I Want Marriage and My Boyfriend Doesn’t

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"Okay so I’ve been with my S/O for 5 years now. We live together & have 2 children. He works, I stay home with the kids. He knows I desire marriage. I don’t pressure him about it anymore because the topic seems to be uncomfortable for him. I feel like I can’t talk about it at all with him. I’m a good woman and he’s a good man and we have a fun loving goofy type of relationship. Besides the stress of children, work and the norm of life I feel that we are happy & good together. I know marriage isn’t important for everyone, but it is for me & I feel it should be for him as well because we are both Christian and I desire to honor God and grow old with the man I love. I don’t want to force it on him. I want him to want it to come naturally & for him to desire it just as much as I do. He also wants to have more kids and I’m not at all comfortable with adding more children to our family without being married. I definitely don’t want to break my family apart, but I feel that I have compromised my values enough. I have prayed for years, but my prayers aren’t being answered. What is the best advice you can give me to fulfill my dream of marriage without forcing him?"

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The following top answers have been selected by a moderator from hundreds of responses to the original question.

"Be open and honest about your feelings, ask what is his concern or fears with it."

"If he doesn’t want marriage and you do than in my opinion if you stay you will not be happy"

"Meet in the middle and have a commitment ceremony instead?"

"There is nothing you can do to change his mind. After 5 yrs clearly you two will never see eye to eye on the subject. Either stay and accept he doesn’t want to get married or leave and find someone else. Those are honestly your two options. I don’t mean to sound rude but it is what it is."

"To be 100% honest, coming from a gal who was in your EXACT position not even 10 years ago. WAIT. Wait until he is ready. Does it suck, sure does. But I feel that if I would have continued to pressure him he would be going into something feeling forced and I did not want that. And trust me, it caused a LOT of issues in our relationship and looking back, I am not even sure why it was such a big deal. Do I love being married, ABSOLUTELY. But pressuring him into something he doesn’t want at the same time I did only pushed him away rather than pulling him closer… Just wait love, it’ll happen. You just have to remember that this is about you BOTH not just you. If he is happy how it is, then let him be <3"

"There are many legal benefits to marriage. Maybe connect on that level?"

"Agree to more kids if he agrees to elope? Is the issue marriage, is the issue a wedding? Does he know why marriage is important to you? Either way you need to sit down with a calm mind and discuss it, get all the feelings out, try not to push it and try not to get angry. But also I know people that are engaged forever before ever getting around to getting married. I’ve never had a desire to get married. But my current partner is my forever. He’s been married and doesn’t have any real desire to get married again. If I were to ever get married, I’d elope. I’d only be engaged as long as it took to get a license. Personal feeling on engagement, if I’m confident enough to accept, I’ll just do it here and now."

"You just need to decide if it’s a deal breaker for you. None of the other stuff matters."

"Check with your state laws, you may already be a common law wife. Also check to see how not being married would affect the children, and joint owner ship(house, car ect) if something was to happen to one of you."

"Ask him what about marriage turns him off… let him be honest without a reaction. See what he says. You already do pretty much everything a married couple does anyways. What’s the issue? If it’s monetary offer prenup. If it’s the whole societal expectations and the marriage certificate etc then do a commitment ceremony. If he wants to explore his options let him go. Marriage is all about compromise there needs to be middle ground this isn’t just your life or his…"

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