Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A question!

One of my really nice readers sent me an email about her current relationship. I won't share her email here (even though it was a really nice email and she even used the word douchebag...nice touch!), but her main question was:

How long is would you stay in a relationship if the guy didn't propose?


And my answer is?

I have no flipping idea.

Because, y'all? I have no flipping idea.


Jason and I dated dated for three years before he proposed. And frankly, I thought it was time for him to...you know, poop or get off the pot. (That was classy, yes?) Other people I know have dated much longer. This gal and her guy? Have been together for fifteen years. I haven't even KNOWN Jason fifteen years.

Thus, I have no idea what to tell her. I was thinking some crap about how every relationship is different and blah, blah, blah, whatever, but somehow? I don't think she wants to hear that.


So, kind readers, what do you think?

30 comments:

Gerbil said...

Has she ever sat down and discussed with him what he sees for the future? what she wants? And why and when they both want it?

Allie said...

I agree, sit down and talk about it, you'll know by that discussion.

Chelle said...

hmmm. we knew each other for 6 years, but had only really been dating for 3 years when J proposed. Then it was another 2 years til we got married *rolls eyes*

But ya, like Gerbil said, have they talked about what they each want? What timelines they each see? I hope things work out for your (awesome) reader...

Halala Mama said...

If she wants to be married and have kids, then it's time for her to go. If she just wants to hang out and be with him, kids or no, then she can stay. It's really up to her - what does she want? (and realizing that wanting marriage and this particular guy may not be wants that can peacefully coexist.)

Me? I would be gone. But what do I know? I got married less than a year after meeting my husband.

mean stepmom said...

If you don't KNOW after 15 years, it's time to move on.

rosannepm said...

My husband and I disagree on something. Is "douchebag" a word to describe a woman or a man? I say it's a derogatory term for a woman and he says it describes men.

Thalassa said...

IMO, douchebag is not gender specific. it applies to anyone who is being a worthless jerk, and who would serve society best by dropping their own self into the nearest trash bin.

as for the reader? if the guy has been promising to propose for 15 years and has always had some reason or excuse, no matter how much she loves him, it's time to rip off that band-aid and find someone to love who has some gumption. i assume that being proposed to is something that's really important to her, or she wouldn't be asking the question. but if she's never told him directly it's really important to her (say because she's been trying not to "scare him off" by acting coolly disinterested in marriage) then he may honestly not think she's into it. he might be perfectly happy being unwed domestic partners, or he might be trying not to scare HER off because she's done such a good job of acting like she's not interested.

so, i need more information, but i think she should talk to him about it. then she'll know.

Kimberly said...

I second the talking thing, but I have to say, fifteen years is a heck of a long time. But that's coming from a gal whose guy proposed after five months, so perhaps I'm not the best one to listen to. =P

the Yearning Heart said...

I'm not sure there's any really good time. If he's not really motivated to, there's really no incentive for him to ask. Why don't you be the one to ask him?

Also, according to George Carlin, a scumbag is a guy, a douchebag is a girl.

ChloƩ said...

Well, I've been with my guy since 8 years now (we even missed our "anniversary" on July 8th... shame! LOL) and since we both don't care much about marriage, we are happy that way. The important words here being "we both don't care much about marriage": we talked about it and decided that it wasn't something that was important to our relationship, so, yeah, I agree on the talking advice above.

Concerning the douchebag question, well, I speak french, so I don't have any freaking idea!!

Sunny View said...

I would give it a couple of years if your goal is to get married.

Liz said...

Have a chat about future plan. If her goal is marriage, but the guy is non-responsive, then see ya! No point wasting her time. Besides why forced it on him if he doesn't want to get marriage? It won't be good anyway.

Lil Mouse said...

everyone has already said it, but do they have kids, is she 30 or 45? these things do make a difference,i mean if they were kids when they got together, like 15, she may still have a chance at a relationship with someone else and starting a family if wanted, if she's already past that, she may not care enough to make the move. Someone we know (too complicated to reason out who), had their grandkid ask when their anniversary was. They couldn't tell him, because they hadn't gotten married. They meekly rectified that and acted as if they had been married all along. Shrug. You just have to figure what's important to you and what's not. Also a quickie proposal, first date in August, engaged by December, married 1 1/2 years later. We had known each other before, though. so..

Patience said...

Dump him!

PaintingChef said...

I think that every circumstance is different. With me and my husband, it came down to him deciding to accept a job in another state.

We had been dating for about a year and a half and I got all "OH HELL NO" when his way of telling me he was making this kind of plan without me was for him to call me at work and ask me to help him look for a house.

I had no intention of doing anything to encourage this next phase of his life if it wasn't going to include me and I'm not one for the long distance relationships.

Turned out, he was just kind of dumb and it hadn't at all occurred to him that I might not be down with this whole "move out of state" plan because things WERE going so great.

In a nutshell? Men are dumb. Most of them fear change and upheaval in a relationship and getting engaged? Means all kinds of change!

But I think that, in general, three years (in an ADULT relationship... those 3 years on and off in high school DO NOT COUNT) is long enough. If he isn't sure after three years then move on. And if he is the one and you move on, he'll come to his senses really quick.

Manipulation? Yeah... maybe a little... use what you have sister.

Fine For Now said...

Personally I think it depends on the age of this woman. In my case, my husband and I were dating for 9 years before a proposal....but we started dating at 15 and we were only 24 when he actually proposed, any sooner would have been too soon really. So, if she's around 30...yeah I say it's time! And if she's older, tell her to stop wasting her time :)

ohthatgirl said...

