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You Asked: I Don't Want to Get Married

You Asked: I Don't Want to Get Married

Dear Sugar,

I have been with my boyfriend for four years, and we currently live together. In more ways than not, we're like a married couple, although we don't have a joint bank account. Everyone is pushing me to get married, but I don't want to! It seems like being in a committed, long-term relationship without the pressure of marriage just has so much less responsibility and drama.

I guess I'm just happy with the way things are, and though I would never write it off completely, I know marriage isn't something that I need or want right now. But it seems like everywhere I look, my friends are getting married or expecting me to announce my engagement; I feel strange being a girl who doesn't want to get hitched. Is there something wrong with me that I'm not more excited by the prospect of a wedding?

— No Wedding Bells Bridgitte

To see DearSugar's answer,


Dear No Wedding Bells Bridgitte,

I don't think I can emphasize this enough: There is absolutely nothing wrong with you! Because of the way our society works, once you reach a certain age, there are things automatically expected of you — one of which is marriage. Understandably, the pressure is worse if you're already in a committed relationship, but I'm relieved to hear that you're not letting the pressure get to you or harm your relationship.

If you're happy, enjoy it, and don't worry about the fuss everyone else is making around you. Marriage might be what works for your friends, but that doesn't mean it has to work for you — especially if you're satisfied with the way things are now. A successful relationship is more about love and respect than it is about wedding parties and engagement rings. Next time someone asks you when you're tying the knot, just tell them, "We're just planning on staying happy indefinitely." Who can argue with that?


