Where do I begin? My fiancé and I are planning on getting married next year, having been together for 6 years. We already live a “married” life because we have the bills, cars, dog, house and other stuff that married couples tend to have. But I can’t help this feeling in my stomach that something is wrong in some way.
I don’t feel excited about being engaged and I even feel like hiding my ring most of the time so I don’t have to speak about my engagement. I love my partner, but I am not sure if I am in love with him. I should be happy that I’m engaged but I’m not.
How do you even determine whether or not you’re truly in love with somebody? Could it be that time has just passed us by, leaving behind two people who respect each other, are great partners but the spark is just gone? I miss feeling loved and in love, etc. I want someone to be proud of my accomplishments.
In my mind I feel that I’m “settling” for less. I also haven’t forgiven him for the things he has done in the past, which include a DUI, struggling with alcohol problems and not finishing his education even though he’s 5 years older than I am. I try to stay positive about it all but it feels like he needs me more in his life than I need him.
People have said to me, “If you can live without him then he isn’t the ‘one'”. I always reply that I can live without somebody, but choosing to do that is an entirely different thing.
I don’t know what to do here – it just feels like our lives are on different paths because I want things in my life like a house, children, etc, but all of this is going to be supported by income instead of his. I want to feel taken care of if needs be, especially if I decide to stay home after any children are born. I basically need him to grow a back bone and become the provider that I seek. I don’t want to feel like an Amazonian woman doing everything herself.
We have been to counseling together and although the same points I’ve made here have come up in our sessions too I feel like not enough is being done. Could it just be that time has torn us apart?
We’ve worked opposite shifts for the last 5 years, which means we really only get to see each other at weekends. Some good news is that he recently got another job, which pays him a little more and he’ll be working the same shift as myself from now on.
Looking at your question the one pervasive theme in it is that you’re not happy with your guy no matter what he does. He doesn’t have enough money, he’s made mistakes in the past, he needs you more than you need him and he’s just not doing enough to keep you happy. There’s also a recurring theme revolving around money in your question too, which to be blunt isn’t something which should ever come into how you value a relationship.
Let’s break this situation down to its core components:
- He’s had a DUI and alcohol problems. If he’s still an alcoholic and putting himself and others in danger by driving while drunk then you need to consider what you want to do here i.e. either leave him or not. If, however, he’s a recovering alcoholic then forgiveness might go a lot further than constantly trying to find fault with him. Remember it’s your choice to stay in this relationship – I take it he’s not trying to stop you from leaving him?
- The idea of “settling for less” is something which you see on TV shows, and I would have imagined that you’d have known he wasn’t the one maybe 4 or 5 years ago, and not just have that idea pop into your head far more recently? There is no single “one” for anyone on this planet B.B. There’s more than one soul mate for all of us, so you can spend the rest of your life searching for the “one” and I’m going to guarantee that you won’t find him simply because it’s a myth perpetuated by people who don’t understand what a healthy and happy relationship actually looks like.
- I’m assuming that you accepted his marriage proposal…even though you’re saying you’re not in love with him? That would have been a perfect opportunity to voice your doubts about the path your relationship is on right now. Nothing gives you the right to lead somebody on like that because you’re afraid to make a major life decision. How would you feel if he did that to you?
- He’s even gone to counseling with you but you’re still not happy with him. Can he do anything right?
- Some of the smartest and most successful people in the world never finished their education either – Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and Richard Branson being perfect examples.
There’s every chance that this relationship is simply never going to work out, but if you want to have any hope of saving it then you need to stop judging your partner right now, unless he’s giving you very specific reasons for doing that e.g. ongoing alcohol/substance abuse problems.
I can also 1000% promise you that money doesn’t make for better relationships and marriages. I have lawyer friends who earn over $100,000 per year but they never see their kids and rarely see their husband/wife. You can have all the money in the world and still be completely miserable B.B. – the world is full of people like that.
Right now you need to have a very serious think about where you want your relationship to go, and please, please stop using his income as a weapon against him. An ex-girlfriend of mine did that to me once and she found herself single about 25-minutes later. I’ve never looked back either to be honest.
If you’re not happy then as an adult you have the choice to leave your partner, but I get the sense that’s the last thing you want to do here. Now you have to ask yourself exactly why you won’t leave him right now and you might just get the answer that’s been in front of you all along.