Post # 16
Sorry bee, but I don’t think he’s ever going to marry you. If you’re not ready to leave yet, then give it ONE more year but NO more.
You also need to talk to an attorney now and get some paperwork in place for getting you out of the mortgage when the time comes.
Post # 17
By the way, willingly looking at and discussing rings with you online one minute and telling you he’s “not there yet” and doesn’t know when he will be the next, is a red flag and slap in your face.
Let him know you will not allow yourself to be treated like an option. I wouldn’t marry someone like that in your place if he proposed today.
Post # 18
One thing l see in your post( l have seen it in others too) is the , to me, odd language he uses when discussing marriage. He talks of it ‘being a possibility’ ‘going to happen’ ‘ happening naturally ‘ . All passive phrases as if engagement and marriage was something that somehow just occurs rather than something one actively makes happen.
l don’t think he wants to get married really, or at least not in the foreseeable future. His calling discussion of it ‘pressure’ is telling. He may vaguely think it would be ok sometime in the distant future and he calls ( such a infuriating masculine trait) what he thinks and wants ‘logical’ , the inference being you aren’t, plus the idea that emotions are in any case inferior.
As pps have said, he seems to have had no problem buying a house, a big committment, though not necessarily to you . Make dead sure you are financially protected there.
l would tell him you want to explain something seriously, and want him to hear you out and not label your concerns pressure or overly emotional etc . Then tell him, clearly and without anger or tears , that marriage and children are a deal breaker to you , that you love him and want these things with him, but if he refuses to allow you equal agency in your own future and can only think of marriage as something that ‘happen naturally’ to him then you can’t see the relationship progressing .
Tell him you don’t want an instant response but you do want a response in the next day or two. Then take it from there. l do hope it turns out well but in the meantime, whether it does or not, do , dear OP, reflect on the idea that wanting an equal say in your own future is normal and desirable, not something any man allows you .
Perhaps your username doesn’t mean you really are hopelessly romantic. I hope so, as it is a condition that doesn’t confer much strength and agency on women . Fine for flowers and chiocolate etc, not for life decisions .
Post # 19
At 33 he knows exactly what he is doing. You have to look at yourself here too. What made you live with him and buy a house with him without engagement or marriage? You had a choice. Were you hoping it would make him more committed because your lives were becoming entwined. Every day you settle for less than marriage, he knows you are getting in deeper without him doing a thing. Words are cheap. Only you can change this. You don’t have to stay and settle for less than you deserve. Houses can be sold or one person can buy out the other. Whatever you do, don’t even think about having a child with him unless he can commit to marriage. Do you want to be a single parent?
Post # 20
I think it sounds like you need to date more. You were 22 when you got together witha 31 year old who had never had a girlfriend? OMG run away, you are in your PRIME, and you’re worried about someone nearly ten years older dithering about whether or not he wants to get married (to you?!). I think if you had more experience, and let’s face it, more boyfriends, you could make a more discerning choice. YOU have the power here – you’re 24, you’ve got your whole life ahead of you. This guy is stringing you on unnecessarily – and the small town stuff? That just meant he was an unattractive prospect to the women of that town. Surely you can do better?
Post # 21
So this guy is 33 years old and can move for you, live with you and buy a house with you. But he can’t commit to a timeline for getting engaged and getting married? That is super concerning.
And what’s even more concerning is he can’t even have a serious conversation with you about it. And I’m sorry but the fact that he’s never had a serious relationship is a major red flag at his age.
All these things on their own are red flags but not necessarily dead ends. But when combined this paints the picture of a man who likes being with you but doesn’t want to marry you.
Im sorry OP but we see this all the time and I don’t want you to get your hopes up.
Post # 22
First issue: You’re so young to have purchased a home without any sort of commitment. Please protect yourself.
