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House... Baby.. No ring.

(603 Posts)
littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 13:42:36

Have nc'd for this.

I suppose this is like a WWYD.

Basically me and oh live together, own the house together, have a baby, own a car jointly, finances are pooled. You get the idea. We act like a married couple.

However we are not a married couple.

Not even engaged.

At first it never bothered me really, but now we have a baby and him and oh have the same surname and I have a different one, I'll admit it does really get to me that we aren't married. I feel like a bit of an idiot.

Before anyone says well why did you buy a house and have a baby with him, well because I thought we would get married and I wasn't bothered if that came before or after a baby!

Now I'm starting to doubt it'll happen. We've been together four years. Neither of us have been married before. He's in his early thirties, I'm in mid twenties.

I know there is no real rush, and realistically we couldn't afford a wedding for maybe a year or two. (Though I'd be happy with a registry office and a nice meal! He wouldn't!)

When I've spoken to him about it he mainly just says we will do it in time, we will get there eventually, not yet, or in a few years, or what's the rush it won't change anything (technically it won't I suppose, obviously legally but in terms of our relationship nothing would change as we're pretty much living as a married couple)

He thinks I want to rush into it and doesn't see why I'm so bothered about doing it because it won't change anything. I say that if it won't change anything then why not just do it instead of putting it off for years.

I guess I'm just a bit fed up and this is just a bit of a whinge. I don't want to leave over this obviously as we have a good relationship, but I want to be married to him and I don't want to have to nag about it.

WWYD in this situation. Can you change the mindset of someone who is not very bothered? He is quite laid back anyway so it comes as no surprise that he is in no rush to do this.

Should I bring it up? Should I forget about it? Should I resign myself to the fact it may never happen?

I am hoping he is secretly thinking about it but I doubt that very much.

I need advice!

ChicRock Wed 13-Jul-16 13:48:35

I don't think he wants to marry you.

What would I do? I'd have a chat with him, explaining why marriage is so important to me. I'd suggest a date and a venue, and take it from there depending on his response.

AnotherEmma Wed 13-Jul-16 13:53:29

There are plenty of legal differences between cohabitation and marriage. So when he says "it won't change anything" he is wrong. Show him this:
www.citizensadvice.org.uk/relationships/living-together-marriage-and-civil-partnership/living-together-and-marriage-legal-differences/

There is also the fact that marriage is important to you. I think that how you feel about it is just as valid as all the legal and practical reasons to get married. If he doesn't respect your feelings about it and keeps fobbing you off, that's just not fair.

princessmi12 Wed 13-Jul-16 13:54:37

I really don't think you can change someone else's mindset, apart your own.
I think you should tell him exactly how you feel and why ,but once and never nag over it.
Probably after a while ,if nothing changes,you will feel resentful and your feelings towards him will change.You might even not want to be together with him ,after seeing whats clearly important to you is not being honoured and you not on the same page.

HopeArden Wed 13-Jul-16 13:54:55

Bit late for you but this is why unmarried mothers should give their children their own name and not the dad's one. My nan would say why buy the cow when he is getting the milk for free. Horrible expression but it's true - he has nothing to gain from marrying you assuming you are not earning much more money than him and he is not a sahp. If you are a sahm you are massively vulnerable with this arrangement so I would seriously advise against it.

For me it would be a deal breaker if ky dp knew it was important to me (for whatever reason) and was unwilling to give me the security that comes from marriage.

MollyTwo Wed 13-Jul-16 14:05:21

Well you were a bit silly to have the baby and then decide marriage is for you. You both weren't bothered at the beginning but now that's changed for you, if he can't see that then not sure what you can do besides force him to.

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:11:29

I am not a sahm, he doesn't earn considerably more than me, but I would be financially fine if he were to leave.

I didn't decide marriage was for me after the baby, I always thought it was on the cards. I never doubted we would do it. If I had doubted it I wouldn't have had a baby with him.

