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Sophomore in college and newly engaged (ish)

Hey fellow student brides! I thought I'd introduce myself. I'm a sophomore in college (20 in less than a month!) and so is my boy. Him and I were best friends all freshmen years (same college, he is just 3 months younger than me.) and finally came together this past September. 

Things just started falling into place and as much as we've talked about it and considered it, we're waiting to be "officially" engaged until next fall when we will have been going out a year. Reasons for that being financially we're just starting to save and talk about how we each handle finances and making sure we're compatible and also because of social norms. 

Did anyone have issues with parents? Right now we're worrying that even after a year that parents won't be 100% supportive. We're confident in ourselves and what we are doing. We aren't getting married until end of September 2014 when we both will have our undergraduate degrees and he will be working part time while also doing his Architecture Masters program. We're just saving and planning.

Anyone in a similiar situation? I'm open to all advice and opinions.

Re: Sophomore in college and newly engaged (ish)

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    I'm in a very similar situation!

    I'm 20, and my fiance and I started dating in August, and got engaged in October. We know we went against the grain of social norms and whatnot, but after a lot of prayer and thought, it was what we felt was right for us.

    We haven't had much trouble with families. A little concern from his that's mostly gone away now (but nothing serious), and complete support from my family.

    I admire your patience in waiting to get finances and other things in order without the pressure of time. Justin and I are getting married this summer. Although we know we can do it, getting everything together so quickly has been stressfull.

    The best advice I can give you, is that no matter when you get "officially" engaged, no matter what the circumstances, just about everyone is going to want to put their two cents (or 1,000 cents) in. Be polite and gracious for awhile, but sometimes, there comes a point where you simply have to put your foot down and say "Thank you, but right now, we really just need support." Don't let any debbie downers rain on your parade. :)

    Congratulations, and best wishes for a bright future!!!
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    You're either engaged or you're not. There isn't an in-between stage.

    If you're engaged great, and if not, STOP PLANNING YOUR WEDDING!

    You are 19 years old. You've been dating your 'boy' only a few months. You're completely putting the cart before the horse by starting to plan your wedding at this point. You admit you're still figuring out if you're compatible, which is something you should have figured out long before you get engaged and start planning your wedding.

    Also, no one who still refers to their partner as 'my boy' should be getting married. My fiance is a man, a grown-up. The difference isn't as much about age as it is about maturity. 
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_students_sophomore-college-newly-engaged-ish?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:684Discussion:0c9ce4ae-42f8-4505-9d2c-aae8793d67e4Post:6e93b049-ef37-4058-bb2d-73982b89de6c">Re: Sophomore in college and newly engaged (ish)</a>:
    [QUOTE]<strong>You're either engaged or you're not. There isn't an in-between stage. If you're engaged great, and if not, STOP PLANNING YOUR WEDDING! You are 19 years old. You've been dating your 'boy' only a few months. You're completely putting the cart before the horse by starting to plan your wedding at this point. You admit you're still figuring out if you're compatible, which is something you should have figured out long before you get engaged and start planning your wedding. Also, no one who still refers to their partner as 'my boy' should be getting married. My fiance is a man, a grown-up. The difference isn't as much about age as it is about maturity. </strong>
    Posted by Beads921[/QUOTE]

    <div>This. </div>
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    Frankly, I think you're rushing. You're 19, have been with this guy for a few months, and are supposedly already engaged. Why so soon? You say you don't plan to get married until 2014 so there's no point in even being engaged now. 

    Just cool it down and wait a while before getting engaged. That's not something to take lightly.
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    If your parents aren't 100% supportive it's probably because they see some red flags in your relationship. In which case, you will want to sit down and have a serious, open-minded (as in don't go into the discussion with your defenses ready), adult conversation with them. Hear out their concerns and address them as best you can.

    However, you aren't engaged so you don't need to worry about that just yet. Focus on your relationship as it is right now. Worry about anything wedding/engagement related once your relationship has actually progressed to that point.

