Not Engaged Yet

I need to tell somebody.

Hello NEY ladies!  I have been reading the forums for some time on and off but never posted.  But I feel I have to now - and hoping that you sensible people here can knock some sense into me because I am falling (have fallen?) into a very dark place about waiting. Any advice, help, encouragement, tough love, etc, more than welcome.  I am already grateful that you are reading this.  

Here's my situation. Lets start with t he rosy bit.  I've been with my SO for 2.5yrs and this is the real thing.   Every fibre in my being knows that.  We are both 31. The man is amazing, we fit perfectly, he is my best friend, the conversation and communication flawless, sex is great, his family is fantastic, he gets on amazingly with my family.. we believe in growing in a relationship, we have the same views of the world... .  We have been living together since last August (in my flat, it's perfect, none of the nitty-gritty teething problems, loving every moment with him as he does with me).  I feel that this is not just an infatuation, we have talked about future, marriage, children, property, we are on the same wavelength.  He cares about me the way I never imagined anyone could, he makes me laugh on an hourly basis, tells me he loves me, his actions match up with his words.  He took me to a surprise trip to a mediterranean island for our 2years.  He is romantic, handsome, funny, successful (our finances are in order), everything is just amazing.  

But I am defective. There is something wrong with me.  For some reason I have fallen into this really deep dark place about the subject of engagement.  We have been talking about the future for some time and we agreed that we can see ourselves together in the future. both want to get married, have family etc.  We had many nice, mature conversations.  But I started wanting a proposal.  And he is not ready.  Classic story, I am sure happened to many people around the world.  And we started talking about it. First subtle hints, then not so subtle ones, and my desperation and nagging has now gone full bloom.  I am ashamed at myself, but for some reason I dont seem to be able to stop.  Here's the thing.  He is handling it very well and we had a very mature conversation the other day, and basically he said it loud and clear that a.) He never thought about marriage with anyone before me 2.) he can definitely see that happening for us 3.) he is just not ready, but he will be ready soon. (he even said something between a couple of months and a year and a half... a YEAR and a HALF??? ) Like this.  He said it's not a doubt about me, its about him, himself and being ready.  He explained it at length, and quite convincingly.  I can see his point.  When I accused him of "auditioning me and testing me", he actually gave the perfect answer: "if there was an audition, you passed it ages ago", and he is adamant its not me, he just needs to be ready for it.  But as I said, I am defective.  There is something inside me that keeps saying that I am not good enough to be called Mrs SO,I am not good enough to be his wife, I am not respected enough to be taken as his wife.  And I am not an unconfident person normally, I am a senior manager and generally very happy in my skin all the time.  

I want a proposal.  Soon.  Now. Yesterday.  Why?  I dont know.  I have no goddamn clue!!! I am happy with the man I love, we live together, we both want children one day but not quite yet, I am still not awfully old, there is nothing that would require a paper (visa etc), but I want a proposal.  Why?  Why cant I wait for him, why cant I trust him, why do I have to rush everything in my life? Why cant I enjoy the amazing life I have right now, what is the rush?  I have been asking myself these questions and I dont know the answer.  Noone is pressurising me apart from me pressurising myself.  Everyone around me seems to get engaged, and I get into a very dark place, where I am ashamed of my thoughts.. ashamed of thinking thoughts such as "friend x is less of a person than I am, how can she be engaged, what does she know that i dont?"  That's the disgusting person that I have become.  I am jealous.  Jealous and bitter of people who are engaged, and I cannot recognise myself!!  I want him to turn to me and say to me that he wants me forever, forever, until we are old, and just me.  My sister is getting married next year and she is actually the only person I am not jealous of and love to bits... but she is younger than me and a shallow, stupid, idiotic part of me just wants to be married before her.  I want to go to other people's weddings and not be just the girlfriend.  I want to be a wife, HIS wife, not just live like one, like we do at the moment.  I want to have his children, grow old together and I cant understand that if we love eachother, been through a lot (we have), happy together, planning the future, etc - why cant he just propose then? 

