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 AUTHOR
 Blah_User_Name
Joined: 8/27/2011
Msg: 2
Boyfriend talking marriagePage 1 of 3    (1, 2, 3)
You can't rewind and keep things how they are - simply put, they've changed. He has a desire to marry and you don't. Your only option is to deal with the difference in your wishes and the way to do that is by communication.

Why are you against marriage ?
Why does he want to get married ?
Is it a religious belief, does he see it as a natural progression ?
Does he simply wish for a formal commitment and if so, is there another way of doing this which would be suitable ?
Is there an alternative which will provide a compromise ?

You obviously care for him if you fear losing him so surely it's worth trying to understand his basis for this wish just as it's worth trying to communicate your objection. Personally, in your situation, I wouldn't wait until this vacation to broach the subject. It will hurt if if he chooses to propose and you decline so it would be better to bring this subject up before he's feeling the sting of that. He might be feeling you out with regards to this subject and therefore you have to provide him with some feedback. Sitting there avoiding the conversation is going to create an elephant in the room which doesn't need to be there.

He needs to understand the reason you are resistant and you need to understand the reason this matters to him. Once you both have that information, you can decide if there is a means to provide what you both want.
 Funfiftysomething
Joined: 6/24/2012
Msg: 3
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 5:44:13 AM
I don't want to get married either and I'm afraid I'll end up in your situation. I've told my friends & family that if I talk about getting married again they have to kidnap me until I come to my senses. Since your boyfriend knows how you feel I'm not sure what you can do to maintain the status quo. One thing I've learned about men is that they do need repetative instruction. Admittedly no does sometimes mean yes for us girls so they do get confused. Honesty is your friend here so keep reiterating your desires while telling him how happy you are with him now. Good Luck!
 CaptainA.D
Joined: 6/10/2012
Msg: 5
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 6:04:25 AM
You can't stop things from changing as a result of turning down his proposal. Maybe he won't propose and got the hint to keep things as is.. Or mabey he'll be understanding and still want to be with you after saying no. Either way, once thats happend, ball is in his court. I hope things turn out ok! Best wishes
 motown_cowgirl
Joined: 12/22/2011
Msg: 6
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 6:11:07 AM
I really need advice on how to keep things the way they are.

So nice of you, wanting to control him like that. ;-) I totally get the motivation for it, but there's a more important principle here. I think *if* things play out the way you've imagined them, then go ahead and let him go. Why shouldn't he have the same freedom to define his own future and ideas of happiness that you insist on claiming for yourself? He’s not wrong for wanting to get married, and you’re not wrong for wanting to stay single; it's just that you two are ultimately not a match, if this marriage thing is going to be a make-or-break situation.

Long-term relationships can't work if you don't have compatible longer-term goals and desires, it's as simple as that. I know my father laid that marriage ultimatum on my mom many years ago; she caved in because "she didn't want to lose him". She lived to regret it, LOL! I do know that getting married just to save a relationship is not savvy. If he stays with you even though you won't marry him, it should be because that's a decision you didn't chisel him into with false promises or whatever.
 WomanInProgress
Joined: 10/16/2005
Msg: 8
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 6:22:21 AM
I'll be watching this thread - this is kind of one of my fears. I'm curious to see what happens here.

I have a friend years ago who was dating a man who had kids, and she wanted children of her own. He knew she'd walk if he said he didn't want any, so he told her he'd have kids if she wanted them - and they got married. When asked about this a couple years later when he never came around about it he said, "I lied - I knew you'd leave if I told you the truth". Crappy thing to do. This isn't exactly the same but it reminds me of that story.

I gotta say, if you did tell him you didn't want this and it wasn't just in passing - it's pretty clear he either didn't take you seriously, or thought he could change your mind. Neither of those things sit well, really. He may love you and sure, he has every right to want marriage in his life - but not from someone who doesn't want it.

One of you will now have to do something they don't want to do to keep things from ending, which isn't good.
 OutMind
Joined: 2/13/2007
Msg: 9
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 6:40:23 AM
You hear it here in the forums, you hear it everywhere, where women want the relationship to move to that stage and the man is not ready, so she dumbs the guy. Well, it works the same way, the other way around.

But for the OP, ask yourself these questions. Do you believe that you want to be with this person for the rest of your life? Are you sure? Not sure? Undecided? What do you fear? Are you hoping for something better? Better sex? Someone that washes dishes? Do you love this person?

If you keep finding yourself saying yes but....Find what those objections REALLY ARE.