    If you are just starting to figure out how you both handle finances and making sure your compatible there really is no need to be talking marriage right now. I am in no way saying that in a year you won't be ready to take that step, all I'm suggesting is that for now you focus on getting to know each other even better. Even if you've been friends for awhile being in a relationship with a person is different than being friends.Take time to get to know each other as potential life partners rather than as friends. That way in a year you might actually be ready to get engaged/married and if you two are really ready your parents will see that.


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    ChloeaghChloeagh member
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    edited December 2011
    I fully agree with Beads921. If you don't know if you're compatible, you should NOT be engaged. You shouldn't even be thinking about getting engaged. You are much too young and you haven't been with this boy for very long. Engagement comes when you know you will get married, not when you're just thinking about it.

    I'm also a sophomore and I've been with my boyfriend for 2 years and 9 months. We plan on getting married spring of 2015, about a year after I graduate, but we aren't going to get engaged until I'm a senior. It took us 2 years to be confident that we could spend the rest of our lives together (although we had been thinking about it since we had been together a year). Obviously it's different for each couple, but you are so young and have so much life experience ahead of you, I would recommend taking it slow before you get too committed.

    As far as parental advice, my mom still won't let me mention the "M" word. She insists that I can't get married until I'm 27, have graduated pharmacy school, and have a career. All parents are different, but if I was you, I'd be locked in a convent for mentioning marriage to someone I've been with for 3 months. But that's just because she married young and got divorced. She absolutely loves my boyfriend.
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    I understand you situation although i've been with my SO for almost 4years which is defintiely different.  We will be getting engaged in the near future, but we have had to wait longer than we wanted because of my parents.  They really love him, but they wanted me to have another year of college under my belt before getting engaged.  I don't know if you live near your parents or not, but I live 6 hours away and so does my SO.  So we have had almost 2 years to be apart from our parents.  Although we are in school, we live in Chicago and going to school in the city is very different from going to school not in a city.

     If you aren't planning on getting married anytime soon, I'd advise you to wait awhile to get engaged.  You will want your relations with your parents to be as good as possible.

    I firmly believe that the decision is between the two of you, but you also have not been together very long.  It is better to wait to get engaged and be more sure, than to get engaged too early and mess things us.  In my opinion you shouldn't get engaged until you and SO are at hte point of I would marry you today.  That being said, we are waiting to be done with school and be more financially stable.  I just think that that is the way you should feel about each other and have what you want out of like and life compatibility figured out beforehand.
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    edited December 2011
    So I am slightly confused are you just talking about getting engaged in the future or  are you actually engaged but not telling family and stuff? either way i have a story with some advice if you would like it! :-)

    My best friend was in a simliar situation. Although in this case the boy was not exactly something to feel comfortable about even more so about their situations. I am not aware of your relationship really with your boy so this may not be a good example but I will tell you anyway.

    They started dating and were engaged with in 6 months. My Friend is really deep in to her Catholic faith while this boy was agnostic at the time (first red flag). When she told me the news I was not even excited for her because of the fact I was not a big fan of her boy to begin with (Another flag). They hid this for another month from her parents, of whom are also very deep in their Catholic faith, until both my friend and the guy were able to come down and cook dinner and basically butter her parents up to the idea (3rd flag). When I spoke to my friend about why they were choosing to be engaged she would tell me that it's just a promise they were going to stay together and work together towards marriage if it was something that seemed to be the right thing for eachother( Last flag). They were engaged for about 2 months after telling her parents before the broke up, which sadly was a relief for just about everybody.

    Now while this relationship may not exactly fit your relationship, he may be the best thing to ever happen to you, it still has some key points. Worrieng about parents being ok with the idea of you been enghaged shouldn't be an issue. You should be able to tell your parents right off the bat about your engagement because you should know that they are going to be happy and excited for you. If you don't think this is the case that may be reason 1 why you need to slow it down just a bit.

    Secondly it's about being engaged while still figuring out if your compatible. isn't the point of being engaged about planning for the wedding that will unite you two? How can you do that if your still seeing if your compatible. If you have not talked about religion, finanaces, family, kids, ect. than you probably shouldn't be thinking about marriage at all quite yet.

