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Girls & Guys PG-13
Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:53 AM

Sorry if this is long. Im just really confused and dont really know who to talk to about this. A little back story...

I have been with A. for two years. We have been long distance the entire time. I live in California, for the first year he lived in Florida, this past year he got transferred to Arizona (He's in the military.) It has been a whirlwind of a relationship, but the longest we have gone without seeing each other in person has been three months. Now that he is in Arizona for the past year, we see each other every 3-4 weeks.

I have been spending a lot of time out there lately as I will be relocating there in the next four months, thus leaving every friend and family member behind. I've decided that I am okay with this as despite them I am not a huge fan of California and see a lot of opportunity in another state, besides just love. If it matters, we are both 28.

Lately I have been bitten by the engagement bug. Maybe its because I am the one making all the sacrifices but I also know how much I love him and feel its about time. We started discussing it in about December, he even at one point asked me to send him examples of rings that I liked, but told me he wants some big romantic gesture and it will happen eventually. This past time that I saw him we started talking about it again, he asked me why it was important to me as it was just a title. i explained that even though i wanted a long engagement ( at least two years) and more of an elopement than a wedding, I saw it as more of a commitment than the title. We ended up getting in an argument about it and the next day when we talked he stated that though he would buy a house with me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me, he may never want to be engaged or married. That it was just a title that didnt matter to him and he was tired of thinking about it and hearing about it.


That being said, we have gone back to normal but I still have this nagging thing in the back of my mind that is questioning everything. He is coming out next weekend, for one of my cousins weddings none the less.

What are your guys thoughts on this?

15 Replies to Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage

re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 8688, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:24 PM
Edited by YumYumDoughnut (99333) on 2016-04-22 12:29:33
Edited by YumYumDoughnut (99333) on 2016-04-22 12:34:14
Edited by YumYumDoughnut (99333) on 2016-04-22 12:36:07
I have been dating my bf for 6ish years and living together for 3. If he were to ask me to marry him tomorrow, I would say yes. I wouldn't be saying "yes" to getting a new different partnership, but I would be saying "yes" to confirm the one I already have and getting married for the sake of our families. I don't want anything to change, I like my relationship the way it is now.
I can just propose to him if I end up wanting marriage in the future. My religious family does want to see me married, so we have started to talk about engagements a bit.

BUT

If I was dating a man in the military, I would require marriage as a long term goal. I would want to live in military housing with him and get all the legal benefits that are given to a military spouse. Especially,if god forbid, he was killed in service, and I had children with him.
If I were to ever become a stay at home mom, I would want the security of a marriage incase we became divorced. I want the legal right to 1/2 his retirement and income, if I sacrificed my own career to raise OUR children.
I don't want to be 45 with no real job resume, with no husband, raising children, after he leaves me for a 20 year old "upgrade" (I've seen this happen NUMEROUS times in this town)
No one get married with intention of a divorce, but CA is a no fault state. After seeing numerous marriages fall apart, including my own parents, I want the protection of marriage if I plan to have kids.

I think my advice to you is, how do you see your life in 5 years? Do you want to be married or married with kids? If so, at 28 , I think it is very much in your right to speak up about your plans and goals.You aren't a 19 year old madly in love with a bf of 5 months.

Is he ethically against marriage or just antimarriage with you? That is a HUGE difference. My professor was totally against the instiution of marriage based on the fact that she felt that marriage had very sexist beginnings. A bride "sold" and given for some cattle etc. She was 68 years old and happily single for all her life.
Although if you bf was talking about engagement rings in the past, I doubt he is against marriage on an ethical or political level.

I know another person who insisted that he was against marriage until he broke up with his girlfriend. He was engaged to someone else 8 months later.

Good luck navigating all of this. Just make sure that your bf doesn't guilt you into NOT talking about marriage. ( Even if he is tired of hearing it). Adults talk about things like this.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:34 PM
Thank you so much for your reply.

I actually asked him if it were just me or marriage in general. He stated that it is definitely not me. So hopefully that is true?

