Not Engaged Yet

Engaged but no not really?

We have been together for many years and my SO considers us engaged. He wants me to start planning the wedding. We are planning on eloping/honeymoon then having a very small celebration when we return. I don't feel engaged. I want a loving proposal and a ring. No ifs ands or buts. We are looking at rings. He just seems very blah about everything. He wants me to take care of everything which people have told me is normal. It's just that I don't want to start planning a wedding without a proposal. Is saying u want to get hitched a proposal? I haven't announced it or even told anyone because it doesn't feel like I'm engaged. I want to take engagement photos. I want all of that. I'm still gf status. Am I being ridiculous? If he doesn't end up doing a genuine proposal I'm going to be really disappointed 

Re: Engaged but no not really?

  • We have been together for many years and my SO considers us engaged. He wants me to start planning the wedding. We are planning on eloping/honeymoon then having a very small celebration when we return. I don't feel engaged. I want a loving proposal and a ring. No ifs ands or buts. We are looking at rings. He just seems very blah about everything. He wants me to take care of everything which people have told me is normal. It's just that I don't want to start planning a wedding without a proposal. Is saying u want to get hitched a proposal? I haven't announced it or even told anyone because it doesn't feel like I'm engaged. I want to take engagement photos. I want all of that. I'm still gf status. Am I being ridiculous? If he doesn't end up doing a genuine proposal I'm going to be really disappointed 
    You're not being ridiculous if this is how you feel. If proposal with a ring is what you need/want you need to clearly communicate that to him. Does he know how strongly you feel about this? 

    To the bolded; I don't think there is a "normal" for this. My H and I planned different aspects of our wedding; there were things he cared more strongly about, there were things I didn't care about. But we had the expectation that we were both doing it together. Do you want to take care of everything, or do you want his input? Weddings involve two people and you shouldn't be expected to just do everything.

    I think you both need be on the same page here, and it doesn't sound like you are. You need to have a clear, honest conversation about your relationship, where you both want it to go, and how you both want to move forward. It sounds like you're in different places, and you want to work that out before you do any planning. 
    CMGragain
  • We have been together for many years and my SO considers us engaged. He wants me to start planning the wedding. We are planning on eloping/honeymoon then having a very small celebration when we return. I don't feel engaged. I want a loving proposal and a ring. No ifs ands or buts. We are looking at rings. He just seems very blah about everything. He wants me to take care of everything which people have told me is normal. It's just that I don't want to start planning a wedding without a proposal. Is saying u want to get hitched a proposal? I haven't announced it or even told anyone because it doesn't feel like I'm engaged. I want to take engagement photos. I want all of that. I'm still gf status. Am I being ridiculous? If he doesn't end up doing a genuine proposal I'm going to be really disappointed 
    It sounds like you guys need to sit down and have a heart to heart. You need to tell him what is important to you and why (it’s perfectly fine to take a little while to think about this). For me, I wanted a proposal because I wanted to know that this was something he wanted as well. He proposed in our bedroom after work, so no over the top stuff but it was important to me that an actual proposal happened. It sounds like you guys have very different expectations for what being engaged/ having a wedding entails. That is part of why wedding planning is stressful, because you have to compromise on your vision and he has to too.

    I wouldn’t start planning until you guys have a clear idea of how long you want to be engaged for, what your budget is, what your priorities are, etc.
    charlotte989875CMGragainSTARMOON44
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    You need to communicate with him about what you want. What you told us - tell him.

    It's totally OK to want a proposal. It was a really special moment for us, and it made me incredibly happy. 

    As far as planning goes, my H was very involved. He actually picked out our venue, stuffed envelopes, made the centerpieces with me, etc. 

    missJeanLouisecharlotte989875STARMOON44MissKittyDanger
  • Have you told him an "official" proposal was important to you? Would that be a deal breaker if he didn't want to do a big proposal? Either way, it's important to talk to him about his and your expectations; not just about the wedding but life together in general. Start that habit now.