And I know that it's only been 2.5 years.  I know. I know its not a long time. 
And I know that I shouldnt be nagging and it can push him away. And I know that I should trust him.
But I seem to be unable to let go of the control over my life.  And I am growing resentful and bitter towards him, and at the same time I love him every day more than the one before.  I am in constant highs and lows, sometimes giggling on the sofa for hours and being the happiest person in the world, then crushing down in the loo and crying my heart out in a bitter, desperate, snotty bawling session.  I have become this dysfunctional, bipolar person.  Sometimes he sees part of this but more of the time I am just sad on my own.  Then he makes me happy within 5 seconds of arriving. Then I get sad again. 

And I dont know what to do. And why it hurts me so much. And why I seem to be unable to wait.  I tried talking it out. To my sister, to him (to different extents).  Ive been honest with him.  Maybe too honest.  Maybe I am fucking this up right now.  Maybe I am spoiling the relationship for myself.  I tried meditating.  I tried refocussing.  Working out.  Playing video games.  Working like there's no tomorrow.  Starving myself and focussing on weight loss.  Overeating.   All sorts of distraction techniques. Not bringing up for x days.  And I am still bloody defective, I cant seem to get out of it, this man loves me to death and makes a beautiful dinner for me with roses and chocolate and ALL i can think about it that ~I am bitter that he is not proposing and that he disappoints me.  What kind of a defective and ugly person am I?  How do I get out of this?  

I have reached rock bottom this week.  I have even contemplated breaking up with the most amazing person I will ever know, because at one point I thought even alone is better than this pain.  What in the world is going on with me?  I am a stable, excited, happy person normally.  This cannot continue.  Something has to happen.  If it doesnt, I will drive him away.  Even I wouldnt put up with my bitter desperation, and i cant expect him to. I am trying - I know some people dont believe in "trying", but I am doing all sorts of things to work this out of me, and its not going away.  People are telling me to be patient.  But for some reason it doesnt seem to be an option.  I feel like if I go to this summer's 4 weddings - all of them friends - my heart will just break into two from jealousy - and I could spit on myself for these thoughts.  I feel like I am making effort and still auditioning, i feel like i already messed it up with these conversations, I feel like even if it happens, even if it happens soon, it will be spoilt now, and it will be nobody's fault but mine. .  

And  he doesnt do anything wrong.  He talks to me.  He opens up.  He is honest, transparent, romantic, open, encouraging, loving, amazing.  And I am like that with him too, or at least I hope I am.  This man is the love of my life.  In 50 years' time, it won't matter whether we got engaged today, tomorrow or a year from now.  I know this. My brain knows this.  But something stupid, ugly, idiotic in me just wont accept it.  Please help me.  Say something, anything, be rude, or be nice, just tell me what you think - I will try anything.  Promise.  


Re: I need to tell somebody.

  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    Wow that was a long post!

    If he isn't ready then you can't force it. And sometimes being ready for marriage doesn't have anything to do with the person you want to marry. My BF and I have been together for almost 5 years, we've been talking about marriage for about 4. We know we want to marry each other but we also know that for our relationship to last we need BOTH of us to be ready for marriage before taking that step. BF has been a little slower than me on that part but in no way does that mean there is something wrong with me or that I am deficient in some way - that's an extremely unhealthy way of thinking!

    As for others getting engaged and married, I can understand being a little jealous that they are where you want to be but that jealousy should only last half a second. Nobody's relationships move at the same pace and it's not a race. So be happy for your friends with the knowledge that they will be happy for you when it's your turn.

    You can know that he wants to be with you forever, without an engagement and marriage. In fact that should come before all of that. I know for certain that I want to be with my BF forever and I know for certain that he feels the same. Having that knowledge and not needing a ring or a proposal to solidify it for me makes the waiting a lot easier.

    Your attitude toward engagement and marriage seem very unhealthy and reeks of insecurity. If you've tried a million different things to change your attitude and get your mind off it and none of it has worked, then perhaps some counseling on the matter would be beneficial.


    ErikaT22
  • While I don't think your feelings are good for your emotional health, I suspect they're rather normal. I think almost all of us have felt or will feel like this at some point, though perhaps not as forcefully as you do; it's human nature.

    My SO and I are younger than you are but have been together much longer (7.5 years, in a couple of weeks) and I'm definitely going through this too. I know he has the ring but have no idea when he will propose. Last week two of our good friends announced their new engagement, and I am SO happy for them, but I confess I secretly also entertained ugly thoughts like "I thought WE'D be the next ones in our group of friends to get engaged," and even "I bet my ring [which I don't even HAVE yet] is prettier." Ugh! How embarrassing.

