pressure taken off tehmselves, and often will try to put (sometimes justly) their hesitation and uncertainty off onto you. 

Post # 27
193 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

@ LittlePenguin:  Can I assume you’re 23 then, if you met at 19 and have been together for 4 years? I just hit 24, and I don’t think that 23-24 for a woman is a HUGE difference when comparing a guy at 29.  I have two good male friends that are 28 and 29, and honestly there’s not really much difference between where we are in life, our viewpoints, goals, etc… Unless you are immature for your age, which is probably not the case, I don’t really see age factoring into it too much unless your life goals & near-future wishes/desires/wants/goals etc just have too different of time frames to work out together.  I personally think the age thing is kind of a BS excuse unless he’s ready to start a family in the immediate future and you aren’t ready.. I could potentially see that as an issue at 23 vs 29.

Although I have to say, I would think the age thing would have made more of a difference at 19 and 25 or 20 and 26.

I agree that it’s troubling that you say “he is downright scared to marry me after all this time.”  Like PPs have said, it may honestly be that he is just scared to get married in general, and he may be using your “flaws” as his way of placing the blame on you & making YOU the reason you’re not engaged, not his fears.  But, there may be some legitimate concerns he has, if you REALLY don’t handle stress well, he may be concerned about things like “How will she handle the stress of having kids? Buying our first house?  When money gets right?  Will everything fall apart & I’ll have to shoulder all the weight, or do I really think we can make it through together?”  If he is concerned about things like that, I think those are valid hesitations.  BUT, how will those change in the next year? Is he just saying that to kinda “keep you off his back?” or have you guys discussed a way to work through these problems?  Honestly, counseling may not be a bad thing for you two to talk about your fears/concerns with a non-judgmental 3rd party who can help you sort through the issues and get to the root of the issues, if you 2 truly want to try to work it out.

However, I will say this… the guy I dated before Fiance pulled something similar.  He said I love you within the first month, talked about getting married (kind of jokingly, as we weren’t anywhere near ready to get married at the time, but really thought we would eventually get married), etc…  BUT, he would ALWAYS bring up some sort of flaw of mine.  He complimented me plenty, but always brought up my flaws, too.  Then wondered why I had self esteem problems.  HE was the source of a good chunk of my low self esteem.  I always felt like there was something wrong with me.  He always told me how bad he felt bringing up these things, because he’d make me cry & make me feel like I was unattractive & had all these flaws, & would always ask “Well there has to be things about me that bother you”…. uh no nothing that’s important enough to bring up to make you feel terrible about yourself because it’s insignificant anyway!  It reached the point where we had broken up recently but still talked all the time, after a 3 year relationship.  I told him every guy I met I compared to him & they didn’t measure up (I was obviously delusional).  His response? “I don’t really like comparing you to other girls because then I just see all your flaws.”

I don’t know you or your relationship, but I will say I am SO much happier than I ever thought I would be, with my now Fiance, than I was with the asshole that blamed things on “all my flaws”… no one is perfect, and if things don’t work out between you two, just know that there are men out there who will love you despite your “flaws” (because they’ll recognize they have some of their own, too!).  I hope you’re able to work things out and figure out what’s best for you, whether it’s leaving or doing counseling or something of the sort with him to confront the issues you both are facing with each other. I hope things work out for you!

Post # 29
315 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2020

@kt23525: Thanks for sharing. My ex also was slow to point out my good points. Well…it’s more that my good points were all physical qualities that I actually don’t value much to begin with, because having “nice legs” or anything of that sort is like praising someone on winning the genetic lottery.

My ex put me down a lot and we got married anyways. So I lived a few years under his constant criticisms and when I asked why he did it, he said “to make you a better person”. Wow. It was no wonder that I never felt good enough. Sadly, I stll have that lingering feeling whereever I go. I should laugh at him at this point because I’m fairly certain that I’m doing much better than he is in life.

So if a man ever makes you doubt your self-worth, chances are he’s trash. A guy should be able to give you constructive criticism, but to use that outlet to make himself feel better by putting you down is a huge no-no.

Post # 30
575 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Here’s my problem with this whole thing:

“he revealed that about 90% of the reasons that he is still not ready to be engaged after 4 years together have to do with my flaws… He said he does plan to be ready and propose by the end of the year”

How do those two thoughts go together? He’s not ready to be engaged because you have too many flaws but he’s going to propose by the end of the year? What does he expect to change in that year? That you are going to change (and by association he would NOT propose by the end of the year if you didn’t change so he’s not being truthful?), or that you aren’t going to change and magically he will be ready to accept that and propose anyway in one year?

There’s a real disconnect going on here. It seems to me like he’s not being entirely truthful–either about the reason that he hasn’t proposed yet, or the fact that he will be ready in one year. 

Post # 31
151 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

What a d-bag.  Telling you that you don’t have enough self-esteem can’t be helping your self-esteem issues!

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