    As far as him being involved, that really depends on the couple. My H was pretty involved with the planning, but I probably did more, just because my job is a little more flexible than his and I had more time than he did.
  • edited October 9
    If you don't feel engaged then you're not engaged. It sounds like the two of you aren't ready to be married if you can't even communicate well enough to determine whether or not you are engaged and what is important to you.
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  • Yes I have communicated with him about how important this is to me a lot. I have asked when he's going to propose and have said propose without a ring and he won't even do that. Idk if he feels weird about it or what this is about. He says he wants to skip everything and just get married. I guess in that way it's romantic.

    It's just weird telling everyone hey we're getting married no he didn't propose or get me a ring. My parents siblings and friends would flat out say wtf? I can actually here them questioning the whole thing in my mind already. I'm keeping this to myself which also sucks. We've discussed all of this and idk y but I feel like I'm pushing him into this? Which he says that I'm not but wouldn't he have proposed? Not sure if that's all in my head.. but I always felt if a man really wanted marriage he would propose
  • CMGragainCMGragain
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 25 Answers
    member
    edited October 10
    Yes I have communicated with him about how important this is to me a lot. I have asked when he's going to propose and have said propose without a ring and he won't even do that. Idk if he feels weird about it or what this is about. He says he wants to skip everything and just get married. I guess in that way it's romantic.

    It's just weird telling everyone hey we're getting married no he didn't propose or get me a ring. My parents siblings and friends would flat out say wtf? I can actually here them questioning the whole thing in my mind already. I'm keeping this to myself which also sucks. We've discussed all of this and idk y but I feel like I'm pushing him into this? Which he says that I'm not but wouldn't he have proposed? Not sure if that's all in my head.. but I always felt if a man really wanted marriage he would propose
    I mentioned in your other thread that my niece eloped two weeks ago.  She was from a very wealthy family, so budget was not a consideration.  They just went to the courthouse in NYC and were married.  No fuss.  It was what they BOTH wanted.  Her parents had been told that they were going to be married soon.  That is all.  You do not pre-announce an elopement.

    After you are married it is fine to send out formal marriage announcements to friends and relatives that tell them that you are now married.  This does not mean that they should send you a gift.  It is just a nice way of letting people know officially.  No other information should be provided in the announcement.

    Bride's Full Name
    and
    Groom's Full Name
    announce their marriage
    Date of ceremony
    City, State

    I question if you really want to marry someone who does not put your wishes first.  From your description, he sounds reluctant.  I think you might want to wait a while before making such a big commitment when the two of you cannot even decide about becoming "officially" engaged..
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • Yes I have communicated with him about how important this is to me a lot. I have asked when he's going to propose and have said propose without a ring and he won't even do that. Idk if he feels weird about it or what this is about. He says he wants to skip everything and just get married. I guess in that way it's romantic.

    It's just weird telling everyone hey we're getting married no he didn't propose or get me a ring. My parents siblings and friends would flat out say wtf? I can actually here them questioning the whole thing in my mind already. I'm keeping this to myself which also sucks. We've discussed all of this and idk y but I feel like I'm pushing him into this? Which he says that I'm not but wouldn't he have proposed? Not sure if that's all in my head.. but I always felt if a man really wanted marriage he would propose
    So do you want the proposal for you or because you don't know how to explain it to other people? I didn't want an engagement ring, and my H proposed by sticking a post it on our dog (after we basically just talked about things and agreed we both wanted to get married). One of the first questions everyone asked was "Ooooh can I see your ring??? How did he propose???" I just said I didn't want one, we went on vacation with the money instead, and owned the proposal story. That's what happened, and I would have felt super awkward if he had done some grand gesture.

    The other part of this is that everyone has different "love languages" (I hate that phrase). But what that kind of means is that everyone communicates differently, and the don't always have the same priorities. Maybe your FI thinks he's being more romantic by saying "we don't need any of that other fluff, let's just run away and get married," but maybe he's not super committed. It sounds like you have different priorities and definitions of what it means to be engaged, etc. This is a conversation you need to have before you get married. If he would say he straight up doesn't ever want to formally propose, would that make you not want to marry him? Or is there some kind of middle ground here?
    charlotte989875knottie8bf96acb55161163southernbelle0915
  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    I think you two are on vastly different pages with the wants and needs, and both of you are going to have to figure out what you think is non-negotiable and what you can compromise on.

