- 7 years ago
I posted before on the Waiting board about preparing to talk to a boyfriend of 2 years who has been acting rather nonchalant about marriage and who went through a very rough work period last month (no financial crisis, just stress). So we finally had the conversation about marriage, or rather I re-hashed what we had discussed at the one year mark because I didn’t see any progress toward marriage being made. Anyway, if you want some background, that first post will provide it.
The conversation didn’t go fantastically. He actually seemed shocked and put on the spot when I asked how close we were to an engagement. Basically, I got the “I don’t know, but I also don’t want to lose you over this” response. Among other things, I told him that I needed to see something more concrete from him (an engagement ring, a plan of when we’d be married, something) by the end of next February or we should part so he and I could both find what we really need and/or want. As we both quickly approach 29 and have our own homes, living together before marriage isn’t an option. But I feel like relationships need to keep moving forward in order to be sustainable. I’ve recently felt like we’re in a place of stagnation, considering for me the only next step would then logically be engagement and he hasn’t proposed.
I told him, yes, I want to get married, but I also want it to be him. I said it would rip me apart for a while if we hadn’t found a way to make some progress and had to end the relationship in the next 6 months. I’m willing to work with him in these 6 months, but if we can’t reach an agreement at the end then we’d both be better off pursing other relationships or dreams in spite of how much it might hurt.
He was very conflicted––defensive at first, then distraught at the idea of possibly losing me, then nostalgic, then finally agreeing that it wouldn’t be fair to either of us to stay in the relationship if we couldn’t get on the same page by the end of six months. I asked him what he thought the next step might be (since he obviously hadn’t thought marriage). He said spending every single night together (at his place or mine) and seeing if we could still be civil after so much contact. I was honestly a little perturbed by this suggestion, because I had mentioned the same thing before about half a year ago and it wasn’t put into action “because of his work schedule.” I wanted to see him more, though, especially since the stress period with his work was done. So I said we’d try it, and I’ve been calling every day to see who was going to stay at who’s house that night. Obviously, it’s only the beginning, so things are still going well. No major arguments or even tiffs between us. But part of me wonders if this is just a stalling tactic by him.
I guess I also wonder what to do now: if I should either back off of the marriage talk entirely until the 6 months is up or re-emphasize the importance of marriage as being the logical next step for us in a casual, gentle way as we progress through this period. I don’t want to push it so far that it actually causes conflict and a breakup, but I also don’t want his work schedule to continue to be an excuse, especially since in his mind having regular amicable time together is the logical next step.
For those of you who’ve been there, any suggestions?