Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

15 Signs Your Boyfriend Isn’t Ready to Marry You

no-marriage-300x300As an advice columnist, I receive letters every week from women who are wondering how they can tell whether their boyfriend will be ready to marry them soon. When I check my search engine traffic, “Is he ready to marry me?” is one of the top searches (followed closely by “Wedding Etiquette,” and “Wedding Invitations,” and “He bought a ring but returned it,” hmm…). So for those of you playing the guessing game, here are 15 helpful signs that your boyfriend isn’t, in fact, ready to marry you.

1. You’ve been together seven years but when you bring up the topic of marriage, he says, “Aw, what’s the rush?”

2. His profile on OKCupid is still active.

3. He won’t tell you where he lives because he’s afraid you’ll start stalking him.

4. When you ask why he hasn’t changed his Facebook status to “In a Relationship,” he says he’s not ready to go public yet.

5. He refers to the future in “I” terms instead of “we” terms.

6. Your invitation to his best friend’s wedding arrived in the mail and he said, “Don’t go getting any ideas…”

7. He bought a house without getting your input.

8. He says he’s “just not big on labels.”

9. He got you a puppy for your birthday to “give you something to focus on for a while.”

10. He’s hoping to be cast on the next season of “The Bachelor.”

11. He says things like, “You would make a great wife some day,” or “Any guy would be lucky to marry you!” that sound sincere but lack any language that includes him in the scenario.

12. He won’t allow you to come to his house because he worries his guard dog will attack you.

13. He proposed eight months ago but still won’t buy a ring or set a date.

14. He thinks the worst part about a “Bridezilla” marathon is how much it glamorizes marriage.

15. He still hasn’t left his wife.

21 comments… add one
  • Amber March 27, 2013, 2:10 pm

    LOL I forgot about the letter in #3. That one was a gem.

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    • othy March 27, 2013, 3:56 pm

      I’d love to get an update from her.

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      • Nookie March 28, 2013, 6:53 am

        Yes, me too! I want to know what happened…

    • katie March 27, 2013, 5:55 pm

      haha, i just went back and read the comments… that was a good one.

      some guy got all mad because of MOA. lol good times good times

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  • Sobriquet March 27, 2013, 2:25 pm

    How about he keeps making excuses for why he’s not ready? When a man truly wants to marry you, he’ll make it happen!

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  • 6napkinburger March 27, 2013, 2:42 pm

    You should totally link each of those to the letter it came from. I remember the LW whose boyfriend was blamed the guard dog for why she couldn’t come to his house.

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  • ktfran March 27, 2013, 3:07 pm

    Love this!

    Although I kind of disagree with numbers three and eight. Of course, if I ever get married, I’ll probably change my facebook status to “married.” But I seriously doubt I’ll ever change it to “in a relationship.” I just think it’s silly. Then if you break up, you have to change it back. And I’m really not into labels, but that has no bearing whatsoever as to how I feel about people.

    I’m not bashing people who think that kind of stuff is important. I’m just now one of them.

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    • Nancy Pants March 27, 2013, 3:14 pm

      I feel the same way about the “in a relationship.” It brings out all of the facebook stalkers who don’t actually talk to you outside of facebook that want to dig into your personal life. (I’ll be the first to admit I’ve done this from time to time). And then, of course, if you break up, then you’ve got all of those “what happened?” comments from people you don’t care to talk about it with… Ugh. I’ll pass.

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    • trixy minx March 27, 2013, 4:43 pm

      Or you can just have it so no one can see your relationship status..

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      • ktfran March 27, 2013, 5:11 pm

        Actually, I don’t think you can see mine. So I wouldn’t bother with it at all.

      • *HmC* March 27, 2013, 5:28 pm

        Do you mean that there’s some way to put on your profile that you are “in a relationship” but have it hidden? I’m a big Facebook Scrooge but, what is the point of having stuff on your profile that you “hide”? If you don’t want the world to see something and would rather keep it private, why not simply refrain from posting it on the internet? Something doesn’t have to be on a social networking site in order to exist.

      • katie March 27, 2013, 5:57 pm

        no, theres a way to just not have your relationship status on there at all. so if you arent into labels, if you prefer no one knows, if you just dont care, whatever… you dont have to put *anything*.

      • ktfran March 28, 2013, 9:24 am

        THIS! I have it so it’s not even an option to show up on my profile, so I would never need to change it. And actually, if I were dating someone, I would ask the dude not to do anything with his status if it’s shown. I’m just into everyone and their best friend’s third cousin knowing every minute detail of my life.

      • Fabelle March 27, 2013, 6:00 pm

        I think she means when the relationship begins/ends, there’s a way you can hide it so it’s not blasting all over everyone’s news feed (with the broken heart & everything…does FB still do that, even?)

      • HmC March 27, 2013, 6:02 pm

        Holy crap the fact that it ever did that in the first place (and people left it on their profiles!) really scares me.

  • Brown-eyed NoVA Girl March 27, 2013, 3:57 pm

    16. He buys a new engine for his racecar but forgets about your birthday…. oops.

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  • Paki March 27, 2013, 4:12 pm

    17) He hasn’t asked you

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  • trixy minx March 27, 2013, 4:39 pm

    I have a friend who’s bf bought a house without discussing it. At the time they had been together +5 years and were having some issue but buying a house about an hour away fromwhere my friend worked/lived kinda moved the breakup along. Also, they lived togetherat the time so she had to find a place she could stood. Yeah, that sucks.

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    • NerdyGirl March 27, 2013, 9:09 pm

      This is my friend right now! He bought a house in a town where she has explicitly said she doesn’t want to live without really involving her in the decision (she knew he was thinking about it but that’s all). There are so many red flags but she won’t MOA!

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  • Jess March 29, 2013, 8:58 am

    Too funny! I think #5 is a big one and probably the best indicator of the whether or not a person is thinking of their relationship as long-term (man or woman). The opposite is also true. One thing that reassured me while waiting for a proposal was the fact that my boyfriend talked so much about “our” future and in very specific ways that included me (like where to buy a house that would be convenient for my job).

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  • jeff February 27, 2014, 7:56 pm

    The most common source of problems in marriages is that the couple misinterpreted their mutual feelings of attraction as love. This normally results in the couple trying to keep up appearances after about 5 years, and wondering where the love went.

    It is important to know that attraction is an emotional feeling that may fade, while love is a promise that has little to do with attraction. If you are thinking of getting married, then please read “Attraction is a feeling. Love is a promise.” by Grenville Phillips.

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