    It sounds like he'd be perfectly fine just eloping. All he wants is to be married to you. (It's also possible that he wants a wedding, he just doesn't want to do any of the work for it, which would not be okay.) However, you want (much) more than that.

    I was in the middle of you two - I did not care about a lot of wedding trappings, had no need to get engagement pictures, etc., but I did want to celebrate with all our friends and family, and for that we had a large traditional wedding. DH was pretty much on the same page, so there wasn't a whole lot of compromise involved for us, but that sort of middle ground between all-the-wedding-things and none of them is where you may need to get to. You guys need to have a discussion about what you both want, and how you can do some of the things you really want and even if he's not interested in any or all of it, he should be willing to do it for you. If he does feel strongly about something like a small wedding, you need to see if that's something you can approach or make work.

    You do need to tell him that just because he personally doesn't care about something is not enough reason to veto doing something you care about. You care about having a ring, you care about him proposing, and you wish he would care about that just for your sake.

    To some extent, if it's you who cares to have something wedding-wise, you will have to be prepared to do much of the work for it. If he doesn't want a big wedding and is just going along with it to please you, then you're probably going to have to plan a lot of the wedding. However, if there's any part that he expresses opinions on, or that you just need help with, you should feel free to delegate that to him and he should be willing to put that work in even if he doesn't feel strongly about it.

    Anniversary

    charlotte989875southernbelle0915
  • Yes it feels really unromantic to me. He thinks romance is him being here every day being devoted and helping around our house. I do find that sweet and caring but I don't really consider it romantic. My definson took of devoted is a real commitment. He thinks he is committed enough already.

    I've been doing a lot of reading and it seems like it's become more and more common for men to not want to buy a ring. We spoke about this and he admitted he doesn't really understand us having rings and he thinks we shouldn't get any anymore. That we don't need them at all. It seems really odd that a man doesn't want to wear a ring? And not have his girl wear one? Isn't that supposed to say hey we are off market and committed? 

    Im even more confused now because he had me searching through rings and wanted me to have a nice one to show off. I've looked for a while now so it makes me angry he had me waste that time. He's talking about DeBeers conspiracies and how he would only consider lab diamonds. Then says we don't need any. 

    So so I said ok let's announce it and when people ask you can say you didn't want them. He wants me to say I didn't want them either and I told him no I'm not saying that. Why should I have to lie about my happiness? Why do I have to say something that's not true?  Having no rings makes me feel non worthy and that I had to sacrifice something I consider absolutely necessary, He said I'm now being superficial and shallow and he says he is going to convince me that the rings aren't necessary. 

    Am am I shallow? He had me looking through real life pics of ring after ring and now there's no ring coming? I'm angry and I feel heart broken. He says he wants to get married but I can't get these strange thoughts out of my mind.. that he would get some OTHER BETTER girl a ring just not me. These are irrational thoughts 

  • Yes it feels really unromantic to me. He thinks romance is him being here every day being devoted and helping around our house. I do find that sweet and caring but I don't really consider it romantic. My definson took of devoted is a real commitment. He thinks he is committed enough already.

    I've been doing a lot of reading and it seems like it's become more and more common for men to not want to buy a ring. We spoke about this and he admitted he doesn't really understand us having rings and he thinks we shouldn't get any anymore. That we don't need them at all. It seems really odd that a man doesn't want to wear a ring? And not have his girl wear one? Isn't that supposed to say hey we are off market and committed? 

    Im even more confused now because he had me searching through rings and wanted me to have a nice one to show off. I've looked for a while now so it makes me angry he had me waste that time. He's talking about DeBeers conspiracies and how he would only consider lab diamonds. Then says we don't need any. 

