Why is he marrying someone he just met?
February 21, 2012 12:03 PM   Subscribe

Why is he marrying her and never proposed to me?

I've known him when I was 12, we were friends and then we dated for 6 years. We went through a lot of stuff together: learning about relationships, love, sex, everything. He moved away and we were long distance for 2 1/2 years. I was unable to move because of school and we were both un-financially stable which led him to joining the Army. I supported him and was there for him.

He then broke up with me a year ago because he felt he lost interest in keeping a relationship. He was devastated as were I. I cut him off to "heal" and later he ended up wanting me back and saying I was the one for him. I told him that I can't be with him if he hasn't resolved the problem of what led to our break up because he said he didn't know WHY he lost interest.

We remained in contact and talked. I began to date someone new and much more compatible although I will always have a place for my ex in my heart. He dated a girl too and then cut me completely off because of her fear of him leaving her for me like her last ex. This was unlike him...my ex never cut people off. I remember him never doing that for me. I was very hurt because I wanted us to remain friends...and he cut me off after all the years I've known him.

He's only known her for 2 months and is engaged now. I was VERY surprised. I thought to myself maybe it's because she's not a citizen, maybe because she is very wealthy, maybe because he's deploying, or maybe she's the ONE for him, or maybe it's all the above.

I don't want him back because I felt like he hold me back. He was not very good at saving money and was always broke. Never could hold down a job except for the Army Reserve which doesn't even pay much. He's pretty broke so I don't know how he is ready for wedding and family...He's 23, I'm 23, his fiancee is 22

What was wrong with me?I helped him in any way possible and I felt like he just cut me off. He owes me tons of money $5,000 which he claims to pay me back when deployed. I felt like I lost a friend that I can never have back.
posted by Asian_Hunnie to Society & Culture (31 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
There's absolutely nothing wrong with you. You and her are not the same person, so he feels differently about her, and acts in a different way.
posted by spunweb at 12:06 PM on February 21, 2012 [8 favorites]


What was wrong with me?

Nothing. As someone far wiser than me has said here, the "one" is not a person - it's a relationship. Your relationship, as I think you already realize, was not the "one." And that's fine. And there's really no way of knowing why, exactly, an ex makes the choices they do after the end of your relationship. And that's fine, too.

Have you lost a friend that you can never have back? Maybe. But worrying about why he is marrying someone other than you is not the way to keep a friendship.

There's nothing wrong with you. But you do need to move on.
posted by The World Famous at 12:08 PM on February 21, 2012 [23 favorites]


People change, and they grow, and they don't necessarily always grow up. Sometimes they just grow in whatever direction. When they grow apart from you, their decisions may look inexplicable to you. They might start doing things which seem absolutely out of character. It sucks but it's a part of life.

Even if you don't want to be with someone, it can be a punch in the gut to find out they're going to marry someone else. That's also normal.

As far as the money, I don't know. If it's anything like any other large sum of money lent between friends that I've ever seen in my life, you'll probably need to take him to court if you want any amount of it back.

Honestly it sounds like what you need is time, and some distance from the shock and hurt of this. Try that, and good luck.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 12:11 PM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I met my husband about three weeks after I broke up with my long term boyfriend. I had never lived with my long term boyfriend, and basically moved in with my new boyfriend (to be husband) after the first date.

Stuff happens, people are people. It doesn’t mean anything was wrong with my ex (or with you). It just means that when I met the right person for ME, I knew immediately, and acted on it.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:13 PM on February 21, 2012 [5 favorites]


He owes me tons of money $5,000 which he claims to pay me back when deployed.

This seems like a bit of a non-sequitur. What's more important-- healing your hurt feelings or attempting to get the money back? Because those two goals are at odds with each other.
posted by supercres at 12:16 PM on February 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


You have two questions here:

Why is he marrying her and never proposed to me?

We can conjecture about this all day and night -- as you have started to do -- but you'll never know the real answer. Hell, maybe she'll never know the real answer either.

What was wrong with me?

"Wrong" is the, er, wrong way to look at this. You two are different people, and that unknowable whatever that I refer to above is one of the differences. Again, we're entering the Wide World of Pointless Conjecture here, but let's say there actually is an concrete and overarching single reason he married her (which is unrealistic what with people being complicated, but, again, we're Pointlessly Conjecturing here, not playing private investigator). Let's say, in the grand traditions of shotgun marriage, it's because she is pregnant. Let's also say you were never pregnant during your relationship with him. Would you say that the fact that you were never pregnant is something wrong with you? I doubt it. It's just a circumstance that never reared its head.

So, there you go. It could be circumstantial, it could be because there's something about her personality, it could be any of a million things you'll never know. But what you can be sure of is that there's nothing wrong with you as a human being; you're just not the person he's marrying. Reading any further into his actions is a recipe for avoidable misery.
posted by griphus at 12:17 PM on February 21, 2012


Oh and this: I helped him in any way possible and I felt like he just cut me off.

