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How long til engagement after initial conversation?


figur

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I'm asking not because I think my boyfriend and I should be on any "timeline" or anything, I'm just curious. My story is that I plan on moving to his state in September (waiting for an internship to end), finally ending the LD part of our LDR (we've known each other for a couple of years and dated before the LD started, and see each other twice a month, so he's not a relative stranger or anything). I told him awhile ago that I would not live with him unless we were engaged, but that this was by no means an ultimatum. I would happily move to his city, or as close as possible, but just get my own apartment. I've lived with a boyfriend before, and decided it just isn't worth the trouble to combine my life in that way with someone unless we are completely set on being together for the long haul.

 

A few months later during New Years he told me he wanted to get married. Hurrah! I agreed, and we are happily looking forward to it. He's asked what ring I would like (because we decided that is how we will signify an engagement...I deem myself nontraditional in many ways, but I guess this sort of stuff has stuck), and now I'm waiting in anticipation for when he will "formally" ask. Again, I'm not pressuring him, I'm just excited.

 

So...how long did it take for your engagement to become formalized after the initial conversations about it? Engagement stories in general are welcome.

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This is what i'm seeing:

 

"he told me he wanted to get married"

"now i'm waiting for him to formally ask"

 

this doesn't make sense. he already asked you. you are engaged...no?

 

 

That isn't quite the same as asking someone to marry you. You can tell someone 'I want to get married' but that isn't asking that PERSON to marry you. My husband and I told each other fairly early on in our relationship we wanted to get married. Marriage was the end game for us and neither of us wanted to waste time on a relationship that didn't have the possibility that one of us didn't want the same thing (btw, we were LD as well. 4,000 miles, two separate countries, and a 5 hour time difference LD). We met in Jan 2010 and were a couple by Feb 2010. By the time we were a couple we had talked about marriage (in gernal terms, like 'this is what I want one day' etc). We met June 4th 2010 and he proposed to me on June 17th of that same month. Soooo 4ish months between us having serious talks and him asking the question.

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To clarify, he indicated he wanted to marry me in particular, but we do not see ourselves as formally engaged. He and I both would like the exchange of a ring to be that formality. Outdated and maybe overly traditional, sure, particularly in my liberal circles. But I've decided to not overthink how this relates to my feminism, and it's really just the fun of it.

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The first time we had a conversation like that (there were two proposals where the conversation was more general) it was about 4 months later because I think we went looking at rings on Valentine's Day weekend. We'd been dating about 1.5 years at that point and were in our 20s. I don't think there's a real timeline but my sense it it should not be too long before it's official - enough time to pick out a ring if you need to and talk about when you would want to get married after getting engaged(even that isn't necessary). My friend who just got engaged -they talked in general terms and he proposed about 6 months after they started dating and they are marrying about 6 months after that.

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A few months later during New Years he told me he wanted to get married. Hurrah! I agreed, and we are happily looking forward to it. He's asked what ring I would like

Yeah... this does sound like he already proposed and in a very casual way. Sorry to burst your bubble

 

Traditionally, guys don't ask their girlfriends what engagement ring they want after mentioning "Hey, lets get hitched!" That's ruining part of the surprise that makes the proposal memorable. If he wants to get you a ring that you would like, the tactful way for him would to either take one of your girlfriends/sister to help him ring shop. My fiance did this with a very good friend of ours (who was a dude, but more like a brother to both of us LOL) and the proposal was very surprising.

 

If he phrased it in a way like, "I would like to marry you soon," that's not a proposal; that's him telling you that he's hinting at a future in the relationship, but isn't ready to make the move yet. Think of it as a cliffhanger part of your life chapter.

 

It really matters how it's said. Not everyone proposes with some sort of token (jewelry, etc.).

 

I told him awhile ago that I would not live with him unless we were engaged, but that this was by no means an ultimatum.

I agree that it is not an ultimatum- that's being smart.

 

So...how long did it take for your engagement to become formalized after the initial conversations about it?

