She Wants Commitment
Q: I have been dating a guy for a year and a half, and living together for almost a year. He is in his mid 30's and I am in my mid 20's. I have been thinking about marriage a lot lately and know he is definitely the one. We don't talk about future plans very often only because I feel it will 'freak' him out. What if he says he is just not ready right now? I don't want to waste my time just living together, if he is never going to commit. How long should you be with someone, before it is OK to make plans for the future? -- Sally
Dr. Susan: By even the most conservative estimates, a year and a half is long enough to have a good sense of whether you're just shacking up or if you're at least on the road to thinking, "This is the one I want to have babies with." When you say your boyfriend might freak out, I wonder what signals he's giving you that he's not on the same wave-length you are. It's not a very great sign of your intimacy of you're afraid to talk about what's deepest in your heart. Better to know now that he's not "ready," then to just live in a fantasy world hoping he will feel the way you want him to, someday. Sometimes a girl hangs around hoping her guy will get ready to commit, and then he falls a lot harder for someone else and suddenly all his doubts about marriage vanish. Time to speak up!
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Advice for Her
Advice for Him
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.