Q: My boyfriend and I have been together for six years, and I'm really itching to get married now. I know he's ‘The One’ but he just won't ask me. We've talked about marriage, but he always makes it sound so far away. I'm getting fed up and want to give him an ultimatum. Is that a bad idea?" – Chanel
A: Chanel, while he may be “the one” for you, are you really “the one” for him? The fact that you have been dating him for six years and he has not asked you to marry him suggests that he may not be ready for marriage and/or you may not be “the one” for him. Have you had an honest conversation regarding wanting to get married? When you say, “he always makes it sound so far away,” does that mean he has goals that he is trying to achieve before marriage? If so, you can respect that but you really don’t have to accept that if you want to be married right now.
If you feel that he is truly the person for you, it may be worth waiting for him to achieve his goals, if he has some. However, if he is shuffling his feet and giving you a “song and dance,” you must be honest with yourself. Many times men become very comfortable with relationships, especially if they have everything they want without the commitment of marriage. Ask yourself, are you making it easy and very comfortable for him not to be married to you? You definitely do not want to marry someone that you have given an ultimatum. Marriage is something two willing parties should enter happily without reservations. If he feels pressured, he may or may not marry you. Again, you have to ask yourself, is that how I want to enter my marriage?
Maybe it is time for you to have a heart-to-heart conversation with him to gain an understanding of where he is at this time. After your conversation, assess if he is serious about marriage now or in the near future. If you determine he is not, maybe it is time for you to say I love you but I have to move on with my life. Six years is definitely long enough to know if you would want to commit to someone. The fact that he has not “popped” the question may be a dead giveaway of how he honestly feels underneath. Sometimes it is not what people say, it is what they do not say that let’s you know how they feel. Be smart and listen carefully to the verbal and nonverbal signs! You must decide how long you are going to wait in hopes of him “popping” the question. Life is too short. Go for what you want and be prepared to move on! -- Dr. Sherry
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If you're coming to the ESSENCE Music Festival this summer, you'll be able to ask her in person. Dr. Sherry will be on hand to help out with your burning dating and relationship dilemmas during the festival so if you're coming to New Orleans, be sure to stop by the ESSENCE.COM live stage to say hello.