Seligson: My baseline is one year in a monogamous relationship.
Do you see this as someone you are making big sacrifices and life decisions around?
Or they assume you're not interested in marriage at all. I had strange conversations that revealed a lot about people's fears of marriage: "Yeah, who needs to get married? I suppose these fears aren't completely unjustified.
I even had some friends assume we weren't married yet because we hated the idea of marriage — you know, like they did. You'll just stop having sex and bicker all the time! There that weird phenomenon of long-standing relationships falling apart after making it legal. How does all this relate to the phenomenon of the epic, half-decade engagements?
At that four year point, it felt like people started assuming if we hadn't gotten married yet, it was because we didn't want to — not just that we hadn't gotten around to it.
Add to this his alleged propensity to do things as he pleases and at his own pace, and the end result is years of dithering.
For example, the day-to-day staple activities are done together.
You buy furniture together but you say, "What happens when if we broke up? " There is no definite sense this will culminate in marriage.
Brides purchase a dress, and then a different one a year later, and then a third a few months before the actual wedding. It continues to work for both of us: we'd been together over ten years before we had a child (although half of that was not by choice). We're both pretty fiercely independent, and clearly, moving slowly has worked well for us as a couple.
You put a deposit down on a caterer, and they go out of business the next year. At this point, we've been married as long as we were unmarried — Dre's and my 2004 wedding marks the half-way point of our relationship.