(Closed) My Boyfriend Proposed before I was ready and he knew that

posted 3 years ago in Engagement
Post # 16
1335 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2019 - City, State

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zzar45 :  She’s not in a marriage, you’re correct.  But she is in a long term relationship of over 3 years.  There’s still something to be said for working together on large decisions in relationships – that’s all I’m saying.

Again, she doesn’t have to marry the guy if she doesn’t want to.  I’m not saying she should just barrel through and do it anyway.

Post # 17
2761 posts
Sugar bee

It sounds to me like you know that you aren’t ready for an engagement yet, and he ignored your feelings. He also posted on social media without getting your approval first or giving you time to process, making you feel trapped in an engagment you never wanted in the first place. IMO this isn’t about the fact that the proposal was underwhelming, it’s about the fact that he ignored your feelings and you felt like you had to say yes to a proposal you were totally unprepared for. It also sounds like you felt a little pressured to say yes because of his upcoming surgery, which is a red flag — it seems like he was asking at a time when he knew you’d have trouble saying no even though he knew you didn’t really want it. That shows a tremendous lack of maturity on his part, at best. 

You definitely need to talk to him. End the engagement and give him back the ring (or keep it as a promise ring if you want to stay together). An engagement shouldn’t be an ambush, and you shouldn’t continue being engaged until you’re actually 100% on board with the idea of marrying him. If you are meant to be, you can always get get engaged and married down the line, but you should BOTH feel totally ready before you make the next step. He needs to respect that, and if he doesn’t he’s not the guy for you. 

You’ve got a great head on your shoulders and are so self-aware to acknowledge that you aren’t ready yet and want to get your education first. You WILL come out of this stronger! I know it’s scary to disappoint people and embarrassing to cancel an engagement, but it’s so much better to do it sooner than later. You’ve got your whole life ahead of you, and you shoudn’t be settling for less than you want. 

ETA: Also, so much can change your late teens/early 20s, especially as you enter college, meet new people, and learn new things about yourself. When I was your age I had a high school sweetheart who really wanted to get married too. I held off because I knew I wasn’t ready. I am SO glad I did, because we were all wrong for each other and it was not a healthy relationship. We broke up when I was 20 after a 5 year relationship, and I never looked back. There were so many red flags I had missed because he was my first boyfriend. Now, I’m not saying that your relationship is necessarily going to go the way mine went — I have friends who married their high school sweethearts and who are happy 10+ years later too. But if you are going to spend the rest of your lives together, there is no harm in waiting a few more years to make sure you are 100% committed before getting married. Make sure that this is really the person you want to be with for the rest of your life. 

Post # 18
1027 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - -

I agree with others who have you said you need to tell him how you really feel about this. He ignored your feelings after explicitly discussing waiting on a proposal and only thought of himself in that gym-clothes-kitchen proposal you never wanted.

It’s that you talked about waiting that makes this proposal so one-sided. Better to do it now because if you get married one day, you don’t want him thinking that he’s justified in ignoring what you want because it’s a “happy surprise.” I’d be very serious/stern about this.

Post # 19
282 posts
Helper bee

This could be setting the tone for the rest of your life. You voice a concern of yours and he completely ignores what you want and does whatever he wants anyways. Is that really what you want for your future?

Post # 20
2877 posts
Sugar bee

To me, it sounds like your boyfriend railroaded you into an engagement. He wanted to propose, he knew you weren’t ready for that yet, so he proposed anyway, putting you in an awkward situation. He knew you were likely to say yes, solely because you love him, so he used that to his advantage. Then, to ensure you weren’t able to postpone and announcement until you were comfortable, he went and shared it on social media with everyone. It just all sounds calculated.

Personally, I would advise telling him that you want a do-over when you’re both ready. He should be the one to figure out how to explain this to all of your family and friends. And the reason I say that, is your response to this situation could set the tone for the rest of your lives together. If he knows that he can force what he wants by setting up an embarrassing or awkward scenario that makes it easier for you to go along with him, he’ll continue to do it. You have to show him that he can’t force you into things you don’t want, by maneuvering things around.

I know this is particularly hard, because the proposal itself is a sweet gesture (if it’s done when both parties are ready), he may try to play that card. But don’t let him manipulate you if he goes for the, “But I love you and I just couldn’t wait to propose!”

Post # 21
358 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2019

I’d also be really upset he went ahead and posted about it without discussing with you first. What ever happened to telling important friends and family members in person first? He sounds generally immature and impulsive. 

Post # 22
182 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2019 - City, State

Have a longer engagement, don’t make any wedding plans until you’re ready. If he couldn’t respect your timeline to get engaged, then he can wait for the actual wedding. And you will have time to better assess how you feel about him and see if this is someone you really want to spend your life with.

Post # 23
7806 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

If you’re not ready to be engaged, you don’t say yes. Give him the ring back, tell him you aren’t ready. I don’t know why you’d even say yes if you’re so adamant about accomplishing XYZ first. This is YOUR life, get in the drivers seat. No one is going to advocate for you except YOU. 

Post # 24
3187 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

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jennifernichole333 :  you two are barely more than children. you need to have a discussion with him that you’re too young.