Second issue: you and your boyfriend may be “good” together, but you don’t sound compatible. I mean that in terms of what you both want out of life and how you go about pursuing things in life. You just need to decide if you’ll be okay potentially wasting another year with someone who may not want anything further with you. You’re young, the relationship is relatively young, maybe take some more time to enjoy just dating before succumbing to the engagmeent pressure.
Post # 23
So he was sure enough about you to buy a house with you but not sure enough to marry you. Ok
You are completely wasting your time with this guy.
Post # 24
I feel like there was a reason a 31 year old picked a 22 year old to date. And it wasn’t for marriage. I think you sound extremely smart, stable and competent, and I agree with pps on setting a walk date. I don’t like that he doesnt have real reasons for any delay besides pressure. If he had won a million dollars on a lottery ticket, would he wait a year to cash it in? Would he feel “pressured” to take the money? No, because you arent pressured into things you WANT to do.
Post # 25
You should have walked 6 months in when he said he wasn’t interested in marriage or kids. Those are two massive things to he incompatible on and going out and finding people whose views/desire for marriage and kids actually aligns with your own is way easier than trying to force someone into them.
If you want to keep going with this relationship though, I’d give it one more year maximum but like I said I think you’re already given it way more time than you should have.
Post # 26
I am sorry but he sounds like a guy that wants to have one foot out the door for an easy exit. I am surprised he went as far as to look at rings online and then tell you he’s being pressured by you when you inquired further. It doesn’t take long to figure out if someone is the one or not. 2 years is plenty of time, particularly since you two live together and own this home as well as have dual responsibility together such as the dogs. Plenty of ways to figure out if you’re the one he wants to spend the rest of his life with. I feel like many women find themselves in a relationship built on the foundation of convenience. I see it a lot and I have been there. Totally have been there. Right now is no different than 1 year from now. Or even 2 more, etc. Your relationship will continue to get more comfortable. Right now I see him as enjoying having an easier “out” if needed.
Post # 27
Thanks so much for all your replies. I just wanted to give you a small update. I read each of your replies numerous times and spoke through it all with my best friend to figure out where I should go from here.
Yesterday I decided to sit down again and have another conversation with my partner about it and to seek some further clarity. This was a positive conversation without any tears or anger etc. Essentially he said that he knows how important it is to me and that if we stay together that’s what is most likely to happen. While he personally doesn’t value marriage as highly as I do, he isn’t against it and would do it to make me happy when the time is right. He said he is not big on timelines but in his head people would date between 2-7 years before getting married. And because it’s under 2 years now he thinks it is too soon. He said he is on his way to being there but just not so early in the relationship. He said this doesn’t mean he isn’t sure about me and he knows he wants a future with me. He just wants us to date a bit longer before that stuff. If he didn’t want a future together he would just end it now.
I told him that 7 years is too long for me and that my timeline is more along the lines of dating for 2-4 years and getting married between 4-5years of dating just as a rough guide. Then having kids. I said to me there is 2 options: either we figure out we aren’t right in that 2-4 year window and breakup or we stay together and get married/have kids. He said he knows now that those are the options. I said I would likely bring it up again in a year to see where he’s at, cause even I think the timing is slightly too soon right now. He said it may already have happened by then but there’s a chance it might not. He said that as soon as he’s sure the time is right I will be the first to know and he would never string me along. He said that he can’t promise when he will be ready but that when I decide I’m done waiting and if he’s still not ready, he knows that I will leave. And he said that’s definitely not what he wants.
Basically I said I don’t need a guaranteed deadline or timeframe or whatever, I just need to know that if we stay together that we will get married and have kids at some point. Because for me there is no option where we stay together and those things don’t happen. To this he said yes if we stay together that’s what will happen. That’s the path we are already on and the most likely option to him. He believe the chance of us breaking up is very low.
I feel much better about everything after talking with him. And while the way I relayed this conversation might be confusing or still not sit right with some of you. It answered what I was wondering and helped me understand what he was thinking. Basically he knows now that I’m not going to wait around forever and if things aren’t going that way in the next 2 years then I will walk. So now that will be something that is on his mind. I really love him so much and I know he loves me to. So I really believe it will all work out in the end.
