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Should she propose?

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  February 11, 2009 11:01 AM

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Should she pop the question on Saturday? Let's help her out.

Q: I’ve never really been a shy girl. If I liked a guy, he would know it. If I wanted to go out with him, I would ask him out on a date. It’s just the type of girl I am.

At 20 years old I was in a short relationship that resulted in me having my son, who is now 3 years old. So I find it even more important to be up front about my life and what I want in a man.

For the past year I have been dating a man who has been an amazing match for my son and I. He’s been living with us and although we’ve run into some bumps along the road, I remain happy and secure in the life we have with each other.

Because I’ve had to grow up a little faster than most 23 year olds I know, I feel like I am ready to settle down with someone. I want more stability for us and I feel like I’ve found the right guy (he’s 25 years old, if that matters).

This is the first time in my life I’ve actually been nervous about telling a guy what I want. I want to ask him to marry me and I don’t even know where to begin. Valentine’s Day is around the corner and I thought that would be my opportunity to do so, but now I’m not so sure. Is it too up front for me to ask him to marry me? Should I wait a little longer? Do guys get engagement rings? Lol

Help!

-- Newly Nervous, Roslindale

A: 1. I don’t believe in “too up front.” And it sounds like you don’t either. Good for you.
2. I've heard that guys like engagement televisions or engagement vacations, but if you want to spring for a ring, go for it -- especially if he's into jewelry.
3. Should you wait longer? Sounds like you don’t want to. Go with your gut.
4. Even if he’s not ready for this (a year isn’t very long, especially at 25), your proposal can start the marriage discussion. Don’t be too upset if he needs time to process your request. We all love romance, but making a lifetime commitment to a woman and her child should take some thought.
5. Please let us know how it goes. I'd like a full report by e-mail on Monday.

Readers? Agree? Ideas for Newly Nervous? Share here. You can comment on yesterday's letter here. And -- submit your own letter here.
-- Meredith

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52 comments so far...
  1. What's the rush? 23 is so young to get married! And you've only known him for one year! If the two of you are happy and secure in your relationship now, then what's the problem with continuing with what you have? Just because you don't get married right away doesn't mean the relationship isn't solid. Don't fix what's not broken.

    Posted by CD February 11, 09 11:43 AM
  1. It's kind of scary! It's the kind of discussion that will change your relationship whether he says Yes or No. If it's a No, your feelings are hurt and he may be feeling pressured. It will be difficult to go back to the relationship you had before you popped the question. You would have to phrase it so that it doesn't come across as an ultimatum, though he might take it thay anyway. Why don't you instead have a different conversation on Valentine's Day, the one that starts with "where do you see us in a year or so?" and see what his response is. He may surprise you and propose to you!

    Posted by J Bar February 11, 09 11:53 AM
  1. What I don't get any understanding of here is how the man feels about the relationship. Your letter talks only about you. But what about him? Is he happy? Is he committed? Sure he's living with you, but is he just taking advantage of a convenient situation? How's his career going? If your letter is any reflection of how you think in real life (all about yourself), you have reason to be nervous. For that reason, maybe on VD you should just bring up the subject of marriage without flat out putting him on the spot by saying "will you marry me?" There's no harm in raising the subject without boxing him into a corner. A few more weeks or months could be worthwhile in the long run.

    Posted by Raffi February 11, 09 11:53 AM
  1. I'd just have the standard "where is this relationship going?" talk. No need for a proposal, and who knows, maybe he's thinking about it, too. At 23 you have time to wait.

    Posted by J February 11, 09 11:56 AM
  1. Nervy-
    It seems to me that you need to broach the subject of spending the rest of your life together as a family. I’m not sure a proposal is the first step. You certainly don’t need a ring. Proposals are for people who know the answer. When you propose , but are unsure of the answer, it means you either don’t know each other well enough or you haven’t had the ‘talk’. Surprising someone with a proposal may elicit a nervous response and acceptance. You don’t want someone to say “yes” if they are actually unsure. Marriage isn’t for tricksters. I applaud your directness, but is the guy ready to hear it? Are you each other’s last Valentine?

