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Question is for the men: We've been together for 5 years and no talk of a proposal - what's wrong?
Dating / 10:05 AM - Thursday February 24, 2011

Question is for the men: We've been together for 5 years and no talk of a proposal - what's wrong?

We have lived together for 4 years now and he says he loves me forever, but no talk of the future or a proposal. What is wrong?

- Asked by A Career Woman, Female, 36-45, Consulting

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The only one who knows what's wrong is you. 5 years ago, today would be the future. You didn't talk about it then. But, you still managed to get where you are today. It hasn't been a problem for you for 4 years. And, he obviously is fine with things being what they are. What is wrong, is you want him to marry you. And, he hasn't decided that he wants to marry you. What matters is how do YOU feel about this? Is marriage important to you? If it has always been important to you; you probably shouldn't have invested 5 years in living as if it wasn't.

Seriously, he "might" decided "one day", that you are the woman he can't live without. But, he also might decide he can live without you after he meet another woman somewhere that he now has to "find out" if he'll want to keep after another 5 years! If you are the one he wants and he says this and uses the fact that he's been with you for 5 years. You kind of have to wonder why after 5 years he hasn't made you his wife legally. What other people think about what marriage is and is for doesn't really matter. It's what YOU believe it to be and mean. You need someone in your life who feels the same way about it.

This is why it's important to know and discuss what type of relationship you're seeking when you begin exclusively dating someone. Because, some men are happy living like they are married and loving you without the risk or challenges associated with marriage. It's hard for them to change into wanting to take the risk later. And, yes; many view marriage as a risk to their freedom and finances. It isn't that they don't love you, or want to be with you "at this time." Because, he has for 5 years. It doesn't matter that he is content with things being the way it is. Because, obviously you aren't.

You have to be honest with yourself and with him about why you want to get married. I'm sure at this stage it isn't about "what everyone else is doing or your girlfriends." You have to find out if this is something he truly wants. If he says it is, then there is no reason at this point for waiting. What would you be waiting for? And, hopefully, he'll be just as honest. Instead of, trying to make you feel like a monster for desiring to be married to the man you love. Or, making excuses. If you're good with things being the way they are. Enjoy it. But, if you want the benefits that come with being legally married, you need to address that. Because, he's not in this relationship by himself. So, he can't just think about himself when it comes to getting married or not.

The "when" matters to you. Regardless, of whether it matters to him or not. And, if he truly loves you, he'll take how you feel into consideration. You certainly don't want to miss out on a man that views marriage as being an important part of his relationship to a woman he's been with for years, by investing more years with a man who doesn't. I don't know if you have children or want children but that's something to consider as well in your age range. Like it or not, a man can be old and still meet and marry a young women who'll be able to have children, while he's enjoying your youth without marriage. But, after a certain age, women are not valued as much for this purpose.

So, men might talk and make light of the "biological clock" like it shouldn't matter. But, they are also the first to call a woman useless and undesirable after they reach a certain age too! Just read the responses to questions some women have had about why it's hard to meet a "good" man after 40! So, it's kind of hypocritical for them to talk about a woman's worries about getting married and starting a family as if this is some sin to desire it. Of course, if you've already had children, and he has children it might not be as bad. However, if you have children and he doesn't. You might get traded in when he reaches that point of deciding he can't live without being with a particular woman. If you can move on from that without looking back and regretting the time of your life that you invested in the relationship, great. But, if you know you will regret it. You have to start thinking about what you want at some point. It can't just be left up to him to decide the fate of the relationship you want to have. Good luck to you and your relationship.

- Response by thelovedovefor1, A Creative, Female, 46-55, Atlanta, Who Cares?

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Marriage invariably leads to divorce.

And then he has to pay you.

Only a fool gets married these days.

- Response by lasikplus, A Thinker, Male, 46-55, Boston, Science / Engineering

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Community Rating: Community Star

Maybe he's been there, done that and has no intentions of doing it again?

- Response by rexy67, A Sweet Sarah, Female, 46-55, Who Cares?

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he simply doesn't want to get married, maybe he doesn't like marriage.

- Response by beanielou, A Thinker, Female, 29-35, Who Cares?

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Maybe you should bring it up. Not in a confrontational way but in a I love you and want a life with you way. A lot of people dont want to marry anymore. They see it as just a piece of paper. Not me but thats where a lot are at. He may be one but that doesnt mean he doesnt want to be with you long term.

- Response by newnumbersguy32, A Mr. Nice Guy, Male, 36-45, Financial / Banking

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Living together isn't the first step to marriage. He is content the way his life is now. You have status as a common in law wife after 5 years. You need to ask him why he isn't marrying you not assume. Rosey

- Response by roseytalks, A Thinker, Female, Who Cares?, Tampa, Who Cares?

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The answer is he doesn't want to marry you. Why he doesn't really isn't significant, you don't expect him to change his mind at this point do you?

So it boils down to whether or not you want to be with him without being married. If so, stay with him. If not, move on.

