Is Marriage A Deal Breaker? [Ask A Dude]
I’ve been dating this guy for a few months, and we really get along phenomenally. We have a lot in common, including our sense of humor, we love to go on adventures and the sex is fantastic. Marriage came up in conversation the other day, because one of his friends is unhappily married. During the conversation he revealed that he didn’t believe in marriage and would never marry. He said he had too many friends who are unhappily married and constantly complain that the sex is boring, and they wish they could sleep with other people. I’m not saying I want to marry this guy or anyone any time soon, but I do want to get married eventually. Is it worth sticking in this relationship if those are his beliefs? Should I be with someone who thinks they should only be with someone as long as the sex is sizzling? Does he really mean that, or has he just never been in love with someone enough to realize that there are many other reasons to stay in a relationship beyond the honeymoon phase?
Not Yet A Bride
Dear Not Yet A Bride,
Ouch! I mean, OUCH! You’re in a swamp filled with sh*t on this one. Sorry to be explicit but damn, girl, this is not the easiest terrain to wade through, and you’re right in the thick of it…Please disregard all nature-based metaphors used in the prior sentences, I’m in the middle of reading Swamp Thing #8. Multitasking!-it’s what makes us adults, seriously.
I’ve had this conversation myself at one point with a certain lady-friend of mine, so I’m talking from experience rather than just out of my ass on this one. Lots of couples last long-term despite differences over a lot of things: Who’s the best Bond, best Doctor, whose family is crazier, why she never takes out the f*cking garbage, is the cat cuter than both of you combined (yes, she is), but there’s one difference that usually sinks a relationship at the end of the day: Marriage.
Some people are ready now, some aren’t, some say they could be, and some claim they never will be, and are any of these statements 100% concrete? No. He could want to in 5 years or maybe it’ll take 10 years. There are plenty of marriage horror stories that we all hear about. Ever notice how you generally only hear about the bad parts of a marriage? Or stories at least about bad marriages and not so often about good ones? Way of gossip, I guess. Those horror stories are enough to give the most grounded person pause these days, so it’s not surprising that right now he can’t envision himself married. Those are issues he’ll have to work on, and either you can put some faith into him being able to do the work, or you can walk away when you decide you’re ready for the next step, and he’s not.
There’s no definite way to know if you’re completely wasting your time by staying with this guy for much longer. A lot of us change our minds with maturity and experience of a healthy long-term relationship. It does take time, and it takes a bit of work on our parts, but it does happen. The reverse happens to. The question, really, is how long are you prepared to wait?
It could take a year, five years, or even ten years before he gets comfortable with the idea of getting married and that’s thinking he actually will. You have to make the decision for yourself when enough’s enough. If, should you become ready, he can’t or won’t get ready, that’s the point when you consider using those walking boots. Until then, keep the lines of communication open, and see how it plays out. Sounds like you two have a real nice thing going. Don’t leap five moves ahead before you see what the next move is first.
To touch on your other point: you should only stay with someone who believes a relationship is working while the sex is sizzling if all you want is sizzling sex. Otherwise, that’s A. not realistic thinking and B. not mature thinking. Take that belief for what it’s worth: not much.
[Got a Dude itch you just can’t scratch? Sick of trying to come up with a not-totally-crazy-girl way to bring it up to your guy friends and get their take on things? Totally over over-analyzing the cryptic messages he leave on your Facebook Wall? We got your back, girlfriend. Send your question over to askthedude [at] collegecandy [dot] com. The Dude won’t sugarcoat it, beat around the bush, or any other weird cliche that means lie to you. Like a nice, juicy hot dog, he’ll be 100% real beef, 100% of the time. So bring. it. on.]