Post # 1
Hi Bees! New to the site.
I recently ended my engagement. We had been engaged for 6 months, and have dated for almost 5 years. You would think I would be ready to say ‘I do’, I mean, we already live together, but something in me didn’t feel right.
These past few months I struggled with what I thought (even hoped) was cold feet/wedding jitters, but they didn’t seem to go away, even after counseling, reading The Conscious Bride and related material, talking to anyone I could talk to, even to the point of going on medication because of the related anxiety and depression I was experiencing.
While he is a great, caring man, there were a few red flag things I saw, and the major one has to do with his behavior in public. I hate to say it, but even I at times thought he acted like a complete tool or douche bag. I even had friends/acquaitances make it a point to say that he seemed like a player or a flirt. He got defensive when I mentioned this to him. While I don’t think he cheated, I did find this unsettling. And, a week before I called it off, I found out he had a lap dance while out with friends at a strip club months ago…REALLY??? I’ve always been a cool girlfriend, but I think he would have enough respect to know that is not cool when you’re engaged to be married, and not on your bachelor party!!!! He brushed it off, saying he didn’t think it would bother me and was sorry. This really further hurt my trust and faith in him.
There are a few other issues, not huge, but which didn’t help my ever-growing anxiety. Was I wrong to call it off, especially for feeling uneasy? Did I overreact?
Post # 3
@ClassyCuse: I think you need to trust yourself and your instincts!!! We can’t tell you here whether you were right or wrong to do it. And truth is, I don’t even think there’s always a “right or wrong”. All they are are choices, you’ve seen behaviours you’re not willing to accept and you decided that wasn’t for you.
Sounds very reasonable, IMHO!
Post # 4
Sounds very reasonable to trust your instinct. You tried counseling, talking to friends, reading books, and you still didn’t feel right so I think you did the right thing. Its also good to realize that just because you get married doesn’t mean he’s suddenly going to turn into a man. If he’s still out flirty and acting like a tool, that isn’t going to change just because he has a wife.
Post # 5
It does sound like you’re much happier now that you’re out of the relationship, and that’s definitely a good sign!
Post # 6
I’m sorry, but no one can tell you what you should do / should have done with your relationship…
The bottom line is: Do you love him? Do you think the problems between you two can be solved? Do you want to spend the rest of your life with him – meaning you will have to work through all sorts of problems as the years go by?
It’s not about if you overreacted over details you don’t like; if you dislike the details enough to not want to marry him, then that’s what counts. Better ask yourself these questions now than after marrying him!
Post # 7
@jo.lee: Some days!! Yesterday I had a really bad day where I questioned whether or not I did the right thing, especially, as I said, we’d been together 5 years, are great partners, and built a great life.
The hardest part is really explaining ‘it doesn’t feel right’, especially to a man you’ve been with for so long. I guess I acknowledged some of the concrete things (his behavior) because I can’t quite put words to my gut/instincts.
Post # 8
As the previous posters have noted, we aren’t there, we don’t know you or him, and we really can’t tell you whether or not you did the right thing. But it sounds like was not an impulsive decision on your part. You seem to have given it much thought and put a lot of work into your decision. Sometimes, decisions based on instinct are very difficult, because the rational part of our brain looks for data. (What are the concrete reasons for my decision?) while instinct is just eating away at us.
Anyway, it is always (imo anyway) better to err on the side of caution. You have doubts. It doesn’t make sense to enter a marriage with hesitation. You want to know beyond the shadow of a doubt that you are doing the right thing on your wedding day — and he deserves a bride that is sure of that too.
If, in the future, you find you cannot live without him, and find that his flaws are something you can live with (they all have them..the key is finding flaws you can live with), or if he matures and changes his behavior, you can always marry later. There is no reason why if you both feel differently in year (or whenever) that that can’t be an option later. Breaking off an engagement now doesn’t have to mean that he is never again part of your life (though maybe temporarily you may need some distance)…..or that you won’t ever be engaged in the future.
Post # 9
I think only you are the one who can truly know. But I think that one of the best tools in a relationship is your gut feeling. If you don’t feel right about something than chances are someting is wrong. However from reading your story it didn’t sound like your relationship was completely un-mendable. If you want him back that is 🙂
Post # 10
trust your instincts, and move on with that choice. we can’t tell you what to do!
Post # 11
I think if you felt like it wasn’t right to you then you were right to go with you gut and call things off. It’s better now then later if you were to get married and realized you made a mistake. You didn’t like the fact that he flirted and that’s ok what’s the point in being engaged if your going to act like that. I wish you the best in the future and I think you did the right thing for you.
Post # 12
Although I wouldn’t take the lap dance thing to seriously. As long as it was just a bach party and not a regular basis. but follow your heart.
Post # 13
It sounds like you made the right choice! We can’t tell you yes/no, but following your instincts is always a great thing 🙂
Post # 14
Welcome to weddingbee!
I agree with the others, you’ve got to trust your instincts. Something was telling you the relationship wasn’t right. You did your due diligence by trying to work out your feelings through counseling, reading, and talking to others. It doesn’t sound like cold feet or a knee-jerk reaction to me. In my opinion it sounds like you did the right thing. It must not have been easy. I hope you have the support of your friends and family (it sounds like at least some of them saw the red flags too), and take good care of yourself.
Post # 15
Thank you all for your comments. I think, throughout this entire process, I’ve been searching for an answer about what the right thing or wrong thing to do is. Truth is, there probably is not right or wrong thing. I just had to go with the information I had in front of me and make the best choice from there.
I guess my biggest question was, did I overreact? Like, yes, boys will be boys, but it did bother me that he didn’t know better not to go get a lap dance – and it wasn’t a bachelor party thing – which I would possibly let slide. I think it was probably his lack of self-awareness regarding his behavior and perhaps deceitfulness (whether he recognized he’s withholding info or not) that made me really concerned. It’s amazing that a few minor things can trump all of the wonderful qualities he has.
Post # 16
To your question: did you overreact? I don’t know the answer to that.
But I will ask: did he know your expectations/feelings about strip club activities prior to going and getting the lap dance? Knowing that it bothered you that much, would he do it again or respect your feelings?
Yeah, he should know better than to go and get a lap dance while he’s in a relationship. It was stupid of him. Stupid enough to not build a life with him? Did he screw up bad, or is it who he is and will be? Only you can answer that.
Better answer it now than after you are married.
For me, I guess it would all depend on his reactions to my feelings about it, and on how he can take responsibility for his actions and work through it with me. Trust can be rebuilt; but it depends on your ability to let go and on his behaviour after.
Some people are able to work through cheating and be happy after, some others slam the door and never look back. It really depends on each situation and the people involved in it. We’re not you, so we can’t tell you what’s right or wrong in your particular situation. Search within yourself and trust your instincts. Down the road, make the decision that will have you say that you have no regrets.