Post # 1
I haven’t posted in a long time since my classic story of girl in waiting (for 6 years) – gets dumped, and 6 months later the ex who said he never wanted to get married.. gets married
Unsurprisingly, this has left me with a raft of insecurity, especially on the topic of marriage.
I met my current partner just under 2 years ago, and we are really happy together and for sure he’s the one. Because of what happened to me in my last relationship, I was keen to lay down exactly what I wanted early on and he said he was on the same page. We moved in together in April this year, it’s all going well and we agreed on a timeline of end of 2019 to get engaged. All the signs are there for this to happen, I’ve actually stumbled upon some screenshot pictures of some rings recently that were open on his laptop when I borrowed it to watch films in bed (had to quickly snap it shut!) and he’s talking a lot about potential venues and visiting venues next summer when we are on holiday etc etc..
However, the main problem is me. I am irrationally upset that he hasn’t proposed by now even though the agreed timeline has not passed, it’s making me thoroughly miserable because deep down I am terrified of the same thing happening to me all over again like it did with my ex. The feeling of being hoodwinked or lied to over this engagement topic feels horribly familiar. There’s only so much of this I can communicate to my partner without him thinking that I’m not over the previous situation, although some of what I’ve shared he’s been really supportive, reassuring and understanding. But it’s really not his fault.
How can I move forwards without ruining what is going to be a special time?
I’m really lost and confused. Someone described what I went through as a trauma recently and I suppose that’s kind of true, I’m so mad that I feel this way when I have such an amazing partner who I do want to spend the rest of my life with..
Post # 2
if you’ve agreed to be engaged to be married, aren’t you technically engaged now?
i think you should talk to a therapist about your anxiety and irrationality. it is a good step that you recognize it.
Post # 3
Get a grip on yourself, it’s not the end of the year yet. Being impatient with a proposal It’s not fair and it’s not even sensible. It’s not his fault that an ex of yours was a douchenozzle. Relationships like you had with your ex are supposed to instruct you to let you know what you will and will not tolerate. Part of this sounds like the blame game. You’re blaming the ex for making you wait so long, so you have to be suspicious and antsy about the current guy. But in fact you were as worthy of blame as the ex was because you tolerated it. Place the blame squarely on your shoulders, knowing you always have the power to end a relationship if it’s not meeting your needs. You’re the one to focus on, not your boyfriend. He’s not making you wait, you’re choosing to wait, of your own volition.
Post # 4
Oh boy. Do you ever recover? Honestly I think not fully. Something in your heart has been broken and although it’s mostly healed the scar is still there. I think you and your bf have moved at a rather quick pace but he seems very involved in the process, responsive to what you are saying, understanding about your insecurities. It all seems on the up and up and there’s a lot of time and holidays from now to the end of the year. Don’t let one man’s lies cloud your vision of another’s promise. If you can’t reason your way to calmness then I suggest a session or 2 of therapy. I know it seems ridiculous but sometimes just word vomiting the story to someone, telling them all your fears and insecurities, and having them acknowledge those, tell you you are normal, and remind you this is a different situation is all you need. And it’s different coming from a stranger. Your friends, family, and bf can reassure you all day but sometimes you need that little extra so you KNOW they aren’t being biased and telling you what you want to hear.
It’s just heartbreaking that this previous person has been able to cloud such a wonderful time in your life. Try not to give him that power over you. It’s so hard, and I’m dealing with something similar too so I’m so sorry you are feeling this way.
Post # 5
I had a traumatic broken engagement after nearly 6 years waiting. When I met my now husband I was very uncertain and although he proposed quickly I had a hard time believing that something wouldn’t happen to make him change his mind. I didn’t find the run up to getting engaged enjoyable at all.
But every day he showed me that I could trust him, and my anxieties got less. I did enjoy actually being engaged after about the first month and he was excited to book things and move forward.
I don’t really have advice but just wanted to empathise.
Post # 6
Hi, bee. Feelings aren’t always rational and I am sorry you are upset. You have admitted that the ex was not the one for you. If you care for him, be happy for him. The two of you weren’t right together. The truth is not that he didn’t want to get married, he didn’t want to marry you. It’s good that he didn’t or you wouldn’t have found your true love.
It sounds like your partner has been very receptive to your timelines and in agreement that you two will be engaged by the end of the year. As PP said, technically you are engaged because you have already agreed to marry one another.
It sounds like you picked a winner this time. I would hate to think that your anxiety from your ex is tainting the experience you are currently having with a supportive partner. Just know that not everyone is supposed to want to marry you. You have Mr. Right and that is no small thing.
Post # 7
Gotta agree with Sunburn bee. You gave up all your power in that last relationship. You allowed yourself to get blown off multiple times and believed him when you should’ve trusted your gut and walked away early on. You, like the rest of us, learned a harsh, painful lesson. So that fiasco was just as much your fault as it was his. Own this and a lot of irrational fear goes away.
OWN your power bee. If you’ve truly learned from that experience then you should be confident that this won’t happen again because if he tries to blow you off or doesn’t stand by his word, you won’t stick around. First things first tho….
What does your gut say?
