(Closed) How to bring up the topic of a timeline when it's been discussed a few times?

posted 4 years ago in Waiting
Post # 2
28 posts

I’ve had similar conversations with my SO and I find that I always get the best reaction from him when I come at the situation from a place of simple curiosity, rather than desperation or anger (if that makes sense.)

I think it all depends on how badly you feel you need an answer. If you’re content knowing it’s somewhere down the line and you can figure out the logistics later, I would say leave it be for now. But if you’re spending most of your time trying to figure it out and wondering about it, it never hurts to bring it up in a quiet moment and ask. I think if you’re super gentle and laid back and let him know that you’re not looking for an exact date, but you’re wondering how far off your SO thinks it will be, there’s nothing wrong with that! If he tries to give you a vague answer again, you can always laugh and say something like “That doesn’t give me much to work with!” or something like that. I think mot of the time, our SOs are willing to talk about this stuff with us if we aren’t coming off as aggressive or pushy. Hope that helps! 

Post # 3
2236 posts
Buzzing bee

It’s not needy to be an active participant in planning your own future. I think I have already written that sentence like 100 times here, and I will keep writing it for as long as I’m here, I guess. 

If you care about yourself, and you care about your future, and you care about being compatible with the person you are with, and you want to have a future with them, it is a rational and smart thing to do to ensure you are on the same page. 

Screw the paternalistic, patriarchal viewpoint that us little wimmin need to sit down and shut up when it comes to the question of who and when we are to marry. Just screw every single part of it. 

Let him know you have something important you’d like to discuss, and ask him when he’ll have the headspace for that important discussion. Whenever that is, sit down with him and let him know that you want a future with him, and you want to ensure you two can communicate openly and honestly about your future together. And for you, that communication should start now, regarding the timing each of you feels comfortable with. 

If he requests a few days to figure out what he wants, fine. But you should be able to agree on some sort of general timeline within a few days of opening that line of communication.

Red flags:

– He tells you his need to surprise you trumps YOUR need to know what your future holds.

– He stonewalls you.

– He gaslights you by using words like “needy, “pushy,” “nagging,” etc.

– He refuses to recognize your own agency in your own future by insisting that you should just “trust” him. 

– He petulantly claims you’re ruining his surprise.

– He puts you off with a laundry list of things that need to happen first. 

Post # 5
1364 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2020

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duchessgummybunns :  This needs to be permanently stickied to the waiting and relationship boards! Completely perfect.

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fairydust91 :  Since it’s far off, you can wait to bring it up or you can bring it up now. Either way, I don’t see it making too much of a difference. As long as you approach in a curious, dreaming of future type way, you’ll be fine. It doesn’t hurt to get a better sense of what he’s thinking.

Best of luck!

Post # 6
1668 posts
Bumble bee

my mother would always use “soon” and “later” as ways to put off conversations inevitably- then after we snapped and demanded answers she’d use the fight as a reason to shut it down with an official No. So basically she just wasted our time with passive aggressive bullcrap. I demand estimated numbers in life now- your time is valuable and you deserve not to be left hanging. Just tell him you need specifics.

Post # 7
150 posts
Blushing bee

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fairydust91 :  DO NOT WAIT ANOTHER YEAR. Tell this Bozo directly how you feel. If this person is an adult this person can have an adult conversation. I think it is reasonable to say. I need to talk to you. I know you do not like time-lines however we are both getting older. I do not want to waste my time. Your lack of verbal communication about this subject has made me feel like I have to bring this up. I want to be engaged before our 4th anniversary. I am just telling you what I want. If I am not engaged by then I don’t know if I will feel like I want to wait any longer and put more time into something that is not really going towards marriage. It is unfair to me because I want to be married. Tell him to be direct and say what he thinks. If he is serious about you he will agree to something. If he says oh someday or something way off in the distance move on. I went out with a guy for 6 years who never proposed to me. I wish I could have gotten back that time everyday and just been single. Do not waste your time to someone who will not commit or even talk about it. I am now married. I met someone who was a nice a guy that wanted to commit.

Post # 8
7268 posts
Busy Beekeeper

Duchessgummybunns said it all. I would only add that if your SO is freaked out and put off by the mere mention of this topic, then that kinda tells you all you need to know? And it’s way bettter to know that now than avoid the topic for another however many months cause you’re afraid of getting exactly this reaction. You just need to put your big girl panties on and level with him. Tell him where you would like the relationship to go in the next x months, ask him what he wants, and see if you can meet in the middle (without compromising too much). If not, NEXT!

I would also not hesitate to call him on his bullshit about “I can’t wait to grow old with you!” if he is anything other than excited to plan an engagement in the very near future. If I had a dime for every dude that waxed eloquent about a hypothetical wedding and what to name future children “one day,” yet suddenly felt “pressured” when a real, concrete discussion about the future came up, I would be a wealthy lady.

Post # 9
832 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

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fairydust91 :  You posted this exact same thing 2 days ago . . .

Post # 10
89 posts
Worker bee

Him giving you vague nonanswers and not providing any concrete timeline, or agreeing with your 3 year timeline, is concerning. I hate to say it, but dutchessgummy and tiffanybruiser are right. How old are you two? If he’s talking about owning a house together, he should be more than willing to discuss an engagement. That annoys the crap out of me about men! Some are so quick to combine households, property, possessions & finances as if it’s no big deal but then they are so hesitant to talk about engagement/marriage. Absurd. 

Post # 14
2236 posts
Buzzing bee

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littlesoldier2018 : Thank you!  I remember feeling particularly frustrated when typing out this one. So glad boards like this exist so that women who are scared to stand up for themselves in these types of situations can get a good re-education!

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fairydust91 :  I missed your update back when you made it – glad to hear it went well and that you have a timeline! Our timeline was about a year out, and it was the best year ever!

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