Now ask yourself this personal questions. Did your parents divorce? Did they stay married, but it was a very bumpy ride? Was one of them physically or emotionally abusive?

Relationships either grow, or they fade. Even when you are thinking that the relationship is static, it's not, it's beginning the drift away.

Whether you believe in marriage or not, it is a natural progression to want to think about total commitment, and to be together for the rest of your life.
 Blah_User_Name
Joined: 8/27/2011
Msg: 10
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 6:41:51 AM

One of you will now have to do something they don't want to do to keep things from ending, which isn't good.


Not necessarily.

It depends on the reasons each person is currently thinking they are on opposite ends of the scale.

If he wants marriage because it's the anticipated way of showing commitment and a statement of loving another and wanting to share their lives 'from this day forward' with discussion, he might be willing to compromise by having a commitment ceremony, by registering their common-law partnership in their State/Province (if that's an option), or by merely assuring him that she is viewing this as a long term relationship and is committed to making it work.

Without knowing his reasons for wanting it and her reasons for not wanting it, it's difficult to suggest alternatives which may work as a compromise.

I've been married. I don't necessarily want to get married again but I wouldn't rule it out completely if it was very important to someone I loved. It's not something I have strong feelings for either way. For this situation to be resolved, an understanding of which each does feel strongly about their view, is needed.
 forums1
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 11
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 6:43:41 AM

You obviously care for him if you fear losing him so surely it's worth trying to understand his basis for this wish just as it's worth trying to communicate your objection. Personally, in your situation, I wouldn't wait until this vacation to broach the subject. It will hurt if if he chooses to propose and you decline so it would be better to bring this subject up before he's feeling the sting of that. He might be feeling you out with regards to this subject and therefore you have to provide him with some feedback. Sitting there avoiding the conversation is going to create an elephant in the room which doesn't need to be there.


I'm gonna agree w/ Import on this, and especially that last line I bolded. Maybe he thinks you aren't serious about not marrying, maybe he'd be ok with living together, sounds like you don't want that but maybe there are things you both could compromise on or talk about that could be acceptable to you both... "maybe, maybe could, maybe, maybe"... but if you don't communicate and leave it as the "elephant in the room" until he goes and puts that elephant out on a limb and you go shooting it down with your elephant gun... at which point you could be doing serious damage.

Talk sooner, talk often, make it real communication, make sure you both understand how you each feel... if you can't communicate and compromise in there, you don't really have a relationship that's going to work anyways.
 SwanLake73
Joined: 4/22/2012
Msg: 13
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 7:25:55 AM
You can be engaged indefinatly.. be engaged.. do not set a date..
win /win
then take the time to discuss with HIM.. not us.. what to do next
 DragonBits
Joined: 1/6/2012
Msg: 16
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 7:46:43 AM
I have been it that situation 4 times. Often a woman will want to get married after a couple of years or less of dating.

In one relationship I think the woman would have been OK to move from WashDC to SanFran with me and live together, but I proposed, we got married and in the long term it didn't work out. But even then I could see negatives that I thought would get better, instead it got worse. So I learned not to ignore any negatives and to assume they might get worse.

The relationships where I am the most happy, the woman always wants to make it formal.

I did have one woman I liked that wanted me to move to Hong Kong, but she didn't seem like she wanted me to live in her home. So that would pretty stupid of me to do. She was considering moving to Chicago, not sure if it was just lose talk to keep the relationship pleasant. I broke up with her because I couldn't see wanting to be in a exclusive LTR with her for several reasons, not related to living together or not. The feeling I got from her is that she was annoyed I wasn't more eager to please her. Like she said her other BF (not sure if previous or current) wanted to learn Chinese. She spoke nearly perfect English, why should I learn Chinese?

I regretted not getting married to my first GF, it would have worked out well.

My experience has been that when my partner wants to take it to marriage and I am against it, the relationship deteriorates and eventually breaks up. Could take years, or it could take months.

A male friend is adamantly opposed to marriage and always has been. He broke up with a GF 8 years ago because she wanted to get married and have children. They broke up, she did get married, have children and now they are all pretty good friends. But he has always been up front about not wanting marriage. Now he lives with a woman and they seem happy with the arrangement of living together forever.

I am not adamantly opposed to marriage, but reluctant to sign onto any forever ( at least in theory) contract. I have had no bad experience with my previous marriage. So if I loved someone and couldn't see any negatives that would bite me later, I would get married if she really wanted it or there was a good legal reason to get married. Normally when I am in a happy relationship, I am not going to be looking at dating anyone, so being married isn't a huge leap for me.