- Response by hubbyochris, A Life of the Party, Male, 46-55, Cleveland, Executive

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If you wanna get married, you might be with the wrong guy. Marriage IS NOT that important.

- Response by roaminginsomniac, An Alternative Girl, Female, 46-55, Law Enforcement

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Has he ever at any point in your relationship spoke of getting married "some" day? I know you only wanted answers from men but . . . maybe he figures if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

If things are working now he may feel that if you get married it would ruin what you have. Maybe he wants it to be his idea to get married (maybe not). If you are happy and things are going well, do you really need a piece of paper to make it legal?

Did he come from a broken home? If so, maybe he feels strongly about not being a statistic? If you have been together for this long and it really is bothering you that much -- why not just come out and ask him how he feels about potentially getting married someday?

Good luck.

- Response by lilkat316, A Cool Mom, Female, 56-65

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what's wrong?
Sounds like nothing is wrong.
What will marriage change in your relationship, really?
Besides of giving her a huge party where she is the center of attention and some financial perks. For him it adds several layers of leagal responsibilities and potential catastophic loss.

- Response by jjcabin, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 36-45, Washington, DC, Technical

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The law on marriage and divorce is now so one sided that no sane man would agree to it. Your guy probably looked around and saw what happened to his father, uncle, brother, and friends.

If you babes want marriage, you really need to call your Legislature and start fixing the feminist hate laws.



- Response by greenwind, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 56-65, Construction

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Its quite possible that he just doesn't believe in marriage or consider it important. If he wants to be with you forever, surely that is what matters?

- Response by sunset77, A Sweet Sarah, Female, 36-45, Who Cares?

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The old saying, "Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free" comes to mind.

- Response by clarkgriswold, A Guy Critical, Male, 36-45

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ECONOMIC SERFDOM- IF HE DOES SOMETHING WRONG, OR DOESNT DO SOMETHING, OR ANYTHING OR NOTHING... YOU CAN DIVORCE HIS SORRY A$$ AND CASH IN. YOU ARE REALLY ASKING FOR A LEGAL TORPEDO TO FIRE AT HIS BOAT. ITS A POWER GRAB.

- Response by A Career Man, Male, 46-55, New York, Who Cares?

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Since all the women have ignored your request that only men answer this question, I will too! Sorry! But I do think you can learn a lot from the answers of most of the men here. Most think he doesn't want to marry because he is afraid of losing money when and if a divorce comes. But, that's kind of silly since you can get a pre-nuptial agreement if that's his concern. But you can't know what his reasons are unless you asked him. If you've been living with him for 4 years, you should be able to bring up this topic. It's not like you are teenagers here. From your question, I assume that you want to get married. So, ask him! If he says no, then you can go from there. Maybe the two of you can come up with a good solution that works for both of you. I pretty much asked my husband "when" we were going to get married, and we've been married 35 years! That was 1976. This is 2011. A woman can pop the question!

- Response by natasha1954, A Creative, Female, 56-65, Artist / Musician / Writer

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In my experience, if you want to marry a man, don't live with him. It's that simple.

Now, I'm a Christian, so I also believe in not having sex before marriage, however, I realize that may not be the case for many people nowadays.

However, from a purely practical POV - if you don't care if you ever marry a guy, it's not an issue to move in with him. But if you do think you may want to marry him - then don't move in with him until you at least have the ring on your finger.

From a man's point of view, why should he marry you when he can get all the benefits of marriage without the drawbacks by living with you? You give him sex, emotional support, do his laundry, etc., without him marrying you. Now, if he marries you, then if you guys split up, things will get messy. Even if you earn more than he does, he may be wary of a divorce.

Now, I think marriage is more than a sheet of paper. If you want children, I definitely think marriage should come first. And I understand why, even if you don't want children, you want the commitment.

All that being said, here is my suggestion - talk to him about marriage. Let him know you want it, if you do. If he has issues with it re. the possibility of you taking all his money if you divorce - then agree to a pre-nup so that he doesn't have to worry about that.

- Response by curvysmartgirl, A Creative, Female, 46-55, Dallas, Artist / Musician / Writer

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Why don't YOU bring it up?

If he intentionally hasn't brought it up, he's likely commitment-phobic. Sorry, it's the sad, brutal, harsh truth. But don't take my word for it, ask him. I could be totally wrong, and I HOPE I am totally wrong. (I haven't been so lucky in that area myself, so my views might be negatively colored by that.)

- Response by A Career Woman, Female, 26-28

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The counter question is - Why must there be talk about marriage? Assuming your 36 - 45, you need to let him know you want to get married. Maybe he doesn't want to get married. But you need to find out if he does, otherwise you're just wasting your time.

- Response by inotnuts, A Father Figure, Male, 36-45, Newark, Retired

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You can't call him a commit-o-phobe, after five YEARS.

- Response by chesterdad, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 56-65, San Francisco

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in my experience if a guy doesnt ask u wo marry him after a year he is most likely never going to do it its not u its just something he has with him self u might want to talk 2 him about it be for u waste more time on him .

- Response by isabeltinkerbell, A Guy Critical, Male, 22-25

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