Join The Conversation
Sporky Sporky 9 years
Okay this is a subject that's near and dear to my heart. I've been in a LTR for almost 6 years, and was married for 10 years to someone before that. No kids, not now or ever. We live together and are very much in love. If I had a nickel for every time someone asked us "when are you getting married" I'd have enough money to pay for the damn wedding! I'm SOOOOO sick of it! We are planning to get married someday soon, but I think we're going to Vegas to avoid all the headaches that go with a wedding (especially family - my mom's a nightmare). But we just haven't decided when. It doesn't feel right yet, and we're not budging until it does. But you would not believe the crap we get from people for not being married. It's really a pain. Sometimes I feel like yelling at them, "Mind your own business!" I say, get married when you damn well feel like it, and try to ignore the people who are pressuring you. it's about you and your love, not them. Okay rant over. :rant:
italianblonde italianblonde 9 years
I know so many people who don't want to get married! Their goal is just to live together, which is hard enough. My friends say it's less pressure, they don't need a 'piece of paper' to certify their love, and they'll never have to get a divorce. I like the last reason..that is a calming thought! Though I don't agree with the 'piece of paper' reason..I think marriage is more than just that, but I'll keep that opinion to myself! But yes, if you don't want to get married, don't! It has its positives, that's for sure.
snickerdoodle snickerdoodle 9 years
I'm so glad that the majority of the posters are affirming what Dear said and frankly surprised that there were any negative opinions expressed about someone who is happy in a relationship and just doesn't feel the need to change anything. (And bengalspice - marriage IS different than being in a relationship. There's a whole list of cultural expectations attached to it. No criticism of the people who are absolutely satisfied with living up to those expectations, props to those who marry without feeling obliged to fulfill them - but nobody can deny that "dating" is a much more fluid term than "married.")
morganfay morganfay 9 years
"I say get married or stay how you are and be annoyed. Whatever you do, please dont bring kids into a situation like this." @ NdHebert; what is that about? No marriage equals no love, or what? Not everyone is as insecure as you seem to be when it comes to staying together unmarried. It may come as a shock to you, but it IS possible to have children outside of wedlock and stay together and happy. I say it's perfectly healthy to not give in to societal pressure "just cuz" and do exactly what feels right for your situation.
sorrowja sorrowja 9 years
I don't think anything is wrong with you. I do believe you are overthingking what marriage is all about. And while it's not for everyone don't let people pressure you into it. Also don't deny yourself the experience. I recently got married and people keep on asking "how is it" I'm like it's the same we just love each other more.
Marni7 Marni7 9 years
story of my life here! I have been with my boyfriend for 4 years and are we are basically living together and I have no desire to be married right now..even tho everyone is asking me about it..I have just never been one of those girls that dreamt about just happy how things are :)
Advah Advah 9 years
Good point, Bella. Marriage means different things to different people. It's a shame so many people still consider marriage as the only proof that you're in a committeed and loving relationship. Do whatever makes you happy and don't worry about what they say. I can't help thinking a lot of people who react like your friends decided to get married because that's what they thought they should do, and not because it's what would make only the two of them happy.
crystalvillage06 crystalvillage06 9 years
I don't think there is anything wrong with not wanting to get married however marriage is far from an outdated institution. If people want to have an official celebration great; if you don’t then that’s great too. It’s whatever makes you happy.
emalove emalove 9 years
If you don't want to get married, then don't!
miriah15 miriah15 9 years
Ah! I don't want to get married OR have kids. I think you're normal :P
Sydney-C Sydney-C 9 years
haha..I wish I could borrow some of your "not wanting to get married" feelings!!!
Beauty Beauty 9 years
There is nothing, absolutely nothing, wrong with not wanting to be married. Sounds to me like the original poster is happy with her life. If she's satisfied, it sounds like it's the OTHER people who have a problem, not her. Dear's advice is spot-on.
0danielle0 0danielle0 9 years
It drives me nuts that so many people think there's something "wrong" with not wanting to get married or have children. Or that, after a certain amount of time with someone, you should get married "just because." Marriage is a horribly outdated institution created when life expectancy was around half of what it is now and women were treated like child-bearing servants. Do what makes you happy, sweetheart. Don't let anyone pressure you, and be confident in your choices.
Melis08 Melis08 9 years
also...the soon to be inlaws have been asking for grand children for years!I don't see the rush, we are still young!
Melis08 Melis08 9 years
I agree with the others. When you are ready you will do it. For me my fiance and I have been together almost 7 years now--engaged for 2. First it was when do you think he will pop the question, now it is so what are you waiting for. They evem started to get ME anxious and feeling like something was wrong with us! SO SO wrong of everyone! I would never push a friend of mine or ask someone when they are going to get married. Both him and I know it will have for us because we are in love and know we are both totally committed. We still havn't gotten married yet, but right now it is more about the money to do it than anything else! :o) Rough times...
Liss1 Liss1 9 years
My husband and i were together for 8.5 years before we got married. Everyone would ask us when we were going to get married all the time. We got married when we wanted to, neither of us were in a rush and are young, we started dating in high school. I don't see how it's anyones business, i would never ask someone that. The newest question is when we are going to have kids. Umm, when we are ready. I swear my 8 year old neice asks me this everytime i see her! It's bad enough we get it from adults but now from a kid! :oy:
thatsjoanna thatsjoanna 9 years
I have tons of friends that live with there guy and not thinking about getting hitched. Its cool just depends on the person and situation. Good luck getting older people(a.ka. grandma and mom) to understand.
juicylove juicylove 9 years
is that supposed to say 'back' account or bank account?
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 9 years
jennifer76, your post made me laugh out loud! I love it. I've been in an LTR for a few years and am also not dying to get married. Sometimes I feel pressure to as well, especially when people are like "I just can't WAIT TO MARRY THIS MAN." I'm like, hmmm, well shouldn't I be feeling like that? But we're happy and we already live together and I'm not into fairy tale weddings so sometimes I'm like, what's the point?
Kristinh1012 Kristinh1012 9 years
In my situtation it would cause financial turmoil. The company that my BF works for requires that if you are married EVERYONE in your family has to be on their insurance. He has a very dangerous job and his family insurance package runs anywhere between 9,000-13,000.00 a year depending on the size of your family (we have 2 children).........We can NOT afford to lose that much money a year right now. It would definitely be a big problem. BUT my situtation is strange.
jessie jessie 9 years
*if* it isn't broke, don't fix it!! i need a edit button on these things! :)
jessie jessie 9 years
it is isn't broke, don't fix it!!!!
bengalspice bengalspice 9 years
I'm kinda irked that she says being in a long term relationship is less responsibility than being married. It doesn't make sense to me. How are the two different? Like a previous commentor said, you can just go to court and get married and that pretty much takes care of not dealing with a wedding. Marriage shouldn't equal financial turmoil, and if they are already living together, what difference does it really make? They are already, presumably, sharing expenses. I don't think it's fair for friends to pressure each other to get married, but I think it's silly to think that marriage is some horrid responsibility greater than living together.
Kristinh1012 Kristinh1012 9 years
I have been with my BF for 11 years now, living together for 10. We have two children, own a house and cars together and all the "married couple" stuff. But we are perfectly happy the way we are. It's just never been an issue for us. To us and our close friends and family, we are married and they call us husband and wife when they introduce us or when talking about us. Now we have a legit reason for not getting married, which I won't get into. But you have to remember that no matter what your preference/reason is, there is always going to be people who are not happy with the way you live your life. But you know what? They don't pay your bills or live your life for you. SO what they think ultimately means nothing. When people ask us when we're getting married, we tell them we don't believe in marriage (we really do) but it shuts them right up. We're not scared to make a committment to one another (obviously), some times people don't have the same priorities as others. People need to leave the marriage and baby stuff to the people they are questioning and start minding their own business. I don't know why whether or not I'm married make a difference in anyone else's life or WHY they would care or question it? Don't let anyone else decide your life for you. Especially if you are happy......
TidalWave TidalWave 9 years
I am getting really really really annoyed at the negative stigma surrounding a girl who isn't dying to get married.
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