Be upfront about how important marriage is to you


Opinion



Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: How long should a woman wait to be asked to marry? I’ve shared my life and my bed with a wonderful guy for two years who swears he loves me. He even calls me “the woman I love” in front of anyone who wants to listen. I know he adores me, but still no engagement ring, and no wedding date!

I don’t want to pressure him, but I want to be his legally married wife, have kids with him who have a legal father, and be together forever!

I just don’t want to sound arrogant.

— Not shy, but proud, Saint-Boniface

Dear Proud: Your man doesn’t know what marriage means to you, so you need to tell him – not in tears, but with joy and confidence. Say something like, “I love you, and I want to marry you, have your kids, and be together forever. That’s what I see for us!” Then give her a happy kiss and let it simmer in her brain as you happily go about your business. Give him time to process this idea.

A week or two later, remind him of what you said and ask him if he feels the same way. If he says yes, smile and ask him if he prefers a summer or fall wedding! Then bring her a calendar and set a date together. If lost, suggest a particular date that might work well to set everything up.

The decision to get married is a lot like buying a car for a lot of guys: if a guy sees his dream car and there doesn’t seem to be a price tag, he’s not going to ask. But, he won’t be so surprised when he finds out that there is a price for such a precious thing. He’s likely to smile and think, “Yeah. I should have known!” then sign on the dotted line.

TV host Steve Harvey taught a lesson similar to this in his book Act Like a Woman, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment. You might like to read about how men think.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I was recently woken up in the middle of the night by an incessant ping from my husband’s phone on the bedside table. Thinking it was an emergency, I jumped up and quickly looked at the message. I managed to see who was texting before my husband took the phone from me. It was from one of his female colleagues, who worked closely with him.

He walked to the guest bedroom and slammed the door. When he came out, he said, as if that explained everything, “She’s had a little too much to drink.” I could see on his face that there was more going on than he was prepared to say.

We went back to bed, but neither of us could go back to sleep. My head was spinning! As he left for work the next day, he said, “She went through a bad breakup, and I told her to call me if she ever needed to talk.”

I could tell by the look on his face that he was lying! I said, “Was that the best you could find?” He said, “You’re paranoid!” and left.

He came home that night smelling of alcohol and mint. Since then, he sleeps in the guest room. Every time I try to talk to him he walks away or drives away. Maybe I overreacted, but my stomach said otherwise. Is he having an affair with this woman?

“Losing my marriage?” St James

Dear loser: If this woman’s husband is gone and she’s “having a bad time”, what happened that night that she called your man when he was probably in bed with his wife? Looks like she tried to force his hand.

Now your husband is acting like a guilty husband who got caught and hides behind the silence and privacy of the guest room. He may be trying to decide what to do next, or he may just be hoping you’ll be so uncomfortable that you’ll move out and leave the house to him. It’s time for a consultation with a domestic lawyer, not the usual one you two share.

Obviously, it’s torture for you, and it doesn’t get better by keeping silent. You have to face the fact that you are already in a new reality with this husband. Get professional help to decide what steps to take to best protect yourself in all ways. You will never regret it, but you could be very sorry if you don’t and every move is driven by turbulent emotion and haste.

Please send questions and comments to [email protected] or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.

Miss Lonelyhearts

Miss Lonelyhearts
Consulting Columnist

Every year the Free press publishes over 1,000 letters to Miss Lonelyhearts and her answers to life and relationship questions that come her way.

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