How Do Long Engagement Work?
Do you know someone who has been engaged for about five to six years and yet to marry? Ever wondered why that has not happened? Getting engaged and then not tying the knot is not that uncommon, but it takes an open mind to understand why some people take this road in life.
Why Not Marry your Fiancé
It is easier to understand people who value their engagement ring more than getting openly wedded at a grand event. To them, commitment in and to the relationship is worth more than what they see as simply gestures. This is the kind of person who when asked about their plans to get married, would say, “I might do it someday, but right now, it does not feel like the thing to do. Our relationship is going steady and strong – nothing has changed since the engagement. I just wanted people to accept we were more than boyfriend/girlfriend. This tells them we are serious, and spares him the embarrassment of being called my boyfriend for ten years. We are more than that, but in no hurry to prove it.”’
Lots of Engaged Couples Put Off Marriage
There is already a huge crowd comprising couples who feel the same way, and long engagements are still growing in popularity. In the US alone, 59% of millennials live unmarried lives, while 9% live in domestic partnerships. These numbers reveal that for many people, it is simply easier to just stay engaged and live happy lives with their partners, rather than get officially hitched.
One may wonder if there are other reasons behind why so many couples prefer the engagement zone to married life. Turns out there are.
- Marriage does not hold the same kind of wide appeal it once did: This is not about getting cold feet; many people are simply dispassionate towards the concept of matrimony. While marriages will definitely not die out in America, fewer people opt for it or can even afford it. Weddings are slowly losing their captivating image as one of life’s milestones, placed conveniently between high school and your first child. Today, it is more often see as a ‘capstone’, which is something people get after their lives are basically in order (house, jobs, car, etc.). Marriage is no longer a mandatory milestone, and since the lack of one does not bother most modern couples, why invite hassles?
Engagement is a lot cheaper: Staying engaged for multiple years is bound to reveal that the arrangement is cheaper in the long run. A wedding on average costs around $35,000, and the only reason many couples put off getting married is that they cannot muster that kind of money without financially sabotaging themselves. Many justifiably see this as heading ‘downtown’, while others simply decide to wait until they can afford it. Yet others set that cash aside and stat adding to it so they can spend on things they want more, such as a dream vacation.
- Being married does not make you a family: Forever-engaged couples typically carry a strong conviction that a piece of paper cannot make them feel any more like a family than they already do. No one stateside can get away with pushing a “right way” to be a family on others, but plenty of pressure can come in with regard to making things “official”. However, once kids have entered the mix, a wedding is one of the last things on an engaged couple’s minds. It gets hard enough to find the time to move through life, let alone hold a ceremony that legally leaves you husband and wife.
- Engagement demands and carries sufficient commitment: Certain couples see no difference in the commitment they would bring to the relationship when actually married to each other. They are already mutually devoted, no matter how many friends and relatives see them as callous. The plain truth is that they deserve all the perks of being together, but there will be plenty of haters. Everyone expects different things from life, but few realize and accept what they want. Many forever-engaged couples tend to fall in the latter category, because even though they bypass the altar, they are serious about their duties to each other.
- They do not want to get married: This is usually the case with couples where one or both of partners were married before. With divorce rates at 50%, for many, staying committed is preferable only when free of the confusion brought in by getting married. A wedding ceremony is simply a waste of money for people who see things in this light, and unlikely to affect their level of commitment.
At the end of the day, each couple must decide and choose what works best for them. The important thing is to be there for a partner who cherishes you through life.