(Closed) Now what?

posted 7 years ago in Waiting
Post # 3
Member
954 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

That’s a really hard one.  I’m not engaged, but if I were in your position I wouldn’t be dropping ultimatums right now.  I think its probably got to be put on hold until he is able to process what goes on with his dad.  He may even want to propose earlier considering that his father would probably be happy about that, and since he is planning on it anyway.  On the other hand, he may want the proposal to be 100% about you and him, and it cant be that until he processes what is going on around him.  Its only June, there is time.

Post # 4
Member
98 posts
Worker bee

I think that it depends on how emotionally absorbed he is right now.  Getting engaged is a really happy time and takes up lots of *good* emotional energy.  BUT — that is emotional energy nonetheless.  Your guy might be too overwhelmed right now to process a proposal and all of the decisions and feelings that go with getting ready for one.  Everyone is so different.  Depending on his personality and how he goes about things, I would at least not push for it or bring it up until he’s had some time to finish grieving after his father’s death.  That’s not to say that he might not propose prior to his dad’s passing — but if he’s more of a one thing at a time type of guy, I could completely understand how this would take up his entire focus for a while. 

Post # 5
Member
10367 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

Um…

Why aren’t you talking to your boyfriend about how this should effect your engagement expectations? We can’t read his mind and know how his emotions about his father impact being ready for marriage.

Communication = most important thing in a relationship.

WB = not mindreaders 😉

Post # 6
Member
4887 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I personally dont think you should even MENTION engagement right now.  Your boyfriend is going through a really, really difficult time and it’s only going to get harder over the next weeks/months.  Be there for him, take engagement off the table, and be the best partner and support system you can possibly be.

Turn the tables and try to imagine how YOU’D feel in his shoes, you know?

Post # 7
Member
9029 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

You’re just gonna have to wait and see, because none of us can know how this will affect him. It might speed things up because he wants his dad to witness his wedding or it might push things back a bit or everything might stay on schedule.  Only time will tell.

Post # 8
Member
3302 posts
Sugar bee

My finace’s father had a stroke a lil before he proposed. I DID NOT talk to him about getting engaged during that time because I felt it was inapproporiate HOWEVER it was clear that I was waiting on it before the stroke happened and when my fiance got the money he was waiting on, he bought the ring himself and proposed to me shortly afterward, which ended up being a few weeks after the stroke.

Right now, proposals shouldn’t even be at the top of your list. It is unfair to him as he is going through a difficult time in his life.

Post # 9
Member
493 posts
Helper bee

I know how resentful and heartbreaking it can be after staying with someone that long with no proposal, engagement, marriage, etc. My SO and I are almost at our 4 year mark and I honestly didn’t think I’d make it this far. I initially set a deadline for the end of 2011 but four days prior to that he lost his job. And because this is the love of my life I extended that deadline (our 4 year anniversary) to try to fit what I thought of his circumstances but what was also reasonable for me in this relationship. Although job loss isn’t as severe as loss of a father I think you should do the same. You definitely need to be supportive because if you’re planning to marry this man things like this will happen. Maybe you’ll be ready to purchase a car or house, or take a trip, have a baby, etc. but circumstances will cause these things to be adjusted. Support and understanding is definitely what he needs right now.

Post # 10
Member
1738 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I have to agree that talking about a proposal, or even hoping for one right now is not a good idea.  You might need to revise your plans about breaking up seeing as circumstances beyond anyone’s control have stepped in and you guys need to be able to work through things like that, even when it leads to the disappointment of postponing things some.  

I know one couple who got engaged fairly soon after his mother died suddenly following a car accident – for him it drove home the fact that you really don’t have forever to make up your mind about such things, and that he’d missed out on his mom being there for his wedding by delaying.  Also, going through such a loss as “just” Boyfriend or Best Friend and Girlfriend may have shown him that it takes that piece of paper for your SO to be recognized and honored as important in your life – BFs and GFs don’t get the same treatment as FIs, or wives or husbands during funeral planning – FIs and spouses get listed as survivors by most newspapers, while BFs and GFs do not without an extra charge (in my 7 years working for newspapers).  So having her left out of such things may have helped him realize exactly how important marriage is.

