Learn how you can get a few steps closer to walking down the aisle!
You’ve dated for 3 years, lived together for 1 of them and are really beginning to wonder if this man of your dreams, your soul mate, is ever going to pop the big question. Certainly the two of you have discussed marriage. Yet lately every time you bring up the subject, it ultimately gets shrugged off as a “great idea” and you are left wondering if the relationship is ever going to move out of this exclusive, yet, not-quite-committed stage.
It’s common for women to feel pressure to get married while men are happy to be in an intimate relationship without the commitment of marriage. After all, they are comfortable and getting their physical needs met - why risk moving forward? Many men simply don’t understand the importance of going all the way emotionally, whereas a woman may feel that something is missing in a relationship if it does not end up in marriage. Marriage is the Holy Grail to many women in a relationship, as opposed to men who may make sex the priority.
This common roadblock can end an otherwise good relationship—a woman wants to get married and a man doesn’t want to take that step. How can couples resolve this issue and move forward into a mutually satisfying, long-term committed relationship—otherwise referred to as engagement and marriage? At some point the woman will make the mistake of passively accepting his position and denying her desire to get married, or she will demand that he marry her. Neither approach tends to work—men simply do not respond well to ultimatums. And, really, what’s the thrill in having a man give in to the pressure and agree to get married?
A marriage proposal should be joyful and free from conditions or obligation. It’s a want, a desire, our heart’s true choice. The good news is that there is a simple alternative to tossing around ultimatums or denying one’s need. A woman can move back to the intimate relationship stage, and share with him how she feels in a non-demanding way without blaming him. It’s important for men to feel as if they are the solution instead of the problem. Many times a man, when given the space and opportunity to solve the problem, will propose that they take the relationship to a higher level of commitment, but only after understanding how important it is to a woman.
Often this can be accomplished without either partner feeling as if the other is pulling back too suddenly and taking away a part of the relationship, or that they are being punished for moving too fast or not fast enough. Open communication and forgiveness are essential to feeling loved and respected through this crucial time.
If you want to talk to your partner about your feelings, the following things need to happen to create a good conversation:
When you approach a man about getting married, ideally you want to help him see your feelings and why getting married is important to you. If in your conversation you say things like, "I'm going to leave you if we don't get engagged" or "If I'm not engaged in the next 6 months then this relationship is not going to work," you run the risk of sounding like you're giving him an ultimatium.
Are there times for ultmatiums? Absolutely. But ususally not the first time you talk about something!
For some, committing to anything is a scary concept. If you feel like your relationship should be progressing at a faster pace than it is, take comfort in knowing that often all that is needed is to share your feelings with your partner in a way that he is open to hearing - in his language, so to speak!
If you're not sure how to craft this conversation, our coaches can help. A well contructed conversation, held at the right time and with the right words can do wonders to help you get closer to walking down the aisle.