Post # 1
Not sure where to start. My SO proposed last Christmas in 2011, but he had a panic attack and took the proposal back later on that day. I was devastated as you can imagine and the beginning of this year (2012) was really tough on our relationship as you can imagine.
Some background information, we have now been together 5 1/2 years, living together for 3 1/2. My SO parents split up when he was a child, it was a bad breakup and his dad ended his life when he was little as he couldn’t cope not seeing his children. Also we know alot of friends who have Horton married and divorced in the space of a few years. So my SO hasn’t had the best impression of marriage so far.
He has been seeing a counsellor this year to try and help him get over his issues and our relationship has been back on track if not better since Easter this year. He promised me a proposal would come by the end of this year and it had looked hopeful. He promised he would commit before Christmas and I knew he had planned some event for the last weekend. However a couple of days before he started to panic again and was stressing, his whole body was shaking and he cancelled his surprise plans and told me he wasn’t ready yet. I think he needed me to help him and reassure him but I was completely devastated and just fell apart and we argued.
After having a very long talk he has now promised me he will commit before easter 2013. I know it’s only another 3 months but I’m finding it so hard to trust him and wait, he has already let me down twice, what if he does it again. He keeps saying he’s sorry and that he does love and care about me. He says that we should try and have the best most amazing three months together and not argue about committing as this has happened often (I feel really insecure after everything) and then when he proposes it won’t be shrouded in stress.
I just don’t know what to do anymore. Do I just keep quiet and wait for 3 months or walk now as he may never commit. We’ve been together for over 5 years, I’m in my late 20s and he is in his 30s.
Post # 3
That’s really tough. Do you know what is at the root of his commitment issues? I would give him one more chance and if he doesn’t propose by Easter, leave. Does he get this panicked with other major life decisions?
Post # 4
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
Yikes, reading this I thought your Fiance was going to be younger than “in his 30s” — how can he still be acting like that?! Points for him for seeing a counselor, but how much longer are you going to let him string you along with promises he doesn’t fulfill?
Personally I would move out and if that isn’t the shock that he needs to get serious, move on.
Sorry you’re dealing with this 🙁
Post # 5
imo, i don’t think he wants to get married. if he is having these panic attacks, there is something much deeper.
he is waiting for this perfect stress-free time before he proposes. i think his image of marriage is unrealistic and when everything is not perfect, that’s what’s causing the anxiety.
op, is marriage/no marriage a deal breaker for you? you are still young but i think it’s time that you think about yourself and your goals and dreams. you may want your bf to be apart of your future but if he doesn’t fit, he doesn’t fit. no one will be happy.
Post # 6
@ArielBelle: This reminds me of the “I’ll do it tomorrow” Problem. My Fiance had this where he would say that he would tackle something big (like sorting out problems with family) but he’d do it in a week or two weeks. When the time came, he wasn’t ready and would put it off.
This sounds exactly what your SO is doing except he seems to have this idea of marriage that is obviously very scary to him. Before he can commit, maybe he needs to know that marriage can be happy and healthy – where you’re there for him through the good and bad. If he doesn’t have some sort of realization about this, he may never become fully commited.
I am so sorry that you’re going through this. Do your best by being there for him but don’t forget to take care of yourself – you deserve to be happy!
Post # 7
Perhaps you can go to a therapy session together.
Post # 8
I do therapy with people who have a crapton of family issues. I think a lot of people don’t think about the impact that their parent’s relationship has on their own. Having your father commit suicide secondary to a bad divorce really does have an impact on you. Having a parent absent for the majority of your childhood is enough to F you up…having one take his life partially because of family stress can super F you up.
And I mean SUPER F you up.
I don’t know exactly what to say because this seems like it could go either way. The fact that he’s having panic attacks is very disconcerting and it seems like he needs a lot more time than early 2013. Go to therapy with him when he allows for it and work through it together.
Do you have a walk date? If this isn’t something able to be resolved, and you aren’t willing to be BF/GF for the rest of your life, you may want to consider it.
Post # 9
Thank you all for your advice. I honestly don’t think he is leading me on intentionally, I think it’s just a really big thing to happen in his childhood that has had a huge affect on the way he views marriage with caution. He is really trying by going to a counsellor which I guess is a positive thing. I think I’ll wait till mid April and if things haven’t changed then I have a big decision to make.
I do want to get married some day not just for religious reasons but also I don’t want to give up on my hopes and dreams either, I don’t think I’ve got it in me to be a girlfriend for life, I want to make that commitment in a church one day. Anyway thank you all and fingers crossed it turns out ok.
Post # 10
My friend was in a similar situation and I’m very sorry to tell you that it did not work out. Fortunately, she wasted very little time leaving him.
The were in the process of buying a vintage ring and moving in together. Out of the blue, on the day the movers were coming to his apartment, he couldn’t get out of bed. It was like a light switch. He had an anxiety attack that landed him in the hospital.
They tried for another few months, but he’d stop taking medication or something would trigger a panic attack and they’d be back at that place where he couldn’t get out of bed.
I think he’s right about trying to have an amazing 3 months. It’s not a huge amount of time lost in the long run if he doesn’t propose. I think you need to be prepared for both scenarios and you need to be prepared to really talk to him about the wedding planning process if it does happen. He may have needs that need to be met in order to get through an engagment without another panic attack.
Post # 11
Ugh! This is a tough situation. It’s obviously entirely up to you. If you love him then I think you have to stick it out and see how it plays out. If you can consider walking away then I’d say you probably don’t love him as much as you think you. My fingers are crossed that everything works out for you!!