Do I want to be married?


#1

Hello,
There are so many layers to this issue that I want advice on, I'm just going to unpack them from the oldest issue to the most recent twists.

I have been in a long-distance relationship with this guy (we're both practicing Catholics) for over three years. I fell in love with him mainly because I feel so comfortable around him. It just feels like home. I'm also attracted to some of his traits. Our relationship has been continuous the entire three years. We've been faithful to each other. We started out seeing each other once a month, but since he has moved to the other side of the country, I've only been seeing him once every 3-4 months. Things have been pretty good. Usually, when we have a disagreement, he gets his way, but I'm usually not bitter about that. We're polar opposites in many things. I'm liberal, he's conservative. I'm a theology student, he couldn't care less about analyzing his faith (he's Catholic because he was born into it). My view of the future is that I want to travel the world and try to make the world a better place, his desire is to have a white picket fence and as many children as he can afford.

So, this past May we got engaged. I said yes because we had been planning to get married pretty much since our first date. I still feel at home with him.

Since we got engaged, I've been thinking more seriously about marrying him. Do I really want to marry someone who is so...unlike me? I know the rest of my life will have to conform to his ideals (he doesn't compromise well). Am I willing to give up my whole identity simply because being with him feels like home?

I have heard that when you're trying to discern something, whatever it is that makes you feel most free is God's will. Well, to be honest, when I thought earlier this week that I was going to go through with it and leave him, that was the best sleep I got in a while.

To add a complication to all of this, there is a first year seminarian at my school that I think I'm falling for. He and I do seem to have the same desires for the future, there seems to be more overlap between our worldviews. He has taken simple vows with his order, but not solemn vows. We haven't been on a date, I haven't shared with him my feelings, because given the fact I'm engaged to be married and he's basically engaged to the Church, I don't think either of those things would be appropriate. Besides, I've only known him for three weeks, so I can't say anything definitive yet except that I fell really guilty for having feelings like this for another man, especially another man who is a novitiate.

Please help me.


#2

My advice is that if you both want totally different things for your future (and it sounds like you do) and you have very little in common, I would not recomend marrying this person. You should not have to change who you are fundamentally in order to fit into someone else's "dream", have your own dream and find someone that shares it.


#3

Having been married once and getting married again (i do have an annulment) I will offer you this advice.

Study the sacrament of marriage. Learn the roles that two people play in each others lives and if you are willing to sacrifice to gain. Now, not all people are compatible and if I have learned anything it is; wait for what you want and will be happy with.

There is NOTHING wrong with looking at a person and saying yo yourself "Well, I love him but we don't share the same values, likes or determination." and NOT marrying that person.

Catholic marriage does not allow divorce. People always trip out about this. As a catholic convert when I FIRST got married as a PROT I really didn't understand that "till death do you part" really MEANT something. It meant "THINK and KNOW for certain that YOU and HE are right for each other."

If he cheats on you, that is NOT ground for divorce. "For better or for worse"

Know yourself and what will make you happy and know how to make others happy. If you can't make yourself happy than don't think anyone person can do it for you. If you are not happy, you wont make him happy. Sacrifice, love, passion, commitment and common bonds are what marriage is about.

I think you are using common sense. If you don't FEEL like you can spend your WHOLE LIFE with this person, DON'T. Sit him down and tell him the hard truth. Call it off.

BUT, also ask yourself IF this, are you letting yourself be drawn away by another guy? If this guy was NOT in the picture would you feel the same about your man? You have to honest with yourself. If this OTHER guy didn't want you, would you be CONTENT with having left the other relationship? What are the things that you DO like and love about your current man AND are those things strong enough to keep you together?

There are no right or wrong answers. It's up to you to decide. How old are you?


#4

I don't know how much "advice" I have to offer - I have more of a personal perspective. Take it for what it's worth. Don't rush marriage. I was very worried about pleasing everyone around me ...and making sure it "appeared" that I was doing all the right things - but I did not listen to my heart. Now, 10 years later, I'm considering ending it (with a child). It's an awful place to be. You start to doubt what God wants for you....and if you are truly listening to him. You lose your ability to make decisions concretely because you wonder if you need to be more forgiving ,..God said it himself...in the bible. He hates divorce. So - be VERY careful before you leap. Make sure you know 110 percent - what you want. You don't want to be in my shoes. You are currently tempted by another man - that will happen MUCH MORE if you are in a failing marriage and then it becomes a mortal sin. It's not easy....no one but you can decide...but definitely listen to your heart.