I do want all of the military benefits. Especially the healthcare. I am currently paying 250$ a month for health insurance plus a 50$ copay every time I see a doctor. With this plan I have zero prescription coverage. In my eyes, its all a waste of money. He says he can go either way on having kids, but he is fully aware that in a few years I do want one child, likely not more than that. He says that he is fine with this not being married. He may not stay in the military but if so he will still be an airplane mechanic (what he's been for ten years). I work in the dental field which hardly offers benefits or retirement, though I make decent money. It would be nice to have a shared security.

On back note, my parents are happily married at 35 years and his parents are happily married around 30 years.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 8688, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:44 PM
Edited by YumYumDoughnut (99333) on 2016-04-22 12:48:58
I personally will not be comfortable with a man who would be ok with having a child outside of marriage and PLANNING it like that.
As sexist as this is, women have a lot more responsibilty and a lot more to lose in a divorce, especially with young children.
I think as a mother, women are going to be tired, their bodies may change and they might not be the "fun carefree 21 year old" the husband married. They are more likely the ones getting up at 2AM feedings.

Hopefully there are plenty of men in this world, who love their wife and stay with her through hell and back. This not always being the case, I would want the financial backup and security if one day he left the marriage.

Some man might call this bitchy or "captalistic" or whatever. I just like to think of it as being realistic when the divorce rate is so high!

Do you guys combine finances at all? If so, surely he sees "his" money going down the drain by NOT being married? Thankfully I got lucky with health insurance and I am the beneficiary to his financial accounts and retirement, if he is killed. We are each others medical power of attorney etc. So legally, we have all the same rights as a married couple. But man, was it a pain in the butt filling out all this extra paperwork!!! Signing a marriage certificate would have been a lot easier! ( But I can't get married until 27 anyways, if I want to continue doing pageants.) I wanted all the legality of a partnership without the actual marriage part.

I don't think there is a way to collect military benefits without being married though.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 8688, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 04:23 PM
Sorry I forgot to ask.

I know you have been long distance this entire time but you see each other often.

Is it possible that there is a bit of hesitance because he has never spent large amounts of time with you and he doesn't know how you guys would mesh together in a "married" situation? What is the longest you have spent with each other during visits?
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By Moonlitefairy06member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 7177, member since Fri Apr 16, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 09:51 PM
YumYumDoughnut wrote:

Sorry I forgot to ask.

I know you have been long distance this entire time but you see each other often.

Is it possible that there is a bit of hesitance because he has never spent large amounts of time with you and he doesn't know how you guys would mesh together in a "married" situation? What is the longest you have spent with each other during visits?


I think that's a good point. Have you ever gone on vacation or something together where it was just you two for a week or more? A weekend a month or so would be very different than being married and owning a house together.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 10:07 PM
We have gone on vacations and also have spent two weeks together at a time.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:21 PM
We have gone on vacations and also have spent two weeks together at a time.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By Theresamember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 34891, member since Wed May 22, 2002
On Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:36 PM
So, being married to the King of "I don't want to get married", let me say something.

When he says he doesn't want to get married...you should probably take him at his word.

For a long time, I said that I didn't care if we weren't married, and I meant it. I wasn't just paying lip service to it, I really meant it. That was never really a goal I saw for myself, I wasn't that concerned with it.

And then...it just got to the point where it felt really disrespectful that he wouldn't marry me. James was getting preschool aged, so I was having to start explaining that we had different names, and yes that's my boyfriend, and yes my boyfriend is actually my sons dad. And who's 31, 32, 33 years old, and still has a boyfriend?! I mean, what is that?!

So I fought. And he fought back. We fought, and fought, and fought. I threw down on the ultimatum, then he fought that I wanted to get married, AND fought the ultimatum. I pointed out that if I called my mom and said she needed to come get me, she'd be on the way before I could say "Alright, bye." Didn't matter.

Even with all my "You have to marry me!" talk, I didn't want to go get married TOMORROW. Heck, I still didn't really care if we ever got married at all. I just wanted to get to stop calling him my boyfriend. If he wasn't going to do it for me, I wanted him to do it to get credit for being James' dad.

