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Parallax - Advice

September 12, 2005

Not the marrying kind?

Dear Conversely,

Ask us a Question! I am writing because I am finding it EXTREMELY hard to wait for my boyfriend of four years to propose. I'm twenty-five and my boyfriend is thirty. We've lived together for a year and have a fourteen-month old son. He says he wants to get married and he'll propose when he's ready. For the past year, he's been telling me that we would marry in 2005, but it's now September and we're not even engaged. I want to believe him because I need that stability for myself and our son, but with each day that passes I feel my hopes and dreams of spending my life with this man are fading. I love him and my son with all my heart. Should I give up on the idea of us getting married and settle on us dating forever? I will, if I have to, but I know I'll begin to resent him for it later on. What's best for our son? What's best for me? Email to a Friend

Her view:

Dear Ringless,

Okay, so this really great fellow had a child with you but cannot seem to drag himself to a jewelry store to make your relationship permanent. You are, in fact, dating, and you have a child. He is an idiot.

Unless you want to be dating forever, give him a firm ultimatum. It is not good for you or your son to be held at arms length, always wondering if you'll ever get a real commitment. You will crack under the stress of that constant threat, and the relationship will tank eventually. Whether you realize this or not, you are very young and could easily marry someone else. I'm sure you feel vulnerable with a child, but there are many guys out there who would love both you and your son. And there are many single fathers looking for a real future with someone.

Clearly, you missed the July wedding. Clearly, he has no plans. The time has come for you to make a hard decision. Will you be happy forever this way? Because this is where you are headed. Step up and decide what you want. Have a backbone.

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His view:

Dear Ringless,

The reason your boyfriend is never going to go through with his promises is that you are pathetic. Why should he marry you if the worse thing that could happen is that you will bend your little head and 'settle' on dating forever?

You're going to have to grow a new spine and show some cojones if you want to get what you want. That's what would be best for you. The good news is twenty-five is still young: you have time.

In the meantime, try figuring out an alternate plan. Are you so dependent on him that you can't come up with a plan that doesn't involve him? If it's so extremely hard to deal with his lack of commitment, stop whining and look for a way out.

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You Vote! 73% of Women agree with HER VIEW and 27% with HIS VIEW.

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