I do have another friend where she has been engaged for the last 10 years. It seems to work for them, though she lives with her mother. I do wonder how she will feel if her mother dies and she has to live alone.

It doesn't seem from your post that you have made your position as being against marriage and having a desire for your own space obvious to your BF. That is a big problem, maybe you feared turning him off by stating your position.

If this causes you two to break up, is that going to bother you for the rest of your life, that is the question only you can answer.
 Wonder5750
Joined: 1/30/2012
Msg: 17
view profile
History
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 7:56:28 AM
Isn't this the basic reason we are all here? One person changes and one doesn't. It is that simple. Seems we all choose people we love just to have either our lives move us apart or goals change, or whatever. OP you are in that place. Before you get to the point you feel he is going to ask you to marry him... talk to him. Don't let it get to that point of no return. There still might be a chance to save what you have in a way that works for both of you.
 SwanLake73
Joined: 4/22/2012
Msg: 19
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 8:11:08 AM

Engagement is a promise to marry, not to be taken lightly. It is unwise to make promises one has no intention of keeping.


Yes but a broken engagement. is better than a broken marriage. Rushing into marriage is often lightly done these days.
Practically living together is what OP said they are doing most nights, that is as serious as engaged or not engaged..

It sounds like she doesnt want to lose him, and he is keen on her, but whatever demons that make the OP avoid marriage must be dealt with.. better while engaged.. than trying to be married with discomfort
 U make it entertaining
Joined: 7/17/2009
Msg: 23
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 9:01:04 AM
I think the key word here is ...

COMMUNICATION

Talk to him and negotiate a win/win situation for the both of you.
 laskoboo
Joined: 2/12/2010
Msg: 24
view profile
History
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 9:34:49 AM
Nothing ever stays the same...

you and your man are not compatible with your lifes goals, time to break up before
you end up hating each other. If you do not want to marry and go his route, have some class and
tell him YOU are not her and leave... find someone to play on your terms.
If they want to move on, you will have to trade them in too............. there are many people ( both sexes)
who do this all their lives.
You would not be alone.
 MacInOC
Joined: 2/19/2012
Msg: 25
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 9:36:38 AM
Like everyone I asked "Why OP doesn't want to get married". So I reread and found:


I like having my own space and knowing that if I want to be alone, I can.


I take it this means no living together? Arg. I feel a storm coming. Marriage be damned, it sounds like you aren't even close in relationship views. Sorry, but even most guys don't want to date forever maintaining separate lives and households.
 EG63
Joined: 1/13/2010
Msg: 26
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 10:24:03 AM
OP - He knows you don't want to get married, if you fear he will propose in the upcoming vacation then you need to make it clear to him once again, in a polite and diplomatic manner, what is your wish on this subject. Before going on vacation, don't wait until it will be more difficult to say no.

In a relationship you shouldn't be forced to accept something you have made clear you don't want to do nor have a fear to express yourself openly and let your feelings known. If he can't respect you enough to understand your wishes now, how can you expect to be respected after being married? Talk to him ASAP.
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 27
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 10:31:16 AM
If you two have been together 1.5 years, the topic of what kind of future you two have together must have come up at least once. You don't practically live with someone for that long without thinking and talking about where the relationship is headed. What was the conclusion if/when the topic of long term togetherness was brought up before? Did you tell him previously that you are opposed to marriage, and conversely, did he ever mention that a life goal of his was marriage?

I don't see a good ending if he's ready to pop the question. How will he react if you say no? Will he still see a future with you? You should not get married if you feel pressured into it. There's always a lot of resentment and bitterness when someone feels forced into marriage.
 SunshineAngel99
Joined: 10/13/2010
Msg: 28
view profile
History
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 10:49:04 AM
I am with those that believe if you live with a significant other for an extended period of time, that eventually the topic of long term commitment, whether engagement or marriage, will eventually follow.

He probably communicated this clearly, but you simply didn't accept what he was saying at face value. Now, that you find out he isn't bluffing you are nervous.

You either talk to him why you feel this way, but you have to let him explain why marriage is important to him. Don't invalidate his feelings or point of view, and don't let him belittle your perspective and feelings either.

Do it now, and your relationship may be saved.
 ro1970
Joined: 10/23/2011
Msg: 29
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 11:03:30 AM
well.....if you have made it crystal clear to him you do NOT want to get married and he winds up proposing........

Run Forrest Runnnnnnnnnn!!!!!!!!

