We live in a generation much different than our parents before us. Careers and education goals are put ahead of babies and wedding vows and today’s women are happily content being single late into their 20s unlike the women in older generations who were married at 18.
How long should we wait?
What are we waiting for?
When it comes to relationships and marriage, are we rock blocking ourselves?
Today, more often than not, relationships stay in the dating phase for years and years without any forward progression. Is it due to a fear of commitment or is it because we have evolved into a society that likes to keep our options open? Instead of looking at all of the reasons to say “I do,” we convince ourselves of all the reasons to say “I don’t.”
When you find yourself in a long term relationship, you have to know your own personal limits and be upfront about them with the person you are with. Perhaps you are ready to run down the aisle while your partner is content with things as they are.
Should there be a time limit?
It seems the longer a relationship lasts without any forward progression, things become stagnant. You find yourself waiting for a change until the lack of it makes you hostile. Everyone is entitled to their dream life timeline. Maybe you saw yourself married with children by now and that just isn’t in the cards for your relationship. We aren’t getting any younger and the closer you get to 30 and beyond, you could feel the stressors of your internal clock ticking away. Are you still hitting the snooze button or is your partner hitting it for you?
This is where things start to get messy for those in long term relationships. If you have found the person that you consider to be “the one” and you haven’t made any moves to go forward in your relationship, what are you waiting for?
Some of the best relationships go sour when long term plans aren’t on the same page. If one party is ready to commit, they may feel slighted or offended if it seems the other party isn’t there yet. It can feel like they want to keep their options open in case something better comes along. Even if that isn’t the case at all, you can drive yourself crazy asking why they won’t marry you. You start to invert those feelings on yourself and it can cause a wave of inferiority feelings that overcome you. You may find yourself saying things like “maybe I’m not good enough” or “maybe I’m just not wife material”
It can be extremely psychologically detrimental.
You could also be the person on the other side of the fence. Perhaps you just aren’t ready yet. It could have nothing to do with the other person, but internally you aren’t satisfied with where you are in your own life yet and don’t want to bring another person into your mess. There may be extenuating circumstances as to why you aren’t there yet; maybe it’s financial or professional. It could become very stressful if the other party is always pressing the marriage issue and may turn you off to the idea all together.
If the decision is that hard to discuss together, perhaps it’s not the right one to make. This is a big issue that you should be on the same page with. You should be able to talk about your expectations and what you both want out of your time together. Don’t rush into something, but don’t drag your feet on it either. Be open and respectful of the arguments on both sides of the topic. Know what you what and eventually all of the pieces will fall into place. What is meant to be always finds a way and if your relationship is meant to go the distance, pace yourself for the run.
Girl Talk began in 2012 as a telltale horror story of the city’s most epic dating disasters and has evolved into a column about love, life experiences and growing up. Melissa also has a weekly Girl Talk TV segment on PA Live, WBRE, and a radio segment every Wednesday on 98.5 KRZ.