    Now i'm not saying that you not good together or don't love eachother or have a bad relationship. I'm just saying you need to make sure you have the important stuff out of the way before you decide to get engaged which equals your getting married.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_students_sophomore-college-newly-engaged-ish?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:684Discussion:0c9ce4ae-42f8-4505-9d2c-aae8793d67e4Post:51cce605-12fd-4d58-8c6b-36cd510167b1">Re: Sophomore in college and newly engaged (ish)</a>:
    [QUOTE]I<strong>f your parents aren't 100% supportive it's probably because they see some red flags in your relationship.</strong> In which case, you will want to sit down and have a serious, open-minded (as in don't go into the discussion with your defenses ready), adult conversation with them. Hear out their concerns and address them as best you can. However, you aren't engaged so you don't need to worry about that just yet. Focus on your relationship as it is right now. Worry about anything wedding/engagement related once your relationship has actually progressed to that point. If you are just starting to figure out how you both handle finances and making sure your compatible there really is no need to be talking marriage right now. I am in no way saying that in a year you won't be ready to take that step, all I'm suggesting is that for now you focus on getting to know each other even better. Even if you've been friends for awhile being in a relationship with a person is different than being friends.Take time to get to know each other as potential life partners rather than as friends. That way in a year you might actually be ready to get engaged/married and if you two are really ready your parents will see that.
    Posted by bethsmiles[/QUOTE]

    While I agree with a lot of this post, I have to disagree with this part. I have been with FI for 5 years, and got engaged 2 years ago when we were 19 and had been together for 3. My parents disapproved completely, especially my mom, but every supposed "red flag" she has seen in my relationship has been utterly made up. Everyone who knows us (including all of his family and most of mine, as well as all of our friends) agrees that the reasons my mom keeps trying to use for why we shouldn't have gotten engaged are bogus, and that we've got a very strong relationship and are clearly meant to be together. Parents can disapprove for a lot of reasons beyond actually seeing something wrong with the relationship.

    That being said, I do think that getting engaged before the one year mark is a little premature, and I could see how it would alarm your parents for some very practical reasons. The first year is still very, very much the honeymoon period, and even though in some ways that excitement and happiness doesn't go away (I still get butterflies thinking about my FI!) you do learn a lot more about the person <em>after</em>  the early months.

    Actually, psychologists say that passing the four year mark is the best indicator of a relationship's strength - I wish I could find the article again! And of course that doesn't mean that <em>everyone</em> should wait until four years to get engaged or married, because it's an average, like everything else :)
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    I agree with most of the PP. My parents didn't like my engagement, and we had repeative discussions. And honestly, some of the stuff they told me just clicked. And when it did, fi and I had a discussion about it and fixed it. Parents can be right or wrong, but you shouldn't be worried about telling them. I've known my fi since second grade and we didn't engage until after a year and a half (I do believe). If you're still wondering about the compatibility, then you shouldn't be engaged.

    BTW - She says she's engaged, just has no ring in a different board

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    Ok, I'm going to echo the sentiment of you're either engaged or not - there is no "official" or "unoffical" engagements.

    Second - good to hear that you're discussing finances and compatibility now. Figuring those out before marriage will go a long way when it comes to developing a stable relationship. However this is something that you need to figure out BEFORE you get engaged. The engagement period is for you to proclaim a commitment while you plan the wedding. 

    As for your parents, why don't you worry about that after you've reached the year milestone. Spend time building your relationship now instead of focusing on what may or may not happen in a year. Of course you're confident now - all of us were when we were that age. Heck it was two years ago that I was 20 and sure the guy I was dating/living with was "the one." He wasn't - and the reasons were mostly because we were not compatible, which we found out. Spend time getting to know your boyfriend, figuring out if you want the same thing in the future.

    I actually love this article and would advise anyone to read it. It's amusing, but it also brings up serious questions you should consider before getting engaged. 
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    I was a sophomore in college and had been with my FI for four months when decided that we wanted to get married. We didn't consider ourselves engaged but we talked about getting married all the time and planned for our future together with the intention of being married in the future.

