(Closed) New waiting bee – timeline dilemmas

posted 5 years ago in Waiting
Post # 3
52 posts
Worker bee

My SO and I came up with our timeline together but honestly it was just a discussion to see what he was thinking about when to get married. I got lucky and his timeline was close to mine (married by Nov 2014) so I let him keep his timeline so he is more comfortable with the whole proposal etc. In my case we are in our 40s and he has been married and divorced with 2 teenage kids. With all of that, he has more he has to handle (like talking to his kids) than I do so I have learned to be patient.


You will work it out. 5 years in my opinion is a long time but you are a lot younger than I am and have your whole life in front of you. My advice is leave it alone for a little while and revisit. Let him know how you feel and why getting married then is important to you. I think he will come around.

Post # 4
680 posts
Busy bee

I’m interested in this too. My SO and I have been dating for almost 2 yrs and we can’t seem to have a meeting of the minds on a timeline. I’m like the OP, I’d like to get engaged soon and have a long engagement. SO, not so much. I don’t know how to approach the conversation.

Post # 5
1670 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

We didn’t have any trouble agreeing on the wedding date (which we’ve set already) but we did struggle with engagement length. He wants to get engaged this Christmas so I can meet his parents first and also so we can have a short engagement (8 months) – we’re both kind of introverted. I’m ok with that but I told him I would be a wreck planning in 8 months. I’m a hyper planner and I totally freak out when on a time crunch. I was one of those people who never even put homework off till the last minute. I am always done early.

Our compromise was to start planning now and still not announce until Christmas. Obviously we have had to tell my parents (they are hosting) and random people like the minister. We booked the venue AND I bought a dress this weekend on a trip home. We are really enjoying making decisions without everyone asking us about it. This is obviously not for everyone though.


Post # 6
2610 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014 - Madison, WI

What is it with men and short engagements? LOL. My SO and I were in some ways close with our timeline of being married next year. However, SO thought we could get engaged and married in 3 months! Cause apparently “all his friends did it”. I kind of doubt that is true. Anyway, after I told him I want a year long engagement to have plently of time to plan (I am a planner by nature – I love planning!) and DIY cause I also love DIY crafts, he then agreed that he could see my point and pretty soon after that started planning his proposal and shopping for rings. All I know now is a proposal is in my very near future! We both plan on a late spring 2014 wedding.


I think it’s just important to talk about why you want a longer engagement. Be specific. It helps give you time to save money for the wedding, spreads out the cost, etc. Many men do not get how long it takes to plan. Find a one year planning timeline online (many on Pintrest!) and show him! Often once men can see the details you need to be thinking about it starts to make sense. My SO just told me he figured, why wait? If you’re engaged the goal is to be married. Many men are very goal orriented and so what’s the quickest way to the goal here – a quick wedding. I also read a book once by a man who said you should ask that your SO give you the wedding planning time etc as his gift to you. Now that might not be exactly how I would put it but I think the point is to make it clear what you want and that you don’t want him to solve a major issue for you but to give this time to you for your happiness.


If he wants a shorter engagement still then talk about what you two can do before it’s offical. If you think you’d be bad at deciding wedding plans well can you start “planning” now? Look around to get ideas etc. Then when the time comes you’ll have a better idea and not feel so overwhelmed.


Post # 7
7311 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast

We knew that we wanted to get married and buy a house. We both knew that I was not signing any house papers without a ring, date set, and all major vendors booked (those were simply my requirements. others are free to do as they please). So with that information in hand, we talked about the timeline in reverse. It went something like this.

Me: So when do you want to start looking at houses?

Him: Well our lease is done in June, and I think we’ll need time to look, so let’s start looking in January.

Me: I am not looking at a single house until we are engaged.

Him: Okay.

Me: What time of year do you want to get married?

Him: Fall is my favorite season. I like the weather the best. Can we do fall?

Me: Sure. Do you want Fall of this year, fall of next year, or fall of the year after that?

Him: Fall of this year doesnt leave us much time to plan, but I don’t want to have to wait long. I think Fall of next year would be great.

Me: Okie dokie. We want a small wedding, so we won’t be able to do a Saturday wedding. There is just no way we will meet the spending minumums. I’d prefer a Sunday over a Friday. There is only 1 Sunday in the fall where Monday is a holiday, so that would be my target date. Since we will be shopping for a house AND planning a wedding at the same time, I will like to have about a year to plan the wedding so that I don’t have too much on my plate at one time.

Him: That seems reasonable.

Me: So that means we are getting engaged sometime between now and December 31, but I would prefer it to be sometime this Fall.

Him: Agreed.


And that was that. It was a very rational discussion where we both tried to meet eachother’s needs and goals. By timing our ultimate outcomes (marriage and home ownership) and then working backwards on the timeline of everything that would lead up to those outcomes, we were able to develop a timeline that suited us both.

