Post # 1
My wedding is in about 3 months, and my fiancé and I have been together for 5 years. We have lived in different states for the past 12 months because he graduated and took a job in Florida while I stayed in our home state to finish my degree. In general, the distance has been tough, but it’s bearable as he has been coming back every so often to do our marriage prep classes with our church.
All of the sudden, he shut down and hasn’t talked to me in several days. He did end up telling me the other day that he wants space, but said nothing else. He has a tendency to shut down and shut me (and everyone else) out when he’s going through something, but he has never completely ignored me for several days.
I feel confused and hurt, especially considering the timing of things. I’m going to be finished with my degree in literally 2 weeks, and we had plans for me to move into his place by the end of August. Even if his reason for space has nothing to do with me, I feel hurt that after 5 years of being together and 3 months before our wedding, he won’t even communicate the gist of why he’s shutting down. I want to give him space, and I agreed to do so, but the selfish part of me can’t help but think that I don’t deserve this. Is whatever he is feeling really so bad that he can’t simply tell me he loves me? We have been talking for weeks about how excited we are for me to be done with my degree, which admittedly has made me stressed out the past few months. Why, now that we’ve finally made it through a year of distance, does he do this?
My thoughts have just been running rampant, and I’m not only anxious of losing him, but also of having to tell all my family that it’s over (my wedding shower is in 2 weeks, and a lot of family members have already paid for certain parts of our wedding). How long do I give him space before I tell everyone that the shower is off and tell the priest that we no longer need to prep for marriage?
I apologize for the length, but I could really use some advice right now.
Post # 2
That is unacceptable. He needs to be a grown up and tell you what is going on.
Post # 3
How long does he tends to shut down for?
This habit of his isn’t fair to you and I’m surprised you have put up with it in the past. I’d schedule an emergency couples counseling session asap and have a conversation with the priest about this, as a couple.
Post # 4
im Sorry you’re going through this, but this is a huge red flag. It is so unfair for you to have to just sit around waiting and wondering when he’s going to talk to you. This is not how adults act in relationships.
Marriage isn’t going to be pleasant all of the time, and shutting down when you guys hit a rough patch is unacceptable.
I don’t want to rush to say you should call it off, but this is definitely something that needs to be addressed and fixed before you marry this man. Perhaps your priest doing the counseling could help, or a therapist.
Post # 5
So…He needs more space than entire an state (or more) away? Because how much more space does one need before changing continents?
I’m not opposed to giving space – provided I receive an explanation (ex. grieving the death of a family member, lost a promotion and wants to wallow in self-pity for a day) and a timeframe. People who claim to be committed don’t just get to ghost their loved ones indefinitely with zero respect for their life plans – it doesn’t matter if that is their “process”. At a certain point you have to grow up, stop being self-centered, and recognize that.
So honestly, I would ask for a reason and a timeframe and tell him if he is unable to provide either if those things, then the wedding will be postponed indefinitely. I personally would refuse to continue with a marriage where my partner refuses to communicate even the basics of common courtesy to me until he learns how to work through his sh*t without ghosting for days on end. What happens when he needs space if you have kids? He just going to ghost you and the kids with no explanation?
Post # 6
rxdnce3 : this is not a pattern of behavior that’s going to end once you’re married. This is only the preview of what the rest of your life with this guy will look like.
Post # 7
rxdnce3 : “Even if his reason for space has nothing to do with me” — I’m sorry to say it sweetie, but I think it probably does have to do with you. Or at least, with the idea of marriage. 3 months out and suddenly for no reason, he’s gone off radar for several days? I would ask him “Do I need to cancel the wedding? If I don’t hear from you within [4/8/24] hours I’ll take that as a yes.”
I’m really sad for you. You must be so confused and hurt. I hope he talks to you soon.
Post # 8
rxdnce3 : It sounds like, now that it is down to the wire, your Fiance is having second thoughts. You can’t force him to be mature or to communicate with you. And the fact that he won’t tell you probably means that he doesn’t want to discuss things until he is sure one way or the other. I would start creating a mental and financial plan for the potential that he calls the wedding off, including reimbursement for things that your family paid for that are direct wedding expenses. He will be breaching that contract and should be (I believe) finacially responsible for the costs associated with that.
Prepare for the worst, Bee. Just in case, prepare to have a cancelled wedding and no Fiance.
Post # 9
Daisy_Mae : I agree with this completely. give him a timeframe to tell you what’s going on otherwise you would consider this to do with the wedding and that he does not intend to proceed with the wedding.
Complete shut down for anything more than a few hours (say if you just need time to calm down and think) without communicating what it’s about is unacceptable, and you think correctly – you don’t deserve this.
I suspect he may have met someone else in his year away.
Post # 10
My fiance is the shut down and keep to himself type as well when he is processing emotions, stress, etc. But he respects me enough to tell me what’s going on before shutting himself up in his office or our room, and he has never outright ignored me even for one evening, let alone days.
This isn’t an issue of him having a different way of dealing with emotionsbthan you, this is a fundamental lack of respect and consideration for how his actions impact you. That does not make for a good foundation for a healthy relationship, let alone marriage. You’re supposed to be a team and you’re supposed to put one another first, always. He’s not doing that and it is extremely unfair to you.
Post # 11
Daisy_Mae : exactly!
missyjz : yes, someone else!
Sorry rxdnce3 : It doesn’t bode well. I would put the brakes on the wedding.
Post # 12
- Wedding: October 2020 - New York, New York
Marriage is about considering someone else’s needs along with your own. So, even if this is how he naturally handles things, he should realize that the radio silence is giving you anxiety and reach out in order to make you feel better.
What if you’re going through a difficult time and you need him, and he just bails? Your post doesn’t suggest that he’ll be there for you and support you as your husband. If it were me, I would delay the marriage and work on the relationship (or leave if he’s not willing to improve).
Post # 13
Get a back up plan together, it doesn’t sound like he’s ready to move in and get married.
And you’re right, you DO deserve better.
Post # 14
I’m really sorry, and I hope this is just a temporary freak out that he wants to work out on his own before involving you (I understand, of course, that this method of dealing with it is causing you even more anxiety, but maybe he truly doesn’t realize this)- however, I think you need to prepare yourself for the worst, as other posters recommended.
The fact that this shut down has lasted longer than normal, with no end in sight, to me indicates he is possibly looking to leave this relationship, and is avoiding you because he lacks the courage to tell you, but also can’t bear to go along with wedding and move in talk, knowing it’s not actually going to happen. I’m so sorry. I hope I am wrong.
Post # 15
I really hope the other Bees are wrong, but you need to get an answer out of him ASAP. I second the strategy of giving him a timeline to call you back otherwise you will assume the wedding is off.
If he still wants to move forward with the wedding, I would really put a lot of consideration into it over the next 3 months. Communication is a huge part of a successful marriage. If you can’t communicate, you can’t get through almost all of the common stressors in a marriage.