I have been in a relationship with my boyfriend for 5 years and we have been living together for more than 3 of them. I’m not the kind of girl that just packs a bag and moves in with a boyfriend on a whim. It was a big decision for me and I didn’t take it lightly. Living together was the next step in our relationship and for me I believe it shows a certain level of commitment. I would not have taken the step if I didn’t think he was the one. But when you’ve been together for a certain length of time people think it’s ok to ask ‘Have you got a ring yet?’or ‘when is he going to pop the question?’
Let me tell you now, I don’t have a ring as you can clearly see and how the hell am I supposed to know! If you want to know what I am thinking when you ask marriage related questions of this kind, expect an expletive or two because I find them to be really rather nosey and personal and I would never dream of asking you such a thing. The day I get engaged, you will know about it. I will be even more animated than I usually am just to enable me to wave the sparkler in your direction so you most definitely will not need to ask me.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I really do want to get married one day but I want it to be for the right reasons. I want him to propose to me because he wants to marry me and spend the rest of his life with me. I don’t want my partner to feel forced or pressured by me or other people. I do want to get married and although I like to think of myself as up to date and modern, I am an old-fashioned girl at heart and you will never find me down on one knee during a leap year.
I’m not the kind of girl to put pressure on, drool at jewellery shop displays with longing or change the screensaver of my boyfriend’s laptop to a big sparkler. Actually, I take part of that back. I have been known to drool at diamonds in the window of jewellery shops but only when I am on my own. Looking in a jewellery shop window with your boyfriend by your side does feel a little bit cliché and desperado and I am sure there are many men out there that dread such situations.
Now we’re both 29, more of our friends and family are getting hitched and I have to admit I dread the whole bouquet catching scenario at a wedding. It’s not just me. I have spoken to several lovely ladies that feel the same way and totally understand how I feel. It’s like a public display of pressure that I’d rather not be part of. Before the bouquet is thrown, there are little knowing glances of expectation in the direction of those that have been together for more than a couple of years and even more piercing glances for the ones that have been together for over 5 years and live together. I have never caught the dreaded bouquet as I try and stay as far away as possible but I can just imagine the excited gabble that would come straight. Scary!
I am very comfortable with our situation and we are very happy together but you can’t help feeling just a little pang of disappointment when you return back from a holiday and people look at you with that distinct face of pity when they fail to see a sparkling diamond dazzling them from your finger. Every week somebody else gets engaged after a whirlwind 12 month relationship and you think to yourself ‘what the hell is wrong with me?’ I don’t want to turn into one of those girls that is waiting for a proposal whenever you are on holiday or in a romantic, beautiful spot. I just want to enjoy every minute that we spend together regardless of what other people expect or say. Life’s too short!
It’s easy to get bogged down and disappointed when other people put the pressure on but in a relationship it’s important to not let those other things get in the way. Too many people get married for the wrong reasons and too many people have marriages that are shortlived. So for the time being, I am going to carry on as we are, living happily together in our home with my head held high when I get another one of those questions and I calmly respond, ‘there’ll be no wedding anytime soon’, through gritted teeth. I will still be dodging the bouquet at weddings to avoid yet another awkward and embarrassing situation and my hands will be bare of rings. I’m saving my digits for some seriously sparkly jewellery that I’ve been eyeing up while nobody is looking, so no pressure!