Thurlow Wed 13-Jul-16 14:14:25

The reasons he is giving you for not marrying, or more specifically, for not marrying now, are a bit of a red flag to me.

I am in exactly your situation - two children, house, car, finances, the whole shebang. However we have made efforts to replicate marriage in our legal situation as well as we can (wills/trusts, powers of attorney, cohabitation agreement etc). Because marriage is almost entirely off the cards for us, not because we are delaying it.

However this is all on the understanding that if one of us decided that they felt financially or legally vulnerable and only marriage would fix it, we would get married. For example, if the difference between our earnings changed dramatically.

You need to explain to him why you want to get married and how being unmarried makes you feel at the moment, and ask him to give good explanations of why he will not do it at the moment.

HopeArden Wed 13-Jul-16 14:19:26

Then you have to decide if it is impotant enough to you to break up over. Personally I would feel as if he has entered into parenthood with me under false pretences, which would lead to me becomming very angry and resentful. I would feel taken for granted which would poison my relationship.
I had my first ds without being married and I was okay with that (had this daft idea about not wanting people to think we had only done it because of the baby). But I always knew that my dp would happily marry me if I wanted - I would have been massively pised off if he had been unwilling to get married.

StaleOreo Wed 13-Jul-16 14:20:14

"unmarried mothers" ? hmm
how quaint.

StaleOreo Wed 13-Jul-16 14:21:45

OP, it doesn't sound as if he wants to marry you. This is a tough place for you to be. There's nothing to lose, IMO, in bringing it up. But he may just keep you dangling with vague promises of 'one day' etc.

HopeArden Wed 13-Jul-16 14:24:04

What is wrong with 'unmarried mother'? She is a mother who isn't married (as was I - I wasn't making a moral judgement on it, honestly).

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:25:16

If I suggested doing wills, singing legal documents etc I have no doubt he would do it.

I could get something drawn up and he would sign it tomorrow.

I have no fear that he is somehow trying to screw me over.

I manage everything financially so I know exactly what's going on and I don't feel like I am in any way at risk of being taken for a fool in that respect iyswim.

Everything is split equally and will continue to be once we start paying for childcare when I go back to work.

This is what I don't get.

I don't think he would leave. In fact I'm fairly certain he wouldn't.

He doesn't keep anything separate from me, so he wouldn't be losing anything by marrying me if that makes sense.

He just genuinely isn't bothered for doing it. He says that's his reason for not asking and I'm inclined to believe him.

I guess I just find it hurtful that his not bothered attitude comes before my feelings.

I've explained I'm not really bothered about the big day or the dress, I don't want an expensive ring or a lavish honeymoon. I'm not bothered about the wedding or any of that shit it's the marriage I want.

However he has said that he would want a wedding etc and he would want to give me a nice ring etc.

We are not particularly skint but with me being on Mat leave we do have considerably less money. Enough to save up for a small wedding but not enough to buy a grands worth of ring and get married in a stately home.

I do wonder if he isn't doing it because he wants to do it 'properly'

I dunno. Perhaps i am clutching at straws!!

Titsalinabumsquash Wed 13-Jul-16 14:25:28

I'm in the same position OP, it's easy to have a baby and pool finances ect expecting it to happen, it's a natural progression you'd think, I'm not sure how I feel about it. I'd love to be married to DP but I most certainly don't want a wedding which I think he's taken to mean I don't want a proposal/ring etc. It's hard to get the right words to talk about it tbh so I've given up trying.

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:28:20

I don't think it's important enough to split up over, it seems silly to throw what is a good relationship away over this.

I think we do need to talk more but I feel like like a desperate loser by asking.

Sorry I really don't want to offend anyone but I suppose ive always had in my had that he'd just ask and it would be happily every after and I wouldn't have to mention it or ask or hint at it or point blank say look I want to get married.