    I would encourage you to consider seeing a therapist, though. What concerns me is how many times and in how many ways you said you are "defective." You are a good person with normal feelings you just don't know how to control or accept - you're far from defective. Try to take some deep breaths and not be quite so hard on yourself.
    ErikaT22lavenderfields13
  • peekaboo2011peekaboo2011 Washington, DC member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 250 Love Its Name Dropper
    I second PPs on talking to a therapist.  I think that's honestly going to be the best way for you to work through these feelings in a healthy manner.

    Regarding everything else, please stick around.  We're pretty good at talking people off a ledge, and keeping people distracted.  What do you like to do for fun?  
    I french with my man
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    ErikaT22
  • Thank you for reading and responding.  

    Bethsmiles, you're right about insecurity, I am an insecure person though it does not show.  but the only other relationship I had (and it wasnt nearly as amazing as this one is), I got dumped out of the blue, had been told that I am not good enough and unwanted. I will try to focus on what you said about the knowledge and security in our relatio

    Kmbirkel, I mean defective in a way that I have everything and the relationship is great and I am happy, so why am I so unhappy? Surely thats not right to feel like this? And with this intensity? and this long?  Its not even the wedding itself I am wanting so badly - its the "foreverness" of it that i crave.  Thanks for telling me that you can have ugly thoughts too - makes me a bit less guilty about mines.  

    I am trying to understand what the missing bit is - what is it taat makes me feel ready, thats not there in him, so that he isnt?  I cant help but think he is waiting for something specific. Someone suggested it might be his job (he just started a new job a week ago), but surely thats just silly - he is financially stable, with or without a job, and I earn OK too, whats that got to do with loving someone eternally? *drama queen* :)

    Thanks again for taking the time to read and respond, I do appreciate it.   
  • CLoGreenEyesCLoGreenEyes member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited May 2013
    Hey OP, I'll PM you tonight, but for now, just know that I don't think there's nothing wrong or defective about you. I have felt the same way before at times to some degree. It's not about the feelings; it's about how you deal with them. So try to act in a way that reflects the kind of nature you really want your SO to experience from you, even if it's hard sometimes. Don't be too hard on yourself :)

    ETA: "I don't think there's nothing wrong or defective." Yeah. Please read without the double-negative; I guess I had my redneck on a little strong today. ;)
    ErikaT22
  • Honestly, I totally get it.  I've been with my BF for over 3.5 years and I'm ready for an official commitment.  I catch myself having similar jealous thoughts and obsessing over why so many other people's BFs are so eager to propose and get married and mine is dragging his feet (meanwhile, he actually is shopping for rings and I'm just being a big baby because he's taking his time).  The other night BF came home and told me all about how happy his friend was to have just gotten engaged to a girl he's been with for less than a year and I secretly cried in the other room--not my most shining moment.  The difference, though, is that I don't think that makes me defective.  I know that those jealous feelings are stupid and petty, but I also know that they're human, and that a lot of girls/women end up feeling the same way.

    You can't always help how you feel, but you can keep those feelings from consuming your life.  You need to decide if you're willing to wait for him or not, and if you are, you need to do your best to forget about it for a while.  I know it's easier said than done.  In your case, the negative feelings you have about yourself make me think it might be a good idea to seek out counseling.  If it's not for you, fine, but I'd suggest at least trying it out to see if it helps.

    In the mean time, just try not to get so down on yourself.  It sounds like you have a great guy on your hands!  Some of them just get a little freaked out by marriage or even just the stress of the proposal--it doesn't mean that you're not good enough.
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    ErikaT22
  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited May 2013
    ErikaT22 said:
    Thank you for reading and responding.  

    Bethsmiles, you're right about insecurity, I am an insecure person though it does not show.  but the only other relationship I had (and it wasnt nearly as amazing as this one is), I got dumped out of the blue, had been told that I am not good enough and unwanted. I will try to focus on what you said about the knowledge and security in our relatio

    Kmbirkel, I mean defective in a way that I have everything and the relationship is great and I am happy, so why am I so unhappy? Surely thats not right to feel like this? And with this intensity? and this long?  Its not even the wedding itself I am wanting so badly - its the "foreverness" of it that i crave.  Thanks for telling me that you can have ugly thoughts too - makes me a bit less guilty about mines.  

