Post # 1
I recently joined, and I wanted to introduce myself a little more and ask you all what you think about some of the stuff that is going through my head.
I just graduated from college, and I have been dating SO for almost 2.5 years. We both knew pretty early into our relationship that our intention was to get married, and we have always been very serious about each other. It feels to us like we have been pretty much “unofficially engaged” for most of our relationship!!
However, like the thousands of other grads out there, we are both struggling to find jobs (shocking, I know! haha). Now, don’t get me wrong-We are both young (I’m 21, he is 23). We have agreed that we want to find jobs first and save up some money before getting engaged. However, I see all of these other people around us, our age, who are getting engaged after only 6 months-1 year of dating, and it is soooo infuriating to me. What’s even more bewildering is that these people do not have jobs either, so how on earth can they do it and we can’t?
I know I should be focused on OUR relationship and not other peoples’, but it’s so hard to do that when it’s everywhere!! It just makes me feel worse. To make a long story short, here is my question:
Is it ridiculous of me to not be willing to wait another 3-4 years to get engaged, even though I am so young? The truth is, I do not have to have a wedding right now; that is not what this is about. All I really want right now is a proposal, and to finally be able to call him what he really is to me-my fiance!
I apologize if this comes across as whiny or immature, but I would really love some perspective on this.
Post # 3
Some people prefer to wait to get engaged until they can afford or are ready to plan a wedding. Others prefer to get engaged as soon as they know they’ve found their future partner and they may have a longer engagement.
There’s lots of different factors and it will only make you sad to always be comparing yourself to others. Especially if you don’t know all the factors that went into it. Just do whAt works best for you and your FFH.
Be warned, as soon as you get engaged random people will being badgering for details, and will really pester you if they find out that you’re not getting married for a few years!
Post # 4
I am in graduate school with a sizable stipend and yes…2 years ago, it was frustrating for me to see my undergraduate friends/together for less than 1-2 years getting engaged. After 4 years together, though, my SO and I just got to a place where a) we could afford the ring I wanted without going into debt, and b) had been sharing finances/responsibility for a while and each had stable income. It just kind of clicked for both of us that this was the right time. Our families approve, our friends are excited, and we know what we are getting into since we have been together for so long and lived with eachother for most of that time. I know it’s hard to wait, but focus on your goal-landing an awesome job and looking forward to that great moment! Enjoy your relationship, make time to do simple, fun things. It’s amazing how fast time flies!
Post # 5
Thank you so much for your input! About what you said about people badgering us, people are already doing that, so I can’t imagine it being too much worse! That’s the other thing that really bothers me-I’m tired of people acting like we’ve been together for ten years without being engaged! For goodness sake, we are still under 25 and have just graduated from college, so it isn’t the end of the world that we aren’t engaged yet, haha! Even with that being said, I really don’t want to wait more than another 1-1.5 years just to get engaged, if that makes any sense at all.
Post # 6
I know it seems like a lot of your friends are getting enaged now, and I know facebook has made these emotions a lot more complicated, but I promise you will be okay waiting a few more years. I mostly say this because you guys are young and you have the time to wait. Wait until you are employed, settled, and have the money to buy the ring of your dreams. I don’t think you will ever regret that. He will propose and you won’t need to have a long proposal because you will already be settled and financially able to make that next step in life.
here is absolutely no rush, and the great thing is that since you ARE young, you don’t have the pressure from family and friends that some of us “older” bees get. When you are nearing 30 and still waiting for a ring after 5+ years, then I would say just buy a cheap “now” ring until things get better. You probably have a lot of big life changes coming up. You will likely be moving, hunting for jobs, starting a job, etc. and these are all stressful life events. You don’t want to pile on paying off a ring or planning a wedding on top of those big changes. You will know when the time is right. 🙂
Post # 7
my future husband and i have been dating since we were 18. we also talked about marriage, but he didnt propose until our 8th anniversary. everyone kept asking when we were getting married but we were just not ready. if your comfortable who cares.
oh and these unemployed people who are “doing it all” are doing what what thousands of other people are doing LIVING BEYOND THEIR MEANS. getting engaged is expensive. you shouldnt hve to settle for what you want and if you dont have the financial ability to get what you want, you should wait.
Post # 8
Hahaha…this reminds me of what my husband and I are going through. We’re 28, married for two years, and were waiting until we have some savings before starting to try for baby (we just started trying in Jaunary). In the mean time, I have several friends (all between the ages of 21 and 25) who are having babies with people they just met! My problem lies less in their age than in the fact that they are bringing children into this world, (who don’t have a choice in the matter) with people they don’t really know. Like you, I find myself angry and frustrated at times.
Find solace in the fact that you’re doing it the way that’s right FOR YOU. And hopefully, your relationship will be stronger for it, (some of those friends who are rushing into engagement and marriage will probably be divorced before you two tie the knot).
Post # 9
You’re absolutely right, I know it. Thank you so much for all you have said; you have brought up some great points. 🙂
I guess what hurts me the most about all of this is that it feels as if money is the one thing that is keeping us from moving forward. I love this man with all of my heart and soul, and it kills me that just because we don’t have jobs yet, we can’t move forward with our relationship. It feels like a huge roadblock.