That's my perspective. I will pray for you!


#5

[quote="Marine03, post:3, topic:212999"]
BUT, also ask yourself IF this, are you letting yourself be drawn away by another guy? If this guy was NOT in the picture would you feel the same about your man? You have to honest with yourself. If this OTHER guy didn't want you, would you be CONTENT with having left the other relationship? What are the things that you DO like and love about your current man AND are those things strong enough to keep you together?

There are no right or wrong answers. It's up to you to decide. How old are you?

[/quote]

I was having these problems before the other guy came into the picture. Having him in the picture has only intensified the issues.

I'm 25-years-old. My fiance is 30.


#6

Please stay away from the seminarian. Allow him to complete his discernment without an emotional attraction possibly tempting away from the priesthood.

You must share your doubts with your finance. Except your feelings seminarian (at least at this point).

This is what engagements are for. You are doing the right thing. God bless you as you discern your future.


#7

[quote="Emilae, post:1, topic:212999"]

Please help me.

[/quote]

I really want to address a lot of these points one by one but sadly I am crazy busy with work right now and I can't. :(

So here is the short version:

Don't confuse comfort and familiarity with "he's the one". We can become comfortable in something because we are used to it, it has become a part of our lives to the extent that we can't see our way past it. That is not an indication of being in the right place - only that of being in a familiar place. I hope that makes sense.

Opposites attract, and sometimes they work. But when they don't work it can be a very difficult way to live with someone. How can you say that you feel "at home" with him when you are forced to give in and compromise all the time? Again - don't confuse comfort with compatibility.

You clearly have some ideas about how you want to spend your life, and they are not in line with his. While marriage is a daily practice of working together and compromising, this is not a healthy way to start out KNOWING you are going to have to give up what you love just to BE.

Finally - if you don't know in your heart of hearts after three years that it's right, don't do it. Breaking off an engagement and a relationship after that long is horrible, embarrassing, and difficult. Been there, don't that. I was engaged to someone I dated for four years and he broke up with me six months before the wedding. I was devastated. But then I met my wonderful husband who, while quite different in some ways, is 100% in lock step with me on the important stuff - faith, children, values, future. He hates my music and I hate his, but when it comes to how we are going to live our lives together we don't disagree on a thing. :D

And as for the attraction to the other guy ---- I think your heart is trying to tell you something. ;)

God bless,
~Liza


#8

((hugs)) to you since I am sure this is not easy. Are you attending premarital counseling? Could you, would you both be willing to talk to a priest about this? From my point of view if you are doubting things this early on in happily ever after you should consider not getting married. It sounds like your heart isn't in it. Sometimes the kindness thing to do is the hardest.

This is off topic but how can you be a liberal and a practicing Catholic? I just assumed on would have to be conservative to be Catholic. Maybe I am wrong?


#9

[quote="Emilae, post:1, topic:212999"]
Hello,

So, this past May we got engaged. I said yes because we had been planning to get married pretty much since our first date. I still feel at home with him.

HUM I would want to marry someone I was deeply in love with and excited about not just comfortable with...unless I'm misreading the feeling in your statement?
**
Since we got engaged, I've been thinking more seriously about marrying him. Do I really want to marry someone who is so...unlike me? I know the rest of my life will have to conform to his ideals (he doesn't compromise well). **Am I willing to give up my whole identity simply because being with him feels like home?

They say opposites attract...I've seen it but the statement about giving up your whole identity now that raised a big red flag. I wouldn't think it healthy to give have to give up your identity in a relationship....you shouldn't have to do that in other words.

I have heard that when you're trying to discern something, whatever it is that makes you feel most free is God's will. Well, to be honest, when I thought earlier this week that I was going to go through with it and leave him, that was the best sleep I got in a while.

There's your answers....you gut feeling is the natural alarm system that GOD gave all of us.

To add a complication to all of this, there is a first year seminarian at my school that I think I'm falling for. He and I do seem to have the same desires for the future, there seems to be more overlap between our worldviews. He has taken simple vows with his order, but not solemn vows. We haven't been on a date, I haven't shared with him my feelings, because given the fact I'm engaged to be married and he's basically engaged to the Church, I don't think either of those things would be appropriate. Besides, I've only known him for three weeks, so I can't say anything definitive yet except that I fell really guilty for having feelings like this for another man, especially another man who is a novitiate.

If you already having feelings for someone else that's a good sign to not to marry the other guy you've got to be fair to him. Would you want someone to marry you just to settle because they couldn't find anything better....that's kind of selfish really.

