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Am I Pushing Him to Get Married?

"Am I Pushing Him to Get Married?"

This question is from a Group Therapy post in our TrèsSugar Community. Add your advice in the comments!

Please bear with me with the long details. I'm 25 years old and I'm dating a man who's 30 years older than me. We've been together for two years, we get along great, and most of the time we really have fun. The age difference doesn't show much when you don't try hard to notice. However, lately I've been thinking about where we are going with this thing. He's a very private guy and likes to take things slowly. There's nothing wrong, but he had a divorce seven years ago and since then he's been careful about his feelings until this time — he really felt something great with me. The divorce, in a way, discouraged him from pursuing anything permanent anymore, and I understand that, too, but at the same time, I wonder if we want the same thing down the road since we're at such different stages of life.

A lot of my friends of the same age are getting married, or are with someone who is headed toward that direction for sure. I'm never someone who likes to push a guy to propose or anything, but with him, I don't know what he's looking for. To me, it seems like he's done the marriage thing before and doesn't want to go there fast or at all anymore, and it probably won't be a pity, but if I assume this and talk about it with him, he gets upset and always says, "How do you know?" or "I'll never say never," or "Maybe, maybe not." I understand people can't foresee how things will go and maybe someday we will both feel right and we'll just get married, but with him, I don't think it will ever happen, considering his personality and past experience, or it would probably take him a long time before he would even consider that, which I'm not sure I can wait that long.

In my situation, I feel like I'm still at the young stage where the things newlyweds dream about or look forward to still seem exciting. Older people may see that as childish, but I think everyone deserves a chance to experience that "childishness" at least once in life. I certainly don't expect the person I'm with to marry me tomorrow or next year, but I need to manage my expectations here, so being with someone who is already disheartened about the whole relationship thing makes me a little pessimistic. I think he's OK with just being together forever, and if marriage happens down the road, fine, but if not, no big deal. I'm not sure I can deal with that.

I hope all this makes sense. I'm in no way in a hurry to get married or anything — let it be someone this much older or someone my own age. I feel sad because I wish we were the same age, so there won't be a lot of judgment or practical issues before us such as the age gap and all other things that entail. It's hard to give up now since we've built a lot of things together and are getting even stronger, and I don't think it's nice for me to just "dump an old man." But should I really be concerned here? Or should I just wait it out and see what happens? The latter option kind of scares me with this case, considering my guy's past and personality.

Have a dilemma of your own? Post it anonymously on Group Therapy for advice, and check out what else is happening in the TrèsSugar Community.

