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Fear talks of marriage unreal ruining relationship
January 25, 2000
1:06 pm
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geodeb
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I am 33, divorced for over 6 years, have one eight year old. I have been dating a 35, never been married man for 10+ months. From early in the relationship he has been talking about marriage. As romantically and also looking at houses together, shopping for furniture talking about rings etc... We broke up once in October for about 3 weeks. Mostly I fell our problems are a result of my anger and inability to be patient and believe that this life we have talked about will actually happen. I have hear soon for months, but then we fight and that is supposivily "setting us backward" I am feeling unable to let go, but very unhappy. Basically I feel betrayed and lied to. Am I overreacting? Is it normal for a guy to talk non stop about marriage and then not really do anything real about it? How can I be more patient and try to enjoy the relationship while I am still so angry? For example going out last week he started talking about how he needed to let me know about his debt to income relationship and how would I like a certain city if we got transfered. I freak out--I am tiered of talking about it and really want it to happen.

January 25, 2000
5:33 pm
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holly2001
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Ugh! I'm not sure I understand but it sounds like this guy is stringing you along but is not sure he will ever marry you. If he is a grown, experience man, and still has these doubts about you, he may be waiting for "something better to come along." He doesn't realize that you are "something great!", and he may never see that. All I know is, now that I'm married, if I were single again I'd stay that way until I knew for sure, 100%, that we were supposed to be together, and that I was THE BEST for him and he was THE BEST for me!

Try to stand outside yourself and your relationship and see it from an outsider's point of view. If it were one of your friends in the situation, what advice would you give her? Would you say she is ignoring the problems in hopes of getting married? Would you say she is letting this man control her, even thougth they are just dating? Would you tell her "not to settle" and to look out for #1 (herself)? Would you tell her not to waste her time?

I think you need to ask yourself those questions and be as honest as you can with the answers. You know in your heart whether to keep hanging on to him or whether to just let him go. I have been learning (the past 2 weeks!) that I DON'T NEED MEN TO BE HAPPY!
It's so obvious, but I have never believed it! You don't NEED him, you just want him, and if you didn't have him you would be sad and miss him, but life would go on and you would probably meet someone else sooner than you think. Someone who was genuine and had your best interests at heart, and no "debt to income ratio" to worry about!

What do I know, I'm just starting to see "the real world", but that's what I feel in my heart about your situation.
Best of luck. Be smart and keep your eyes open.
Holly

January 26, 2000
8:49 am
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Cici
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Argument can be seen as setbacks because of how we deal with them. A common principle in marriage counseling is that anger causes physiological arousal, which enhances the dominant response. That is, however we argue before is how we will always argue until we take conscious steps to try to have productive discussions rather than angry disagreements.

The probelm, I think, nowadays, is that people think that everything should be perfect before getting married. The reality is that nothing can be. You find a person with similar problems that are tolerable to you and you go from there. Being that marriage is about two adults coming together, there's no way you can start from a clean slate!

My question to you is, why do you want to get married so badly? You have taken care of your child for over 6 years by yourself. You've taken care of yourself. Is marriage really security? When divorce rates are over 50% in the US? THat's why I'm studying to be a marriage and family counselor.

Conflict indicates that there is an underlying misunderstanding between you two. Ask him why he wants to marry. Say that since there is no date set, don't discuss it for a while and see how things go.

February 8, 2000
7:53 pm
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clc
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geodeb:

I am in the same situation as you are. My significant other (for the past 1.5 years) is always talking about a family, what ifs and rings - and then he gets cold feet by telling me that he doesn't think he loves me enough to marry me. I can totally relate to what you are going through. Just be strong and get on your own two feet and look out for number one. I need to do the same.

February 8, 2000
9:48 pm
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BROC
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Geodeb and CLC,

Hit a Barnes and Noble and buy the book titled "The Two Step". Its a LARGE paperback.

It will show you both why you are where you are, how you got there, and how to get out.

broc-

ps - hi cici. love the advice you give. hows your issues today... your sobriety, etc.? Hope all is well.
hugs,
b-

February 9, 2000
5:54 pm
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Cici
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Hey Broc!

How are you? I'm doing better. Although I'm prementrual today, so I've been weepy. Ha ha ha. I think that falls under the category of "too much information."