Thanks again everyone 💕
Post # 29
- Wedding: November 2020 - Seattle, Washington
He said he is on his way to being there but just not so early in the relationship. He said this doesn’t mean he isn’t sure about me and he knows he wants a future with me. He just wants us to date a bit longer before that stuff.
You know. I am really happy you had a talk. It sounded calm and productive. That’s so awesome. I hope to God that this man keeps his word. I’m not going to comment on him as a person, that’s not my place. Everyone is allowed their own timelines and points where they are ready for big commitments, for whatever reason. But I will say that I have not only read on this message board but heard those exact lines in person from friend’s mouths before.
Be aware of your situation, bee. I’m not giving you the “don’t trust him, leave him, he’s a liar”, blah blah blah. But you seem to have a damn good head on your shoulders. From just what I read, you come across as a smart, strong individual. I would hate for you to be strung along and disappointed come year four. I love the year check-in. That’s great. And you’ve told him what’s to come if you both aren’t on the same page in a couple of years’ time. Also great!
My thoughts are with you, sending tons of good vibes.
Post # 29
“Essentially he said that he knows how important it is to me and that if we stay together that’s what is most likely to happen”
” I said I would likely bring it up again in a year to see where he’s at, cause even I think the timing is slightly too soon right now. He said it may already have happened by then but there’s a chance it might not. “
Well dear OP , if you are happy with that, fine . But to me , that language is still that of a man who has no intention of making any effort whatsoever nor has any real investment in marriage and children and vaguely hopes you will give up hassling him. Possibly one day he might give in and amble down to the courthouse. My guess is any children you have he will see as your business, tho he might be good at playing with them now and then .
If you are having fun with him now and feel you can afford to wait , why not ,you are young and he seems like a pleasant easy going type.
Post # 30
Okay, based on your update, I can give better advice. Your boyfriend’s language is very noncommittal and wishy-washy and it concerns me. Responding to your concerns with something along the lines of “I know that marriage and children is important to you so let’s put a plan / timeline together to work toward that” is very different from what he said to you. OP, he actually gave you a timeline of 4 to 7 years. Which means he wants nearly a solid DECADE of your life (if we include the 2 years you’ve already been dating) before he decides if he can commit to you. That is unreasonable. I understand that you countered that timeline with a shorter one and I applaud that, but please LISTEN to what he is already telling you. If your boyfriend knows that he wants to marry you like he said, why wait for so many years? You’ve been dating for 2 years and another 1-2 years is reasonable. So, why did he come up with a completely unreasonable timeline for marriage? What is blocking him from moving forward quicker? Is it finances? Is it issues in the relationship? Or is he simply stalling and running out the clock to hold onto you knowing that he has zero intention of every marrying? Please seriously ask yourself these questions…and to put this in perspective, because you’re young: I want to assure you that young people are getting married all the time and your age is not a reason to invest 4 to 7 more years in this relationship. I actually met my spouse right before I turned 23. Started talking marriage at 25. I was engaged at 26 and married within the same year. And I had a baby at 27. In 4 year’s time! Your boyfriend wants another 4 years to DECIDE if he wants to marry and I was engaged, married and pregnant within 4 years. Now not everybody does things so fast, but it shows that if your significant other wants to build a life with you, they will be proactive and intentional about it. There is no intentionality and no plan in any of the things your boyfriend said and that’s what concerns me. Don’t waste your time and the better part of your 20’s investing in a man and relationship that is not eager to provide you with what you need to be happy. If marriage and children is important to you, I’d leave him in 1 year if a ring wasn’t on my finger. That’s the year 3 mark and plenty of time to decide. Otherwise, this man will drag you along forever with the hope that marriage MIGHT happen, knowing that he actually has zero intention to commit. Sorry OP.