Engaged, to the right man?

posted 1 year ago in Relationships
Post # 2
2321 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

I’m sorry bee, a lot of the things you listed were worrying, but I think the absolute dealbreaker for me here would be the difference in religious beliefs and not being able to agree on how to raise your kids. I don’t really see how you could get past that. 

I think if you really need to ask if you are engaged to the right person, you probably already have your answer. 

Post # 3
195 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

Everyone is different, but to me many of the things you listed would be dealbreakers. Especially the difference in religious and overall core beliefs. These issues would only become a bigger concern the longer you are together, ESPECIALLY if there are kids involved. To me, core beliefs are something couples should be in agreement on.
The phone thing also bothers me a lot. If my SO was on their phone during an entire concert I would be seriously annoyed- that’s just rude. Even when you’re spending time together, it’s a sign of disrespect if he’s constantly pulling away to check it.

Post # 4
2285 posts
Buzzing bee

What you said in the first part of your post doesn’t match the rest. You don’t doubt him, you know your lives together will be full of love and laughter… except for this, this, and that, and these other two huge issues, of course.

The religious, alcohol, and fitness issues are serious. Those traits of his may get more pronounced over time and as the children come. He’ll be the exact opposite of what you want before long, but he’s basically there already.

Frankly, I advise you to break up with him. It sounds like he’s going to be lazy, inattentive, and a conservative republican. I don’t think this is going to be a fulfilling marriage for you — I really don’t.

Post # 5
1405 posts
Bumble bee

So I see this list of things getting longer and longer as time goes on. I also think if you are asking the internet, you already know the answer….

Post # 6
493 posts
Helper bee

in my experience, very rarely have i broken up with someone over something that happened or that i discovered way way down the line. instead it was little things, that i noticed, that concerned me, that i ignored. and later came back to be big things.

no marriage will be perfect, and many people experience doubt at certain points, but ideally your values and life visions should align well.

Post # 7
122 posts
Blushing bee

My husband is a registered Republican, and I am a registered Democrat. Most of the time I find it strengthens both of us and it’s really stimulating and interesting being with him – sometimes I change his mind on things, and sometimes he changes my mind on things, and sometimes we discuss an issue and find we both feel even more strongly opposed than we did before. In any case, it has only ever bothered me or angered me a couple times. Definitely not a dealbreaker. We have different spiritual beliefs, as well – he’s a staunch atheist and I’m a ‘spiritual agnostic’. It doesn’t affect us that much but I know he thinks my beliefs are a little silly, and I think he’s being bull headed. Again, it’s not an issue. He also is SUPER fit and we used to run 5ks together, but I’ve gotten lazy lately and can barely run a mile. I know this frustrates him, but I am trying to get back in shape. We’re also trying to drink less together because we both have family problems with alcohol, and we have a tendency to drink a lot together. I’m saying all this because despite our differences in upbringing and beliefs, and our struggles, I have zero doubts that he’s the man for me. I love him with all my heart and even when we disagree, we’re civil and we know how to compromise – in terms of physical activities we do together, meals we cook together, and how we’re going to raise our kids and where we’ll live. If your fiancé can’t compromise with you, he’s not the guy for you. Talk to him about your concerns. Be kind, but honest. See where you land. You might be surprised!

ETA: I didn’t address the phone thing. That would drive me BANANAS. It sounds like he has some addictive tendencies. Have you guys discussed this? Maybe institute some structure around it, like a ‘no phone zone’ at meals or something?

Post # 8
2511 posts
Sugar bee

I’m sorry bee, but literally all of these would be dealbreakers for me.

The political party difference actually almost WAS a dealbreaker for me and Fiance. He was raised very Republican/conservative. I wasn’t raised any kind of way, but I am through and through liberal. This last presidential election almost broke us, as Fiance immediately trotted out the “well, let’s give him a try” line and I unleashed my wrath. We had our most serious, drawn-out argument over the next 3-4 days, until he finally relented and saw my side of things.

