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Should I Give up or Keep Trying?

Dear Sugar

I'm 27 years old and have been dating a guy for about a year and a half now. We both have so much in common and get along extremely well, however, I am at a point in my life where I am ready to settle down. He is three years younger and while he admits he doesn't think he'll ever find another girl that makes him happier, he doesn't feel that he's had enough experiences with other women. He wants to take a break and sow his wild oats, although he acknowledges that he has no idea if he'll get over this phase in a month or in 5 years.

I'm crushed and confused. I don't want to take a break, but I also don't want our relationship to end up in divorce court because he married before he was ready to settle down. If it were just a matter of giving us more time, I would do it, but the thought of him with other women just crushes my spirit. Do I kick him to the curb or give him the chance to have some fun before having a family and settling down? --Decision Time Debbie

To see DEARSUGAR's answer

Dear Decision Time Debbie--

It can be so heartbreaking to find the "perfect" man for you when the timing isn't right so I am sorry you are hurting. Your boyfriend is being extremely honest with you, which I admire. While taking a break might not be the ideal situation, pressuring him into settling down before he is ready is sure to backfire, potentially hurting you more in the long run. It sounds as though your boyfriend needs some time to explore himself, so if you don't want him going behind your back, I suggest giving him the space he needs right now. You're right, you don't want to end up in divorce court or have your husband resent you for pressuring him into a premature marriage.

While some people think taking a break is a bad idea, others find time apart to be a blessing in disguise. I don't blame you for being hurt by your boyfriend's desires, but unfortunately you are going to have to respect his needs one way or another. Oftentimes distance does make the heart grow fonder, so keep faith in your relationship and hopefully, sooner than later, your boyfriend will realize that you're the woman for him! Good luck and stay strong.


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