(Closed) Is 11 years just too long?

posted 2 months ago in Waiting
Post # 17
598 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

You’re not his one.

My nephew met his one at 11 years old. He knew it by 10th grade and asked her their second year in college. She was his one and he wasn’t letting her get away.

Every man I know, who drags his feet with commitment, is because they think something better MIGHT come along so they don’t want to settle.  They also don’t want to be alone so they’re perfectly fine with a status quo girlfriend.  

He probably cried because he knows this could be the beginning of the end and he doesn’t want to be alone and doesn’t want to figure out if you’re good enough to settle with. He wants you to be perfectly happy with what he’s happy with because he doesn’t want to deal with the guilt and drama of making you miserable.

Post # 18
119 posts
Blushing bee

He says you’re “devaluing” the relationship, but it seems HE’s the one who doesn’t value the legal and social commitment of marriage.

I understand that 11 years doesn’t seem so long when you started as teens. But everyone I know who married their high school sweetheart did so after about 6-8 years together (around age 23-25).

He doesn’t want what you want.

Post # 20
5876 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2016

It sounds like you and your guy are at different points in your lives. And justifiably so. Like it or not, women have to be practical about timelines and biological clocks if they want to have children. Your guy can fart around for another 20 years and still make a couple kids. That’s much less likely for you.

Also, you deserve to be with someone who is thrilled to share his life with you, not (possibly) taking the default option because you’ve been around for so long. Relationships and commitments are a choice at a certain point and the fact that he wants you to guarantee that the two of you won’t get divorced makes me think HE isn’t sure he wants to marry you. But he’s too chickenshit to just say that.

And someone who goes through life not putting themselves out there and just going along with whatever is happening or what they’re forced to do is not someone who is mature and making conscious and authentic choices for their lives.

Personally, I would start preparing myself to depart from this relationship. If nothing else, the two of you need to be in a new era of relationship before marriage becomes a viable option. My husband and I have had several different and distinct eras in our 12 year relationship. The one we were in when we first got together would not have made for a good marriage. We didn’t get married until we had built a “marriage relationship”. Then the wedding was just a ceremony to celebrate the growth and lessons we’d learned to get there.

Good luck with your counseling session! 

Post # 21
119 posts
Blushing bee

backwardsandinheels :  Is this with a known therapist that you or he have been seeing regularly?

If not, he is still gaslighting you by suggesting you have issues or “need help.”

This is his problem. You aren’t crazy, you’re responding to the shitty way he’s treated you. Good luck and be careful of more manipulation.

Post # 22
1435 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

I think you actually nailed it in several updates.  He’s comfortable with the way things are but at the same time he wants to keep his options open.

Also, he’d be right on one point….you’ll never get divorced if you never get married.  As I see it the only one who needs to act is you OP.  You need to decide what it is you really want and then act on those best interests.

Good luck on your counseling session….I don’t think it will change much.  He’s hoping it will buy him more time.  And in the future, don’t fall for the deflection tears okay?

Post # 24
9466 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

I got the constant, when is he proposing questions all the time too.  It drove me up the wall because really it was no one else’s business when we decided to get married and why not just let us live our lives?

But the thing is at 11 years even if you don’t want to tell anyone else you should have some idea of what the answer to that question is and you don’t. You should be an active participant in your own life but right now you’re letting him have all the control.

I hope you can find some answers in your therapy session but I also think you should give the advice you’ve gotten here some serious consideration. 

Post # 25
598 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Oh his own therapist?  He could be using her as a way to tell you something he can’t tell you himself and his therapist will automatically be more protective towards him because she’s not your therapist.  Careful

Post # 26
1046 posts
Bumble bee

He probably cried because he knows this could be the beginning of the end and he doesn’t want to be alone and doesn’t want to figure out if you’re good enough to settle with. He wants you to be perfectly happy with what he’s happy with because he doesn’t want to deal with the guilt and drama of making you miserable.

This was my interpretation, as well.  It is unfortunate that sometimes you can meet someone you genuinely love, but grow “beyond” the relationship you once had with that person. Our twenties change us so much that relationships that span our youths into our true adulthood often suffer a natural death. 

He isn’t crying because he truly believes you are “devaluing” your relationship. He is scared that he is going to lose his security blanket (your relationship) or sacrifice by being “forced” into an engagement to you in order to keep you around. If he was hurt, or recognized that you were hurting (what he SHOULD have felt — sadness over your emotions, not leaping to how it affects him) he would have proposed an engagement timeline. He doesn’t want that with you. So instead he manipulated you with false explanations. 

You have no reason to go to therapy with him. You can’t psychologically talk someone into marrying you through a therapist, and his long-time therapist is only focused on working through with him through his emotional issues. Not salvaging your relationship or acting as a partner counselor. This will only be used to “explain away” why he has feelings x, y, z about not wanting marriage just yet, but will want you to wait for him to be ready and show he is “working on it.”

If the “devaluing our relationship” crocodile tears weren’t enough of a red flag, “come talk to my counselor with me”’ certainly is.


Post # 27
1310 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

backwardsandinheels :  A possibility other posters seem to be ignoring is that your boyfriend might simply not want marriage, or might not be ready for it yet, but is indeed 100% committed to you. Societal pressure can really fuck with otherwise happy relationships. 

Him wanting to go to therapy with you is a positive sign. Hopefully that will help you guys communicate and figure out if your life goals are compatible or not. If you’re late-20s and want kids, multiple, then you don’t have the luxury of waiting years for him to become more comfortable with marriage. And what he said about divorce makes it sound like he will never marry — if that’s true, there is no point in continuing this relationship. The sooner you end it the sooner you meet your future husband.

As an aside, I strongly disagree with the “milk for free” concept — that’s so offensive! That comment always reads to me like “women are whores and relationships are transactional”. As you said, regardless of what happens in the end, you have *both* benefited from living together. 

Post # 28
459 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2019

I think one can be commited without being married. I also think that you can have children together, buy a house together without being married. But I’ve learnt that this really differs from society to society. But only if each partner is ok with that. And I can totally understand that one getting affected by outside pressure.

I think the important thing is to find out what you want. And decide from there.

Concerning his argumentation. What he expresses about wanting to be 100% sure is a common anxiety related to getting married. Have you asked him what is lacking for him in order to be 100% certain? I hope he’s addressing this with his therapist. Because there is no certainty in life. He wants to protect himself from a possible heartbreak/divorce/loss, but he can’t. Some of us are wired this way, that we want to have the control, that we want to know, but there’s no way in which we can have total control. But he needs to work through this in order to be able to grow.

Post # 29
844 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 1983

Do not see his therapist. The two of you should see a therapist who knows neither of you, who is biased toward neither side.

If you do see his therapist (someone whose been on his side for how long?), ask each of them, right up front, what each sees as the purpose of this session. To straighten you out? If so, get up and leave.

I thought it was considered professionally unethical for a therapist of one member of a couple to do counseling with both members of the couple.

Post # 30
763 posts
Busy bee

Don’t even bother with therapy.








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