I know the age gap stands out. We’ve been together for years, both really happy, no real issues to speak of (except my almost crippling self-consciousness, which prompted me to behave the way I have in this post. I’m really working on it. You’ll even see in my post history that this is how I act. I’m really, really trying.)
My SO has always spoken of the future as “after we get married” and such. He assumes we’ll be married. Well, it’s been a few years now — we have a house (his name only; he’ll add me after marriage if he wants, because I thought him alone having it was best), we’re on the same page with family, and both our savings funds for the rings/wedding and honeymoon are basically topped off. We’re ready. And he hasn’t even remotely been going for it.
So, as I am wont to do, I can’t stop thinking about it. I thought he would be really excited to finally have the money to get married…because I’M really excited. I thought he would show some sort of joy that he would get to spend life with me, because I’M super joyful to spend life with HIM.
He’s not acting that way.
On the one hand, it seems unfair for me to expect him to feel the same way I do, because he is, in fact, a different person than me. On the other hand, when I bring up marriage (directly, none of that beating around the bush “oh look at that married couple they’re so cute”), he doesn’t seem even remotely excited about it.
“Do you wanna get married?”
…Okay then. We’ve had the marriage conversation probably six or seven times, as I seek a hint that he’s actually excited about it. I feel insufficient, like he’s not actually excited to have me in his future. I’ve told him this.
Last weekend, we were out driving around and having fun (we often play Pokemon Go together). We were waiting in the car for a raid to start, and he just said, “I can tell this wedding thing has been bothering you. I’m not excited about the wedding because I don’t like planning things in the future and it feels overwhelming.” (This has always been the case; he gets overwhelmed thinking far ahead, which is why I handle household investments, etc.) “Let’s just pick a date.”
And so we picked next June. And we sat down and planned out the honeymoon, and everything is so exciting!
Except…as always, because I can’t get out of my own head, I’m afraid that he’s only chosen a date because I’ve pressured him. I didn’t mean to pressure him. I just wanted some reassurance that he was actually excited at the prospect of US.
I tried to be clear how excited I am to eventually be married to him, and I did also talk to him about how I didn’t want him to feel pressured. He promised that if he had even an inkling of a feeling of something “off,” he wouldn’t go through with it. I want him to marry me because he wants to. But I just have this niggling that I pushed too hard without meaning to. But he did also stay in his previous unhappy relationship for seven years, and when they broke up, she started it (even though he was SUPER relieved). So maybe if I hadn’t brought it up, he would have just gone through life living as though we’re married because having an actual wedding isn’t appealing to him (or me, honestly).
Did I push too hard? How do I know that he wants to marry me for me, not to get me to shut up? (I haven’t brought it up again since, and will try not to again.)
EDIT: I talked to him last night. I told him that I was getting no indication at all from him that he wanted to be married or that he wanted to be anything besides live-in best friend roommates. He sat and hugged me while explaining that he just doesn’t like planning out the future (which I knew), he likes to keep things light (which I also knew), and he’s in the middle of his busiest season at work and just doesn’t want to think too hard about anything during his free time (understandable). He clarified that he absolutely wants to be married; I asked if he just wanted to cohabit instead, but he would rather marry. He also said that he’s been making more of an effort lately to be vocal about his feelings, since he knows that for me words are how I feel loved. I HAVE noticed a difference, and he said that things seemed to be going particularly great as well since he started doing that. I felt guilty that it still came down to me being sad despite his increased effort, but I did affirm that I had noticed it. He also said that I had sorta “taken the wind out of his sails” because he had been planning the proposal for a month or two already when I brought up the marriage talk more seriously; he felt like I had sort of spoiled any opportunity for a surprise. However, he acknowledged that he had procrastinated too long and there was no way of me knowing that he was doing that. On top of that, he said that he couldn’t think of a way to get me to go ring shopping with him without me clearly figuring out what was up. So I told him that basically we’re in the same place he wanted to be — I’ll go ring shopping with him, and then he can surprise me with a proposal whenever he wants (which is how it would have gone regardless of whether I pestered him or not). I’m feeling a lot better, and I just have to work hard to remember that HE’s already working hard to communicate his affection, even if it’s not as often as I do. He’s just not wired that way.
**tl;dr**: My SO always talks about us being married but never made any moves toward it; now I’m afraid I’ve pressured him into chosing a date and he’s doing it to get me to drop it, not because he wants to be with me.