Post # 1
3 weeks before our 3 year anniversary, we found an engagement ring we both liked, he bought it. (I asked if I could tell my BFF, but he wouldn’t like it, so I kept my mouth shut.) Anyway, he then confessed he would have proposed on our anniversary if he wasn’t on a business trip that very week (at first, he miscalculated the weeks he was away and really believed he was in town then). After that, nothing!
2 weeks after our anniversary, we were on vacation and everyone there said things like “how would your husband like his coffee?, did your husband ordered the fries?” when he wasn’t around. I told him everyone just assumes we’re married, but I really wasn’t his wife and the wiggled my fingers in his face. And he said “But you have the ring. You know where it is.” and I replied “You have a ring that it’s on the shelf in your living room”.
There is no element of surprise for me, I told him I am feeling unworthy and unvalidated, but he insists he wants the proposal to be special. (I guess I think about it as a hand-over.) Meanwhile, our lives keep getting busier and busier at work. I already told him I would strangle him if he waits until my birthday – I find it too cheesy, and this year I’m leaving for a congress just the next day.
So today I was putting together an outfit for his “sexy nurse fantasy” and it hit me: I should show it to him (not wear it), put it in the dresser and if he asks about it, say “It’s right there, in the dresser. I want it to be special”.
I don’t consider wanting to get engaged the same as granting a sexy fantasy, but how do I get the “propose already” message to him?
I’m asking you what do you think this tit-for-tat game, since I’m afraid it could backfire at me (I am that unlucky in life).
Post # 2
I think passive-aggressive game-playing is for immature people who aren’t ready for marriage.
Try clear, honest communication instead.
Post # 3
It sounds like you’re forcing him to propose which is really immature. Showing him a sexy nurse costume and then putting it away until he proposes? I cant imagine he wont just resent you when he finally does.
Post # 4
- Wedding: May 2019 - City, State
Tit for tat is never a healthy way to behave in any relationship, ever. Just have an open conversation with him about this and don’t play games.
Post # 5
I’m asking you what do you think this tit-for-tat game, since I’m afraid it could backfire at me
This is ridiculous and immature. You’re being really stupid IMO.
Post # 6
I appologize I cannot be as mature as you guys, and that I am not willing to take things as serious as others may think I should. That I am willing try to show my SO how all the “shelf surprise” feels.
And Thank you! so much for telling me so much about myself from this post. You obviously walked miles in my shoes and are very confident that showing some panties and not wearing them would make my Boyfriend or Best Friend propose.
Post # 7
elphya2 : I’ve read lots of Bee stories here where the ring is purchased, and no engagement. I would back off a bit and let him plan the time at his own pace. I have to wonder if he feels the otherwise special moment has lost its luster because you seem too eager for the ring. Be patient, and he will propose when he’s ready. An engagement to a guy is different in that he is responsible for making sure the memory he is creating for the both of you is one you’ll want to look back on fondly. It doesn’t help to be bribed or rushed into the moment. Maybe he was going to propose in your birthday, but you’ve made it clear you find that “cheesy”. You’re wanting a proposal, but controlling when it can’t take place, yet demanding it takes place soon. Can you see where he may be at a loss or frustrated? Give him a little breathing room, and he’ll start planning again.
Post # 8
I get where you’re coming from, OP. It’s been three years. He has the ring. It’s not a suprise at this point, and it doesn’t have to be. If he wanted it to be a special surpise, he should have proposed much earlier and not leave the dang thing out where you can see it.
I think it’s good that you’re not walking on eggshells around him about it and seem to have some humor about it which is good. So many posters seem afraid to talk about it with their partners which is sad.
