Hi Doc:

I guess my situation is common but let me ask what you think any way.

I am a 42 year old woman that has been dating a 50 year old man for 4 years now, we have been living together for 2 years now and we’re both divorced.

When we met I was very clear what I wanted and he seemed to want the same which was to be married. Well again it has been 4 years and he has not asked me to marry him yet.

When we talk about it he will say he isn’t sure that he wants to be married again but that he knows he loves me and wants to spend his life with me other times he will say to have patience. Well I think after 4 years of dating he should be able to ask me to marry him I don’t think I’m rushing things.

He tells me all the time that we love each other and we get along great and have a very blessed life why do I want to get married. Just as everyone I have a type of life that I want I want to be married and live till death do we part with him.

Some people want kids and some don’t and I guess it’s just the type of life I want. Do you think he will ever ask me to marry him or do you think that I should move on and maybe I will find someone else I want to spend my life with and get married and then maybe I wont.

Please tell me what you think!!! Thank you


Oh my god Michele! You've wanted to be married for all of these 4 years and you still aren't? What the hell?? You seem like a nice woman! I'm sure you could go out this very weekend and find someone that would marry you TODAY! Then, you'd be happy and all of this wondering would be behind you, right?

Of course not.

Michele, come on now. You've been focused on marriage all of this time and you're really missing the entire point. No, not "everyone" wants the same things.

You're totally missing one important fact: marriage isn't the relationship itself; it's a FORMAT of a relationship. So is living together, dating exclusively, dating non-exclusively, LDR's, dating with kids, dating with gerbils, etc., etc., etc. There are thousands of formats and marriage is only one of them.

Here's more reality:

You view marriage as all sorts of good things: security, success, family, future, love, status, etc., etc.

Men however view marriage as something very different. We see it as stress, responsibility, loss of freedom, loss of choice, taking on a business partner that we have to run every decision by and many other negative things. Add to this some other facts such as women often change dramatically after they get married. They often gain weight, stop or change their sexualities, stop focusing on their partners, etc. Divorces are usually far worse on men than they are on women as well. Our divorce courts (and in fact, society in general) view men in divorce situations as the only bad guy, despite the fact that wives file 72% (majority) of all divorces!

It's almost amazing to me that men ever get married in the first place!

What you have now seems like the perfect situation, but you're not satisfied with it because you want that big party and a contract that will nail him if he doesn't do things exactly the way you want him to. What you call "commitment" you're getting far, far more of right now than you'd ever have in a marriage! He CHOOSES to be with you now even though it wouldn't hurt him much to end things.

If he were married to you, it wouldn't be a choice - it's be a court-ordered mandate! Ohhh!! How romantic!!!

Let's bottom line this thing: if you honestly have to be married to be happy, then you need to go find someone - anyone - that will give that to you right now. Don't worry about whether your boyfriend will ever come to that point - just go do it. Then, you'll have the happiness you want.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a solid, loving, committed relationship with someone you respect and love, the focus on the quality of the relationship itself - in whatever format it takes.

Best regards...
Have a love, dating, relationship, sex or man/woman question? You can write to me by going to: http://beingaman.com/ask_question.asp for answers. For more information about my books, "Being a Man in a Woman's Worldtm" (volumes I and II), and other products visit: www.beingaman.com. Check out the new BAM! TV at http://beingaman.tv.

Copyright (c) 2008, Dr. Dennis W. Neder
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Author's Bio: 

Dr. Neder is known around the world as a tough, but fair relationship expert, dealing with all sorts of dating, sex and relationship issues from a man's perspective. Having written 3 books ("Being a Man in a Woman's World™" series) and is working on others, hundreds of articles, been on hundreds of radio and TV shows, he is funny, direct and intuitive.

Do you have a burning question that needs an answer? Are you a man that wants to better experiences with women, or a woman that wants to better understand men? To learn more, go to http://beingaman.com and http://beingaman.tv.