    I am trying to understand what the missing bit is - what is it taat makes me feel ready, thats not there in him, so that he isnt?  I cant help but think he is waiting for something specific. Someone suggested it might be his job (he just started a new job a week ago), but surely thats just silly - he is financially stable, with or without a job, and I earn OK too, whats that got to do with loving someone eternally? *drama queen* :)

    Thanks again for taking the time to read and respond, I do appreciate it.   
    Don't do that. You will drive yourself crazy. Like I said, you can't force it. He will be ready when he's ready. Just enjoy your relationship as it is. There is so much to enjoy about a relationship when you are in the dating stage of things.

    And BTW being financially stable doesn't have anything to do with loving someone but it has a lot to do with being able to make a marriage work.

    ETA: @belle2188 - just because your BF isn't proposing rightthissecond doesn't mean he isn't eager to propose or that he won't be every bit as happy as his friend when you get engaged. You should really stop comparing your relationships to others...it doesn't do you or your relationship any good. I can't understand crying because others are happy they got engaged.


    ErikaT22
  • @bethsmiles  Not every thought or emotion has to be totally rational.  I'm not saying it's good to compare, but it happens.  Is it stupid?  Of course, but I know that.  People get jealous...it happens.  Nobody is perfect and I think acknowledging that is better than expecting to be able to control your emotions all the time.
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    ErikaT22
  • @belle2188, I can identify with your situation. I don't think I've ever physically cried over hearing the good news from someone else, but I've definitely had to take a little quiet time to give myself some perspective. My best friend got engaged a couple weeks ago, and while I am over the moon for her, a little part of me did that thing where you do the math about how long you've known each other, how long you've been dating, how long it took to get engaged, blah blah blah. I definitely had my own pity party for a few minutes in between congratulating her and getting excited about everything that's coming up with her wedding in the works. I agree with Beth that it's not helping either of us to compare, because no one's relationship is exactly the same, but I guess I can empathize with where you're coming from. Sometimes you have to catch yourself in the act and remind yourself that you've got a wonderful and unique thing going for you, with or without actively planning to tie the knot.
    ErikaT22
  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    @belle2188 - I'm not saying every thought/emotion has to be totally rational but come on...really crying because something good happened to others? That's a bit much. Your own relationship is no less valid, good, or whatever just because you aren't engaged when others are. You will save yourself a lot of moments of crying if you focus on your own relationship and don't compare it to others. I'm not saying control your emotions all the time but having a different perspective on things can make life a lot easier and happier.


    ErikaT22
  • @Amapola14  I agree with you completely!  Also, just to make myself sound like less of a psycho, I'm not talking sobbing here--I'm talking two little tears that slipped out, and I'm a person that cries at TV commercials.  I was really excited when I heard they were engaged--I knew it was coming and I was really happy for them.  It was just BF's reaction to the whole thing after seeing his friend a few days later that made me momentarily teary-eyed.

    Regardless, the point I was making to OP is just that we can't always control how we feel, but we can put it in perspective and keep from dwelling on it.
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    ErikaT22CLoGreenEyes
  • peekaboo, I just saw your post :) thanks for being kind.  As for fun, I love to travel. Doesnt have to be far! :) you?
  • Hey :) thank you, looking forward to receiving it :) and thanks for being nice.  I am trying.  I just really disappointed myself lately with not being able to get over this.
    Amapola14 said:
    Hey OP, I'll PM you tonight, but for now, just know that I don't think there's nothing wrong or defective about you. I have felt the same way before at times to some degree. It's not about the feelings; it's about how you deal with them. So try to act in a way that reflects the kind of nature you really want your SO to experience from you, even if it's hard sometimes. Don't be too hard on yourself :)

  • Hi Belle
    I think this is really insightful, thank you,. The easy answer is - yes, I am willing to wait for him , absolutely.  He is the one.  the other one is hard - because I KNOW I should forget about it but I ran out of practical ways to do... 