    Posted by Valentino February 11, 09 12:01 PM
  1. If you have been dating him for a year and he is living with you I have to assume that you have already discussed marriage. If so, has he given you any indication that he wants to get married? I understand your thought that you have grown up fast and would like to settle down, but perhaps he is not at that point in his life. 25 yrs is still very young. I agree with both J and Raffi that it may be better to just have a heartfelt discussion with him as to whether he is ready to make that committment. The proposal can wait a while. You could always surprise him on his birthday, or any other holday for that matter. (Plus, personally, I would want to be the one receiving the proposal. Having received one from a wonderful man and having been happliy married for 8 years now, I can tell you that "oh my" moment when he gets down on one knee is so romantic and memorable.)

    Posted by rsl February 11, 09 12:13 PM
  1. My advice is you both still young, she could talk to him regarding in a year or two where wiill their relationship be, by then it could be clear to him if he is ready to commit, right now if he's not ready he will think that there is presure to act. Give it more time and you will be glad later on. I will turn 32 on VD, still single with no kids but i taught i was ready 7 years ago, but it wasn't the case. So enjoy your VD and please give it some taught before you make him change the whole relationship.

    Posted by Tony February 11, 09 12:19 PM
  1. Depending on how romantic and traditional he is, and also depending on how close he is to asking you anyway, it might be better to state "If you were to ask me to marry you, I would say 'yes'". That's part of the talk. Somehow you've got to convey what happens if he doesn't ask now, or if he's not ready to commit to asking, or he's committed to never asking, whether you're willing to go with unmarried uncommitted stability or unmarried committed stability. It would help if you had those answers for yourself.

    Posted by Fishwood February 11, 09 12:21 PM
  1. I don't think your being 23 years old should be a factor in this ... you are a woman, a mother, and if you are thinking about love, the future, forever, then you have as much right as a 30 year old to be planning a marriage. However, I agree with J that perhaps it would be best to tell him what you want instead of necessarily proposing. You might catch him off guard, and his reaction to the proposal might end up hurting you, even if he really DOES want to spend the rest of his life with you. He might need to spend some time getting comfortable with the idea of marriage before committing to it. But, you know this man, and if you feel he's the type that likes surprises, likes the non-traditional, then I'd say go with your gut. And even if you don't propose, per e, you can still come up with a super romantic way, on Valentines day, to tell him how you feel.

    Posted by LW February 11, 09 12:24 PM
  1. Definitely take it easy here. I totally agree with those posters who say just have the "where is the relationship going" conversation. No matter what your age, it's a good idea to have this talk before anyone starts popping the question. Communication is the bedrock of any lifetime commitment and this is a good thing to talk about first.

    Posted by ramona February 11, 09 12:28 PM
  1. Unless you can wait for the Swan Boats to open: Jumbotron...TD BankNorth Garden...Between the 2nd and 3rd periods of Bruins v Habs (had some beers) or WWF...Center Ice on the logo or in the Ring...Sing him your proposal...It makes a statement...Start with a claddagh ring...Don't take "No" for an answer...Remember, you're the mum.

    Posted by I do February 11, 09 12:50 PM
  1. i say do it ! to move away from all the comments on the age issue and what he wants-for all we know you both have dicussed it and both want the same things. i proposed to the man that i wanted over christmas and he said yes (though i have since ended it). a close friend of mine proposed to her bf of 8yrs on new year's eve and he also accepted; they are now deep into planning their upcoming wedding. a real woman goes after what she wants.

    Posted by ly February 11, 09 01:02 PM
  1. I would recommend to only propose if you need/require the following.....
    1. You need health insurance for you and your son
    2. You want to own property and can't afford to buy on your own
    3. You really want to piss off your parents, so you should tell them you are pregnant again but this time doing it right!
    Please don't propose out of love, it's trivial and ridiculous. No one is "In love" these days and if they are it's a lie!