But, I also have a friend who was happy to get engaged, and had even been pushing for it, but then so distraught over her mother’s death within a year of the engagement (she’d been very sick a very long time) that she ended up postponing the wedding for 3 years, until this past March.  She’d been hoping in vain that her mother’s health would improve, and it just wasn’t possible with all the had going on inside her.  Her daughter’s regret at not getting married when her mother was alive ate away at her, making her hesitant to even get married at all.  The daughter even moved out from living with her Boyfriend or Best Friend (they’d been living together about 7 years) at one point because she was having trouble coping with her grief, guilt and regret.  The engagement of another set of friends, and the fairly quick setting of their own wedding date for less than a year into the engagment helped spur the 3-year-engaged couple into solidifying their plans and going on and getting happily married.

I’m not saying your Boyfriend or Best Friend will be thinkning anyhting like this, just that a close family death can do lots of things to someone.  Your Boyfriend or Best Friend needs your support and unconditional love right now.  Holding his hand through all of this, even though he knows your feelings about possibly breaking up should a proposal not be forthcoming will go a long way to showing him you care about HIM and not a ring or a white dress.

Also, I heard something on the radio one day that’s good to remember if marriage is where you’re hoping to head:

It’s for better and for WORSE, not for better and better

How you guys make it through the bad times is far more important than any easy times – that’s when you show each other how much stronger you are as a unit instead of singly.  All of that said, I DO hope he is able to show you HE cares for you, and that at some point when it’s appropriate, he brings it up, himself.

Post # 11
Member
317 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I’ve been somewhat in your boyfriend’s position–years ago, my father passed away six weeks after he was diagnosed with cancer. It was very difficult for me to think about anything else during the time he was sick.  Life literally just went on hold.  Your boyfriend not only has to deal now with his father’s illness, I’m sure he also is dealing wtih other family member’s emotions.  It’s a horrible, overwhelming time.  Please don’t take anything personally if you are on his backburner right now.  All you can do is be supportive and stand by him and wait for life to get back to its “new normal”

Post # 12
Member
1738 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

One more thing – is your Boyfriend or Best Friend the oldest son?  If so, much of the family will expect him to shoulder a lot of the responsiblity as the “man of the family” for helping his mom take care of things.  I’m sorry he and you with him are havng to deal with this.

Post # 13
Member
132 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

I agree with PP – it’s almost impossible to know, and you shouldn’t raise the issue with your SO. Just be supportive and patient. There’s a distinct possibility that you won’t be engaged when you leave for grad school, and that he won’t move with you but will follow you after a few months. I think you just have to trust that your SO will make you a priority as soon as he is emotionally ready to.

If it makes you feel any better, my FI’s dad just had a really big medical emergency. It looks like his chances of a full recovery are good, but it could take a long time, so now we are trying to figure out whether to postpone our wedding or go ahead with the plans. And no European honeymoon like we had imagined, b/c we are using all our vacation time to visit his family. It sucks, but on the other hand, what kind of people would we be to take a vacation instead of be with the people we love in that kind of situation? When we do take a vacation/delayed honeymoon next year, it will be worth the wait. I think the same thing applies to your case. The timing may not be what you had envisioned, but having been there for the man you love is what will really matter to you in five or ten years.

Sorry for all you must be going through right now.

Post # 14
Member
3639 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

Just wait and see for a while and be supportive. Really, it could go either way, he might want to stay closer to his family or this might motivate him to take life by the horns. He might propose but choose not to go with you. I think you need to wait until the fall gets closer before bringing it up. Give him time to process and come to you.

Post # 15
Member
3297 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013 - An amazing non-profit retreat

Continue to be supportive and let it go for now. Engagement is a heavy thing and he obviously has a lot on his plate right now and it likely isn’t foremost on his mind.

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