Should I Compromise My Dream of Having a Traditional Family?

Reader’s Question:

I am 38 years old. I have been dating my girlfriend for almost 8 years and I am ready to have a baby and get married. Her not so much. She is happy with how things are in our relationship and says that she is willing to have a baby, but wants us to be more life partners than husband and wife. This is not cool with me. I want the traditional family stuff and so did she. I am not sure what changed and I don’t’ want to throw away 8 years, but should I settle if I want marriage and she does not? 

The answer to your first question is yes, I do believe that you would be settling, and here is why:

You have been together for eight years and so it is “normal,” at the very least understandable, to want to get married and have children. She does not seem to want either of these things, which is not “not normal,” (follow me here) but it is the opposite of what you want…to say the least.

I want to ask you so many questions that would help me better understand the situation.

How old is she? Have you had this talk before? Why does she not believe in, or want marriage? Did you know this when you two first started dating? Is this new or has it been going on for some time? How is your relationship overall? How does she think marriage vs. a life partnership will change things? Et cetera. I will do my best with the little info that was given.

In my opinion – assuming that you two have talked, and talked, and talked some more…then waited and thought and talked some more – it is time for you to be honest with yourself and then her.

First, you must decide if you want to get married and have a baby bad enough to walk away from an eight-year relationship that you truly care about. You care so much that you want marriage and a family.

Secondly, you have to consider if you are okay with the facts, being she does not want to get married, EVER. Plus, she is simply WILLING to have a baby for you, is the gist I’m picking up on.

She is obviously willing to stay together, but her love is conditional – i.e. no marriage and does not really want a baby- you have conditions too- i.e. marriage and children.

Now you have two people who love each other. One with a missing piece because they are not married. One with a baby they don’t really want…and if they have, will probably regret.

I smell major resentment blowing in…You see sir, you have the right, and I believe you OWE yourself the chance, to find what you want that will make you the happiest.

Everyone should find the love they deserve and settle for nothing less. You have the right to a fairy tale and so does she. See, sometimes we find someone in life and we love them, and they love us, and then it ends.

Not because it was bad or good, but because the relationship ran its course and served it purpose. That’s how life works. Life is constant change and we have to be willing to change with it or be left behind.

Eight years of being together is a long time to walk away from, and it’s a decision you shouldn’t take lightly. But, if the two of you have come to a true understanding and neither is willing to give or take, then it could be time to accept change and move on from each other.

REMEMBER, if you do settle, this is a choice you are making. Settling here could mean not getting married or having a kid, or it could mean having a baby and never being married.

If you compromise and choose one of those options, you must be okay with that decision for the rest of your relationship. For the rest of your life!

You would be deciding to take a deep breath and then let it go. You would have to let go of your desires to have a traditional family. You can’t use it to fuel fights or win arguments. You can’t allow it to build resentment and hatred. You truly must let go and move forward.

If you can’t compromise and be happy, MOVE ON!

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