    Posted by Realist February 11, 09 01:03 PM
  1. Maybe I am too much of a traditionalist. But I would prefer the old fashioned way and wait for him to ask. And I agree with most of the posters. Has marriage ever come up in conversation?

    Posted by oldfashioned February 11, 09 01:23 PM
  1. Whoa lady! You have only been living with this man for one year. Your first responsibility is to your son. Wouldn't it be in his best interest to wait a few years?
    The first few years are the 'honeymoon'. Everything seems perfect and wonderful right now, so why not let the good times continue? If he is the real deal, he won't go anywhere anyway. Consider using the next 3-5 years as a test to see if he would be a good shoulder to cry on for the rest of your life. Honestly, one year is too short of a time to know whether or not someone is truly husband material.
    Divorce is a painfully long drawn out process not only for you, but also your son.

    **for what it's worth, I had a baby at twentyone, got married, had another baby at twenty three. We have been together since we were fifteen. I am looking at colleges now for my first baby who turns seventeen this year. It has been a very long road. My husband and I have come close to seperating, but worked hard to keep our marriage together.


    Posted by deborah February 11, 09 01:53 PM
  1. I would wait on a formal proposal and just discuss what you're wanting out of life with him. The rings and formality of an official proposal increases the stress and it may just be enough for you to at least know where he's coming from and for you to register where you want the relationship to go. Less stress is best.

    Posted by Joy February 11, 09 02:23 PM
  1. "For the past year I have been dating a man who has been an amazing match for my son and I. He’s been living with us and although we’ve run into some bumps along the road, I remain happy and secure in the life we have with each other."

    Hmmm..that's a great way to raise a child, date some one for a while, let them move in, then maybe think about getting married. Perhaps you should have done that before you started setting such a quality example.

    Posted by JJ February 11, 09 02:28 PM
  1. my sister in law told my brother she was planning a wedding. she knew he would never ask. They lived together, they were mid twenty's. she told him what day and where to show up. And, he did. They are 20 plus years, with four children. and, appear to have a solid marriage. she thinks my brother is wonderful. you can see how much she adores him, even after all these years. He is a merciless tease and she just finds him so funny and endearing. My only concern is that you wrote "I feel like I am ready to settle down with someone". Is it the idea of settling down and not necessarily him? Because if it is not him, and you don't feel with all your being "this is the one" your life. don't do it. don't do.

    Posted by kidsparent February 11, 09 02:38 PM
  1. Wow... as a guy, I would be psyched if my girlfriend proposed to me and gave me an engagement vacation! Holy crap! That trend needs to catch on fast!!!

    1.) I'd be somewhat flattered that she wants to bad enough to through tradition to the wind....
    2.) Free vacation!!
    3.) plus I was sorta thinking about it anyways! haha

    Guys: are you with me... this would make marriage a little more appealing... what ever happened to the dowry? There isn't much I wouldn't do for a free all expenses paid trip... I'd say "baby, for that, I'll marry whoever you want me to"

    Girls: this definitely will increase the chances you convince the guy to take the plunge

    Guys..

    Posted by Jonah February 11, 09 02:49 PM
  1. Do it!!! We all have that one who got away. Somtimes just because neither side was truly honest.

    Posted by Anonymous February 11, 09 03:14 PM
  1. Don't do it. He may feel threatened, you may get disappointed, and the good thing you have could be jeopardized. I wholeheartedly agree with my fellow posters who recomment a "where is this going" talk. That's what committed adults do. And one more thing....why not lay low with the serious chatter on V.Day and just enjoy a breezy, romantic night? You sound kind of rushed for an answer, and there is no rush, especially at your age. There is always another day for a serious talk. Your plans are too loaded with the possibility of a total backfire.