    So so I said ok let's announce it and when people ask you can say you didn't want them. He wants me to say I didn't want them either and I told him no I'm not saying that. Why should I have to lie about my happiness? Why do I have to say something that's not true?  Having no rings makes me feel non worthy and that I had to sacrifice something I consider absolutely necessary, He said I'm now being superficial and shallow and he says he is going to convince me that the rings aren't necessary. 

    Am am I shallow? He had me looking through real life pics of ring after ring and now there's no ring coming? I'm angry and I feel heart broken. He says he wants to get married but I can't get these strange thoughts out of my mind.. that he would get some OTHER BETTER girl a ring just not me. These are irrational thoughts 

    So, I don't think you're shallow but it definitely seems like you're concerned about the ring. I do get feeling disappointed when he had you looking at them to pick one out and then decided it wasn't necessary. Have you told him how you feel? Not "hey where's my ring?" but "hey we talked about this thing and I got my hopes up and now it's not happening and I'm confused and hurt." 

    I don't understand what you mean about your separate definitions of devoted/committed. Have you TOLD him what you find romantic and what you need from him? Everyone is different; communication style, needs, wants, expectations. No one can read our minds; the only way for our partner to know is if we actually spell it out for them. Don't hint, don't beat around the bush, expressly tell him what you need that you're not getting.

    Also, he's a little right about DeBeers, etc. The wedding ring industry was based off of a marketing ploy BUT it's turned into such a huge part of our culture that it seems more normal to have a ring than to not. All my life I've known men who don't want to wear wedding rings for one reason or another (comfort, their work, etc). I personally didn't think we needed them, but it was important to my husband so I compromised and we both have wedding rings. 
    charlotte989875CMGragain
  • FWIW, I have a lab sapphire. If you want a diamond IMO you should get a diamond (in his budget!), but if you're not stuck on wanting one you might mention what you would like to him. Again, it's fine that he doesn't want/need a ring to show his commitment. But YOU want one and he should want to give you one because it's what you want. Not because DeBeers marketing told him you wanted it, but because YOU did.

    I also agree that doing things for you around the house is not romantic. It's part of the social contract you have when you live with someone. You do chores because you live there, duh.
    image
    charlotte989875CMGragainahoywedding
  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    Well, he told you he wants to marry you. While not a fancy proposal with a ring, that's a commitment. It's still okay to say what PP suggested above - "Hey, I still want this, plus you got my hopes up" but I'm not entirely sure what more than "the plan is marriage" you're looking for in terms of commitment, other than making sure you don't Roy and Pam it and never set a date.

    So he's probably thinking he's fulfilling what you're currently saying you want, i.e. commitment. He's committed, and doesn't know how to be more committed. However, if you communicate well about what you specifically want - a ring (of some kind), a proposal, romantic gestures (give examples - unexpected flowers are romantic, chores without being asked are not, although they are part of the selfless commitment to one another you have to live every day), then he should be willing to do those things, or at the very least compromise on them.

    Anniversary

    ahoywedding
  • H didn't propose with a ring but he did agree that if I wanted a ring, we could get one. I shopped, brought him to the store that I liked and he paid. Our "will you marry me" was not what a lot of people would consider romantic but it worked for us. H does not want to wear a wedding ring (we didn't even buy him one to exchange in the ceremony) and since it isn't my hand, I didn't push it.

    I agree with PPs that you need to have a discussion about feelings with your partner. If you are not feeling heard or respected, work needs to be done. You may want to google "Languages of Love" as you might be on very different pages of what you see as  = love. Perhaps you are words of affirmation and he is acts of service. That might explain a few things.

    charlotte989875
  • CMGragainCMGragain
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 25 Answers
    member
    edited October 11
    OP, please sit down and write five good reasons why you want to marry this man.  None of them can be "because I love him," "because he needs me", "because I need him,"  or "because he is so hot."
    I had no problem doing this 41 years ago.  We have been very happily married.  It is so easy to fall in love with the wrong man.  I think it is part of growing up.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • So I see this both ways. In describing reasons you want "the ring" you've used reasons like "I want to be off the market" and "my family would say wtf?" "having no ring makes me feel not worthy." These statements sound extremely shallow. Your other reasons: "it's romantic" "it would make it feel real for me" are less shallow, but do make me question why you put so much importance (literally agreeing to marry someone you obviously want to marry) on a piece of jewelry. 

