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How long would you wait for a proposal?


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I am 28 and my bf is 34. We have only been together 10 months, however he asked me to move in with him a few months ago.. I post poned it for awhile as I didn't want to rush things too soon. Finally, after 2 vacations together and spending practically everyday together, sleepovers became more frequent and my closet at his place kept getting fuller and fuller lol..

We have had the talks about marriage, we both have the same values and even both want 2 kids. We obviously have a lot of learning to do as a couple, however we just seem to get along really well. Our arguments never last longer than a few minutes, we communicate really well, we have a healthy relationship and just generally treat each other amazing. It seems natural to discuss life together.

My boyfriend has his own 2400 sq ft home.. and a stable job. He has been vocal about wanting a life with me and talks about putting a ring on my finger in the future. He even loaned me $6000 as he was able to get a very low interest line of credit from his bank instead of getting a higher interest one myself. This showed me his devotion to me without a doubt.

 

I am not the type of person to push for anything, I want someone to do it when they are ready. To be honest, I am not 100% ready myself yet either. I just want us to be together at least a year or more and maintain the happy relationship we have before solidifying anything. However, I don't want to be that relationship that the man already has the woman living with her and has no incentive to propose anytime soon.

 

This April 2010 is our 1 year mark... By next year 2011 in February will be my 29th birthday and that year April will be our 2 year mark together.

I don't generally believe in putting "deadlines" on things... However, I am a firm believer of by a certain age a man and woman should have enough life/dating experiences to KNOW the person they are with they WANT to marry. By this time line, I feel myself and my boyfriend SHOULD be ready to be engaged and if we are not, there is a serious problem. I know money would not be an issue for him to have purchased an engagement ring by this point. So I have sort of said to myself if things don't happen by this point in time, I will decide to move out of his house and continue the relationship as I live on my own more independantly. Not as a way of saying "propose to me".. but more of an insurance for my own life that I want to be open to finding the right person for me.

 

Does this seem reasonable?

I know people may say, with the right person you should wait for them forever, or until they are ready... But I personally don't believe this. Proposing to a woman is the biggest sign of commitment a man can give, and I feel if a man can not feel ready to do that with me by a reasonable length of time together than he is not the man for me.

I have confidence to know I am a good woman with a lot to offer and I would rather be single than waiting anxiously year after year for my live-in boyfriend to propose to me.

 

What are your thoughts on this topic? Or what have you done in the past?

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He already loaned you $6000. Moving is costly. Right now you have your own place and your own independence. If you move in with him and the relationship doesn't work out, or he is not proposing to you in the time frame you have decided for yourself, then you will have to face the daunting, painful and expensive task of finding a new place and moving out. People get roped in to spending years and years living with someone without marriage because it becomes too difficult to move out...you already have too much of your llfe invested with the other person. If your ultimate goal is marriage then I would not be so quick to move in with him....why not continue with separate residences and see what happens at the two year mark. Plenty of people get engaged and married without living together beforehand.

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When you feel you are ready you could propose to him. After all the same thing applies in reverse - it is the biggest sign of commitment a woman can give.

 

Some women are ok doing this, personally I am not.

I would exit the relationship completely before I would ever propose to a man.

I'm just not comfortable with that, I have old fashioned thoughts about engagements.

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He already loaned you $6000. Moving is costly. Right now you have your own place and your own independence. If you move in with him and the relationship doesn't work out, or he is not proposing to you in the time frame you have decided for yourself, then you will have to face the daunting, painful and expensive task of finding a new place and moving out. People get roped in to spending years and years living with someone without marriage because it becomes too difficult to move out...you already have too much of your llfe invested with the other person. If your ultimate goal is marriage then I would not be so quick to move in with him....why not continue with separate residences and see what happens at the two year mark. Plenty of people get engaged and married without living together beforehand.

 

Well, only problem with that I see is that my boyfriend was engaged in the past... about 6 years ago.. He dated a woman for 9 months living apart, wanted her to move in and he felt the old fashioned way was how you were supposed to do things. So he proposed, she moved in and within 6 months they broke up. Once she moved in, she stopped working much, he had to pay alot of her bills, she was lazy.. etc. He vowed to never propose to another woman unless he has lived with her before and knows what she is like on a daily basis.

 

Me on the other hand, I was engaged 2 years ago.. I moved in with my boyfriend of a few months, he proposed at 6 month mark. He became very controlling and had trust issues, I left him after 2 years.

 

So both of us have done things oppositely and neither worked out... So we would have conflicting ideas on that topic.

We both realized the same thing, that you have to get to know a person for quite some time to really see their true colors... We both knew our s.o's for less than a year before getting engaged.