    Posted by Jetta February 11, 09 03:15 PM
  1. That's gross, don't women of today have any pride? Don't propose unless you are prepared to hear him remind you for the rest of the "days you are together" however many or few. Are you in a hurry to get married so you can then get divorced?Grow up please and if you want to be the man in the relationship and he likes it then hey - whatever floats you and his boat.You've only been seeing this guy for a year and he moved in already? You sound like a "fast woman" to me......too easy to let him move in, etc.....

    Posted by cynicle February 11, 09 03:23 PM
  1. Sounds like your a 16 yr old with puppy love dreams cause it's Valentines Day. I mean really!!!! Grow up.

    Posted by Grown up February 11, 09 03:29 PM
  1. Wow, Realist, you are just a walking bundle of rejection eh? Lighten up, chick, and don't rain on Newly Nervous just because you can't find love.

    Posted by J Bar February 11, 09 03:30 PM
  1. Start with I love you and see how that goes. Pay no attention to folks like Realist, they just have lived a live deprived of Love, we should all feel sorry for them. If you want a lasting marriage and relationship, you both need to come to it together, you can't push or pull one another into it.

    Posted by Anonymous February 11, 09 03:32 PM
  1. So, Realist, why are you reading this blog? So you can straighten the rest of us out? I feel very sorry for you. NN, aside from his/her obnoxious last comment, Realist makes 2 good points, and I agree with the previous posters who have suggested intermediate steps on the way to proposal. And I also agree with Fishwood that it's a good idea to consider whether he will be extraordinarily disappointed if he's not the one to propose. My husband (of 17 yrs) is the opposite; he wouldn't ask my father for my hand because "I'll marry you anyway." Silly or not, that was an issue for both my father and me. So it's worth considering.

    Posted by Kerry February 11, 09 03:33 PM
  1. I say go for it. While I do think that 23 and 25 are young, it's not a bad idea to talk about it. After all, you have a son, and your man seems to be a great father figure for him.

    If he seems put off by the proposal because he's not ready, let him know that that's okay, and that you just want him to know that you love him, and you're thinking about it.

    I don't think it's weird for a woman to propose. Also, a proposal gift might be a good idea; I've always hated engagement rings because they're very heteronormative and kind of sexist (I mean, if you propose, will he have to get you an engagement ring? It's confusing). I think that a ring would only be appropriate if he's not too threatened by non-traditional gender roles. If he's a little more traditional than that, I like the idea of an engagement TV!

    Posted by sabend February 11, 09 03:34 PM
  1. Go for it! I love it and I'm betting after a year together he knows you and he will love it too!

    Posted by In love with hubby of 9 years February 11, 09 03:52 PM
  1. If a man wants to marry you, HE WILL ASK YOU!!! Are you that desperate and insecure?? How foolish will you feel if he says no? It's like the pathetic women who send flowers to men on Valentine's Day, knowing that the man isn't going to send them any - very sad.
    And, you're only 23! You haven't even lived yet. Ten years from now, you will be a completely different person. Don't be in such a rush. ALWAYS let the man chase you and ALWAYS make sure he's crazier about you than you are about him.

    Posted by alex47 February 11, 09 04:08 PM
  1. I am not in your relationship, bit I think we are a lot alike. I would probably use the moment to tell him what he means to me, and my son, and let him know that you would love to marry him someday.
    Then see how the conversation goes.

    I did notice, however that you made no mention of how much you love him, onyl that you are secure. Have you said those three words to eachother?

    Posted by AG February 11, 09 04:20 PM
  1. I don't know. I suppose to a lot of people this will sound sexist, but in my experience, men in their early/mid 20's tend to shy away from commitment. If he's at all shy, the m-word may have him running in the other direction. If you really love him, absolutely bring up the subject, but don't issue a formal proposal. Find out how he feels about marriage first and see if he thinks it's in your future. If his response is positive, start talking general timelines. I say get the guy to propose for you -- make him think it's his idea.