    Either way, the two of you are not seeing eye to eye. You're hinging your agreement to marry this man on a piece of jewelry. He doesn't want your agreement to get married to hinge on a piece of jewelry and thinks y'all already agreed to get married, so how are you not engaged? I would highly recommend BOTH of you read this book. It will help you learn about yourselves and each other. And, if you take it seriously, it will spark conversation and understanding that will help you navigate this and other conversations: https://www.amazon.com/Love-Languages-Secret-that-Lasts/dp/080241270X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1507724892&sr=8-1&keywords=5+love+languages 
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  • I get it OP. I wanted a ring, not because I care about the jewelry but because I wanted a physical symbol of our commitment. My DH had been saying for YEARS he wanted to get married. He told me within 6 months of dating we were going to get married. So I needed someTHING to make it feel real, to feel like we were moving forward with our plans, that we could actually start wedding planning. 

    Re: DeBeers conspiracy/ diamond industry, check out Etsy, estate sales, auctions, etc for old diamonds/ diamond jewelry. My MIL gifted us an old ring of hers with some small diamonds in it that we used in my wedding band but could have been used in the E-ring if I had chosen something different. Custom bands aren’t too expensive once you have the stones.
    charlotte989875
  • I don't think there is anything wrong with wanting a ring, and I don't think it's shallow. I wanted a ring. I'm with @missJeanLouise in that I wanted a physical symbol of the commitment/next stage of our relationship. No our marriage didn't hinge on whether or not he bought a ring, but it was important to me, and I don't think there is anything with wanting a ring, just like I don't think there is anything with not wanting a ring either. 

    The problem, as I see it OP, is that neither of you seem to be on the same page with rings, and it sounds like he is trying to pressure you into his side, without respecting yours. 
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    member
    We have been together for many years and my SO considers us engaged. He wants me to start planning the wedding. We are planning on eloping/honeymoon then having a very small celebration when we return. I don't feel engaged. I want a loving proposal and a ring. No ifs ands or buts. We are looking at rings. He just seems very blah about everything. He wants me to take care of everything which people have told me is normal. It's just that I don't want to start planning a wedding without a proposal. Is saying u want to get hitched a proposal? I haven't announced it or even told anyone because it doesn't feel like I'm engaged. I want to take engagement photos. I want all of that. I'm still gf status. Am I being ridiculous? If he doesn't end up doing a genuine proposal I'm going to be really disappointed 
    Truth is, if you both consider yourselves as getting married at some future point, you are engaged, whether or not you feel it and whether or not he "proposed."

    I think at this point I would talk to your SO about it and tell him that you aren't happy with his approach: "SO, I know you would like me to take care of all the plans, but this approach that you're taking is leaving me feeling taken for granted by all these expectations rather than loved and cherished. I'd appreciate it if you could show me more clearly that you're taking my needs and feelings into consideration. Leaving me to make all the plans isn't doing that for me."

    Consider getting couples' counseling before you proceed any further with wedding plans so you can be on the same page when you make them.
    CMGragainernursej
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta
    Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
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    You are absolutely not shallow for wanting a ring. If you were saying you wouldn't agree to marry him unless the ring was at least 1 carat or whatever, this would be a different discussion. Whatever the history behind it, wedding rings are a visible symbol of commitment in our society, and it's ok to want that. (It's also 100% ok to not want that). His desires shouldn't trump yours, and you shouldn't settle for a guy that chooses to convince you to want something else instead of giving you what you want. 

    It truly sounds like he's more interested in marrying and committing to you on his terms, rather than going out of his way to make you happy. Frankly, it's pretty selfish. I would be thinking long and hard about whether I want to marry a guy that's not willing to bend a little to make me happy. Getting married/engaged is one of the happiest times in a long relationship. If he's not willing to do for you now, what is it going to look like when you want him to compromise over something that's not as exciting/fun? 
  • You need couples counseling.
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
    CMGragain
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