After an unexpectedly confessional phone call with my aunt - she found out we were going out of town, and called to crack wise about if I thought he was going to propose. She and I don't have that "confessional phone call" sort of relationship, and yet...there it came. All of it. I found myself telling her all about the fights, and the ultimatums, and even my plan of action if I had to follow through on it.

She politely shook off the phone call, and as I found out years after the fact, called him and went "Ok, is it the cost of the ring? Cause I'll supply the ring. Just propose to her already." She stayed true to her word, he stayed true to his, and we were engaged that weekend. He actually proposed on my 30th birthday. At Lolita, in Cleveland, Ohio, which if you ever have the chance, I recommend it.

So I toyed around and played around with wedding ideas, but I was happy as I was, and he was happy, because he'd somehow convinced himself that I literally intended to elope, and just be done with the whole thing. I never planned anything of the sort.

So the thing that finally eventually got him down the aisle, after almost 15 years of him telling me he didn't want to be married? Our son told him it was time. I have no idea how he knew what marriage was, or how he knew we hadn't, but he knew, and he said it was time. We were married inside of 6 months.

Now, this is only my first marriage, so I'm hardly the worlds leading expert on this sort of thing, but I'm no stranger to the philosophy. If he says he doesn't want to get married...you should probably listen. He's telling the truth. Now, whether his opinion is ultimately swayable (as my husbands proved to be) or not is a different story. But his opinion is his opinion, and just like you get a right to want what you want, so does he. :( Good luck. I hope you get the answer you're looking for.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By TheMidlakeMusemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 11321, member since Sun Nov 23, 2003
On Mon Apr 25, 2016 08:25 AM
That it was just a title that didnt matter to him and he was tired of thinking about it and hearing about it.


If it's just a title that doesn't matter, yet it matters to you, than why NOT get married? This line of reasoning is BS. As a civilian marriage is more than "just a title", but especially being in the military, he knows that's an unequivocally false statement.

It took my husband 5 years to propose, and we had a lot of conversations about marriage in the interim. We fought about it. Basically at one point I had to put my foot down and say that after 4 years, I was not being a wedding-obsessed harpy to want commitment. Now that we're married he has ZERO regrets and loves our partnership. It just took him a hella long time to warm up to the idea (this isn't the only instance of taking his time on decisions, but partially because he was engaged before and it ended badly). But during that whole time he never ONCE told me that he didn't tell me that marriage was a sham, he never wanted to be married, or that it was a dumb title that didn't matter. He just said "I'm not ready."

Like T said, you should take your BF at his word. If getting married is important to you, only heartache is going to result by staying.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Tue May 03, 2016 03:00 PM
Edited by foreverlost (84609) on 2016-05-03 15:02:48
UPDATE:

I appreciate everyone's advice and took it to heart. It was exactly all of what i was thinking but it was also good to hear from someone else..

We went to my cousins wedding on Saturday and spent the weekend together. I brought up my points and points stated on here in a very casual breezy way, but also stating that his lack of wanting to get married may be a deal breaker for me.

I am moving to Arizona in July and am getting married in Las Vegas on 03/16/2017. Our three year anniversary.

We are going to get a ring for me when I go out to visit in three weeks. My head is still spinning and you guys are the first ive told.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 8688, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Wed May 04, 2016 08:25 AM
Yay! Congratulations!!!!
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By imadanseurPremium member Comments: 16604, member since Thu Dec 04, 2003
On Wed May 04, 2016 11:29 AM
OMG...I was trying to gather all my thoughts since I lived through this nightmare, gave the ultimatum, and we broke up. THEN I read your update...YAY!

HOW EXCITING!!!! Congratulations. Are you in Phoenix?? If so, we should meet for coffee sometime while you are here.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By hummingbird Comments: 10418, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Wed May 04, 2016 02:38 PM
Congratulations, that's wonderful news!!
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Thu May 05, 2016 12:00 PM
Thank you so much:)

Its weird calling him my fiance now. Haha

imadanseur- we spend a lot of time up there. I will pm you next time I am there. Otherwise we will be living in Tucson.
re: Boyfriend Possibly Not Wanting Marriage
By kandykanePremium member Comments: 16415, member since Mon May 01, 2006
On Sat May 07, 2016 07:56 PM
Congratulations!

kk~

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