    Posted by Mary February 11, 09 04:22 PM
  1. I would advise treading very, very lightly here. When the subject of marriage comes up, the woman is thinking of the fairy tale wedding she's been dreaming of since she was a girl, with all her friends and family in attendance. The man is thinking, "am I ready for this to be the last woman I ever have sex with in my life?" If you aren't reasonably certain that he's going to say yes, don't ask.

    Posted by Steve February 11, 09 05:13 PM
  1. I think I'd tend to stick with your history of being up front about what you want, how you feel, rather than throwing yourself and possibly the relationship on the line. I do agree that really, proposing _ought_ to be done when you already know the answer is (more or less) yes. If you don't know he's ready, or almost totally ready, don't do it yet. But there are a lot of ways to try to bring it up in a less direct way even. Tell him how you feel, tell him you'd love to make it together for the long haul, tell him you think you're ready to start working toward, and planning for, something bigger together. You don't have to blurt out a proposal as soon as you feel ready for it. A marriage takes two, and both have to be ready. When you're sure he's ready to get married, or at least close enough that he's ready to be engaged, if he doesn't beat you to it then you can go for it.

    Posted by Stephen February 11, 09 05:27 PM
  1. NEWS FLASH: The divorce rate is 65% and of the the remaining 35%, 85% of those married couples are together for reasons other than each other. WAKE UP!! Now I've never been a big fan of statistics, but if you don't recognize that marriage is a farse, you're a fool. Would you make an financial investment with these kinds of odds?? But for some reason, people will gamble away their financial, mental and emotional well-being on someone who WILL simply change their mind - for no reason whatsoever?? Todays society is being overrun by an epidemic of people (mostly women) consumed with selfishness - people who will not hesitate to betray their own family in favor of their own interests. Focus on the betterment of yourself and your child, and save yourself the hassle.


    Posted by Buzzy February 11, 09 06:01 PM
  1. Posted by Realist:
    "I would recommend to only propose if you need/require the following.....
    1. You need health insurance for you and your son
    2. You want to own property and can't afford to buy on your own
    3. You really want to piss off your parents, so you should tell them you are pregnant again but this time doing it right!
    Please don't propose out of love, it's trivial and ridiculous. No one is "In love" these days and if they are it's a lie!"
    ________________________________

    AMEN - finally someone who makes sense. This thing called MARRIAGE is an artificially created societal farse perpetuated by Fairy Tale. The perception of love is fiction and only serves to coax one into making illogical decisions. Human relationships don't require a legally binding union. Your relationship with that "special person" should be executed and maintained like a business. Have fun and enjoy that person, but check your emotions at the door and act ONLY on what your brain is telling you.


    Posted by Buzzy February 11, 09 06:41 PM
  1. I can't believe how sexist most of these comments are. If this was a 23 yr old guy who had a child and wanted to ask his live in 25 yr old girlfriend to marry him, you'd all say, "Yeah! Do it! Good Luck"... I would say there's no reason to RUSH to ask him... maybe bring it up on Valentines Day and then plan it for later... Valentines Day is a little, well... tacky I think, but hey - it's your proposal:) Do what you want, what you feel in your heart. You'll always regret it if you never try!

    Posted by NPNebraska February 11, 09 07:43 PM
  1. Gee; let's see what we've got here! 1. A woman who was too stupid to employ trustworthy birthcontrol. 2. A woman who had a baby out of wedlock and was too selfish to give her baby a real chance with a mother AND a father through adoption, but probably did so under her illusion and delusion that keeping her baby "was the right thing". 3.A woman with no morals (see Items #1 and 2 above) and is now SHACKING UP with a man. 4. A woman with no self respect (see 1, 2 and 3 above. 5. A woman who's too dumb to know that he really doesn't respect you if he's already living with you, and a woman waayy to immature that she's got to ask total strangers.

