How to Manage Waiting for My Younger Man to Propose?

posted 2 years ago in Waiting
  • poll: Will he propose soon?
    By the end of this year : (2 votes)
    2 %
    Within the next 6 months : (5 votes)
    5 %
    Get a clue, he doesn't want to marry you : (44 votes)
    45 %
    Who knows! : (47 votes)
    48 %
  • Post # 31
    30 posts

    najadai :  If he’s anything like mine, deep down it really bothers them. He would make the occasional joke about having a sugar momma, but one night he had a little too much to drink and finally explained how hard it was for him. Felt like he wasn’t enough because he didn’t feel needed.

    Now that he is making more than me, he is doing all he can to pay for everything, and his demeanor has changed. He’s happier, but still complains that I own the house, and he has catching up to do. Sadly, it won’t be long and the roles will change again. But I’m doing all I can to make him feel needed until then, and things have gotten better for us. But trust me, trying to feel needy is not an easy task. lol

    Post # 33
    30 posts

    najadai :  I hear ya, and if I thought there was a better man for me out there, I’d have an answer for you because he wouldn’t require it.

    I found that by letting him feel like he’s making decisions has helped a bunch. I tell him about something I’m thinking of doing or buying, get him involved in the decision, and let him say that we should do it, even though I had already planned on doing it anyway. 😉  Sounds ignorant, and it can be time consuming, but me coming home with things I bought, or just doing things on my own would upset him because he wasn’t involved physically or financially. We also keep the majority of our money separate, with the exception of an account that we both deposit money into for bills. That way it isn’t “you pay this, I pay that”, to him it looks like WE are paying for them.

    Just two small ways to make him feel better, and to help our relationship. Doing this led me to really step back and realize just how much I was doing on my own, when it should’ve been us doing it to begin with. Try that and maybe some of his d-bag comments will subside as well. In the words of my bf, “learn to lose a little control, and share it”. I hope this is helpful!

    Post # 34
    2103 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: July 2018

    najadai :  I’m a strong feminist, with a master’s degree and a good career and my own home.  But your “indepedent woman, I don’t need no man, why does he need me to assuage his fragile male ego” thing seems off putting to me, so I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s offputting to him.  Like it or not, partners in a relationship need to feel wanted and needed and appreciated.  

    From what you’ve written, it’s pretty clear that your guy feels like another project that you are micromanaging.  I’m not sure what you should do about that, but I do think it’s important to recognize it.

    Post # 35
    200 posts
    Helper bee

    I don’t see buying a home or doing Reno work as suggesting that planning a wedding would just be another thing to keep busy. Those all sound like reasonable and productive things to do like any other hobby. Seems like a positive thing to always be working on some (good) project. I try to make sure I am so that I’m always improving myself and learning new things. 

    Post # 38
    2509 posts
    Sugar bee

    I’m a feminist who “don’t need a man,” and I made that abundantly clear to Fiance from the moment we first started dating. I let him know multiple times early on what would and would not work for me, and almost walked a few times (over issues other bee’s would probably deem silly, but which were important to me.)

    So I don’t really buy that that you need to “tone” yourself down. I mean. You need to be who you are – and you need to date and marry a man who’s compatible with who you are. 

    I had dated plenty of guys with “fragile male egos” before Fiance, and I purposefully laid my “I don’t need a man”ness on thick when dating him to try to suss out any incompatibilities in that area early on. 

    I WILL say, though, that I don’t do the micro-managing thing you seem to do. I think the combination may be what’s overpowering your dynamic?

    I make sure I’m vulnerable with Fiance frequently, he knows I rely on him for emotional support. He knows I think of us as a team, not as if I’m in charge or in the lead. And I think the fact that we feel like equals to him and that he feels needed within the relationship IS important to him. But I would argue that that’s not a part of “masculine fragility” – that’s just an aspect of being in a relationship. Everyone wants to feel needed and necessary. 

    I also think that his age is a cop out. I was 31 and Fiance was 27 when we started dating, and he had told his family we were going to get engaged and bought the stone by our 1-year anniversary. And we were engaged 8 months after that. 

    The relationship dynamic is paramount. If he felt like all his needs (even his need to feel needed and necessary) were met in his relationship with you, he would be jumping hurdles to marry you.

    Post # 39
    7910 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper

    You’re saying one thing but doing another. Based on your actions, you sound clingy and desperate, not strong and independent. His comment about you just wanting a new project doesn’t sound like something a supportive partner would say, but is there a grain of truth to the claim? I have no idea. 

    You can hope and wish all you want, but you can’t make him change his thinking, and you can’t make him marry you within your timeline. Really ask yourself if you two are truly compatible. You said you own your house. You can end it, have him move out, find yourself a better match. 

    Post # 40
    339 posts
    Helper bee

    It seems like he is a moocher.    You bought your own house, you decorated and did the renovations.   He is just living there thinking he owns the house.    Sorry but your guy sounds like a bit of a tosser.   Why would he want to marry you when he has a place to live for free and gets all that comes with a marriage without the commitment.  