If you guys have been together for 15 years and you want marriage and he knows that, then he should step up.

If he doesn't know how you feel about it, he should! You need to talk to him and be very explicit about your intentions for the relationship.

If you are perfectly happy the way things are, then just go with the flow. If it works this way for both of you, then maybe it's fine the way it is.

But it seems like you might want something more (judging from the fact that you asked for advice and used douchebag at some point to express your emotions) and thats perfectly alright.

There is a time and a place for everything...and I think 15 years into it, you both should have at least some idea of where you want to be for the next 15 yrs....or 50!

queenrandom said...

Well that's a very individual thing. LB and I had discussed marriage and all that, and I told him I would say yes at any point, so the ball was in his court. Then I waited. And waited. And waited. Then I resolved to leave him if he hadn't popped the question by the end of the year (I think it was 2 years after that discussion?). The same week I made that resolution, he popped it. I think, having discussed it of course, she needs to ask herself if she's willing to cut her losses and move on. No shoe fits everyone, so this is just something she has to figure out for herself.

velocibadgergirl said...

I think Thalassa is right on, down to her definition of douchebag. Talking about it honestly is definitely the first step! If they've done that and he knows how she feels and is *still* stalling, then she'll have to do some soul-searching.

Karin's Korner said...

I agree about the whole sitting down and talking thing and then it is time to poop or get off the pot cause 15 years is a very long time.

Judi said...

I left you an award on my blog, please check it out!

la aventurista said...

Hi! I just found your blog through Judi at Lines Composed and I really like it so far! I love the honesty :) As I'm young and yet to be engaged, I may not be the most expert opinion there is, but I think your reader should move along, especially if she's talked to him about wanting to get married someday and it's still not happening. Fifteen years is a heck of a long time to wait for a proposal...

Katie said...

Umm. . . 15 years? Methinks he's enjoying the supply of milk and she needs to GET A LIFE. Sans Mr. Milk Thief. Seriously. And if you have to call your significant other a d-bag, is that someone you really want to marry? Like a ring and a ceremony will change him? GET OUT WOMAN!!!!

Erratic said...

Yikes. Personally? I wouldn't care. But, marriage isn't all that important to me. I have close friends that have been together over a decade, have children, and have never been married.

What matters to me is having a loving, committed relationship that makes me happy. If she has that and is truly happy - is marriage really that important? If that is something that is important to her, and not to him, then they have a conversation ahead of them. If they cannot compromise, it is time to part ways.

I am Trish Marie said...

I don't think there is a time limit, per se. I think it comes down to if one person is wanting one thing and another wants something different, then a decision needs to be made. Sure fifteen years may sound like a long time, but have they actually talked about where their relationship is going? I have a relative who has been with her (we call him husband) boyfriend for almost the same amount of time. They have no intention of getting married. They are cool with that. It is what they want. But that doesn't sound like the case here. They need to talk. And, if after 15 years, he still is not ready to commit to her, then I would advise her to move on. Easier said than done, though.

CageQueen said...

At this point, what is a long drawn out conversation about expectations going to produce? I'm pretty much thinking that if he hasn't by now, he won't unless he's given an ultimatum. Who the hell wants an ultimatum-proposal? Not I!! She is doing herself a disservice by staying with someone who is not cognizant of her needs, or disregards them. I am not sure how old she is, but life is too short to waste it with someone who doesn't want the same things as you. Lots of people try to play it off as "just a piece of paper" but that is horse shit. There is honor and respect that can't come from shacking up. I'm with you Stephanie-he needs to shit or get off the pot. He sounds like a royal douchebag to me!!

Beyond Alice said...

The hubs and I dated for 3 years before he proposed, and I was seriously considering calling it off shortly before he popped the question. I know things are different for everyone...but 15 years!!??!?!? That is a long frickin' time. It sounds to me like he has no intention of proposing if he is this comfortable leaving their relationship as it is.

My advice would be to have a serious discussion. If he doesn't seem certain that he wants to get married someday soon, I would GET OUT, if marriage is truly what she wants!

Snarky Lady said...

I'd discuss it. Sounds like he likes the way things are and really has no intention to propose and maybe doesn't see a reason to make it legal?

As for me -- I got a proposal after 2 weeks. We had known each other since high school, but we'd been dating for two weeks. It was about 1 month after we'd just finally gotten to see each other almost 10 years after graduation.

Wondering Woman said...

Who can say what will work for someone else? My friend and her husband dated 20 YEARS before getting married and they still live in separate houses. It wouldn't work for me, I don't really understand it, but so what.... they're happy and it works for them.

Katie said...

Surely it's different for everyone.. I have some friends that have been together something like 12 years and seem to have no intentions of getting married, and they seem happy.

That's not what I'd want though. My boyfriend and I are coming up on a year, and I've already told him that I will not be like the above friends (they're mutual friends so he knows all about it), and that I do plan on getting married in my life, and to plan accordingly. Not that I want him to propose tomorrow or anything.. ask me again how I feel six-eight months from now ;)

Anyway, if the writer wants to get married, and her SO knows that and has not proposed after 15 years... I'd say it's time to go. Though I don't really know that I think "making it legal" is worth leaving after 15 years.. *shrug* I'd have done it long before. If he's deliberately not doing it and totally disregarding her wants, then yes, please, GO! but if he's happy and thinks that she is, and is just kind of slow like that, it may be worth rethinking the goal.