- 2 months ago
First off, I realize this is all going to sound really bad so I am going anonymous. I am ashamed of my situation, however it is weighing on me so heavily that I don’t know where else to turn. I can’t sleep at night. Fair warning, this is likely going to be long. I feel the need to start from the beginning in order to include all relevant background info. Here we go…
I am a 27 year old woman who got engaged last year. My fiance is 29. We’ll call him Steve. Steve and I met at the age of 21 and 19 respectively. I met him when I was a college freshman and he was a brand new transfer student. Since we were both new in town and far away from the comforts of home, I believe we were able to relate to each other in that regard and find comfort in each other. Essentially, we were convenient for each other. Now looking back on it, I never had that head over heels in love feeling with Steve. The sound of his name never made my heart flutter. I never knew how it felt to be truly madly in love and thus I didn’t know how it was supposed to feel. I loved him as a friend and as a person and with him being my first real relationship, I thought that was enough and I was content at the time.
However, about two years into our relationship, things changed drastically when Steve cheated on me. This is the event that I refer to as the beginning of the end. This wasn’t just some random hook up at the club. He met this woman at work (we’ll call her Sarah) and actively courted her while he was still dating me. I suppose once things started getting more hot and heavy between Steve and Sarah, he decided that he would rather be with her so he broke up with me to be with her exclusively. This being my first real heartbreak, I was DEVASTATED. I feel like that experience fundamentally changed something in me permanently. Then a few days after Steve broke up with me for Sarah, he came begging back for me claiming that he made a huge mistake (I guess the grass ain’t always greener). Me being so heartbroken and desperate to have him back, I agreed to try to reconcile.
This ended up being a huge mistake, as the next three years would be an emotional roller coaster of Steve going back and forth between me and Sarah, breaking up with me constantly only to beg for me back again over and over. It was so confusing and hurtful and I fear that I am still harboring resentment towards him for it to this day. In case anyone is lost, here is the timeline of events so far: My fiance and I met in 2011, he met Sarah in 2013, and up until 2016, I was still finding messages between the two of them. Needless to say, even though I stupidly kept forgiving him, most of the trust and respect I had for him was gone.
Fast forward to the beginning of 2018 and Steve and I were still dating (exclusively as far as I knew…) and we were starting to get to that age where all of our friends were getting married and having babies. Needless to say, as a 26 year old woman at the time, I started feeling the pressure. But it wasn’t until one of my family members who is the same age as me got engaged that I really started to resent Steve and feel pressure to marry. At this point, I had been with Steve on and off for about 7 years and I knew couples who had been together for a shorter time and were getting married before us. I was getting fed up and I was starting to feel a lot of resentment and a real lack of commitment towards him.
Around March of 2018, I randomly met a man while out and about running errands. We’ll call him Danny. Danny wanted my number and I gave it to him. All of Steve’s cheating left me with zero motivation to be faithful to him. Danny and I started getting to know each other and I realized we had a lot in common – a lot more than I have in common with Steve. I was honestly captivated by Danny and within a couple weeks of us meeting, I decided to break up with Steve. My thought process was that we had been together for 7 years and no proposal. I wanted to move on with my life while I was still somewhat young enough to find a man who actually would marry me. On top of that, Steve had cheated on me repeatedly so I felt no real loyalty towards him. My parents were even starting to look at Steve funny for not proposing to me after so long and it just became an overall uncomfortable situation.
Despite all of this, my family was still against me leaving Steve. They had no idea about his cheating and they’d known him for so long and were comfortable with him. They thought we were good together. After I broke up with Steve, he ended up getting a new job in the town where my parents live and relocated there by himself. He started spending a lot of time with my family (without me, as I was still away at school). We ended up trying to work things out and then he proposed to me on my birthday as a surprise. My whole family knew about it beforehand and they were all involved in the proposal and all SO EXCITED about the wedding and us getting married. This was in October of 2018 and ever since then, life has felt like a whirlwind. I felt that I had no choice but to say yes to his proposal. Everyone was so excited for us. I wanted to put off the wedding until sometime in 2020, but Steve was eager to get hitched ASAP. I didn’t understand his rush at all. I felt like I was practically begging him to get engaged for the first 6 years of our relationship to no avail, but the moment I try to leave HIM for once, all of a sudden he wants to propose.
Don’t get me wrong, part of me was thrilled about getting engaged. But I feel like I was thrilled for the wrong reasons. The rush of being able to show off my ring, the societal validation of getting chosen and becoming a wife, the fun of wedding planning and dress shopping – these were the things that have been at the forefront of my mind. But the thought of actually spending the rest of my life with Steve gives me serious anxiety. I feel that I am no longer in love with Steve. I still think about Danny regularly. I am at the point now that everything Steve does annoys me. He is a nice enough guy, but he is the most boring man on the planet. Never talks, never has anything interesting to say. He’s socially awkward and painfully shy. Barely gives me attention. All he ever wants to do is sit on the couch, eat, and watch sports. Even the way he walks and chews his food is annoying to me now. Danny is the complete opposite… fun, exciting, spontaneous, outgoing, and I have a physical attraction to him that I never did with Steve.
Now we are quickly approaching our wedding date in July and I have so much anxiety about it. The save the dates have already been sent (big mistake! I wish we didn’t!!) People have started making travel arrangements. Venue, food, cake, photographer, flowers, gown, music, officiant are all paid for. My friends and family are all SO excited and I don’t know what to do! I just want to run away!!! I don’t want to marry Steve, but I feel like everything just happened so fast and I can’t get out of it now. I really feel trapped and it scares me. I always had a feeling he wasn’t the one, but I don’t know how to get out of this now. I don’t think I could handle the humiliation of cancelling a wedding, but is the humiliation of divorcing after less than a year any better? I will look like a joke, especially if I end up wanting to get married again to someone else. I feel like no one will ever take me seriously after this, but they don’t understand the complexity of the situation. I am so lost and it’s causing me depression. Ultimately I feel like we are getting married for completely the wrong reasons. I feel that he proposed just to keep me from going anywhere. I also believe he wants a family soon and I think that he thinks at this point, he is getting older and he’s not going to find anyone better so he might as well just marry me. And I am marrying him out of a feeling of pressure and obligation. Is there ANYONE out there who has been through a similar situation? How did you deal?