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?