about, be sure you take the time to think about WHY you are really looking for that commitment.
So you have been in a monogamous relationship for what seems like an eternity with no indication that things are moving forward to a more permanent, marriage-type of relationship.
If this first and foremost on your mind, then it might be a good time to stop and ask yourself why getting a commitment is such a priority for you. Are you looking for a commitment for the right reasons, or are you bending under outside pressure or because you feel you "should" be getting a commitment by now?
If you are in the stage of life where it seems like all of your friends are tying the knot and starting their families, make sure you are not just experiencing some wishful thinking that this should be your life, or you have to keep up with everyone else.
Maybe you are feeling like there's something wrong with you or your situation because everyone else seems to be able to land that commitment and seal the deal. Try to take
your ego out of it, and look at the situation as it really is.
It's important to understand your true motivation for wanting a commitment. If it’s just because everyone else is doing it, or because you want a child right now, or you want
that fairy tale wedding you always dreamed about, be very careful about what you
I know so many women who were so focused on getting married that they were missing some big obvious red flags in the relationship. So many of my friends did whatever they had to do to get their guy to walk down the aisle. This included threats and even "surprise" pregnancies.
Each and every one of my friends who used tactics to force their man's hand are all divorced today because they failed to realize that this may not have been the best choice of husband.
To top it off, it didn't appear that these guys wanted to be husbands to begin with.
I am guilty of this, too. Back when I was 20 years old, I had been dating "Mike" for about a year when he proposed. When he proposed, he made it clear that although he was asking me to marry him; he was not in a hurry about setting the date. I was so excited about becoming engaged, I barely acknowledged what he was saying.
As the months went by and I was anxious to plan the wedding, he would not commit to a date. When I started to push the issue, the less cooperation I was getting.
I worked with his sister and was embarrassed to find out that she was telling everyone behind my back that her brother really didn't want to marry me, but felt forced to go through with it because he had proposed and was now trapped with no way out.
After he did finally agree to a date, he wanted nothing to do with planning the wedding, and would get bored and even irritated with me when I would bring up details or ask him any opinions about the wedding.
My parents went with me to pick out the chapel. My parents went with me to sample the food for the dinner. I handled every detail and he said all he figured he needed to do was to
In retrospect, all of these red flags bothered me, but I stubbornly forged ahead with the wedding thinking that it would just all work out, or I was being too sensitive about his lack of interest in planning our wedding.
On the day of the wedding, someone was videotaping the event. After all was said and done
and things calmed down, I had a chance to sit down and watch the video. What I heard on the tape made my heart sink and a sick feeling grow in my stomach.
Here was my future husband, just about an hour before the ceremony, talking to the groomsmen about what a wild time they had the night before. My future hubby was
talking about meeting the most "gorgeous babe" and too bad he was here today
because maybe they could have hooked up.
Our wedding theme was "today, tomorrow and always," which was inscribed on matchbooks, napkins, the wedding invitations, etc. My future ex-hubby was heard making the comment, "Well, today, tomorrow and for however long it lasts," followed by laughter.
If this is how he was talking on our wedding day, can you imagine how bad this marriage was? To say it was bad would be an understatement. I gave it my best for just shy of 10 years and finally mustered up the courage to tell him I wanted a divorce. I believe I stayed married to him for about 9-1/2 years longer than I should have.
The lesson here is what can happen if you get a commitment for the wrong reasons. If you force the issue through a pregnancy or by turning a blind eye to the obvious red flags in the courtship, the odds of you being happily married are seriously against you. If you are disappointed with his behavior while you are not married, believe me, in most cases marriage makes things even worse.
Maybe it was because I was so young and wanted to be married and start a family so badly. So many people warned me not to marry this guy and to slow down because someone better
for me would come along. I didn't want to wait and I didn't want to listen. I'm really sorry that I didn't. I would have saved myself a lot of tears, heartache and loss of a decade of my life I will never get back.
What I’m asking is for you to please think about your reasons for wanting a commitment and make sure it's for the right reasons.
The right reasons include wanting to spend the rest of your life with this person through the good times and bad. Making sure that you are right for each other in terms of ethics, morals, religion, money matters, etc. The way you will bring out the best in each other rather than everything being a fight or struggle. Not turning a blind eye to his faults, but taking an honest look at them and truly being able to deal with his quirks and issues.
Let me tell you that anything that gets on your nerves while you are dating amplifies 500 times when you have to deal with it every day for the rest of your life. Even little things.
If your man is on 10 sports leagues, make sure he is willing to give up some of that for time for you or a family. A marriage is about give and take, compromise and willing to treat the
other person as you would like to be treated.
When things get serious, talk about everything so there are no surprises when you get married. If you are afraid to talk to him, huge red flag!
My husband went out all the time. His weekends started on Wednesday night after work and ended sometime on Sunday night. When I let him know that he went out way too much and should try staying home more, he said, "Look. Just because I'm married does not mean that my lifestyle is going to change at all. I married you...I did my part. I will go out when I want, whenever I want and there is nothing you can do or say to change that."
You know what? He wasn't kidding. His lifestyle never changed in all of the 10 years we were married. He actually treated me like he did me a favor by marrying me. When we went out together, people would stare at me and say, “Gee…I didn’t think Mike was married.”
This is exactly the kind of thing you want to stay away from. Someone who is not willing
to compromise or meet you half way is someone you want to get away from as fast as you can. Even if you think you love him, do not believe for one second that once you are married he will change. Odds are that he won't, and will go out of his way to prove that you cannot control him.
Remember that marriage isn’t about changing someone or expecting them to change. Most mature adults realize that marriage will mean some changes in their lifestyle, and things are
not going to be the way they were in the single days.
If your mate isn’t willing to change his lifestyle in any way – huge red flag! You shouldn’t have to ask or beg for attention or kindness. If you have to ask to be treated with respect and decency – huge red flag!
I know it’s hard to think about ending a relationship, especially if you get a half-hearted commitment and the guy agrees to get married. Being with anyone that is not going to give you love, support and 100% effort is settling.
These are hard questions to ask and to answer them honestly is even more difficult. Now is not the time to deny those red flags and to do some real soul searching before pursuing a commitment from the wrong man.
Glossing over things or blatantly denying there are things in the relationship that really bother you isn’t going to make the problems go away.
Before moving forward with securing that commitment, do it because it feels right and you can answer honestly in your heart that your man is the one for you, you are not settling, and you are committing to someone for the right reasons.
Someone who can truly appreciate how much better their life is with you.