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I'm sort of troubled by this. 10 months is really too soon to expect a proposal and it seems like you're really only after the marriage and not the person. Also, the fact that he loaned you a very large sum of money is what "really showed you he was serious", versus what he does on a daily basis to show you he cares about you...

 

I mean, please tell me if I'm wrong, but you're honestly coming accross as sort of a princess here. Especially to the point of saying you'd rather leave a perfect relationship than propose to him?

 

The way you speak here, your priorities are all kinds of fouled up.

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Where did I say in this thread anywhere that I wanted a proposal at 10 months??? I actually said above, that I wanted to wait at LEAST until the 1 year mark or more.. I'm asking that at my age and his age, waiting longer than 2 years seems to be unreasonable? Especially taking into consideration we'd already be living together, financially I know he could afford a ring by then as well.

My point in saying that he took out a loan for me, was to say that even though he has not proposed to me yet, I think that DOES show how serious he is about me/our relationship. That was supposed to be coming accross as a compliment to him, instead of ranting about him not proposing yet. Because yes I agree, proposals can mean nothing if the guy doesn't SHOW he cares about you... Which mine does, greatly and on a daily basis.

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Yes, I think at your and his age that expecting to get engaged within two years is perfectly reasonable. I don't think it takes longer than that to know whether or not the person is someone you can marry, and I do agree with the fact that if you're not sure by then, you might never be.

 

However, I wouldn't expect a "proposal" within two years. What I would expect is for us to have discussed the issue, to have agreed that we wanted to get married, and to be planning the wedding for as soon as it was feasible. Once you add in the proposal on one knee with a ring, and the fancy wedding, you add all sorts of variables about money that can delay a proposal. If you have a deadline like the one you have, I think you need to be very clear about your expectations, and also do away with expectations of the perfect ring/etc - so that he does not feel financially pressured by your deadline.

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Hmm see I'd actually be ok with having a long engagement. I actually prefer that.. The whole idea of a wedding stresses me out. I want to be married, but I want a simple and inexpensive wedding. I'm very non-female when it comes to that issue lol.... I don't believe the whole fairytale "it has to be the most amazing day of my life" crap lol.... I want the commitment of engagement and eventually marriage because to me it symbolizes a strong bond, commitment, love and builds trust and a deeper bond.

I think couples can be very happy without a piece of paper saying you're married, but to me it just adds to the feeling of having a strong life bond for building a family together.

But like I said, the engagement is more important to me to know we see a future together, then the marriage can come even 2-3 years later down the road if we want? I know it's expensive, can be stressful, etc. so I dont mind taking time planning that and not stressing about it.

My idea of a perfect wedding would be getting married on the beach in the Carribbean with just our parents there and maybe our best friends.. I'd have a simply flowy white gown and I wouldn't even care about a big reception back home or anything. Then we can already be there for our honeymoon and our parents can enjoy their own vacations at a separate resort.

 

Both he and I are very private people, very close to our immediate families and have only a few very close friends.. All of our acquantances we wouldn't care if they saw us get married.

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I've been with my fiance as long as you have, 10 months. He just proposed to me on Valentines Day! We've known each other for 3 years though so it's different, we really knew each other. Give it more time. I'd say 2 years is a good amount of time to be very sure that you want to be with this guy forever.

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He already loaned you $6000. Moving is costly. Right now you have your own place and your own independence. If you move in with him and the relationship doesn't work out, or he is not proposing to you in the time frame you have decided for yourself, then you will have to face the daunting, painful and expensive task of finding a new place and moving out. People get roped in to spending years and years living with someone without marriage because it becomes too difficult to move out...you already have too much of your llfe invested with the other person. If your ultimate goal is marriage then I would not be so quick to move in with him....why not continue with separate residences and see what happens at the two year mark. Plenty of people get engaged and married without living together beforehand.

 

I agree with this as well. Don't move in with him until you two are engaged if you are worried about "playing house" with no commitment.

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I think 2 years is a good time span. It is good to not do something in haste cause you can regret it later. As far living together too I would put that off until there is an engagement. My husband and I were engaged for 4 years before we moved in together and it was another year before we married. One has to be REALLY sure they want to marry someone cause it is a lifetime commitment.

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I don't know, I tend to agree with the other posters. You seem to be coming accross as pretty defensive about people's answers though, they're just giving you advice based on the way it's been written. It's funny that you wrote "Where did I say in this thread anywhere that I wanted a proposal at 10 months??? I actually said above, that I wanted to wait at LEAST until the 1 year mark or more." What's the difference between 10 months and 12? Maybe he's not exactly ready to do that just yet, or it could very well be that he might just have something planned.

 

I have a hard time understanding the difference between a ring on your finger with the long engagement, and him telling you that he wants to be with you and will put a ring on your finger and another year or so.. but you'd still get married at the same time. A ring is more symbolic than anything. He sounds like a great guy from everything you posted though, you're a lucky girl.

