- 8 years ago
Ok, I know I’ve already posted a couple of times in the 5 minutes that I’ve been a WB member, but I saw other people were posting their “story”, so here’s mine 🙂
I’m 31. He’s 32. Been dating since 7/4/07 (almost 3.5 yrs). He’s lived with me for exactly 3 years. We’re both fairly traditional and southern, so we knew up front we were both eventually interested in marriage & family. We share a lot of the same values, although we differ in a lot of ways as well (Alabama v. Auburn, analytical lawyer v. black&white math guy, etc.) I’m an attorney in a semi-stable job (employed but job hunting) but financially stable. He’s an ins auditor in a very stable but mid-level job and financially stable, but his work situation is tough b/c (a) this job is just a stepping stone — he really wants to be a CFA or actuary or trader, and (b) he is on the road Monday thru Friday every week. We have 2 dogs, one of which we own “together” (although I’m not stupid…the pup is really just in my name).
I knew we had something special from the very beginning, but I was careful not to bring up marriage in the first year. I starting dropping little hints of marriage throughout our 2nd year, just to let him know I was interested and ready. After Year 2, we had a conversation where I asked him about timeline and “where are we”, etc. His response was something like, “well, I don’t really know if you’re the one yet.” It crushed me. I knew he was the one, and I thought he knew too but was just biding his time. After a long conversation, he said, “just give me another 1-2 yrs.” I said, “please try to shoot for one.” Another year passed, and I started to bring it up more and more. In the meantime, we went to 5-6 of his friends’ and families’ weddings (in which I was a BM). And now my brother (5 yrs younger) is getting married in May — it is an ENORMOUS wedding with a 2 yr engagement, and I’m a Bridesmaid or Best Man.
Our conversations about getting engaged have become more strained and sometimes end in argument. Although we communicate a lot (we talk daily since he’s out of town all week, and we are inseparable on the weekends), I feel like he just doesn’t understand or comprehend what I’m saying when I talk about marriage. I’ve tried to explain that it hurts my feelings that he doesn’t KNOW that I’m the one yet. I’m a great catch, and I deserve to be with someone who can’t help but want to be with me forever. And I just don’t get why he doesn’t know yet.
In my many efforts to communicate with him about it, I understand a few of his issues. He says he still sees himself as in “bachelor” stage. (Whatever, dude — grow up and get over it) He says he’s just not ready. (Again dude, grow up). He says he’s pretty sure I’m the one, but doesn’t want to propose until he knows for sure. (I totally agree with the seriousness of the matter, but how can you not KNOW YAY OR NAY after 3.5 yrs???) I don’t want him to propose before he’s ready, but still…
Although he hasn’t said it, I know that being away all week is probably having an effect on the issue. He doesn’t want to be in a marriage or have kids and be away all week. And neither do I! But another source of our tension is that he’s not doing anything to change it — he’s barely looked for other jobs, he’s only applied for one.
At one point, I explained to him, “I guess I push getting engaged sometimes b/c it just seems like the next step. It’s the most tangible thing I can think of for you to show that our relationship is progressing FORWARD, especially since nothing has changed since we moved in together 3 yrs ago”. I said, “let’s back up…why do you love me?” (He’s not very romantic, so he never tells me.) Him: “I don’t know. You’re a nice girl.” seriously? REALLY?!?!?! “You like dogs.” oh.my.god. I said, “how do I know you’re not here just b/c the status quo is the easy thing to do? I know you love me, but I’m worried that you’re wasting my time and that we’re never going to PROGRESS.” (Someone later explained that he just doesn’t have the tools to know WHY he loves me b/c he’s such a math guy. I know unequivocably that he loves me…just hard to hear that he has no clue why.)
So many people have told me to give him an ultimatum. But I don’t believe in that and neither does he. But I have told him that he needs to man up this year and make some decisions. Because after our 4th anniv., I think it’s gonna be time to tell him to fish or cut bait. I think a year warning is fair… I don’t want to have kids when i’m in my 40s.
As an aside, he’s TERRIBLE with time. He is ALWAYS late (like hours late). I am ALWAYS WAITING on him. He just has no sense of the passage of time. I am terrified that if I don’t continue to bring up the subject of marriage, then it will never cross his mind and we’ll be in the exact same place (status quo) years from now. And I have the same fear about his job status….that time will pass and all of a sudden we’re another 3 yrs down the road, and he just hasn’t gotten around to searching or applying for jobs. I know he wants to be home with me and the pups, so it’s hard that he can’t get around to looking for jobs in town.
I’m trying to cope. I’m trying to not bring up marriage too much. Or to push him on the issue. He did go ring shopping with me lately, but I know he’s still not ready to be engaged. He’s said on several occassions that I seem “sad” all the time, and I told him this is why…because I feel hurt. But I’m trying to step back and not be so invested…focus on other things…b/c I don’t like being sad all the time…but the rub is I think that my attempt to cope is also making me more distant.
So ultimately, I’m anxious to move forward to the next phase of my life. I want to be married. I want to start to think about kids in our future, and although I’m not ready to have them now or right after we get married, I don’t want to have them after age 40 b/c of the risks. I want to be able to plan life together. But on the same token, I’m scared that he’ll take forever to apply and get a job locally, and I don’t want to be married to someone who’s only there on weekends either.
So in a VERY LONG POST (so sorry), there’s my story in a nutshell.
Thanks for reading.