    I wasn't going to consider myself engaged until i had a ring and wasn't going to make any hard and fast plans until then and I wasn't going to get married until after graduation (FI is 4 years older than me) and graduated halfway through my sophomore year).

    essentially, you are doing the same thing I did. I didn't tell my family about our intention to get married until after 7 months when I told my mom but nobody else. Don't let anyone tell you that your are rushing or attack you. I would advise you to not make it official official until it is, though. If you KNOW he is the one, great! I knew after only a few months as well. However, I would keep it a private matter until you are really ready to plan. Then, in active planning, it truly is an engagement.

    Right now just focus on the committment that you have and view it as a lifetime one if that is what you want to do. There is nothing wrong with "figuring out if you are compatible, etc" because you will ALWAYS be learning new things about your partner, even AFTER you get married. I know that through life's transitions me and my FI have struggled but we always got through it and have the strong relationship that we do because we focus on  our commitment to one another. That is how to make a relationship last.

    Enjoy your relationship and try to not worry about the seemingly far away wedding date. I picked my wedding date my sophomore year (unofficially of course) and time has gone much faster than I thought it would :)

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    oh i got engaged in oct of my senior year--2 years after we told eachother we wanted to be married.
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    edited December 2011
    I agree with PP's in that you are either engaged or you're not.  I would also agree that it is a good thing you are talking about finances and getting to know each other.

    This might sound redundant of earlier posts.  In fact it's my 2 cents.  I met my ex my freshman year and we were friends most of the year.  Towards the end we started dating.  Within a year we both dropped out of college and within two years we got engaged.  I was 20.  I'm not saying you'll drop out, that was just my personal mistake.  I thought he was the one, but we didn't take the time to really get to know each other.  I was miserable but felt that since I'd already ignored most of my friends and family to be with this guy that I was stuck.  I ended up married and divorced within a few short years.

    In hindsight I wish I'd done what many of these ladies had suggested, taken time, really gotten to know each other and not rushed into anything.  but I was 20 and thought I knew exactly what was best for me.  Now that I'm older and I took that time to get to know me; I found my amazing FI.  We had all of those talks about finances and getting married long before ever getting engaged.  It is very important to know what your partner is like financially, emotionally, supportively, ect.  So take your time.  Sometimes it doesn't take long to know if a person is the right one, but don't rush into planning the rest of your life. 
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    kellyt89kellyt89 member
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    edited December 2011
    Talking about marriage/the future =/= being engaged IMHO. Talking about the future just means your talking about the future, and that's exciting in itself.

    BF and I have been talking about the future from a few months in, so I get how you're feeling right now. We've been together for a little over a year and engagement isn't even in the cards for us for another year and a half or so.

    No one wants to hear this, but the first year is the honeymoon phase - it's chemical and physiological. Just enjoy the fact that you're happy and in love in your relationship. Get to know each other, do fun things, talk about important issues for you, grow as individuals and as a couple. Don't put the cart before the horse and ruin an extremely important part of your relationship.

    ETA: indigopsyche I LOVED that article! BF and I have talked about a bunch of things on that list but it also gave me some awesome ideas that I hadn't even thought of.
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    I'm in the exact same situation as you are. I too am a sophomore. My FI and I attend college together. His parents are kind of apathetic about the whole situation and my parents are pretty unsupportive. Although my parents told us that if we wait until we get our Bachelors degrees they will pay for the wedding. Good deal right? He is going for his Masters in Computer Science and will be working part time and I am going for my Ph. D. in Psychology.

