@Stranger516: Hi Stranger,
I haven’t responded yet on your post but I’ll offer up my story/advice.
My situation: SO is the same as yours–Wants to finish school, then get a good job, house, and THEN we will get married, kids etc. We have not dated as long as you but we did meet later in life (27), and we have been dating 3.5 years. SO was supposed to finish his PhD Dec of 2012, and then every single semester after that and we *think* it’s going to be April of 2014 but I would not be surprised at all if it was not as that is how things go for his research.
I was bitter and angry about a year ago when I first came to this site. SO talked about marriage a lot, we’ve decided we wanted to be together–and once it became clear that he wasn’t going to graduate in Dec of 2012, and that there was no ‘real’ graduation date…coupled with the ‘idea’ of not being married or even engaged by 30, I lost my shit, I had a hard time coming to terms with my expectations vs. my reality.
How can you feel less bitter and angry when you see others getting married?!?
1) Stop comparing yourself and your relationship to others (easier said than done, I know, but if you guy is the right one for you, it’ll happen when the time is right).
2) Meditate as much as possible. Get some books on it, learn how to focus on NOTHING at all.
3) Focus on yourself and realize that you can ONLY control you. You can go back to school yourself, take some self development classes, go shopping, focus on making more friends and building stronger relationships. You cannot control when your SO will want to get married–but you CAN control every other part of your life.
4) Try keeping a gratitude journal. I found that once I started focusing on what I do have (great guy, wonderful life we share together), I focused less on what I didn’t have.
Hope theese ideas helped. Hang in there!