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January 30, 2009 2:24 PM Subscribe
I don't believe in marriage. Everyone around my partner and me is getting married and she's getting depressed. How can I show my girl I love her just as much as the guys in rental tuxedos love theirs?
posted by anonymous to human relations (132 answers total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
My partner and I have been together for ~three years, and living together for six months. I'm in my late 20s and have had enough experience to know that I've found something special. I love her tons and things are great.
I don't want to start a debate on marriage so I'll just say, without trying to justify it, that I don't believe in marriage and never want to get married. (No kids either.) I've always been up-front about this and she's been honest that she likes the idea of marriage but is willing to pass it up to be with me. Our understanding seemed strong and we didn't really talk about it much once the expectations were in place.
What neither of us anticipated was 90 per cent of our friends getting married within a 10-month period, or the emotional effect this would have on her. We've attended four weddings in the past six months, have two more scheduled for the next two months, and two upcoming but without specific dates set. Two of her friends are now pregnant as well as being newlywed.
Understandably, this is getting to her. One of my friends recently proposed to his girlfriend of six months (we're going to the wedding sometime next fall), and my partner tearfully told me how how it seemed so passionate, how there was a part of her that wished we had done that, etc. She acknowledges that I've been honest about what I wanted, but witnessing the parade down the aisle is obviously awakening some mourning in her.
How can I cheer this girl up? All advice is welcome, but I specifically would like to find memorable ways of communicating the following:
1. Not wanting to get married does not mean I love her any less than guys who do want to get married.
2. Being unmarried doesn't mean I have one foot out the door.
3. This is not a situation where if she was a better girlfriend I'd want to marry her and I'm only holding off because she sucks. (I think she has some lingering fear of this even though I told her early on that it's completely untrue.)