Cutting yourself off completely from an ex is a normal, healthy and advisable thing to do. For many (if not most) people, the only way to really and truly get over someone is to totally wipe them out of their life, either for a period of time, or permanently. It sucks if you're on the receiving end and don't wish to be, but, again, this isn't something you should take as a personal affront or act of malice.
posted by griphus at 12:21 PM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


To me, this is just a relationship that didn't work out. Nothing wrong with you. Nothing wrong with him moving on either. Sometimes what makes a connection is indefinable.
posted by thorny at 12:25 PM on February 21, 2012


There is nothing *wrong* with you. You're going through the grieving process of losing a close friend who, for years, meant a lot to you. These things happen, close friends become friends no longer, people who dated stop talking, etc. And while it all sucks, it is one of those things I feel like almost everyone goes through at some point in their life (yours truly included).

There's nothing wrong with being distraught over being "cut-off" and there's nothing wrong with being upset over feeling like you'll never get your friend back, b/c in all honesty, you may not. People change, they grow up, they grow old, they grow apart, it happens to be how relationships function.

As far as the money goes, while it's difficult, you should probably write it off. Lending to friends should be recognized as money that you rarely ever get back.
posted by bleachandink at 12:26 PM on February 21, 2012


He's a jerk for not paying back the $5,000. You dodged a bullet there by not having gotten engaged to someone who thinks it's okay to borrow $5,000 and never pay it back.

Look, it's like someone broke into your house and stole your cat's used litter. You come out ahead on this deal, because you're not engaged to a deadbeat.
posted by Sidhedevil at 12:30 PM on February 21, 2012 [14 favorites]


He broke up with you. He tried to get back together with you, but couldnt meet your needs. You declined. You moved on.

But you didn't want him to move on.

But he did.

It sucks. But keep moving on.
posted by vitabellosi at 12:35 PM on February 21, 2012 [3 favorites]


You will never be able to get inside his head.
You need to find your own center - and move on.

The WORST thing you can do is think there is something wrong with you.
You and him were not the right fit for him.

You will find another. You are young. Rejoice in life.
Don't let this crush your soul.
posted by Flood at 12:45 PM on February 21, 2012


Because that's the way life goes. Guys who claim that they will never get over their ex and that is why they can't love you will break up with you and will fall head over heels and propose to the next girl they're with. Girls who claim they want to be by themselves and don't want a serious relationship will be engaged within a year to someone else. It's kind of like in 500 Days of Summer. It sucks to be the one getting dumped and hearing the excuses and then finding out about their next relationship, but I guess at the time they just don't know how to explain why you are not the one for them, but you just aren't.
posted by never.was.and.never.will.be. at 12:47 PM on February 21, 2012 [3 favorites]


Sounds like she has money, and he may realize, now more than ever, that he's not the type that will ever earn a lot of it on his own. He probably feels kind of entitled to having stuff money buys, based on what you wrote, beyond his own means, certainly. To that end, he seems to prefer to have his woman bail him out financially, and if this woman can do it better than anyone he's dated before, including you, well, then he's hit paydirt, er love.

Also, he's now older, and sometimes men hit a certain age and suddenly see getting married as an ok prospect whereas they shunned it before. Also, sometimes it takes a really pushy woman to get a man to propose. No pushiness=no proposal. Sometimes.
posted by devymetal at 12:51 PM on February 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


I don't want him back because I felt like he held me back. He was not very good at saving money and was always broke. Never could hold down a job except for the Army Reserve which doesn't even pay much. He's pretty broke so I don't know how he is ready for wedding and family.

It sounds like he wasn't marriage material, so why are you upset that he never proposed to you? It sounds like you think he was bad for you. It sounds like you never believed he was ready for marriage and a family, and still isn't. So, you really shouldn't be upset if he never asked you, you should be glad.
posted by jabberjaw at 1:06 PM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


He owes me tons of money $5,000 which he claims to pay me back when deployed.
Everyone else has pretty much covered other concerns, but with regards to this - make sure you document (keep your texts, emails) all the conversations you have with him regarding the amount of money he owes you. In case you need it for court. You may not be in that frame of mind right now, but once your heart really starts to heal, you might decide to start looking for your repayment.

Take care of yourself. You are young and you will recover from this.
posted by foxhat10 at 2:00 PM on February 21, 2012


make sure you document (keep your texts, emails) all the conversations

I'd recommend both digital and hard copies, btw.
posted by foxhat10 at 2:01 PM on February 21, 2012


No one has mentioned this, but it's true: the culture in the Army is very pro-early and irresponsible marriage. They also pay you more for getting married.

You absolutely cannot interpret someone's post-Army time by the time before it. It may help to think of him as an entirely new person.
posted by corb at 3:07 PM on February 21, 2012 [5 favorites]


Vitabelossi is right. According to your timeline above, YOU cut him off first. What did you really expect him to do after that?

I am not trying to be harsh, just trying to get you to look at it from his perspective.

