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To think that women should stop starting families before they get the ring?

(544 Posts)
MeteorGarden Sat 08-Sep-18 08:49:55

Ok so hear me out.

I’ve read a few threads now from women who have got themselves into the same difficult situation and judging by hundreds of comments, they are seriously not alone!

They desperately want to marry DP who ‘always said he would’ But now (a few children/ years later) has declared he has no intention of marrying them.

It follows the same pattern, OP wanted to marry early on and DP was open to it but didn’t actually pop the question. OP didn’t force the issue (god forbid she be labelled ‘pushy’ or ‘crazy’) and instead started a family with DP (OP seemed under the delusion that having his children would make him propose).

A) Would anyone ‘start a family’ with a man who isn’t proposing to you? If he’s open to it why isn’t he doing it?
B) Is having children becoming just an alternative to getting the ring/ security you want?
C) Would anyone think having his children will make him propose? If you have the kids without a ring it’s fair for him to assume you’re happy enough with the current situation!
D) are so many women put off flatly asking for what they want? It’s terribly backward to just quietly have his children and keep his home in the hope that one day you’ll be ‘rewarded’ you with a proposal! We’re living in a society where you can carry his children but feel uncomfortable asking WHEN he’s going to propose and pushing the issue?!?!

The stories I’ve read are horribly deflating and I empathise with their explanations of frustration and humiliation but wonder if perhaps it could have all been avoided?

We have so much more freedom and independence than our grandmothers, but we’re expected to pretend we don’t care about marriage or kids for the first year of dating so as ‘not to scare a man away’!! WtF?

I wouldn’t ever plan a family with any man I wasn’t married to. It was spelt out to me that the time to lock down my chosen relationship was BEFORE I had children or made irreversible sacrifices!

This kind of thinking seems to instil fury in a lot of modern women but why? Taking the more ‘modern’ approach really doesn’t seem to be working out very well for alot of women so would a bit more tradition In our approach to getting the ring really be that bad?

Maybe if women banded together and made ‘getting the ring’ more socially acceptable we’d be able to push the point and get answers before wasting years with a guy and learning the hard way! Right now it feels men have more power over the marriage process than they really should!

* This applies only to women who ‘want’ to marry but aren’t getting the ring. Not those who don’t want to marry!

OP’s posts: |
BuntyII Sat 08-Sep-18 09:22:26

You really are a smug married aren't you OP? You've got it all figured out.

Enjoy your eventual divorce biscuit

MeteorGarden Sat 08-Sep-18 09:22:38


I think you’re mis understanding me 😒

Well done you for encouraging your daughter to be independent. I hope there are many parents like you out there! My mother was the breadwinner in our home, total respect!

But if one day your DD meets a guy and says ‘mum I want to marry him’ do you think she should wait quietly for a few years until he decides to propose?

If shes financially independent and doesn’t rely on him but wants to have a baby in that window and would like to be married because that’s important to her but DP won’t commit, what does she do in that situation?

Yes for a lot marriage is about financial/ legal security. But for others it can just be about wanting to get married.

OP’s posts: |
Woodchiponthewall Sat 08-Sep-18 09:22:38

Such a depressing attitude which gives the man all the power. As I have got older I have been quite shocked about woman’s really conservative attitudes towards marriage. Holding up marriage as some kind of female triumph is bizarrre to me. Why not instead pour energies pre children into earning your own money so you’re not financially vulnerable, and not hooking up with some Victorian who believes childcare is not their responsibility? That’s what we should be teaching girls, not ‘getting the ring’. Shudder.

GunpowderGelatine Sat 08-Sep-18 09:23:04

A ring may not but a legal contract does Knots. If you don't want romantic guff fair enough but I think women should be smart enough to protect themselves and say 'no marriage no baby', in the cases where they earn or work less (which I imagine is the vast majority of most couples).

My friend is a SAHM to 2 kids and not married to her DP, says he'll never propose. He's a very high earner and they moved away from another country for his job. The house is in his name only. She has no family here and I worry if he decides to leave her she's absolutely screwed. If she was married it would change a lot. Her situation isn't unique and I think it's in people like her's interest to get that legal protection

onefootinthegrave Sat 08-Sep-18 09:23:23

There are some real GF threads on here this morning. Is there something in the water??

OftenHangry Sat 08-Sep-18 09:24:22

I am actually quite surprised at the number of women waiting for the proposal.
Go for it girls! Pop the question! It's 2018 and there is nothing wrong with woman proposinggrin. Sometimes we have to take matters into our own hands😉

EBearhug Sat 08-Sep-18 09:24:45

I would like people to have a better understanding of their rights and responsibilities - and lack of them - before they move in together, to know what situation they would be in if the relationship broke down, and to set up some protection for themselves just in case. I would also like them to have an awareness of how having children complicates and changes that. But then if they're making decisions when they're informed about the pros and cons, it's up to them.

Not all pregnancies are planned in any case. Even when you are careful with using contraception, it can fail. Life doesn't always work to a careful plan, and lots of people are just getting through it all anyway.

GunpowderGelatine Sat 08-Sep-18 09:25:01

And if your man is reluctant to get married because he's protecting his assets then he's not exactly the best person to start a family with

Childrenofthesun Sat 08-Sep-18 09:25:10

Also if you’re a higher earner, have more assets it’s far better to not be married

This is always given as a reason why some women shouldn't marry. Of course, it's equally the reason why some men don't want to get married!

KnotsInMay Sat 08-Sep-18 09:25:14

Which is exactly what I said, Gunpowder.