It was so serious and drawn out because I knew I couldn’t marry someone who prioritized money/finances over human dignity, rights, and welfare, and I told him so. I felt terrible because I didn’t want to try to change or control him, but I let him know that he needed to do some serious soul-searching and see if he couldn’t find reason to re-evaluate for himself – otherwise, I’d probably be ending the relationship.

No matter how much I love someone, that is just too fundamental of a difference for me to commit my life to them. 

Staying fit (as possible) and healthy is also a very strongly held belief of mine, and I couldn’t commit my life to someone who didn’t feel similarly. It’s not shallow to want your partner to take pride in their appearance, to be able to self-motivate to exercise, to care enough to stay on your level with you. Just as I knew I needed a partner who values quality time over work ambition, I also know I need someone who will join me in trying to stay as healthy and fit as possibly (together) for as long as possible. 

The religion thing… just no. It’s great that you don’t mock your SO for his beliefs, but you are clearly uncomfortable with the idea of raising your children in religious classes, and you’re being forced to contemplate it anyways because of your SO’s beliefs. 

It sounds like YOU are the one always being forced to compromise your own beliefs and values.

If staying fit is so important to YOU, why isn’t HE making an effort to meet you half way? If raising your children in a secular fashion is important to YOU, why isn’t HE willing to discuss doing so for your sake? 

I feel like he is taking advantage of your seemingly compliant nature. I feel like you guys are very incompatible in very serious areas, and you are being forced, over and over again, to draw the short straw. 

Post # 9
670 posts
Busy bee

My fiance and I are flipped in the relationship from you and yours. I am a conservative who works in the political arena and has very strong beliefs. My fiance is moderate, but leans more liberal. He’s also not as “into” it as I am– ie didn’t vote in the recent municipal elections because he didn’t care to learn about the issues in the short time after we got our ballots.

There have been a few difficult times where it would have been really nice to have someone at home who fully agrees with what I believe and makes me feel justified in my beliefs because he agrees. However, most of the time, I really like talking with him and seeing his side, and showing him mine. And it’s great when we can come to a middle ground where we agree (such as both voting 3rd party rather than for candidates we both equally couldn’t stand). I think what helps us also in this arena beside the fact that we are both open to talking and learning, is that I am of the mindset that he isn’t going to fulfill me in every aspect of my life. I have colleagues, friends, and family to talk politics with and get back validating responses, I don’t need that from him as well.

Based on the other things that you brought up, I think you have already made your decision.

Post # 10
654 posts
Busy bee

It sounds like you probably would be best apart. Not that one is good and the other bad; just not right together. I’m pretty set in my religious beliefs, and it would be an absolute deal breaker if my partner wasn’t. It’s SUCH a huge deal to me. The political beliefs would bug me, too, and I can’t imagine if my husband had opposite beliefs as me. It doesn’t sound like he’s “lazy, taking advantage of you,” etc. to me as others have said. It just sounds like he’s not right for you. It’s fine to be republican or democratic; it’s fine if he doesn’t want to work out; it’s fine if he wants his kids raised in church like he was. What’s not fine is to be so different that it gets in the way of your affection for him. If it bugs you now it will bug you later. Better to end it now before you say I do, because breaking off an engagement is a heck of a lot easier than divorcing. However, if you can live with the differences and be at peace and happy still, then go for it. It sounds like you love him. But it’s not fair to either of you if you can’t get past these differences happily. 

Post # 11
2843 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

@anon2bornot2b : eek.

1. As the daughter of an alcoholic the drinking thing would put me off marriage immediately. I will NOT be tethered to an addict. Especially a substance addict. It would trigger me so badly I would lose my shit regularly and frequently. I would never ever have children with an addict either. So i could DATE heavy drinkers (I remember two in particular, the sex was good), but I could never consider them for the role of life partner. Im not saying your Fiance is an alcoholic btw, but if the way he drinks makes you nervous…that’s enough of a trigger for me to heavily reconsider signing up for a lifetime of worrying.