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modafiniljunkie modafiniljunkie 3 years
"I certainly don't expect the person I'm with to marry me tomorrow or next year, but I need to manage my expectations here, so being with someone who is already disheartened about the whole relationship thing makes me a little pessimistic. "     You need to say those words to him and ask for a simple, honest reply.  If you don't know where you stand with him after 2 years, it's time to find out.  If he wants to marry you, he will.  If he doesn't, he won't.  It's very simple.  If he gives you any sort of vague maybe-it'll-happen-one-day answer, that's his way of saying no.  
GTCB GTCB 3 years
It should be noted that the entertainment medium(s) have glamorized and demonized this sort of relationship in various forms.  I'm sure you're painfully aware of this every time you're asked if you're out for dinner with your Dad.   Anyways, dating a guy your Dad's age has been a fun distraction for a couple of years, hasn't it?  But you're never going to have kids with him and honey, he's not going to marry you.  Speaking from a guy's perspective, this relationship is MUCH better for him than it is for you.  Oh man... he's got it made.  You have no baggage, and you're young and still in your sexual prime years.  And Viagra and Cialis are never far away!   However, if YOU want things like marriage and kids, should look for someone closer to your own age.  That's how it works.  And at the risk of being blunt, I question the amount of self-respect you have.  You know plain as day what you're doing and being this guy's little girlfriend post-divorce is really lame.  You're worried that it's not 'nice' to dump an old man?  How about putting yourself at #1.  The clock is ticking.
honestyAboveAll honestyAboveAll 3 years
You need to communicate openly about all issues. Ask yourself: how do you feel about this person? Are you actually happy? Is he making you feel pessimistic, and if so, why? What brought you together in the first place?Can you go back to feeling that excitement when you first started dating or did it fade away? Nothing wrong in addressing your issues and figuring out what it is that actually makes you happy and why. You have to do what's best for you, and you only can determine what it is deep down in you.
BiWife BiWife 3 years
You need to figure out what it is that you need from this relationship. Do you need it to be heading towards marriage/something permanent? Do you need marriage to be a *when* and not an *if*? Do you need a partner who allows you to feel young and experience life without the lens of the jaded and disenchanted? Do you need your partner to encourage your dreams or call your dreams "childish"? You really don't sound happy in the relationship that you have. It sounds like your boyfriend is no longer meeting your needs and doesn't see your needs (as you have expressed them so far) as something deserving serious consideration. Certainly, there could be good parts of the story being left out here, but from what you have said, it does not sound like you two are on the same page as far as goals and the status of your relationship. If you're having trouble effectively communicating your needs and desires, especially if it feels like you're speaking different languages, check into a therapist/counselor/mediator who can sit down with both of you and help you learn to talk *with* each other instead of *at* each other.
Krish82 Krish82 3 years
I know how you feel. I'm the same age as you. The difference between us though is that I'm dating a man who's almost a couple of years younger than me. We've been dating for a little bit more than 2 years now, and things were perfect until now; he seem lost, the relationship got a bit complicated right now (he's on the ship right now. NAVY). He suddenly sent me an e-mail not too long after he left saying that he has been thinking about us, and after that, he also said stuff like, I think I don't love you as much as I thought I did, I need to think, I think I'm drifting away, I think I can't handle being in a relationship while in the navy (no straight answers from him about why he feel this way) Says the man who would always assure me that things will be ok when I'm the one having little doubts. When I ask him if he wants to end it NOW he wouldn't say a thing! It hurts of course, so I told him I'd give him space while he's on cruise. By the way, when he said he doesn't think he loves me as much as he thought he did, it hurts, but at the same time, it feels like he didn't mean it, I can seem to feel it in my heart, kind of like a gut feeling, but then how should I know right? Lol Anyway, now I've been thinking if I had something to do with it.... Thinking maybe I got too expensive for him, maybe I got too spoiled?, maybe because of his job that's a HELL really (at least that's how they feel), or maybe he feels like he's being pressured because I opened up about marriage. One time (after the hurtful e-mail) I also asked if he's thinking about breaking up and about the last thing I talked to him about (marriage) he said yes. I don't blame him really. I told him how old I want to get married, and that I would like to travel with my future husband for a couple of years before having kids, and I asked if he's gonna propose (I known stupid, although we've been talking a little bit about this before) I also asked him though if this bothered him, he said "no, I'm glad I know what you want", then suddenly he's THINKING about it..... My point is, it might scare him or not, but if it really makes you wonder what your future with him is going to be, then maybe you should ask, just don't give him some kind of schedule. I mean, I think we all wonder if there's something more if we already stayed with this person for years. We're women, whether we like it or not our biological clock is ticking (if you want to have kids) and it would be nice spending some time with that special person before having kids. So, go ahead, just ask him if he's been thinking about his future with you or not, because you would like to have a future with him, maybe not soon, but someday, and that you would like to know if he's on the same page or not. Good luck
Krish82 Krish82 3 years
I know how you feel. I'm the same age as you. The difference between us though is that I'm dating a man who's almost a couple of years younger than me. We've been dating for a little bit more than 2 years now, and things were perfect until now; he seem lost, the relationship got bit complicated right now (he's on the ship right now. NAVY). He suddenly sent me an e-mail not too long after he left saying that he has been thinking about us, and after that, he also said stuff like, I think I don't love you as much as I thought I did, I need to think, I think I'm drifting away, I think I can't handle being in a relationship while in the navy (no straight answers from him about why he feel this way) Says the man who would always assure me that things will be ok when I'm the one having little doubts. When I ask him if he wants to end it NOW he wouldn't say a thing! It hurts of course, so I told him I'd give him space while he's on cruise. By the way, when he said he doesn't think he loves me as much as he thought he did, it hurts, but at the same time, it feels like he didn't mean it, I can seem to feel it in my heart, kind of like a gut feeling, but then how should I know right? Lol Anyway, now I've been thinking if I had something to do with it.... Thinking maybe I got too expensive for him, maybe I got too spoiled?, maybe because of his job that's a HELL really (at least that's how they feel), or maybe he feels like he's being pressured because I opened up about marriage. One time (after the hurtful e-mail) I also asked if he's thinking about breaking up and about the last thing I talked to him about (marriage) he said yes. I don't blame him really. I told him how old I want to get married, and that I would like to travel with my future husband for a couple of years before having kids, and I asked if he's gonna propose (I known stupid, although we've been talking a little bit about this before) I also asked him though if this bothered him, he said "no, I'm glad I know what you want", then suddenly he's THINKING about it..... My point is, it might scare him or not, but if it really makes you wonder what your future with him is going to be, then maybe you should ask, just don't give him some kind of schedule. I mean, I think we all wonder if there's something more if we already stayed with this person for years. We're women, whether we like it or not our biological clock is ticking (if you want to have kids) and it would be nice spending some time with that special person before having kids. So, go ahead, just ask him if he's been thinking about his future with you or not, because you would like to have a future with him, maybe not soon, but someday, and that you would like to know if he's in the same page or not. Good luck
henna-red henna-red 3 years
Trust yourself, your feelings, your instincts. If you can actually think the phrase "dump the old man" then you're not in happy, healthy relationship, I think. Even for you, this is about appearances. There's nothing at all childish about being excited around finding the right guy, getting engaged, marrying and having a family. Nothing. Why do you think it's childish? You seem to be sacrificing your youth to be with this man. Nothing in your tone of this post is happy, or excited of anything but sad and heavy and.....you seem to feel some kind of obligation to stay in this relationship, and of course, there is never an obligation to stay in a situation that makes you sad, and discouraged and hopeless. Move on. Just because he's been through life, doesn't mean you are obligated, in any way to hang out and take care of him as he ages......if you have different goals, then you have different goals....and his age is no reason for you to stay and give up you goals......
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