    Belle2188 said:

    You can't always help how you feel, but you can keep those feelings from consuming your life.  You need to decide if you're willing to wait for him or not, and if you are, you need to do your best to forget about it for a while.  I know it's easier said than done.  In your case, the negative feelings you have about yourself make me think it might be a good idea to seek out counseling.  If it's not for you, fine, but I'd suggest at least trying it out to see if it helps.
  • @belle2188 - I'm not saying every thought/emotion has to be totally rational but come on...really crying because something good happened to others? That's a bit much. Your own relationship is no less valid, good, or whatever just because you aren't engaged when others are. You will save yourself a lot of moments of crying if you focus on your own relationship and don't compare it to others. I'm not saying control your emotions all the time but having a different perspective on things can make life a lot easier and happier.
    I'm thinking I made it sound worse than it was.  As I said in my last post, it wasn't that they got engaged--I was thrilled to hear that, and I'm pleased as pie that they're excited about it.  I would never want to take that away from them.  It just stung a little to have BF come bombarding in the house a few days later going on and on about how excited he was that his friend was so happy to propose before his GF moves out here, which is something that I did for BF, so it was kind of like "oh, well that's nice, you could at least say hi before you tell me how excited you are about something you clearly didn't deem necessary to do for me."  Just a moment of vulnerability--that's all.
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  • I am ashamed to admit that I also cried upon hearing of engagement of others, friends... and not just two tears.  Not because I am not happy for them, far from it!  But it focussed me on the one thing I dont have. Does that make sense?
  • leia1979leia1979 member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 100 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited May 2013
    ErikaT22 said:
    I am ashamed to admit that I also cried upon hearing of engagement of others, friends... and not just two tears.  Not because I am not happy for them, far from it!  But it focussed me on the one thing I dont have. Does that make sense?
    It makes sense, but you don't want to live that way. There will always be someone out there with stuff you don't have. I would suggest talking to a counselor because this appears to affect you more than it should.
    CLoGreenEyes
  • GoldenPenguinGoldenPenguin Upstate NY mod
    Moderator Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its
    I feel like I just read the screenplay for the next Bridget Jones movie.



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  • I think you might be obsessing about the engagement because it represents safety and permanence of your current relationship, and you are trying to avoid reliving the painful fate of your past relationship.  Unfortunately though, there is really no such type of guarantee of permanence.  Married couples get into huge fights, sometimes have more stress than non-married couples, people grow apart, divorces happen...not saying any of this would happen to you and your partner, but just go onto the message boards on the Nest to see that marriage doesn't make everything perfect.  The point is, you need to be okay with or without your partner, or any time you have a big fight, you will crumble to pieces.  I would take this time while you are waiting for your BF to be ready to really focus on yourself and grow as an independent person.  Once you are okay with yourself, you will be stronger in your relationship and you won't feel so much pain based solely on what his plans with you are..
  • 500days500days MA member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary Name Dropper
    ErikaT22 said:
    I am ashamed to admit that I also cried upon hearing of engagement of others, friends... and not just two tears.  Not because I am not happy for them, far from it!  But it focussed me on the one thing I dont have. Does that make sense?
    Okay so it sounds like you have severely clouded your vision. You need to focus your energy on what you currently have-- your relationship and your friends. Do not focus on the one thing that you don't have...you will be spinning your wheels. Make sure that you can be happy for your friends; because when your time comes you'll want them to be happy for you, right? Try to rid yourself of resentment and you will be much happier. Promise.


  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    @belle2188 - I'm not saying every thought/emotion has to be totally rational but come on...really crying because something good happened to others? That's a bit much. Your own relationship is no less valid, good, or whatever just because you aren't engaged when others are. You will save yourself a lot of moments of crying if you focus on your own relationship and don't compare it to others. I'm not saying control your emotions all the time but having a different perspective on things can make life a lot easier and happier.
    While it would've nice to control it, it's not always easy. Women with known or suspected fertility problems will often have this issue, myself included. It's not like I'm wishing other pregnant women to miscarry, but sometimes those tears come unbidden. It's a reminder of what you don't or can't have. For the OP, I think some counseling is I order, but realize that you're not broken- just might need a little overhaul. :)

    What you are talking about is an entirely separate issue. She is not incapable of getting engaged, she is impatient. I'm sorry for your problems with fertility but your argument has very little to do with the actual conversation.


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