    Post # 41
    77 posts
    Worker bee

    najadai :  I met my now husband when I was 28 years old and he was 23.  After a year of dating and falling in love, i told him that i want to have kids before i’m 35 and if he’s not ready to consider the age gap, that we better stop wasting each others time.  We had many happy years of dating, got engaged when i was 33, married at 34 and we are now trying for our first baby.  If he’s the right guy, compromise with each other and meet in the middle.  This is your life partner and the one who should matter to you most.

    Post # 42
    2199 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: October 2019 - Chateau Lake Louise

    najadai :  So, I’ll admit, my FH said literally the same thing to me about a “project”

    I’m driven. It’s hard for me not to have something I am planning, working toward, or focusing on. After we finished building our house, which was obviously all-consuming, I expected we would get engaged immediately. Because that’s what we’d talked about.

    When it didn’t happen right away I started to get upset. He wasn’t fussed at all. In his mind it was inevitable, and I was just being needlessly impatient. If we were going to be together forever, who cared about 6 months one way or another about proposing. I was looking forward to planning the wedding, and had lots of pent up energy I wanted to apply to the purpose, but it wasn’t just a project. It was what seemed to me to be the next logical step to plan for.

    When that didn’t happen, our previously conflict free relationship suddenly became constantly tense and prone to bickering. I was more or less always pissed at him. He didn’t take my frustration seriously, and he was irritated I was being so persistently unreasonable. Normally I’m super analytical and can intellectualize my emotions very effectively. That I just kept saying the same things and not being swayed by his very practical explanations bothered him a lot.

    So, I decided to approach the subject another way. We also have a bit of gender role reversal. He makes much more money than I do, but I am more independent and frankly, his intellectual superior. It makes him feel like I don’t need him. And, I don’t. Or, at least not in the sense that I can’t get along without him.

    What I have tried to impress upon him is that I need him to love me. To give me a shoulder to cry on. To always be on my side. To call me on my crap. To challenge me and make me laugh, and to be good at all the stuff I am terrible at. I point out to him how much I benefit from having him give me the things he does all the time. I don’t consider this pandering to his fragile man-feelings, but an earnest acknowledgement of all the things he gives me that I ABSOLUTELY need, to be as happy as he makes me. This has gone a long way toward making him feel that sense of interdependence that healthy relationships need.  

    Ultimately, I knew he would propose, because he said he would. I still got super emotional and upset unil it actually happened. Crying helped. Really. Because I’m not a cryer, and I finally let him see how truly hurt I felt not to have him make that commitment. It seemed to sink it at that point I really needed him to take it seriously and make a move. 

    I have no idea what your dynamic is with your boyfriend. It doesn’t seem like you’re ready to bail. So, approach the subject like you never have before. Write him a letter. Be as vulnerable as you can possibly be. Don’t try to provoke any particular response, but express the anxiety and fear in your heart. Let him know you need to feel needed, too. That knowing you have a future together will bring you a sense of peace and security you just can’t seem to feel without that knowledge.

    Then really listen to how he responds. Does he care you are anxious and unhappy? Is he annoyed you’re pressuring him? Does he really just want a little time off from talking about it? Take in whatever he says and really sit with it. Even if it isn’t what you want to hear. Then, decide how you want your life to look, thereafter. Is he in it? Can you wait and do you want to?

    Then, start another project. Write a book. Start learning to knit. Take up Tarot cards or yoga. Focus on something else so he doesn’t feel like the next task on your list. Do it for yourself, and let him see whether being a part of your life is a project he wants to sign up for, permanently.


    Post # 43
    2092 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: March 2017

    It sounds like he has it pretty good. He lives in your house. You do the renovations. I know he makes less than you. Is he an equal partner around the house? 

    The nagging, posting to Pinterest, and arguments won’t lead him to propose. I agree with PP that he had been clear with his timeline. It’s just not what you want to hear. I don’t think he’s going to do it in any less time than his plan.

    Post # 44
    657 posts
    Busy bee

    najadai :  Storytime: My Darling Husband dated a woman for +4 years before me and never proposed.  He kept putting her off and making excuses much like your bf.  She was a fantastic person so he stayed in the relationship, but was afraid to say he wasn’t willing to marry her just like the partners of plenty of waiting bees.  He kept hoping he could get over a couple of things that were deal breakers and he never could.

    When I started dating him, he was the one wanting clarifications on timelines and very upfront about wanting marriage and children.  Around our 1 year anniversary he asked for my ring preferences and a few months later proposed.  It wasn’t that he wasn’t mature enough to marry his ex or needed more time, it’s that she wasn’t the one even though she’s a wonderful woman.

    Based on what you’ve shared your bf definitely has doubts about your relationship having forever and always compatibility.  If he wanted to be engaged, you would already have a ring on your finger. Your age gap and/or him being 27 aren’t the problem.  He doesn’t feel the same way you do about the relationship and cares too much to be that blunt.  He may eventually be willing to overlook whatever is holding him back, but it’s doubtful IMO. 

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