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:29:07

tits yes I agree I find it really hard to talk about too

Thurlow Wed 13-Jul-16 14:32:09

However he has said that he would want a wedding etc and he would want to give me a nice ring etc.

That's a very interesting comment from him. DP is slightly similar in what some people would could a "not bothered" attitude (though to be fair, so am I so this really isn't on his head at all). But if it became essential to me that we were married, he'd do it. But certainly he'd not say that if we did end up doing it, we'd have to have a big white wedding.

I'd press him more on that front. Is it because he still thinks you secretly want it? Is is because he feels his family want a big white wedding? Or is that just an excuse?

SpeakNoWords Wed 13-Jul-16 14:32:46

If you're on top of the finances etc then can you put together a plan to save a decent amount of money to put towards the kind of big wedding that he seems to want. Then discuss it with him to show how what he says he wants can be achieved within x number of years. Then get an agreement from him that you will get married by the end of that time frame. That would seem a reasonable approach and I can't see how he could object as it addresses all of his apparent concerns. If he still won't agree to that then you know where you stand and you'll have to think about how much of an issue it is for you.

sonlypuppyfat Wed 13-Jul-16 14:33:57

Does he think it's like closing the stable door after the horse has bolted? Show him the links people have put up, marriage is important. I watched a programme recently where a woman's partner was very ill they had been together for years and had a child but because they weren't married his mum had to give consent to his treatment

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:36:49

thurlow I think he thinks that a big wedding is what I really want, and that I'm saying I don't because I think that's what he wants.

When in actual fact I really don't want a big wedding at all. Even if I did I would be so anxious being the centre of attention I'd probably have a shit day anyway.

I think it partly could be because of his parents, to be fair they have a shit marriage and always have had but yet remain together. They out on a front for friends but that's all it is, a front.

They want us to get married, i think they would expect a big white wedding,, but I don't think they'd be horrendously vocal if we didn't. Though he knows them better than me obviously.

He could just be saying that so it makes it a big far away goal that he maybe thinks isn't achievable, so that we never get there if that makes any sense?!

I just don't know!

HopeArden Wed 13-Jul-16 14:37:06

Sorry, but it makes no sense that he would prioitise his vague notion buying a ring and doing it 'properly' over your clearly stated and very real feelings. Sounds like excuses to me.
It all seems to be very much about what he wants and what you want is very much second. If getting married isn't that important to him but is to you then he should get married simply because you do feel strongly about it.

At the moment you two are on an even footing but further down the line it is invariably the woman who is negatively affected by parenthood. Mat leaves etc do have a very real impact on career progression and earning potential. You don't want a gap to widen between you further down the line. Marriage protects you to some degree. Even with all the best legal agreements between cohabiting couples, if one of you wants out then there is no legal protection for you. Agreements only work for so long as you are actually a couple.

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:38:03

speak good idea. Will speak to him about that and see what he says.

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:38:57

sonly yes quite possible that he thinks like that.

I'm not sure that he sees the point, but as you and many others have said, there are many reasons why. There are many points.

littlerabbitface Wed 13-Jul-16 14:42:18

hope I know it doesn't make any sense to me either.

If it were the other way round I would marry him! Though I suppose that is easy to say because I want to get married confused

I am not too worried about career etc if anything I will end up earning more because there are a lot more opportunities in my field, than there are in his.

Don't get me wrong he could be offered an amazing job tomorrow, I don't know what will happen but I'm not tooooooo worried. Maybe I should be!

perfecteyebrow Wed 13-Jul-16 14:42:52

My ( male) friend kept putting off his wedding plans because he was 'scared' of getting married , it wasn't that he didn't want to be with his ( now ) wife but just couldn't quite make it over the hurdle into a wedding , it took them Years to get married but eventually it happened about 3 years ago , now he tells me he feels a bit silly to have put it off for so long ! Don't despair it will eventually happen , it's not like he's said no , he's just said not right now

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