Interestingly, I have the opposite problem (suddenly). I'm only 20, my boyfriend is 21. We recently started talking about the future, just because he's graduating in December. Now all of a sudden he's tlaking about marriage. Although I lvoe him to death and trust him completely, although he has been the best thing to happen to me in a very very long time, I wonder. I feel like I'm too young to make that kind of committment. I still have graduate school to consider, if this semester goes well I'll be able to apply to a five year masters-PhD program, which would make me a doctor by age 26! Oh, well. The grass is always greener, right?

February 15, 2000
11:46 am
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BROC
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CICI,

Yes, it can be confusing. What to do? Well, in my estimation, or opinion, its like this. When you are healthy, you will automatically make the right decisions. I believe this because its not what all the books, and group,, and therapy has taught me, but I am now living it.

As for you, only you know. I don't trust it because he is an addict, or former addict. He still sales doesn't he? You used to use, so I am going to say, "Alex, I am going to take Pass on this relationhship and keep up my recovery for $500"

Love to you.

Broc

February 16, 2000
5:01 am
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hazza
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HI Cici
For what it is worth, i too would say go with your education.
Im 26 now and not a doctor or anything else because i threw myself in to relationships instead of education. I sure regret it.
Hugs
Hazza

February 16, 2000
9:05 am
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Cici
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Ah ha! BROC - is that your final answer? ha ha ha ha.

I'm going for the education. He stopped selling last year, although he made so much money that he is basically supporting me now. We went and talked to my father and to a priest (we both go to church together now).

I have made it clear that I am in school for the interim. I am getting my master's at least, probably my PhD right along with it. Everyone has told us to wait, and get engaged if that's what we want, but to wait to be married. That is my feeling exactly. Marriage cannot come until After my Bachelor's.

So for now we look at rings. We wonder what will happen. He has graduate school starting in the fall of 2001, too, so we're not talking about marrying and starting a family. We're talking about choosing to make a lifelong committment to be together in a loving, supportive relationship. This sounds like a justification, but I feel like if two people fit and fit well, if they have healthy ways of dealing with frustration and proactive argumentative styles, is that not a healthy relationship? Why is it that age is such a big deal. The majority of people are marrying later in life (late 20s, early 30s) and you know what? Instead of the divorce rate being 1 in 3 it is now 1 in 2.

True, good relationships are based on love, committment, trust, generosity and communication. You talk things out when they bother you, you discuss major life decisions. Of course, both my older sister were engaged and married by 21 and my mom married at 19. They're all still married, too. My parents have been together for 35 years, Aaron;s have been togehter for 25 years after marrying each other after only knowing each other for 1 month!

Sometimes I think popular psychology makes everything so dull and humdrum. In it, there's no room for love at first sight or the sweeping passion that motivated Keats, Byron and Shelly (the romatic poets), none of the devouring desire that created Shakespeare's sonnets. If they lived today they would be prozac-ed up and clamly engaging in "healthy relationships." Whatever happened to all-encompassing love?

February 17, 2000
2:55 pm
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BROC
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Cici,

Yes, thats my final answer. I know to much now. I have read, heard, and experienced nearly all of it. Addicts are always addicts. I used to chew. I don't anymore, and haven't for five years. But I am still an addict. So, who knows. I don't know you personally, or Aaron, but I just don't trust it. Again, I don't see the mechanics, so I can't say that you guys are doomed. As for love at first sight, etc., you know that is only in the movies. WHY do you think people go and see them? Because its a fantasy. Yes, I do believe in finding that ONE, but it takes so much work. First, you have to be healthy. If not, forget it. You will repeat your dysfunctional patterns till you die, never reeally knowing why your life is so fucked up. So, you get healthy. Find yourself, religion, etc. Like me and my girlfriend have. I can truley say it is awesome. 180,000 million degrees opposite of Shannon and I. It is so healthy it almost makes me sick. ha ha No chaos. No commotion. So, thats my say. And from what I have heard from you, others, groups, hundreds of books, etc. it IS THE way things happen (if things are going to be good and fulfilling)
I am glad to hear you are sober. I am glad to hear he is too, for your sake. But you and I know that addictions are only symptoms of internal conflict. And you both have/had it. If you guys don't sit your ass down and spill it and solve that internal conflict, you are, well, screwed. And you won't even get a kiss with it.

YOu know this is how it is. And to think anything else will happen is denial. I hope you find your path and stay on it. Its the only way to happiness.

Broc

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