Have you discussed a timeline with him? It’s not just up to him. I would find a time where you are both in a good mood and bring it up in a lighthearted way. Like “hey bae, I can’t wait to spend the rest of our lives together. Have you thought more about a timeline where we could get engaged? I’m excited to move forward and would like to hear your thoughts on that!” and see what he says. That way you will know about how long he’s thinking and if you don’t want to wait til your birthday, well he already knows that lol
Post # 9
- Wedding: May 2019 - City, State
elphya2 : You literally asked what everyone thought of “this tit-for-tat game.” Tit for tat and games never work out well. They are silly and immature. No one made any harsh judgement calls about you as a person, they just made it clear that it’s an immature thing to do and healthy relationships don’t resort to that sort of behavior.
No one is saying his behavior is acceptable. It’s immature too. But being immature back won’t get you anywhere. The only way to move past this is to end the games and have a serious, open and honest conversation with him. No hinting, no games. Just hey, I’m ready to move forward now, when do you think we can do that? If he won’t have that convo, then that’s another problem.
ETA: tit for tat games backfiring isn’t about being unlucky – they never end well so just avoid them.
Post # 10
elphya2 : You asked for these opinions, I’m not sure why you are responding with sarcasm and irritation.
No, it likely will not go well. Yes, it is passive-aggressive and unhealthy.
Instead of communicating with him how you feel and what your needs are, and attempting to resolve the situation, you are trying to invent a way to use sexy-time to “show him how the shelf surprise feels.”
The Bees are right. You need to learn how to communicate through words, rather than games, as communication is key for the health of a relationship.
Post # 11
elphya2 : I totally understand why you feel the way you do about the pending engagement. You know he’s got the ring, but you don’t wanna just “slide” into an engagement without him formally asking you (however simple or complex of a proposal not being a factor here). I also understand why you think that showing him how something exciting and fun can be ruined when you already know about it and it’s in your face every single day, but the person who needs to do an action to make it exciting and fun is actively choosing not to do that thing for whatever reason.
How long has he had it? Honestly, it seems cruel for him to keep it in a place where you can always see it, as it’s a constant reminder that he’s not quite ready to ask you yet. It also probably hurts because now any barriers to him asking you are purely emotional/situational, as the financial hurdle of buying a ring has already been jumped.
Why don’t you have a conversation with him about how this is making you feel, rather than playing games with the nurse costume? You definitely don’t him to propose from a perspective of “fine, you keep bothering me about it so here’s your ring”, as that’ll lead to resentment on both behalfs (is this a word?).
Talk to him, bee. Get to the bottom of this.
Post # 12
I will never understand the idiocy of buying a ring and letting it sit for ages while your partner slowly goes crazy. There’s literally no excuse for this that makes any sense. A surprise? Please don’t be ridiculous. Waiting until you’re less busy? Life has a funny way of changing things around on you when you least expect it. I’d just tell him that the time is now and that there’s absolutely nothing”special” about being made to wait indefinitely for a proposal.
Post # 14
Hahah maybe I’m just as immature as you, but I think the nurse outfit thing is funny. it depends what your relationship dynamic is like, but that’s totally something I would do to tease my husband about something and he’d think it was funny and get the point.
BUT that only really works if you’re just comically exasperated. It sounds like you’re past that at this stage, so a direct conversation is probably your best bet.
Post # 15
wolfeyes : My first thought was also that the idea with the nurse outfit was funny. I could see myself and my husband joking about this, as well.
elphya2 : It seems from your post that you are trying to play a tit-for-tat game, and I do think that this will backfire on you. I understand why you are frustrated, and you have the right to be frustrated in your situation. However, the answer is never to play a tit-for-tat game with someone you love, no matter what the issue is. That will backfire on you, as you suspect it will. Have you had a real, open, and honest conversation with your boyfriend? Also, has it been 5 weeks since he bought the ring? How long has it been since he bought the ring?
happiekrappie : I’m wondering if it has been about 5 weeks since he bought the ring, since she said they initially found the week 3 weeks before their anniversary and then 2 weeks after the anniversary they went on vacation (which I assume just happened, since she posted about it just now).