    Posted by JeffreyInMalibu February 11, 09 07:52 PM
  1. Buzzy, your statistics are garbage - I know, because I recently researched divorce statistics, using, you know, actual data from the US Census instead of nonsense I made up. The divorce rate hovers at just about (slightly under) 50%. As for the idea that 85% of married people are together for "reasons other than each other,' that's both cynical and ridiculous in the extreme. We have a culture that largely supports divorce; gone are the days when people stayed together for the sake of the children, the paycheck, the social cachet, or whatever other bugaboos you are imagining.

    The idea that an epidemic of selfish women is ruining our society is so bizarre it does not even warrant comment.

    As for the letter writer - good luck. I'd broach marriage a lot more casually than with a proposal, myself. I think most couples have a lot of imagining-marriage conversations before someone gets down on one knee.

    Posted by MJB February 11, 09 08:46 PM
  1. What IS it with you women??? Why must you always have marriage??? If things are so good why the hell can't you keep them as they are? A 25 year old man is still a kid and if someone had proposed to me when I was 25, I would have run away screaming. Just so you are aware, most men see marriage as the end of their good times and freedom. WE DON'T THINK THE SAME WAY YOU WOMEN DO!!! If he is interested in marriage, HE WILL ASK YOU, otherwise, he is not.

    Posted by sj February 11, 09 09:03 PM
  1. Your not ready to propose. You wouldn't be posting the question in this open forum if you were. When you are ready to ask the question without asking yourself if it is the right time, that's whe you are ready to propose. I disagree with those that state a woman should not propose. If he hasn't already proposed when you are 100% ready, go for it.

    Posted by Married 7 years February 11, 09 09:10 PM
  1. You see, this is one of those double-edged swords. Feminism is fabulous, but women who propose are taking a big leap. Even if he is good with the proposal, his family, his friends, and everyone else important in your lives might not be as supportive. Should that matter? I don't know. Maybe if you are trailblazer, you just don't give a damn. But from reading your story thus far, I feel there's some hesitation on your part as well. So, express your interest in marriage, then see what develops. He may be waiting for a sign from you. Or you may get a sign from him that it's the right time for you to pop the question.

    Posted by mjka February 12, 09 01:16 AM
  1. Has he ever even MENTIONED marriage to you?
    Have you two even DISCUSSED the issue?
    If not, then my guess is he isn't interested.

    Posted by Shecky28 February 12, 09 07:19 AM
  1. He's thinking, Why buy the cow when I can get the milk for free!

    Posted by sensible February 12, 09 08:02 AM
  1. Dear Nervous,
    You need to focus on yourself and your toddler. Frankly, I'm not even sure why you are pursuing any relationship at this point in your life? Did you finish high school? College? Do you have career already? Forget about the love life. When you had a baby at 20 all bets were off for a normal "20s" with dating, romance, etc.
    Also, you say in a one year relationship you have already run into 'bumps' along the road?! Not a good sign. Don't do this to your child. He doesn't need a revolving door of step-dads....And Meredith-what's up with your advise to go ahead with a proposal?

    Posted by bambinosmom2 February 12, 09 08:23 AM
  1. why do people have to get married when things are good the way they are? save your money from buying a ring and use it on something else. its not gonna last anyways so least this way you dont have to pay lawyers fees for a divorce.

    Posted by Anonymous February 12, 09 08:43 AM
  1. What is with the old fashion, sexist, ageist views on this blog? I got engaged at 21 and married at 22. I've been a self supporting adult since I graduated from college at 19 and was mature enough to want to be married. Not because of the storybook ideal of marriage, but because there are undeniable legal benefits to marriage.

    Any by the way, my husband has plenty of respect for me and we lived together for two years before we got married. I think you are foolish if you don't.

    To the commenter, talk about marriage. Bring it up. If you want it and he doesn't, it's better to know, than not to know, at least that's how I feel

    Posted by S February 12, 09 09:01 AM
  1. My husband and I dated for seven years and lived together for 2 before we started even talking about marriage - not that I think you need to keep to the same timeline. There was no "popping the question" -we had several deep conversations about the what, why, and when of marriage and thought through all the ins and outs of what we both wanted in life, where we wanted to live, our career goals, children, money, religion, aging parents - you name it. Get it all out in the open and THEN one of you can propose. I'm not into the proposal thing and its a very minor detail. The important thing is that your son deserves a stable childhood and you need to make sure that you and your boyfriend are 100% aligned.