As a data-point, the last person I knew who got divorced and then turned around and got remarried right away was fucking around on her first husband with her second.
posted by Brittanie at 3:39 PM on February 21, 2012


This is not surprising at all though a strange phenomena that has no explanation. If you look around there are many many cases where women date men, do everything for them, hang on for years hoping he will marry her and then wham! out of the blue the minute they break up, a months later he is engaged/married to someone else. Bottom line is make sure you have the same goals as your man. If he is not ready to marry, he is not ready to marry you. Plain and simple, dont waste your time. It is one thing to be friends for years but another to be a "gf" for years
posted by pakora1 at 4:47 PM on February 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


A guy who is "always broke and can't hold a job" - is this the kind of man you want to marry? It may well be that, as Devymetal said above, he's looking for a "sugar momma" to bail him out financially.

"Can't Buy Me Love" is not just the title of a Beatles song, it's a truth in relationships. You can't buy someone's love by lending them money or bailing them out of financial jams. Buying them dinner, paying for opera tickets - yes, that is what couples do for one another. But you can't buy a commitment by lending someone money. That sort of thing, IMO, is for people who are already engaged or married - then you put the money in a common pot and it's "ours."

As to "why her and not me?" It has NOTHING to do with you - trust me! It's not a reflection on you and your desirability that he chose to marry someone else. He wanted something different than what you had to offer. It didn't mean what you had to offer wasn't enough. Society does women such a disservice by making them feel as if their worth as a person has to do with whether a man wants to marry them.

It's corny and silly to say - but it's true - you are still young! 23 is plenty of time to find a man to marry and have children with! Be gentle with and good to yourself while you are healing. But after that - give yourself plenty of opportunity to meet new people.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 4:53 PM on February 21, 2012


I would hazard a guess that part of what is fueling this sudden rush to the alter after only two months is his upcoming deployment. From personal experience that stood out to me as soon as I read it as a factor in this quick engagement. The pre-deployment state of mind of young men in the military can sometimes be very different in terms of marriage and relationships , either break ups that might not have happened otherwise, or marriages and increased commitment in an effort to maintain the relationship through the deployment.
posted by Rapunzel1111 at 5:55 PM on February 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've known him when I was 12, we were friends and then we dated for 6 years. We went through a lot of stuff together: learning about relationships, love, sex, everything.

Which sounds like a pretty good reason to move on. Most people don't end up with their high school sweetheart; you learn a lot and go through some changes.
posted by spaltavian at 6:45 PM on February 21, 2012


Not only that, but he's got another reason to act differently. He's been through a thing with you that didn't turn out the way he wanted. So, this time he's not doing the same things that didn't work out before.

(Not that his new plan is any better, necessarily. But it's different.)
posted by ctmf at 7:21 PM on February 21, 2012


Response by poster: I didn't shut him out to the person above. He was basically saying how he wanted to get back together but he wasn't even seriously trying to get back with me. He had no idea what caused him to want to break up with me and lose interest in maintaining a relationship. We both talked about that. He didn't take any further action to try to fix things although he still had feelings for me. Why would I go back to him the second time to be hurt if nothing has changed ya know? The problem isn't fixed. Thanks everyone for answers!
posted by Asian_Hunnie at 12:22 AM on February 22, 2012


Best answer: People never know what they've got until it's gone. He breaks up, starts missing you, realizes what he losts - as is quite common. He tries to get back, can't get it to work. He learns a lesson: Don't let a good one get away.

He maybe didn't learn a lot of discipline at home and / or wasn't taught to parse or navigate his emotions. Therefore he still has a lot to learn, and the pendulum swings the other way when he gets a redo: Let's commit way too much way to soon! Yeah!!1

How's that sound?
posted by krilli at 2:06 AM on February 22, 2012 [3 favorites]


My husband went from 'not ready to have kids for a few more years' to 'let's try now' when his deployment papers came. Three years ago, he said that he wasn't sure he wanted to have kids. It's quite common for men in the military to get married/try for a kid, especially before a first deployment. Divorce is really high in the military because a lot of people get married just to get married, in part because of all the financial benefits.

His marriage has nothing to do with you.
posted by PrimateFan at 5:33 AM on February 22, 2012 [1 favorite]


Nothing is wrong with you. Get your $5000.00 back and go on an amazing vacation with the money.
posted by oceanjesse at 7:30 AM on February 22, 2012


The only thing "wrong" with you is that you still have a place in your heart for someone and seem to be expecting the same from them. Stop speculating on his current relationship and focus on continuing to move on without him (and probably without your money, too).
posted by sm1tten at 8:29 AM on February 22, 2012


Never be upset that someone you don't like/want doesn't like/want you back. You are already getting what you want - not to be with him anymore.
posted by Gor-ella at 9:33 AM on February 22, 2012


Response by poster: Well at the time I wanted to be with him but like I said, he didn't put any effort to seriously want to fix things. I feel like I'm repeating myself when I say that I didn't want to be hurt the second time if problems were unresolved.
posted by Asian_Hunnie at 11:55 PM on February 22, 2012


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