PolkerrisBeach Sat 08-Sep-18 09:25:25

Such a depressing attitude which gives the man all the power

That's not what it's about at all - it's about women having the gumption to stand up for themselves and say that no, children aren't on the cards right now as we aren't legally committed to each other.

Being a SAHM is a valid choice if that's what the couple decide. But the implications of choosing to do that if you're not married can be dreadful if it all falls apart after a few years.

OliveBranchManager Sat 08-Sep-18 09:26:01

I think having a baby on your own is the answer, or at least, working hard in your twenties and early thirties so that in the absence of men who will commit, you can still experience motherhood and provide security and have a life.

Women have it better than ever in SOME ways, access to a good edcuation and opportunities afterwards, but the men are not going to get married during women's fertile window.

I saw looking at facebook that the men in my class at school got married in the run up to forty. They literally fell like skittles that year. These were the handsome outgoing successful ones. Other far more ordinary men had married. Women have to have had their child by then. And it's not like these men stalling their girlfriends are wonderfully charismatic types nine times out of then they're not, but they aren't going to commit to a marriage they're not certain they want for the sake of child they're in no rush to have. Literally and biologically in no rush to have. I don't know what the answer is because the world has changed.

Stompythedinosaur Sat 08-Sep-18 09:26:38

I would possibly agree that people (of either gender) shouldn't place themselves in a financially vulnerable situation without sufficient safeguards, which might include marriage.

But I think there is an idea around in society that marriage=success for women, and I think it is patriarchal nonsense.

I have 2 dc with dp. I don't want to get married (although I have been clear I would marry him if he wanted to). We earn similar amounts, do 50:50 childcare, have wills, the house is in both names etc.

We are making an informed decision, and I think it is fine.

MessyBun247 Sat 08-Sep-18 09:26:47

‘ They aren’t getting what they need/want and stay because otherwise they are throwing away XYZ. Surely being married makes that even less likely.’

So being married means it’s more likely a couple will stick together when you aren’t happy, that’s not a good thing.

ChasedByBees Sat 08-Sep-18 09:27:43

I disagree - women and men should know the legal consequences of marrying or not marrying. Not every woman needs to protect herself as she won’t have access to assets that could be shared. Some women will have assets of their own. Some men will be the SAHP and be equally vulnerable. I think the assumption that the woman will always be worse off and will always be the SAHP isn’t so helpful.

SnuggyBuggy Sat 08-Sep-18 09:28:19

I don't see what's goady about encouraging people to make an informed choice.

P3onyPenny Sat 08-Sep-18 09:28:58

It's tough shit. I was the marriage refuser in our relationship. Nobody would bully me into it.

I'd rather dd be financially secure,have a baby on her own and then find somebody more compatible. If somebody doesn't want to marry you,they don't want to marry you. To be honest I suspect she'll be the one refusing marriage.

And op can I ask as a happily married wife why are you hanging around on the relationship board. I'd only go there if I had relationship problems,which as a longterm unmarried I don't.

Sassenach85 Sat 08-Sep-18 09:29:58

I could swear that exact OP had been put on here a few months ago .... hmm

YeTalkShiteHen Sat 08-Sep-18 09:30:06

I think we should all be encouraging our daughters never to be financially dependent on a man/spouse/partner.

Using the phrase “getting the ring” like its some kind of prize makes me cringe though.

GunpowderGelatine Sat 08-Sep-18 09:30:50

It's all very well saying that the alternative is women getting financial security before babies, but realistically how many can afford the cushion of a deposit for a house, new furniture, childcare costs if everything goes wrong in the relationship? You need tens of thousands saved! When actually just that legal protection would be more realistic and deserved.

Maidsrus Sat 08-Sep-18 09:33:29

I ageee

Pre kids you can’t quite how get your head around the loss of earnings you will suffer due to maternity leave, nursery fees, working around school hours and term time, as well as the huge costs in general of raising a child. The mum bears the brunt of this.

And then in 15 years time there may be parents to look after, again often it’s the woman who steps in

You can’t understand how hard life can be in 10 years time and how this puts pressure on a relationship, and you don’t think you’re ever going to split.

As had been said if you are personally well paid with savings and a pension, and your other half is hint as good with money (or especially if he has debt), AND your name is on the deeds to the house (or are renting) then you might be better off not marrying, but there is a big differential still to cover for your loss of earnings.

Competitive big weddings are the problem here too. They’re off putting and not needed.

SheWoreBlueVelvet Sat 08-Sep-18 09:35:09

For me having a child was more important than having a man. I got the urge for a child in my early 30's and the prospect of that door only being open 10 years more was an issue.
Men are everywhere. Opportunities for children less so.
No one knows the future. Marriages breakdown, people die. Who can tell.

However I do agree that if being married is important to you, having children first will in no way boost your chances of getting a proposal.

I would never ask.I need the reassurance that he actually wants to marry me and has thought about our future.

FissionChips Sat 08-Sep-18 09:35:20

And op can I ask as a happily married wife why are you hanging around on the relationship board. I'd only go there if I had relationship problems,which as a longterm unmarried I don't

What a stupid thing to say. Happily married people shouldnt read/ offer advice on the relationships board? confused

P3onyPenny Sat 08-Sep-18 09:36:10

I have friends who have done it. Affordable home ownership is another issue. More and more people are going to be renting,we need longer letting rules and better maternity rights in the workplace like in Scandinavia.

Foisting marriage onto couples who shouldn't be together isn't the answer.

Maidsrus Sat 08-Sep-18 09:36:13

I’m surprised now, with hindsight, that people don’t get a financial advisor before deciding whether or not to marry grin. It can be very complex on divorce and it happens to a lot of marriages - 42% I think?

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