    Posted by Cordelia Potter February 12, 09 09:29 AM
  1. Get yourself knocked up with another baby, seems like it was easy for you the first time around...

    How much do you collect from the state? Living in a subsidized housing development probably?

    Posted by Ralph in Brookline February 12, 09 10:25 AM
  1. It seems that so many people that have posted comments that are so negative towards the fact that she has a child and is living with her boyfriend. Those are her choices.
    If she has talked about marriage with him and they are already living together, maybe this is the right next step for their relationship. I think that if marriage is something a couple is discussing and thinking about, why does it matter how old they are? My parents married when they were 22 and 24 and have been happily married for 35 years, who's to say that getting married in your 20's isn't the right thing to do. Every relationship is different.

    Posted by Young and In Love February 12, 09 11:43 AM
  1. "If the two of you are happy and secure in your relationship now, then what's the problem with continuing with what you have?"

    Getting married would *be* continuing what they have, only with the extra benefits that come from legal recognition.

    "And, you're only 23! You haven't even lived yet. Ten years from now, you will be a completely different person."

    Ten years from now, her son will be 13 years old. Maybe she doesn't want to make her son wait that long to know whether or not this man will be his stepfather?

    "If he's at all shy, the m-word may have him running in the other direction."

    Either that or have him thinking "I'd better say yes if I *ever* want to get married!" Dating can be difficult for shy people. If he's very extroverted, the alternative to accepting his girlfriend's proposal may be a chance to play the field with 20 other women over the rest of his lifetime. If he's very introverted, the alternative to accepting his girlfriend's proposal may be no other dates with women over the rest of his lifetime.

    "This thing called MARRIAGE is an artificially created societal farse perpetuated by Fairy Tale."

    Marriage is an artificially created social structure, but not perpetuated by fairy tales. For example, the Grimms brothers wrote their fairy tales centuries *after* forced marriages between cousins and/or stangers and/or middle-aged men and child brides were invented.

    " 2. A woman who had a baby out of wedlock and was too selfish to give her baby a real chance with a mother AND a father through adoption"

    Lots of people who try to give their babies "a real chance with a mother AND a father through adoption" end up giving their babies a chance to be bounced from foster family to foster family to foster family. The letter writer said nothing about whether or not any woman and man was willing to adopt her son.

    "We have a culture that largely supports divorce; gone are the days when people stayed together for the sake of the children, the paycheck, the social cachet, or whatever other bugaboos you are imagining."

    Not everyone in this culture agrees with each other (heck, just look at the comments on this blog post!). Even in the U.S., some people still do stay with spouses they don't love anymore - or marry people they don't love in the first place! - for the sake of traditions.

    "A 25 year old man is still a kid and if someone had proposed to me when I was 25, I would have run away screaming. Just so you are aware, most men see marriage as the end of their good times and freedom."

    Those are the men who think sleeping around while lying to your partner about being monogamous isn't cheating if you and your partner are only engaged or going steady instead of married. Those women who see marriage as the end of their good times and freedom are no better. News flash: it actually is cheating. Having sex with someone else the night before your wedding isn't your "last chance," it's already infidelity.

    Posted by Louisa February 12, 09 12:06 PM
  1. I agree with CD. What is the rush? Enjoy the time together! Is he old-fashioned? What if you are going to steal his thunder by proposing?

    Posted by peaks28 February 12, 09 01:16 PM
  1. I also believe that you should go with your gut. Although I am only 19, I believe that women should have their chance to show that we can be the ones to propose as well. It sounds that you are truely ready to settle down and start a new and happy life and that you want the best for your son as well.

    Posted by Kelly February 12, 09 08:44 PM
 
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Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.

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