Hi, Dr. Love: First of all, I want to congratulate you for your wonderful and helpful website. My question is regarding engagement.I have been with my boyfriend for 3 years and 5 months now. He is 32, professional, Harvard Graduate, successful, talented, and of course, handsome, sweet, etc. I am a 25 year old, college graduate, getting started on my career.His parents are divorced, and sometimes I think that he’s afraid. I’ve brought up the issue a couple of times before, and he knows that I want to get married, but he just won’t propose. He says that I am the one for him, and we have a wonderful relationship.Should I just not bring this up any more?. . . what should I do? Thanks for your time, I appreciate it!
Thanks for your words of appreciation. Writing the weekly advice column alone takes so much time and effort, and hearing that I have made a difference for you encourages me to continue.As for your issue. You are in a bit of a bind. You don’t want to deny your own wishes, but pressing your desires will make him more resistant.So here’s what you do. Join his resistance by telling him, ‘Now that I understand how adverse you are to marrying, I don’t want you to marry me.’ There’s one catch, you must ask him to talk with you about his reluctance to marry, not to change his mind, but because you want to understand him.When he feels safe to talk and not pressured to act, this should be healing for him. There’s still one more catch, and this is between you and me. You need to privately set an end date for this process.So long as he’s talking, growing and healing, you may decide to hang in. But, if you see no change in him, after whatever time frame you privately allot him, then it will be time to put your foot down and demand that he enter therapy or else you are outta there.Let me know how you make out.