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advice/opinions wanted

Hi ladies -

I don't normally post here (or anywhere much, as you can see from my post count!) but I lurk here and there.  I have a question that I hope does not come across as insensitive or offensive - I just know that this board is very active and thought maybe some of you would have some insight.

I have a very close friend who is frustrated that her bf isn't proposing.  They've been together for 5+ years and have talked extensively about marriage, both assume they'll be together forever, etc.  She just doesn't know why it's not happening.  They are both 30, have stable careers, are financially fine, and want kids.

I ask about this only because she has asked me for my opinion and advice, and I have absolutely no idea what to say.  

My question is:  is there a point when you just give up?  An ultimatum is obviously a terrible idea, but so is waiting around forever when you don't seem to be on the same page.  She's ready, he doesn't seem to be, so what is the answer?  Waiting for another 5 years to see if he finally gets ready?

TIA for any insights.

CN:  She's ready to get married, he's not.  How long do you wait?
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Re: advice/opinions wanted

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    Only she can decide how long she's willing to wait around.  She really needs to ask herself if she's willing to spend the rest of her life with a man that may never marry her.
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    Of course you're right - I just wish I could come up with some kind of comfort to give her.  I think it's hard because he does TALK about marriage, in a way that assumes it will happen, and then . . . nothing.
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    Great advice from PPs. Also, I don't know how close you are with your friend, but she also might be venting to you and actually not saying what she needs to say to her BF. She needs to actually have a serious talk with him about the future, not just musings about "one day" to find out if they actually are on the same page or not.
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    Polo said what i was thinking, that at this point your friend should sit down and talk to her BF about a time line or at least what he sees happening in the next few years and that she should share with him what she would like to see happen and from there figure out whether to stay or leave. 
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    Thanks for all the advice so far - I like the timeline ideas.  I'm not sure exactly what she's said to him, but you're right - discussing your future together is not the same as issuing an ultimatum.  

    The kids thing is a big one - I think men do sometimes tend to be clueless since they have no deadline biologically.  That's one reason my H and I were married 11 months after we met - we have very little time left to have kids so we wanted to start trying as soon as possible!  
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    Totally agree with Polo.  I was in the same position with my BF and I felt guilty at one point for wanting marriage and a kid because I felt like I was "pushing" him to do something he wasn't sure he wanted to.  I sat down (at 32) and took a hard look at what I wanted and where I could compromise.  It was a tough conversation to have but I knew that giving up marriage and a child would not work for me in the end...no matter how much I loved him.  I told him he had till the end of last year to figure out what he wanted from this relationship and if it wasn't marriage and a kid then we wern't going to work.  It was the honest truth.  Some might call that an ultimatum but I didn't say propose or else, I said figure out what you want.  Luckily he decided that he wanted us and that future we talked about and went and bought a ring...now I'm just waiting for him to give it to me.

    If your friend is not being open with him about where she sees this going and is just upset that he hasn't proposed after all this time, that might be part of the issue.  Guys it seems are perfectly able to keep status quo and need a kick in the butt sometimes.  I think it's hard for those of us without the guy who "just knows" you are the one and the balls to propose in a timely manner.  We all want that fairytale and its rough when we have to tell them to $h!t or get off the pot.


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    DanieKADanieKA member
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    edited March 2012
    I'll ditto PP's and totally agree with Polo, too. I'll tell you, for me marriage and children are important to me. I love my FI dearly and it may shock people to hear me say this (and it would have torn me apart to do so), but if he didn't want the same things. Or wasn't prepared to marry me in 2 or 3 years (from now, not from when we met), I would walk away. I know I would grow to resent him if I reached 40, 45, 50 and we were still together, unmarried, and without children. I was very honest with myself and with him (in a gentle way) about what I wanted and my expectations out of a relationship. Sure, when we were first dating it was all about getting to know each other, seeing if we were compatible and having fun. But I knew at that point in my life (I was a week shy of 28 when I met FI), I wasn't going to stay in a relationship for 5, 7, 9 years without getting married. Marriage and babies are too important to me. 

    Again, just ditto Polo. This might be one of the hardest decisions she's had to make in her life (we're talking about love here, so yeah...a Big F'in Deal). Is she willing to live happily and not dwell if they were to be long term partners with no kids? Would she be happy being long term unmarried partners with kids (a Brad and Angie, or Kurt and Goldie situation). Or is marriage and babies so important to her that she wouldn't be happy giving those up? If so, she must, must, must walk away if he can't give that to her. It doesn't make him a bad person. He might not want to hurt her so he talks about marriage. But if he loves her he'll be honest and let her go, if he truly doesn't want what she want, because he shouldn't have to get married and have kids just to please her, either.

    I hope your friend and her guy can come to some sort of resolution. Hopefully a little communication about timelines and patience clears everything up! 
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    I was on that situation a couple of months ago because i am going to medical school in august 2014 and i at least wanted to be engaged by then, at first bf was weird about because he is like an extreme planner and he didnt like the idea of being 23 and married, we had a discussion and i let it go. The week afterwards he said he had thought about it and that he wantd to get married the first summer after i started medicAl school, and thats how we decided on our wedding date for may 2015. What did it for us was talking about it, how it made me uncomfortable to go to medical school without even being engaged and stuff, and i let him decide because ultimately its when he is ready to pop the question. She has to sit down and talk to him about her worries and hopes, and ask him what the holdup is about. Who know maybe he has it all planned out


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    FI and I were together for 5 1/2 years before he proposed to me. We always talked about getting married and I knew that I wanted to be with him forever. I always hinted about a ring/proposal but after a certain point i kind of gave up on the hints because I figured it was probably just stressing FI out more about it.

    Well, once I accepted the fact that it may not happen for another few years, which I was ok with, it happened!

    Maybe your friends BF is planning something sometime soon. I dont think that just because they've been together for 5 years, that it means that he's never going to propose to her, maybe he just needs a little more time to get the "perfect" ring and have the "perfect" proposal
    imageimage
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