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Should I stay or should I go?
September 16, 2008 10:19 AM   Subscribe

Two people like each other, but never at the same time. Is it worth waiting for her?

I'm from South Asia, as is the girl I'm interested in.

We first met in 2004. After that, we IM'ed and talked on the phone quite a bit. She was really into me, but I was dealing with major depression at the time and didn't feel like I would be a good husband to her.

In 2006, she got engaged to another guy, and they got married in July 2007. Her ex-husband was abusive and a cheater, and they separated in August 2007. I had a fiancee at that time too, but that relationship broke up in February of 2008.

After my breakup, I called this girl and we picked up right where we left off. We'd talk on the phone for hours. I broached marriage to her (we're both Muslims and can't culturally date). She says she's not ready to be married again (understandable), but that when she is ready, I'm her first choice.

So, my question is: Should I wait?

I'm going to be 30 this year and feel like time is slipping away. She's only 25, so she has a while. I really like this girl. We're compatible. We have great conversation. My mom loves her. I just don't want to end up sitting around for 10 years waiting for her to get ready. It's a real dilemma.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
I think I would hold her in your heart as a possibility, while also opening yourself up to finding another wonderful woman who will be completely ready to start her life with you.

I would, too, broach this subject with your mother. She might have some sound advice, as she knows you both.

Best of luck, and may you find happiness and love.
posted by sondrialiac at 10:27 AM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


She says she's not ready to be married again (understandable), but that when she is ready, I'm her first choice.

Obviously, none of us can know. Maybe she is diligently working through the emotional fallout from her last relationship to prepare herself for marriage to you... but I doubt it. I think that if that were true - you'd know it. If you broached the subject early this year and she hasn't given you any signals since then? Then I would recommend that you approach her one more time (optional) and if she's not interested, then move on.
posted by moxiedoll at 10:33 AM on September 16, 2008


Your mom loves her... but do you?? You only use terms like "interested in", "like", "compatible", "have great conversation", etc. I would wait if you love her and she loves you, else move on.

Good luck!


Hens
posted by hz37 at 10:38 AM on September 16, 2008


So, my question is: Should I wait?

You can't actively woo her? Waiting is really the only thing you can do?
posted by tarheelcoxn at 10:39 AM on September 16, 2008


You should not wait. There are no guarantees on when she'll be ready, or even if when she's "ready" for marriage that she'll be ready to marry you. I would suggest letting your friendship with this woman cool off so you can focus on meeting other women who are open to the prospect of marriage now.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:49 AM on September 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


Set a deadline for yourself, put it all on the table. A variant of what you said here is perfectly fine and honest: I want YOU badly enough that I'm willing to wait a little while, but after that I have to move on.

Yeah, it's pressure, it's blunt, it's even a little rude -- but if you see your only other options as "quit now" and "wait forever and lose" it might be worth a try (I actually know a couple pairs who married after similar "deadlines" were presented).
posted by Pufferish at 11:25 AM on September 16, 2008


while you wait, read this book
posted by matteo at 11:33 AM on September 16, 2008


What are your other options? If you're not comfortable with dating, and it sounds like you're not, what else would you be doing? Would you be asking to meet and talk with other potential matches via family/friends/matchmakers?
posted by Sidhedevil at 11:40 AM on September 16, 2008


Do both of the following:

A) pursue her diligently but gently. diligently so that she discovers that she can't live without you. gently so that she doesn't decide she can't stand you.

B) protect yourself emotionally for the possibility that it won't work out.

Difficult to reconcile A & B, but that's life.
posted by randomstriker at 12:15 PM on September 16, 2008


I missed that this was anonymous earlier. So, rather than wait for the poster to respond via a mod, I'll unpack my question a bit more.

If you live in a no-dating culture, and you want to get married, you generally need to enlist other people's help in meeting potential matches.

So it seems like the OP has four options:

1) Pursue discussions with the recently-divorced woman he finds intriguing, and forgo all other matchmaking activities for an indefinite period of time, hoping she'll decide that she's ready to marry, and wants to marry him.

2) Pursue discussions with the recently-divorced woman he finds intriguing, giving her a time limit after which he will resume looking for other matches.

3) Keep talking with the recently-divorced woman at the same time he looks for other matches.

4) Tell the recently-divorced woman that the window's closing, and if she's not interested now, he's moving on to look for other matches.


There would be other options if he chose to go outside his cultural framework (like dating, for instance), but it seems that that's not a choice that would work for him, or be to his taste, or whatever.
posted by Sidhedevil at 12:39 PM on September 16, 2008


What's to lose by waiting?

Worst case scenario is you don't settle for someone you like less. Maybe you meet someone you like more.

The nice part about being a man is that you don't have to worry about your age when you get married, unless you're john mccain.
posted by milinar at 12:57 PM on September 16, 2008


I know this may come off as a little crass, but this is how I see it:

I'm South Asian, but American-born, so I totally understand the cultural framework. From my perspective, wouldn't it be really easy just to wait her out?

Doesn't her divorce make her "damaged goods" culturally (yes, I know that's insensitive and rude (to an American), but within the cultural framework it makes sense). If both of you can't (won't) date, and your depending on the usual South Asian routes to marriage, then your options are limited as it is. Given that she's divorced, she's not going to have a bunch of suitors lining up at her door.

Additionally, within the cultural framework, her parents are going to start putting heavy pressure on her to get married again (especially if you use your mom to talk to her mom about it). 25 can still be considered "young", but by the time she hits 30, and she's divorced? Her odds of getting re-married are really slim at that point.

You should use this to your advantage- I don't see any harm in waiting her out (for a year, two max). You should keep your options open though. Go meet any prospective matches that come your way- no one is forcing a gun to your head, and you may never know what lies behind door #2.
posted by unexpected at 1:02 PM on September 16, 2008


The nice part about being a man is that you don't have to worry about your age when you get married

Men have biological clocks, too.
posted by Sidhedevil at 1:41 PM on September 16, 2008


If it was me, I would wait for her. At least a year and probably longer. It is true that you never know what will happen in the future - you could end up waiting for nothing; things change, people change. But it seems like it's rare to find people that you even want to or can have a genuine, close friendship with and it is so great when you do find them. And it is so much more rare to find someone you want to actually marry and live with. I say Hang on to those people when you find them.
posted by gt2 at 12:11 AM on September 17, 2008


[a few comments removed - please try to answer the question without denigrating the people asking the question]
posted by jessamyn at 8:43 AM on September 22, 2008


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