Edit: I just realized that I may have come off a bit harsh and that was NOT my intention! I hurt for you bee and I’m sorry you’re going through this as I get where you’re coming from. I’m just coming at this from a practical standpoint of trying to help solve a problem and support you as well. Sorry about that.
Post # 8
Ah bee. I’m sorry, this sucks and I do sympathise that feelings like this aren’t always in your control or rational. It’s easy for people sitting behind a screen, not experiencing your life, to tell you to pull yourself together. There are good reasons you feel this way, even if it’s not the fault of your current SO.
The signs of a proposal are overwhelming positive in your current relationship and he hasn’t defaulted on the agreed timeline, so in your position I wouldn’t keep pressing it.
It’s easier said that done, but try and take a deep breath here and reassure yourself that it’s looking good; and that absolutely WORST CASE scenario if it doesn’t happen this year you’ve only wasted two more months. You don’t have to wait years bee, you’re gonna know where you stand very soon and to be honest I don’t think you have anything to worry about.
Post # 9
Carob83 : This situation is totally different! That’s what you need to remind yourself. Before, you waited for 6 years, and allowed yourself to be treated that way. This time, it’s been two, and you’ve been open and upfront with establishing your needs in the relationship. You have a timeline in place. If it doesn’t happen when you agreed, you can leave. The power is in your hands, because you were confident in setting expectations and timelines. Now all you have to do is follow through if he doesn’t. But, all the signs are there, so I think you should relax and trust. It’s almost the end of the year!
Post # 10
Carob83 : it’s almost like a mild PTSD reaction I would imagine. Honestly given what you previously went through I’m surprised you were willing to move in again sans commitment! I sincerely hope this one comes through for you. It does sound promising.
Post # 11
Also…. Your ex married someone only six months after breaking up with you?!
Post # 12
Sorry for your rough experience. It’s pretty difficult to stop negative thoughts and doubts from going through your head, so instead of trying to stop them, label them for what they are. Tell yourself that everything your current boyfriend does and has done points to a winner who is not lying to you so the negative thoughts are lies caused by your past heartbreak. Don’t feel guilty about having these thoughts, but mentally call them out.
To someone who doesn’t know your previous pain, you appear practically engaged already as you’ve decided the engagement is going to happen by the end of the year and you’re planning to look at wedding venues. This is probably how your boyfriend sees it too, so remind yourself to enjoy this time and let him enjoy it too. If you don’t have to have a traditional proposal, you could propose yourself, but don’t do it out of fear, do it out of celebration. I guess my point is, don’t push him away or threaten a good thing by leaning into these anxieties. Instead acknowledge them, label them, and say I’m going to be vulnerable and enjoy this special time anyway.
Post # 13
You make a choice, Bee. There is no risk free relationship. It doesn’t exist. Your new man sounds wonderful and supportive. He could be run over by a bus tomorrow. Life is all about risk.
You do your best to minimize those risks, to the extent that you can. You avoid stepping in front of buses. You vet men that you date more thoroughly. That’s all that you can do.
All relationships are a leap of faith. You can choose to torment yourself over that which you cannot control. Or, you can take a deep breath and make the choice to trust.
ITA, about therapy. You are suffering far more than you necessary. Learn ways to stop torturing yourself, Bee.
Post # 14
Thank You so much for all comments, it is truly appreciated.
I will start and say that I am really not blaming my SO for anything, he’s been great – it’s why I’ve come on here, to seek some advice as I know that my thoughts are irrational and unfair and it’s totally on me..
A lot has changed vs my last relationship, other than being 10 years older from when I embarked on the last one, in the time since it’s ended I’ve effectively had to re-start my life with new friends, home, job – a lot has gone on. It has made me stronger on the whole and I consciously know that I do indeed have the power to walk away from my SO if he didn’t deliver on our timeline as I definitely wouldn’t be waiting 6 years again!
I did want to live with my SO before the committment as that’s culturally what is normal to me and what I’d prefer to do first by the way. I suppose each person is different on that front, and like others have already said – we’ve agreed that the engagement will happen so that’s perhaps the way I should see it more, kind of like an egagement already. It’s an interesting, positive take on the situation. So Thank You for that insight.
Despite feeling reassured and secure in my present relationship, there’s definitely part of me that harbours some strange feelings and irrational thoughts from the past which are strangely quite removed from my current situation and happiness, yet sometimes it crops up and affects my thoughts and behaviours presently which I try to keep a lid on as I know it’s down to me and I need to deal with it. It’s thoughts like sudden rushes of pure anger and stress about wasted time, fantasizing about giving my ex a massive piece of my mind (I was dignified in the break up but I found it hard not to let rip which might have stifled me being at peace ultimately) – I mean it’s 3 years ago, we’ve both moved on and I would never want to get back with my ex if it was ever on the cards as I know he was not a good match and not even comparable to what I have now, but I struggle with such powerful feelings of anger.
A couple of Bees suggested a therapist which I was considering for some time so I think I am going to explore this further, it’s not something that would come naturally to me (opening up in person to a stranger) but I feel I may benefit in order to finally be at peace with things and move forward with a person who truly makes me happy.
Post # 15
baileybagels : This is such exceptional advice on mindfulness. Thank You.