I dated my fiance for 7 years and been engaged for 3 years, and will be married in 4 months. Holy crap, that's 10 years and goes against most of "ENA logic!" I moved in with him before he proposed- the difference is that I have known him for an extremely long time and we both know we wanted marriage. Money and job instability has been a huge issue for us (sadly, it still is) which caused us to hold off on our wedding plans. We started talking about marriage when we both had employment that we thought was stable.

 

I nor anyone on ENA can tell you what or when to expect a "proposal" because it is different for every couple. It is all based on level of compatibility and commitment to each other, both of personal situations, and the environment (culturally) you live in.

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"Traditionally, guys don't ask their girlfriends what engagement ring they want after mentioning "Hey, lets get hitched!" That's ruining part of the surprise that makes the proposal memorable. If he wants to get you a ring that you would like, the tactful way for him would to either take one of your girlfriends/sister to help him ring shop. My fiance did this with a very good friend of ours (who was a dude, but more like a brother to both of us LOL) and the proposal was very surprising. "

 

That's in those cases when the proposal and the ring are surprises. Many do it differently. They pick out the ring together or decide to use a family ring. I don't think that has anything to do with tact -it's just what the couple wants. In my case I'm glad we went ring shopping together to see what styles I liked and what looked right on my hand. I also told him that I didn't want a very large stone. He picked out the actual ring himself but after we discussed it/looked at rings.

 

I also think it's fine for the woman to propose.

 

Some people hold off on getting married because they want a big party/wedding reception and don't have enough money to have that. Others prioritize being married and either don't have a large party or delay it until a later time when they can afford it. It all depends.

 

I don't think there's any "ENA logic" about engagements. In my personal opinion an engagement isn't official until there's a ring and a wedding date (or at least what month you'll be married).

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That's in those cases when the proposal and the ring are surprises. Many do it differently. They pick out the ring together or decide to use a family ring. I don't think that has anything to do with tact -it's just what the couple wants.

I can see that. However the OP wants TWO things: she wanted him to tell her to get married and she wanted the traditional proposal way of actually getting a ring. You only get one proposal- casual or traditional. You can't redo a proposal once it's done.

 

In my case I'm glad we went ring shopping together to see what styles I liked and what looked right on my hand. I also told him that I didn't want a very large stone. He picked out the actual ring himself but after we discussed it/looked at rings

I'm more traditional and feel that picking out each other's rings should be done when selecting wedding bands.

 

I also think it's fine for the woman to propose

Most guys I know are actually against this idea because it will cause them to feel emasculated. However, that depends on the couple.

 

I don't think there's any "ENA logic" about engagements. In my personal opinion an engagement isn't official until there's a ring and a wedding date

Looking at the following reply trends after being a member here for awhile, most responses on ENA are generally against long engagements or lengthy relationships. General society carries the attitude of "dating for 4-6 years and no proposal? Your relationship must have commitment problems" and mark it as a red flag. To me it entirely depends on the situation of the couple.

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I can see that. However the OP wants TWO things: she wanted him to tell her to get married and she wanted the traditional proposal way of actually getting a ring. You only get one proposal- casual or traditional. You can't redo a proposal once it's done.

 

Well I wasn't waiting for him to bring it up first because he's the man. He just was the one that brought it up first, period.

 

In my mind, the first talks of wanting to marry each other are different (and necessary before) the actual engagement. The engagement signifies that a wedding is in the works, and doesn't have to be a total surprise. I might be mortified if he proposed with a ring before we had actually talked about wanting to get married.

 

But it is different for all couples. I was just wondering about others' stories.

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I think many people give their personal opinions which you interpret as being "against" what other people choose to do. I think that if both people want to wait years that's a far different story than if one person wants marriage sooner than the other. I think it does say something about the priorities of the couple if their main purpose in having a long engagement is to be able to afford a large wedding reception to celebrate the marriage. Nothing wrong with those priorities, just might be different priorities than others.

I don't think the only two choices are "casual or traditional". There are many different ways to decide to get married. Even what is "traditional" varies by culture.

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