I will note that we did end up getting engaged a full 7 weeks before his planned proposal. We were having a disagreement, I was getting antsy and stressed about how much time was passing (even though we were still 3 month from the deadline), and it just happened. Poor guy was planning a lovely evening for a proposal, and I just couldn’t keep my mouth shut. Story of my life! lol

I’m not saying it will work for everyone, but it worked well for us. Just a thought. 🙂

Post # 8
849 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

I just wanted to say that y’all are lucky that you’ve been able to get a timeline at all! Lol all my Boyfriend or Best Friend has said was that he wanted the engagement to be one year. Which is fine with me.


But when I asked if he had a timeline in mind for us getting married, he refused to tell me. He thinks the whole thing should be a surprise. I’m not sure how I feel about this…lol so count yourselves lucky that you’re even getting a timeline! 🙂

Post # 9
1670 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

@lovekiss:  I’m glad someone else had a super rational, vaguely unemotional discussion about it. Sometimes I feel guilty because the standard seems to be that this should all be a surprise and super over the top romantic, and SO and I just sat down with paper and LITERALLY drew a timeline going “try for baby” “wedding” “engagement” “ring shopping”. It has taken ALL of the pressure and uncertainty out of it. I know roughly when we are getting formally engaged and that’s nice (for me).

Post # 10
629 posts
Busy bee

SO had a skewed perspective of wedding planning, as the only one he saw planned was his sister’s, who would do bursts of things while she was in the country, and other stuff while she was home in England. What got him on the same page as me (although I wasn’t trying to get a timeline from this) was that I took him to an open house of my favourite venue in the city. We talked to a sales rep, and she said to us that the average booking time for them is generally 18-24 months, especially if you’re looking for peak season. So, with that information, we were able to come to a meeting of the minds.

Post # 11
1541 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

@LadyBlackheart:  My SO is big on it being a surprise, but after almost 6 years, I can’t really keep my mouth shut. I’ve told him time and time again how stressed it makes me. I told him this is one of the biggest decisions in MY life and OUR relationship, but it’s completely dictated by YOU? How is that fair?

He told me it’d be within 1.5 years. He wanted it to be a longer timeline so he can still surprise me

Post # 12
3248 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

@FuzzyBunnyB:  I’m kind of like the first person who replied to this; after months of hinting and ultimately annoying my SO, I shut up about it for a while and then one day when we were talking about our future, I just asked, “about when do you think we should get married?” His timeline was a little longer than mine, but close enough to not bother me. Luckily he understands that it takes at least a year to plan a wedding, and says that “we have to be engaged before planning.” 


I think that having that kind of conversation is a good idea. The other thing is, does he know that you want a long engagement? Does he know that it will take you a long time to plan it? Is he aware of your strong feelings about getting married by age 28? 


Sounds like this will take some compromising, but definitely, if you want to have children, count back from the time of your life when you want to have kids, and say something like, “I would like to have kids when I’m X years old, and it would be nice to be married for X number of years before trying to have kids, so that means we will need to be married by X year.” The fertility thing is something that I think men do worry about, and it is a very concrete reason to hurry things up a little.

Post # 13
4524 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@FuzzyBunnyB:  My boyfriend of 2 years gave me ours on his own. We have been discussing marriage pretty much since we started dating, and I’ve already done a couple of cross-country moves for his work, so he knows I’m in it for the long haul.  He gave me his when yet ANOTHER friend had proposed to his girlfriend and I was pretty bummed out.  The next day at work, he texted me saying we “need to talk when we get home.”  I was SURE he was going to break up with me or something, as he had NEVER said anything like that before.

When I got home he said “I wanted to talk to you about getting engaged…can you wait 6 months?” which would put the end of the deadline at August 31st or so. 

Since then (about February), he gave me free reign to start doing some planning, which we’ve had alot of fun with together. He has even taken me to look at dresses serveral times, but his only rule was no trying on until I have a ring 🙂

And as of now, he texted me about 45 minutes ago saying he “just made a BIG purchase ;)”

Post # 14
1357 posts
Bumble bee

@lovekiss:  OMG that is amazing. I am very impressed by that conversation.


But yes, my advice is similar. If there’s a specific reason you want to get married / time by which your want to be married to start TTC, or whatever, it’s easier for men to wrap their heads around. For me, I told my SO that I’m not super comfortable making big sacrifices while being bf/gf; we’re moving next year and one of us will probably have to put off grad school while the other studies since we can’t find a place where we can both study. So we decided we would get engaged or married (I don’t remember which one) before moving.

Anyways, just talk to your man. At first my SO also said something like 5 years, but it was because he hadn’t seriously thought about it. 

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