    If you need any advice or just want to talk just message me:)

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    Kellyt89 - Thanks! I like it because it's amusing, but it goes over some pretty serious stuff that I think people should really figure out before jumping into engagements/marriages. Especially when those people are young (and I'm including myself in that grouping).
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    I think I need to clear something up. The only reason I say we are not "officially" engaged is because I don't a ring. However, I guess it all depends on your definition of engagement because to me, engaged is the promise that we will be married. And that has happened. He has asked me to marry him so therefore I'm pretty sure we're engaged. I just don't have the shiny ring to show for it yet.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_students_sophomore-college-newly-engaged-ish?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:684Discussion:0c9ce4ae-42f8-4505-9d2c-aae8793d67e4Post:71ed95b1-d0c1-4fbf-bedc-83c1832fc2b2">Re: Sophomore in college and newly engaged (ish)</a>:
    [QUOTE]I think I need to clear something up. The only reason I say we are not "officially" engaged is because I don't a ring. <strong>However, I guess it all depends on your definition of engagement because to me, engaged is the promise that we will be married. And that has happened. He has asked me to marry him so therefore I'm pretty sure we're engaged.</strong> I just don't have the shiny ring to show for it yet.
    Posted by Schrok12[/QUOTE]

    <div>Exactly. That's why people are saying that either you're engaged or not. Saying you're not "officially" engaged doesn't make sense. You're engaged, but you haven't told your family. That's still considered "officially" engaged.</div>
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    I'm 20, too! My fiancé is 24 though and he has a job and everything. The only thing I can say is that even though my fi is older, people STILL give us a hard time about getting married young. It is seriously getting so old. Both of our parents are 100% supportive, but I'm getting really sick of telling people I'm engaged and having them respond, "oh, you're so young!" Now, whenever someone says something like that I just say "Thank you, but it's not polite to comment on a person's age." Frankly, it's flat out rude. If I met a 50 year old woman who was getting married for the first time I would never say "Wow, you're so old!"

    Honestly, you just have to trust God and trust yourselves. It's like what everyone always says...when you know, you just know. People are always going to be critical of choices you make in life, but just remember that it's YOUR life and you're going to do what's best for you. Try to be confident and self-assured...or at least act like you are. That usually wards of unwanted criticism for me :)

    Another thing I tell people when they make comments about my age is that getting married young is coming back. It's definitely becoming a trend. I know quite a few very young married couples actually. Marriage is so beautiful and I think more and more people are realizing that and wanting to get married sooner rather than later. Commitment can be scary, but it's so worthwhile. Also, a lot of people may have horror stories about getting married young, but remember that they aren't you. You're going to live your life and you're going to live it to the fullest! Don't let people bring you down.

    Congratulations! And welcome to a wonderful journey. Good luck!
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    I agree with Beads! 

    My BF and I have been together for almost five years and I'm 20 and also a sophomore in college. and he's a junior. We know it is in our best interest to wait until I'm done with school/close to being done when we finally decide to make the leap to married life and so does our families.

    I think you should be enjoying yourselves now, get to know each other better and make wonderful memories together in college and make even more wonderful memories planning a wedding and actually being married when you have the time for it! 

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    I am 19, my love is 20. We are both in college and were engaged. Our parents support us and are excited. We will be getting married while we are in school. It can be done, but it does not work out for everyone. Really think about what each of you want to do when your our of school, and see if they can be combined. Hope everything works out for you :)

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    I have to agree with a lot of what others are saying. Like you my fiance and I are both sophmores in college, but unlike you we are engaged. You are either engaged or you arent. Once you are actually engaged you should start thinking about tellling the parents and wedding plans etc; but only then.

    For when and if you two do become official: just tell your parents. Even if they don't like" that you two are engaged if you act mature and show your parents that you and he are serious they will come around. You are their child and they love you after all.

    By biggest piece of advice to you is to stay in school, graduate, get your degree. even if you get married in school (which you need to really be carefully with since getting married changes what financial aid you get etc [at least in the US]) don't drop out, keep up with it and get that degree. If you and your possible one actually love each other then you'll be together forever and postponing the wedding for your education won't matter so much. Plus, it'll help make your parents (if they are feeling uneasy) feel a bit better and secure about the future.

    But really, before you keep down this road, please actually get engaged :)
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    I would personally think it'd be much more exciting to tell everyone your news once you have a ring on your finger and have everyone's 100% support. I have enjoyed showing off my ring :)

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