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I would be inclined to focus on the actual relationship. Have fun, learn about each other, etc. A marriage will naturally come out of that if everything goes well. It won't come out of arbitrarily layering deadlines/dates in your mind that you're probably getting from Cosmo.

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ahh...I can't resist.

 

when I initially saw your post, I had a specific answer, but the details of your story seem strikingly similar to another user's on here, who if I may add, recently posted a fairly controversial thread..maybe about valentine's day gifts or lackthereof?

 

Of course you're free to make a gazillion different names on here, I'm sure, but isn't that a bit of manipulation? How can you ask for honest opinions and feedback if you're not doing the same?

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Lots of people live together and then once they are married a person changes. There are no guarantees. Both you and your boyfriend did things the opposite way and still ended up with the same outcome...a disaster. That should be a clear indication that there are absolutely no guarantees a person won't change over time, no matter the timing of living together and getting engaged. There shouldn't be all this pressure of living together as if it is the be all and end all..the true test of anything. It is not a true test of anything except as a means to split bills, play house and have the convenience of someone under the same roof. The real issue is that both of you seem to rush into relationships and rush into living together and engagements before really getting a good feel for how the person is. Perhaps the real answer is slowing down all the talk about living together, marriage, children, etc and just continue getting to know each other past the honeymoon period. I am also concerned that he is rushing the "living together" scenario when he already had a failed "living together" arrangement. He needs to slow down.

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You will ultimately find that being rigid and unflexible, impatient or entitled will not help you get places you'd like to be. It is well to have ideas about what you want out of life, but at the same time it is necessary to be open minded.

 

Hex is right in terms of you seem to only want the destination, not the journey with this person. How fair is that to him?

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I could ask friends/family opinions, but I wanted unbaised ones so I thought I'd post on a general forum.

I shouldn't have gotten so detailed, I just wanted to know at my age and my partner's age, what a reasonable time-span would be to take things to that next level of engagement?

 

There are a ton of factors to take into consideration, financial ones, how we get along after 1+ years.. etc.

Who knows, maybe after the 1 year mark we won't even be together..

I just mean, age sometimes does have to play a factor does it not?

I'm 28, I would like to have children one day. If I take a laxidasical attitude about my future, I may waste time with the wrong person and inhibit my chances of having kids one day.

I'm not saying I only want to be married just to be married.. I WAS engaged... I had it all... But he was not right for me, he was not the person I thought I was with, so I left him.

If I just wanted to settle down and pop some kids out I would have already done that.. My boyfriend now is amazing.. I love him to death, he treats me amazing and if he continues to be this person I've fallen in love with why wouldn't I want a future with him?

However, I have self respect... And if someone doesn't think I am suitable for marriage or decides later they don't want the same things as I do in life, why would I stick around?

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I think your concerns are reasonable. Just continue to get to know him and see how things go naturally. Regarding moving back out, that really is not a casual thing to downgrade/move out once you've moved in but it may be the smart choice. I know you both have had opposite experiences with someone you were previously engaged to. It sounds like perhaps it would be a good idea for you to have your own place for another year/lease term giving you two space to come up with a timeline with no pressures. You can spend as much time with him at his place and vice versa. You can go have alone time if you feel he is taking your everyday presence for granted (prolonging a proposal or at least planning for the future). This way you and he both get to have the experience that you need in order to decide on the future. Don't feel pressured to live with him if you would rather be engaged first. Having your own place but mostly staying at his seems to be the best option for you IMHO given your concerns.

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I truly don't think your age or your partner's age is what you should be considering. It needs to be the time spent together. It is very hard for couples to make it past 2 years and even 7 years and these are generally considered the standards before marriage no matter how old the people are.

 

You've indicated that the real issue is your biological clock. Still, it seems like you have such an impatient and cold outlook on the whole thing. I don't get the sense that you want a loving partner, a great motherhood experience or anything... just seems like you're looking for all the right tools in a "build a life" kit.

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I am not the type of person to push for anything, I want someone to do it when they are ready...

...So I have sort of said to myself if things don't happen by this point in time, I will decide to move out of his house and continue the relationship as I live on my own more independantly.

?????????????????????????

 

Let me get this right, you intend to find the right person for you by maybe dropping the one who may be right...

 

You have his word that one day you will be engaged yet that's not enough.

 

You don't want to be in a relationship which fizzles out when you move in together, yet you moved in...

 

Sheesh woman! You're a bundle of contradictions. I shouldn't be surprised if he has his own thread on here somewhere...

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Personally, I cant tell you exactly how long you should wait for a proposal. I think it is clear that you want to be married and that you want the same out of a partner. I think that the crucial time period is between the 1 and 2 year mark and if you get an indication that the guy isnt serious about getting married then you should leave.

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