I also suppose that deep down, I have this fear that none of this will ever change; that for some reason we will NEVER find good jobs and that we’ll just have to be content with living with our parents and never be able to make that commitment to each other and live together as an adult married couple. I know it’s crazy and irrational, but it scares me to death, especially considering how hard of a time we are having getting jobs.
Post # 10
To me it doesn’t sound like either of you WANT to find jobs and save money before you get engaged, you just think that’s the smart thing to do and it’s what you “should” do. It works for some couples (DH and I were together 7 years before we got married), but it’s not for everyone.
While weddings can be expensive, they don’t have to be, and neither do engagements. My parents got married at 21. My mother never got an e-ring, they didn’t have an engagement party, the ceremony was at a church and the reception was at her parents’ house. It barely cost them anything. They didn’t care about any of that – they just wanted to be married. A lot of people feel this way, and it sounds like maybe you are one of those. I wouldn’t advocate going into debt at this stage for an engagement or wedding, but that’s not necessary either – I’d think about what is most important for the two of you, and how to make it work so you are both happy.
PS If you do decide to hold off for financial reasons, if anyone ever asks when you’re getting married, you can say “When you’ll pay for the wedding” and that should shut them up.
Post # 11
You can always become engaged now and have a long engagement to save up the money. There’s not a time line as to how long you’re supposed to be engaged. =)
I’m 23, Fiance is 28. We’ll be a year older when we get married in October. We became engaged December 2010 and waited almost two years for that particular reason. Saving money and financial constraints. Unfortunately, Fiance was laid off a week after he proposed and has been unable to hold a steady, good paying job since then. We decided it was best for us to just marry on our date we chose and perhaps have a bigger celebration at a later date. We also realized through everything we’ve been through that it’s the marriage that’s imporant and not the wedding.
I wish you the best of luck. We were looking at almost $30K for a wedding that became out of hand within the matter of months. I’d rather save up money for a house than pay for one day.
Post # 12
Oh no, don’t get me wrong, we absolutely do want to find jobs and save some money first-we know that is the smart thing to do for sure. I suppose what I am trying to say is that it is frustrating for us to know we are doing that, and to watch other people who aren’t waiting to get jobs get engaged first.
Honestly, waiting another year or so is not that big of a deal, I just don’t want it to turn into 4 or 5! It’s just so hard for me to let go of the vision I have had-wanting to be engaged by 22 or so. I guess I’m just a big planner and it’s hard for me to not have things work out the way I’ve intended it to.
Oh By The Way…the comeback you suggested for when people bug us made me about die laughing! 😀
Post # 13
My fiance and I got engaged after 11 months.
I am still “young” I think, at 24.
We are both in physician assistant school and around 100k in debt for BOTH of us.
My fiance took out more loan money to buy my ring.
We don’t have jobs.
I feel like I fit your profile of frustration. So I’ll give you my 2 cents.
If you want to get engaged. Get engaged. What difference does it make if you pay 5k now for a ring or 5k later on? It’s still the same 5 thousand dollars. Money shouldn’t be a reason to stop you if that’s what you truely want. You could always find a nice ring for 500 dollars and then upgrade by the time you get married.
To make the ring payments, my fiance and I down graded our apartment, turned off the cable, started recycling and don’t eat out as much. We make it work. Its kind of a bummer I can’t watch my say yes to the dress anymore.. But I sure as hell love showing of my ring.
Also I think it is important to realize that everyone is in a different situation. For example. We’re crazy in debt… we don’t have jobs… we’re engaged. It might be irritating to you.. BUT my parents are shelling out 25k for the wedding and my fiance and I will be making 180k + in about a year. Some might call it irresponible to get engaged now or get married now because we don;t have money… But in the long run its not going to matter.
LIke I said before you should do what YOU want. And like you said… don’t focus on other couples!
Post # 14
Welcome to the hive first of all. 🙂
Personally I don’t find it unreasonable for you not to want 3-4 years to get engaged. My SO and I have been together for two years and we’re both young as well, although he has a pretty good paying job for his age. Anyway, like you I don’t want to wait 3-4 years to get engaged since I see no reason to wait that long. If I were you, I’d sit him down and tell him what you want out of the relationship. Yeah you might be waiting for him to propose, but that doesn’t mean you have to do so passively. Tell him what you want in a calm and non-confrontational matter and discuss both of your expectations and the reasoning behind them. I know my SO was a little worried about getting engaged soon because of his age, until I told him that I wanted two years to plan our wedding. He did the math and saw that would put him at the age of 22 when we get married, me at 24, and seems to have come around to the idea alot better now.
Post # 15
i have to disagree with @katie34667: getting engaged is NOT expensive, a wedding and getting married is. i recently got engaged, my Fiance and I are each still living at home with our parents, having a long engagement so I can finish uni and he can go back to TAFE and we can live together for a year or two before getting married.
it sounds like both of you want to get engaged now, so there is nothing stopping you 🙂 remember you do not have to get married straight away once you get engaged, you can have a longer engagement 🙂
Post # 16
we are both 21, turning 22 this year, age doesn’t matter 🙂