(Closed) How common are broken engagements?

posted 8 months ago in Engagement
Post # 2
2584 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2017

sarandah :  I don’t know a single couple in real life that called off an engagement. 

Post # 3
9540 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

I don’t know anyone who has broken off an engagement. I do know one couple where it was brought up that they might call it off. They were having a lot of arguments/trouble communicating. They ended up doing pre-marital counseling that resolved the issues they were having and the wedding is still on.

I don’t think that just because an engagement was called off it means the people involved didn’t take the engagement or commitment seriously. Life happens. Sometimes, when the idea of forever is more real problems become highlighted, people realize they aren’t happy any more, sometimes there’s cheating, there can be a million reasons to call off an engagement.

I actually think that calling off an engagement shows that you view marriage as a very serious commitment and value that. It takes a lot of courage to call off an engagement. It’s a very public thing and I see posts here frequently with people knowing something wasn’t right during the engagement but they didn’t want the embarrassment of calling off the engagement and are now in a crappy marriage pondering divorce. So I would never look down on someone who called off an engagement because I think it’s a very hard thing to do but ultimately probably the right call 99 out of 100 times rather than pushing down doubts/concerns and getting married then wanting a divorce later which is going to be more costly/complicated.

Post # 4
8770 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

sarandah :  What’s not to get? There’s a reason why married is a legal status and engaged isn’t. They aren’t the same. If during your engagment you discover ANY reason why you should not take that legal (and often religious) next step, then breaking off the engagement is the right thing to do. It’s absurdly foolish to say “well, we found out this thing that we’re not happy with but we’re engaged so I guess we’ll just have to live miserably for the rest of our lives.” Dumb.

Post # 5
702 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2020

Honestly, I think broken engagements are a good thing. If you are having that many issues before marriage, why in the world would you committ yourself to that person in a much more binding and complicated way? Engagements are an agreement to get married, yes, but if in that time you realize this person isn’t the one for you, by all means back out now for both of your sakes.

Being engaged also causes you to look at your relationship with a more critical eye. Suddenly you might notice red flags or start to get a feeling in your gut that this may not be the right person for you down the line. Those are all good things to realize too. Obviously ideally this would be realized in the dating stage, but some people get swept up in the excitement of it all.

And to answer your question, no, I don’t know anyone who has broken off an engagement. But I do know someone who got divorced within a year. They probably had issues before that they should have listened to.

Post # 6
5189 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: July 2018

I don’t think it’s all that common, I don’t know a single couple who have broken an engagement.

I don’t really understand the point of your post, so you not agree with divorce either? You just come off as super judgemental.

Just because a couple chose to end their engagement doesn’t mean they didn’t take the commitment seriously at the time. Are you suggesting they should continue on and go through with a marriage ceremony even if they aren’t sure about the commitment?

Post # 7
2917 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

My bil called off his engagement due to his fiancé cheating on him last year, I know of two others who called theirs off this year but not sure of the reason.

with all three of these couples the called off their engagements and weddings, like they broke up right before the weddings were to happen. 

sarandah :  

Post # 8
1670 posts
Bumble bee

Sometimes things take a turn for the worse once you’re engaged. A partner who was on their best behavior prior to the engagement might stop trying and let their the colors show. In laws who tolerated you because they thought you were temporary might start raising a fuss. And the process of planning a wedding together might show parts of someone’s personality you hadn’t witnessed before. 

If you take the commitment of marriage seriously, these developments will make you pause, and for some make you realize the match is not a good match. 

Post # 9
573 posts
Busy bee

I don’t know anyone who has called off an engagement. 

Post # 10
3754 posts
Honey bee

I ended an engagement after 3 years with my ex. I had felt pressured into getting engaged by my ex-fiance. It happened long before I was mentally ready to commit to one person. After we got engaged he had pressured me into getting married, but at least I had some brains in my head and didn’t give in to that. 

There are lots of reasons to end an engagement. You need some empathy if you find this difficult to understand. 

Post # 11
853 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: City, State

With divorce and infidelity rates as high as they are, I think MORE engaged couples should break up, not fewer.

Most of my divorced friends claim they saw the issues that eventually broke their marriages before they walked down the aisle. 


Post # 12
64 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2019 - Huntsville, AL

I have personally called off an engagment and have known other couples who did. When I called off my engagement our relationship was rocky and the engagment didn’t fix it. It also didn’t help that we were young and immature. Other couples that I knew that called theirs off were also young, 18-22 age range. Couples that didn’t, but waffled, generally divorced within 2 years.

If a relationship isn’t going to work, it’s better to call it off – because problems do not get magically fixed with marriage.

Post # 13
1984 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016 - Sussex, UK

Two of my friends broke off their engagements. Very similar circumstances; they’d been with their boyfriends for over 5 years and felt marriage was the next step. Neither had planned any wedding stuff though. No abuse, cheating etc just realising they’d grown apart and it was good they realised before they actually married. I’ve never known anyone to call off a wedding though.

Post # 14
5192 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2017

I have an ex fiancé. He moved cross country for school and about 6 months into the move he proposed. Then we grew apart, I had started therapy on my own in our home state and he started a new life across the country.

I think he proposed just to show that our relationship was serious, I don’t think he ever intended to marry me

He never wanted to talk about wedding plans, we never set a date, I couldn’t get him to commit to a wedding year.

I bought a wedding dress a year after we got engaged, and that was the end of it. The purchase exposed the things in our relationship that I desperately didn’t want to accept or see, and we broke up a few months later

Post # 15
886 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

I know two couples who have called off engagements. One eventually got back together and got married a few years later. The other hasn’t spoken since. 

It is much easier to end an engagement than it is to end a marriage. So many times on the bee I’m thinking “why did you marry this loser?” I wish more people would take marriage seriously and end the engagement if there are red flags. 

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