Post # 25
2009 posts
Buzzing bee

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jellybellynelly :  c’mon, she’s 19 and was put on the spot with a guy she loves. I can certainly see her feeling pressured to say “yes” in the moment—especially if she didn’t want the relationship to end on the spot. As women, we’re socially conditioned to always be “nice” and cater to men’s overly inflated egos, so that’s likely why she said yes in the first place. But now that she’s had time to give the entire situation some thought, she’s having serious doubts. 


OP, this is your life. Don’t make lifelong sacrifices for someone you’re not 100% sure about. And the fact that he essentially manipulated you into an engagement is highly concerning, so I don’t think right now is the best time to be 100% sure…


ETA: I’m wondering if he was in such a hurry to propose & get married is because he likely knows that once you start college, you’ll have time away from him, meet new people, experience being around other quality men, and essentially find yourself. It sounds like he wants to lock you down so that you won’t even have the option of leaving him if you decide that this relationship is ultimately not the one you want to carry out for the rest of your life…

Post # 26
4015 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2019 - Canada

I would be furious! None of this was about you or even what was best for you as a couple. This proposal was solely about what your SO wanted and he (knowingly) completely disregarded your feelings for his own. Then went on to make it public so any retraction on your part would be infinitely more embarrassing. He didn’t think about you at all when he decided to propose, and for that reason, I would end it. 

I had a boyfriend when I was in my early 20’s. Our relationship was a disaster and when my family said he could not attend our Christmas  celebration he said “that’s too bad, I was going to propose”.  I asked if he thought we were actually ready for that he said no, but couldn’t actually tell me why he wanted to propose. I don’t know what he was thinking, but I do know he wasn’t thinking about what was best for me, for the relationship or for him for that matter. I already knew our relationship wasn’t great, but after he told me that, I knew I had to end it. 

I’d be asking your SO why he proposed after you told him how you felt and what made him think this was a good step to take. That information will likely help you decide where to go from here. Sorry bee, this must be a really tough position!

Post # 27
260 posts
Helper bee

As a person who has been with my boyfriend 5 and a half years and has been actively “waiting” for multiple years, I would not give the ring back. If you both love each other and want to be with each other forever, I would just sit down and have a heart-to-heart with him. Let him know exactly where you are at, and just enjoy a longer engagement 🙂

Post # 28
2274 posts
Buzzing bee

My mother became engaged to a very nice young man when she graduated from HS. After being engaged to him for over 10 years she met, and married my father in 6 weeks, and the marriage lasted ‘till he died.

Yes, your very post indicates that you are indeed too young, and tht’s NOT a bad thing at all. AND, you may well marry your nice young man when you’ve both put in some more years of learning who you are, and live happily ever after.

You know yourself that the timing is wrong this time. For him, and for yourself, defer the engagement, and if that’s not mutually acceptable, give some serious thought to walking away.

Post # 29
501 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

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jennifernichole333 :  I had a similar experience! I dated my now husband from age 16-19, we broke up for 4 months and got back together. A month before my 21st birthday he proposed. I was in college and living on campus at the time. I had plans to go home for my brother’s bday one weekend, I was going to leave on Saturday and celebrate my friend’s bday on Friday, my boyfriend said he had special plans for us and asked if I could come home Friday night instead. Normally my friend would be SUPER mad at me for missing her bday, but she wasn’t this time and it was strange (turned out she knew what was about to happen). Then I called my parents to tell them my new plans and they asked what was wrong with my boyfriend’s car, I said nothing why, they said he was coming over so my dad could look at his car. I called my boyfriend and asked about his car and he said nothing was wrong so I asked why he told my parents there was something wrong. He made up an excuse so I was really sketched out. I drove home that Friday night. I got stuck in SO MUCH TRAFFIC, by the time I got to him I was STARVING and exhausted. He tried to be romantic at dinner but I really wasn’t having it. The dishes at the place we went were tiny and I was still hungry afterwards but we couldn’t afford dessert. I asked if we could just go back to his house and lay down. So when we got to his room he proposed to me there. It was really sweet but I just kept thinking how I wish he would have chose a day where I was happier and that we wouldn’t even be able to get married for a few years because of school and finances. But I knew I wanted to marry him so I said yes. Our engagement ended up being 3 and a half years long. I graduated college, we both got good jobs, we moved in together, and then had an amazing wedding. Everything truly fell into place and we have a wonderful life together and are so in love. Before we got married I told him how I kinda wish he would have waited for a better day to propose, and that it sucks that I’ll always remember how cranky I was that day. He agreed, he was just so excited that he paid off the ring and felt like he couldn’t keep it in anymore. Regardless of the fact that the proposal wasn’t eveyrthing I ever dreamed about, our life together is perfect. I’m so happy and know for sure that I married the right person. 

So basically all that matters is whether or not you want this man to be your husband. It’s totally fine to have a long engagement. I’m actually really glad our engagement was long because we got to save up for a great wedding and build our lives together before the wedding so we started our marriage out being really sucessful together. 

Post # 30
6340 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2016

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jennifernichole333 :  It’s very concerning that your boyfriend isn’t listening to you at all and taking your thoughts and feelings into account. In fact, I’d consider that a red flag. 


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