Here is an unspoken truth: A man can feel when a woman he is dating is desperate. She is so desperate to get married that she actually looks right past him. She may have never even asked herself how he actually feels about getting married. Why? Because she cannot see beyond her own desire to be married, like all of her girlfriends.
Well, here is a snapshot of how the man you may be in love with feels. He is saying to himself, "Thank God the government is closed; no marriage certificates!" (Understanding Why Men Run From the Altar) He is saying to himself, "Is it me, or am I just the right victim? Am I in the wrong place at the right time, or has my stalling and holding off this marriage run its course?" (Understanding Are You "Wifey" Material?)
When a woman gets to this point of desperation, it really makes the man feel like he is in a fill-in-the-blank scenario: "I want to get married. Come on, Johnny, you're it! Let's do it, or else the relationship is over!" Johnny is so scared out of his mind that he does it. What most women do not realize is that men in general are scared of marriage, and they have a cowardly nature when it comes time to face the demands of the opposite sex. He naturally wants to please you and is afraid to say no because he is either scared of losing you or is unsure of what to do. His behavior is partially due to not wanting to hurt your feelings and crush your dreams of walking down the aisle in that beautiful white wedding dress, in addition to falling victim to societal pressures like you do (Whatever Happen to the Concept of the Virgin and Waiting to Have Sex Until You Get Married)
Most of the time, the decisions men make regarding marriage revolve around your time clock, as opposed to, "I want to grow up and be married by the time I am 25 years old." Yeah, right. I have honestly never heard a man say such a thing. Have you? If so many men wanted to be happily married, the divorce rate would not be sky-high, and we simply would not be having this conversation.
I have dated women in their 30s, and they truly make you feel like you are dating their checklist: "Tony has a job…check. Tony does not live at home with his mother…check. Tony only has one child…checkmate." The point is that it makes Tony feel like he is simply there to fulfill your needs, as opposed to the needs of the relationship. Tony feels like he is a great catch, but you will never truly see him for the great catch he is. He feels like it really would not matter to you if it were him or the guy next door. He feels that, for you, rather than finding a loving companion, it's all about who can fill that void in your life.
Men, believe it or not, can actually see past the first sexual encounter and even feel your insincerity, so what you thought was going to be this beautiful walk down the aisle either ends before it starts or, when you get to the altar, you'll find that Tony has quickly slipped out the back door. Or, he makes it to the altar and your relationship ends abruptly two years later. Tony knew all along it was not right, but it took him two years to muster up the courage and an excuse to tell you it's over. He also knew you were more in love with the idea of marriage and the status it would give you among your friends than a real relationship filled with true love and genuine companionship.
A man knows when a woman truly loves him. It is not something you can fake. Either you have that bubble-gum substance or you do not. It's kind of like being a mom and a wife at the same time. The hardcore corporate stance is simply not the best approach to a long-lasting, loving relationship.
Love is not something that can be rushed, paid on demand, or any of the other fast-food relationship techniques that exist in modern society. In the Holy Bible, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 states that real love is "very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do it wrong. It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out. If you love someone, you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him and always stand your ground defending him."
Okay, so we all have a lot of work to do.
Men may not be able to express their feelings or may not have the courage to say no, because we know you want the outcome you feel you deserve and have seen in movies, TV, romance novels, soap operas, and among all your friends. But like anything worth having, it takes time to build a real relationship. Five years is reasonable. And you cannot realistically expect to invest all your time in your 20s partying, all of a sudden meet Prince Harry in your 30s and expect to settle your mind down and have a successful relationship, without doing a serious rewire on how selfishly you have programmed yourself to think. Oops! Sorry, I am not trying to be cruel—just honest.
In the above scenario, if she does not get what she desires from Tony, she has no problems marrying her second option, Johnny, six to nine months later. The saddest part of all is that it was never about Tony or Johnny; it was never even about love. All along, it was all about her, and ladies, this is not love. It will only end in disaster.
Real relationships filled with love will also be filled with sacrifice and pain, as well as pleasure. I call this article "The Desperate 30s" simply because it is often the age and time after a woman has had all her fun that she now attempts to regroup and go into "mommy mode". As a result, she often ends up married for two seconds with a baby, then divorced shortly thereafter, increasing the status quo of broken homes and disappointed children. This is not an attempt to point fingers but to understand the potential pitfalls. We are all guilty of this behavior, but today our goal is to give you more insight into how men think about all of it.
More marriage advice from YourTango:
- The 50 Best Marriage Tips, Ever
- Love: Tips & Expert Advice
- When Is The Right Time For A Woman To Get Married