Please help me.

[/quote]

Move on and forget about the seminarian. Look for someone you can love who is free to love you....or else you'll just be miserable in a bad marriage.


#10

You are asking for big problems as I personally think if he is getting his way this much now - you will lose every piece of whom you are once you marry to the point where you will not recognize yourself. Now look at my signature and you will understand.


#11

[quote="Emilae, post:1, topic:212999"]
Please help me.

[/quote]

I have two pieces of advice.

[LIST=1]
*]Leave the seminarian alone. It's not good for him or you.
*]If you have doubts, wait. If he loves you, he will understand. Otherwise, you have your answer.
[/LIST]

Peace.


#12

Don't change yourself for anyone. Don't give up who you are to please him otherwise you will end up hating him.

I dont know if you have true feelings with the seminarian or its that your subconcsions is telling you that you dont have the correct feelings and mind frame for your own fiance. First stay away from the semainarian so you can get your feelings in check. Also take some time to sit in adoration and take a journal and open yourself up to hearing God's word. While you journal write what you want in a spouse and what you need to match your goals and personality. See if your fiance matches those things.

Remember it is okay not to get married to him. That is what the engagement period is for. You haven't taken a vow yet so you can still walk away. If you do decided he is the one you want to marry then make the committment to yourself to be 100% there. Either be in it 100% or walk away because no one deserve to have someone marry them if their partner isn't in it.

BTW: My fiance and i broke up 6 weeks ago. It was rough the first few weeks but i have peace about it. I have learned more about myself and what i need in a spouse. Does it mean that i didn't love my ex or are relationship?? NO . I apperciate him and still have respect for him and cherish our time together. He is a wonderful man just not my future spouse and that is OKAY.


#13

[quote="Little_Me, post:8, topic:212999"]

This is off topic but how can you be a liberal and a practicing Catholic? I just assumed on would have to be conservative to be Catholic. Maybe I am wrong?

[/quote]

I know this is off-topic but I wanted to address it anyway. I'm an adult convert to the Catholic Church. I was baptized, confirmed and received first communion only 5 years ago. One of the things I love about the Church is that people like me and people like my fiance go to the same Church on Sundays, hear the same readings, and take from the same Body. If you look at the Church teachings, the Church really is moderate. Neither of the US' political parties follow Catholic teaching completely. To be politically conservative and Catholic, you have to play down the fact the Church teaches against the death penalty and for preferential treatment of the poor. To be politically liberal and Catholic, you need to play down the Church's teachings on abortion and in some cases euthanasia. Neither political view is perfectly Catholic. And the fact that such diversity can exist in our Church...I personally find that beautiful and rewarding.

Back on topic, I don't know if any of you have been praying about this situation, but somehow, the downward spiral of my problems with my fiance feeding into my crush on the seminarian feeding into my problems with my fiance feeding into....and so on has frayed and calmed down a bit. We're still not there yet, but it's no where near as pressing and painful of a situation as it was when I made the initial post. Thank you so much for your advice and support.


#14

[quote="Emilae, post:13, topic:212999"]

Back on topic, I don't know if any of you have been praying about this situation, but somehow, the downward spiral of my problems with my fiance feeding into my crush on the seminarian feeding into my problems with my fiance feeding into....and so on has frayed and calmed down a bit. We're still not there yet, but it's no where near as pressing and painful of a situation as it was when I made the initial post. Thank you so much for your advice and support.

[/quote]

Just make sure you are not rationalizing after hearing so many say that marriage with him is not a good idea.

~Liza


#15

I will be blunt with my opinion. (feel free to ignore it)

Do NOT marry him. First of all, all men deserve a wife who 'was so in love with me she couldn't wait to walk down the isle.' Not someone who was looking at a seminarian during the engagement.

Also, the fact that everytime you argue he gets his way is just sad. You deserve better.

Also, all men deserve to know that their wife married them because they loved them. No man wants a wife who married them because 'they felt like it was home and went on an internet forum for advice on whether or not to marry'

CM


#16

Having been down this road myself, being similar is much better than being dissimilar. My wife and I are very much alike. We share many of the same interests, though I am more frugal (which is helpful for a family in this economy) and she likes country music (nothing witty to say here).

Many years ago I dated a girl/woman for a year and then tried to keep a long distance relationship with her for two years after that. It did not work. There was too much to get in the way. I think you need to be able to look in each other's eyes when you argue, when you share joys,...

Good luck and God bless you both.


closed #17

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