2. Republican vs Democrat. It depends. Is he a fiscal conservative but social liberal? Are you a social and fiscal liberal? That’s a reconcilable difference in my POV. Social issues though…if he’s heavily pro-life/anti gay marriage/anti helping the disenfranchised/etc and you’re staunchly pro-choice/pro gay marriage/pro government help/etc – the fundamental differences are too big In My Humble Opinion. If he’s a serious supporter of this administration and you’re not – fundamental difference. Both of you would have to be incredibly respectful of each other’s POV and incredibly mature (think ‘you levitate you’re so evolved’ levels) to not feel like “WHO am I with?!?!” when these issues crept up. And they DO creep up.

3. Religion. This aspect in relationships has been shown to increase in importance as we age. If he envisions being involved socially in his church, attend regularly, tithe (or more), bring his children up with the same principles, etc and any of that seems weird to you then you will feel the burn with the passage of time. Are you willing to make your children believe they are sinners at birth? Do you believe babies are stained by the Original Sin? Do you believe that you are “saved” ONLY thru the grace of Christ? Will you be ok with teaching your children that they MUST be saved? I’m just throwing these questions out there off the top of my head to give you an idea of how this would play a part of your near future.

The fact that he’s a binge drinker, conservative, religious Republican is just a fact. It is neither good nor bad. The fact you’re not those things is neither good nor bad – it’s just a fact.

Me? He binge drinks? I can be with you if the sex is good and it’s not a deep relationship. Permanently? Never. Byeeeee. He feels more at home with socially conservative values? Not for me. Boy bye. He’s religious and would like his children to be so too? God no! (Hehe)

You, however, have been with him for a while. Enough time to get engaged! Therefore his values are probably not so abhorrent to you. Do you want a lifetime of this?

@duchessgummybunns: yep, everything she said.

Post # 12
1898 posts
Buzzing bee

I don’t think this is a good relationship to be bringing children into. They would be constantly confused as to what they should believe- and it sounds like he would not be open-minded enough to let them choose for themselves. Politics or religion.

Next time he’s on his phone after commenting “I need to get back in shape” you should ask him if he’s googling exercise routines lol the pounds won’t melt off by themselves! The phone thing is so disrespectful, he sounds addicted. Don’t marry him.

Post # 13
821 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2017

anon2bornot2b :  I don’t really know what to say about this. Choosing a life with someone who you do not share beliefs with will ultimately lead to some tension. I’m a passionate person about my beliefs. Having a partner be on the opposite spectrum as me would be a deal breaker. You’ve only been together two years. Maybe you need to pump the breaks a bit on things until you can figure out your doubts. A marriage together will be about compromise but from the sounds of it he seems pretty set in, “my way is the only way.” The last thing you need is a life with someone who thinks you’re wrong and have weak morals.

Post # 14
2015 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

The phone thing would drive me nuts. It is inconsiderate! I admit I’m on my phone a lot (like right now, lol). However, Darling Husband and I have an agreement to not get on our phones when we are out together. I think it is rude to be out at a meal or something and just stare at a phone. It sounds like he is not listening to you when you express your needs. 

The Republican/Democrat thing isn’t a huge problem to me because Darling Husband and I are are also different politically. He also loves politics, and I don’t like talking about it. It’s no big deal because we have so many other things in common.

The disagreement on religion is a huge deal since you fundamentally disagree on how to raise kids. This isn’t just a little disagreement—this is a fundamental difference in the two of you.

It sounds like you have listed a lot of major differences. Maybe it is time to leave this relationship?

Post # 15
2203 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Political differences aren’t always bad. I think if they’re to the point it makes it hard to have conversations about how you feel vs how he feels and there’s belittling or negative talk to each other because you believe differently, it’s not okay.

My husband is a recovering alcoholic. This part of our marriage has been SO HARD. If it makes you nervous, you’ve voiced your concerns and he dismisses them, red flag. 

Religion. Both my husband and I are religious. If one of us wasn’t but the other was very much into their faith and wanted to make our kids follow suit, I know the other would feel very uncomfortable. You’d be enforcing something you don’t believe in upon your children and you will grow to resent that. 

It sounds like there are too many things that you two don’t agree on and while you may have never had blow out fights or anything, these differences can build up over time and resentment may build. You’re not married yet. While engaged, you can still break things off if you feel in your heart this isn’t going to be what you want in the long term.

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