My ex pressured the heck out of me on that and it caused me to run as well.......and now he wonders why I ran.

It's all about setting boundaries and making your expectations known.

If he can't accept the fact you do NOT want to get married, then you both need to head on down the road.
 MacInOC
Joined: 2/19/2012
Msg: 30
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 11:21:20 AM
I think everyone is missing the elephant in the room. I don't believe the issue is marriage, but the reason for not wanting to get married....


I like having my own space and knowing that if I want to be alone, I can.


To me, this say living apart and having separate lives at times - not ready to commit. In other words, nothing more serious than dating - a far cry from marriage.

Sorry, but I don't see this ending well.
 daynadaze
Joined: 2/11/2008
Msg: 33
view profile
History
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/17/2012 11:48:07 AM
You need to talk to him now about this, not after he proposes. If you can be with a guy in a relationship this long but you can't talk to him about something that important, then why are you with him at all? You can't change that he wants what you don't, but you sure can stop him from making a step you know you are going to reject. Tell him the truth, now. You may lose him if he wants more, but you are more likely to lose him if you let him think you led him on then embarrassed him and hurt him by letting him propose.

Who knows, maybe he's happy just the way it is. You shouldn't have to play some game of breaking up and dating others over and over like was suggested above, it's not the honeymoon phase that I get from you, it's the not wanting to get married realization that many of us have. Doesn't mean we don't fall in love or don't want a relationship. Living with/marrying isn't the end goal for everyone.
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 34
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/19/2012 8:13:28 AM

I love this man more than life itself. He is everything I've ever wanted and needed. He came out of nowhere. It is the most intimate relationship I have ever had. Physically, spiritually and emotionally....I can't imagine my life without him by my side.


If you're telling this to your boyfriend, you are sending out mixed and very confusing messages. In almost every case, it's the woman who pushes for marriage because almost every woman fantasizes about having a fairy tale wedding. So the guy is assuming that's what you want, not realizing you are one of the very few that's not caught up in delusional fairy tales, so he's prepared to bite the bullet to please you. He would probably be relieved he's not pressured into living out a woman's fantasy. But if tell him all of the above-about can't imagine not having him by your side and all that jazz-and then say to him: "But I can't imagine living with you", that will be just as confusing. On the one had, you're telling him you can't live without him, and on the other hand, you're telling him you can't live with him You have to realize that a woman's view of logic and a man's view of logic are totally different.
 MacInOC
Joined: 2/19/2012
Msg: 35
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/19/2012 8:43:03 AM
^^^^^ Exactly my point. Well said.


I like having my own space and knowing that if I want to be alone, I can.


and ...


I love this man more than life itself. He is everything I've ever wanted and needed. He came out of nowhere. It is the most intimate relationship I have ever had. Physically, spiritually and emotionally....I can't imagine my life without him by my side.


is confusing. At least to me and maleman9.

Someone said you can live together and still " have your own space and know that if I want to be alone, I can". Maybe it's just me, but when two people live together, they sleep, dress, shower, eat every day / night in the same house (unless separate traveling or separate vacations). Shower there, dress there, live there. How do you get your own space and be alone, say on a random Wednesday night? Just kick your mate out and say don't come home? Inquiring minds want to know.
 1bellanella
Joined: 1/24/2010
Msg: 37
view profile
History
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/19/2012 10:41:49 AM

Someone said you can live together and still " have your own space and know that if I want to be alone, I can". Maybe it's just me, but when two people live together, they sleep, dress, shower, eat every day / night in the same house (unless separate traveling or separate vacations). Shower there, dress there, live there. How do you get your own space and be alone, say on a random Wednesday night? Just kick your mate out and say don't come home? Inquiring minds want to know.


It can take some effort but it's definately do-able. Smart couples will plan alone time. In my case, planning alone time now that we cohabitate is easier than planning our days together was when we lived apart. I will take a weekend every so often and spend it with my parents so that my boyfriend has time with out me around. I have hobbies he is not involved in that afford us each time apart. If you feel strongly that you need your own "space" you could always get a place with muliple bedrooms and create your own space.
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 38
Boyfriend talking marriage
Posted: 8/19/2012 1:34:59 PM
There's a reason why some guys have man caves. I suppose a woman could also have a woman cave. If one or both are working, they get quite a bit of time apart as it is, especially if one or both are working a lot of hours or has a long commute. Along with daily chores or routine or outside interests, there really isn't a lot of time devoted to each other. I guess some people still want to think of getting together with their mate as a date, but if they live together, the dating feeling isn't there anymore.
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