- 10 months ago
Happy Holiday Bees!
My SO (let’s call him Joe) and I have been together for two years. I am 28, and he is 34. He is American, and I’m not.
In January of 2015, we went ring shopping and again in February. He took the lead on planning; we don’t even have engagement rings in my country!
He said he would propose at the end of Q1 or the beginning of Q2 (i.e., March or April). April came around and NADA. My mother asked when she should plan to host the engagement party (my family lives abroad and most wouldn’t be able to attend a wedding in the US, so Joe and I had talked about having the engagement party in May at my home).
I asked Joe where we were, and he said we would have to call off the party. The engagement wasn’t going to happen by May. I asked him when he would be ready, and he said June. June rolled by and NADA.
He had known from the beginning that I wouldn’t live with him unless we were engaged. He said he would definitely propose before my lease was up in July. Well he didn’t, and I renewed my lease.
In the meantime, I became depressed and started antidepressants.
“I love you very much, but I feel jammed.” That’s what he would say whenever I asked why he was delaying: I feel jammed. Now, this made little sense to me being that HE was the one that set the timeline, HE was the one who decided to take me ring shopping. There are no financial obstacles. He’s an investment banker.
Not only did I feel like I couldn’t trust Joe, but I was also becoming extremely concerned about my future in the US (I’m on a temporary visa). I told him that I could wait but not forever, that when November rolled around, I would have to start rethinking the relationship.
“I’ll definitely be ready to propose by then,” he said.
In August, it became clear to me that the man I was with was not the man I met. As someone who had been battling depression, I recognized his symptoms and got him help. Within a month of starting medication, he was back to his normal self. I still believed there was a chance he might keep his promise.
November came. NADA.
I broke up with him, but we got back together ~1 week later. He was recovering from depression after all, and it felt unfair to ask this of him during that difficult time.
Since then, we have met with an immigration lawyer and now have more clarity regarding our options. I think he now fully understands the seriousness of the issue. Either he proposes, or I have to leave the country.
He hasn’t set a deadline this time. Merely that it will happen “soon.” I love him so much, and I WANT to believe him, but I feel like an idiot. I feel like he’s leading me on. This past year has been very disempowering; I feel like I have no agency over my future.
What should I do?