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How soon is too soon to get engaged?


SpeakNow

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I'm not sure if this belongs in snark or chatter, so please forgive me if this is in the wrong section. Anyway...

I've noticed a lot of times we snark on fundies for getting engaged so quickly after they start courting. I generally don't think getting engaged to someone you barely know is wise, but I also know it can work. (My grandfather-definitely not a fundie- proposed to my grandmother after one date. They were madly in love until they day they died). I've also noticed on Facebook that some of my more religious friends, not fundie, are getting engaged after dating a person for less than 9 months. I just feel like that seems fundie-style fast. Do you think religious people tend to get married earlier? How soon do you think is too soon (in general, obviously each couple is different)?

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I noticed that also. Like Kristina (from Kristina's keepsakes) went from single to married in 6 or 7 months. It was similar w/ Josh & Anna.

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I think women (fundie and non-fundie) tend to have shorter 'courtships' or relationships if they are older. I think this may be truer when a woman is older and unmarried but wishes to start a family.

I was married young, at 24. Most of my girlfriends married within a year or two after me. My husbands friends are just starting to get engage four years later.

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Hmmmm. I would probably not be the right person to ask. Dh proposed six weeks after we met and got a hearty yes from me. Neither of us were anything resembling fundie at all. I knew the morning after we met that he was the one, and told my roommate so. We were married 9 months after we got engaged.

We've been married for almost 21 years. What can I say. We'd both been searching and praying (he was 28) and when you just know, you just...know. :D

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I personally think a couple should be dating for at least a year. And note that I said dating (or courting, whatever you want to call it.) Reason being, even if the two have been friends for a while, there's a lot of stuff that changes when the relationship moves from platonic to romantic, and I feel like a couple needs at least a year to explore that.

This is ESPECIALLY true in cases where neither party has ever dated before.

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My husband and I dated for almost three years before marrying, but he did propose a couple of weeks after we met. He felt like a sure thing, so I did say yes, but we agreed to wait. I was pretty young at the time, still in my teens. We've been together a grand total of 17 years.

But I do agree that it's wise to wait for the actual marriage, regardless of when a couple gets engaged. I'd say wait at least a couple of years.

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The only people in my generation (I'm 35) I can think of who've gotten engaged after less than a year have either been very religious or flaky about relationships.

I have always needed at least a year to feel that I really knew the person I was dating. I can see how people with very similar relationship goals can progress a little faster, but single to married in 6 months sounds like a recipe for disaster in most cases.

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My thought is that couples should be together long enough to go through one cycle of holidays, plus one wedding and one funeral, before getting engaged. Obviously, plenty of people don't do that and are perfectly happy, but the idea is that they see each other in a variety of situations, happy and sad, to get a better idea of what the person is like and how their relationship handles stress.

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The only people in my generation (I'm 35) I can think of who've gotten engaged after less than a year have either been very religious or flaky about relationships.

I have always needed at least a year to feel that I really knew the person I was dating. I can see how people with very similar relationship goals can progress a little faster, but single to married in 6 months sounds like a recipe for disaster in most cases.

I think you're completely right about this. I had a stepbrother who dated a woman for four months, married her, and then within another 4 months, they'd gotten divorced. The divorce took longer than the entire relationship - it got messy because they were fighting over property.

All that craziness, and all inside of a year!

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I always thought the really important thing was cohabitation. If you're going to be spending the rest of your life with someone, live with them before you're married so you can learn about their habits and such.

Disclaimer that not everyone has the chance to live together before marriage, but I think it's a good general guideline.

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I was engaged 6 months after meeting my H and married exactly one year to the day of our first date. Neither of us are religious at all but we were independent, had our own places, good jobs, and he had even been married once before. We did not live together first and were 23 and 26 when we got hitched. That was 30 years ago and it wasn't weird at all. It's all about the circumstances. We were ready and knew what we wanted. Honestly, you know after a couple months....the rest is just a waiting game. If I knew I wouldn't want to marry someone after dating them for a couple months I would have stopped dating them.

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There are always exceptions to every rule...I know several people, both fundie and not, that did the whole "wow, let's get married even though I've known you for 4 weeks" and had it be relatively "successful" (although, FWIW, length of marriage =/= accurate measure of marital success.)

I think there are a lot of factors at play--how honest both people are w/ e/o (of course, this gets tricky people say they're honest who are liars and people *think* they're honest when they're not.), how well they know THEMSELVES (which is why a 'quickie' marriage when someone is 34 doesn't always raise the same red flags to me as it does at 19) and what they want, how well they adapt to living w/ other people/how set they are in their ways (which is why a first marriage at 47 will raise different flags than at 17), etc.

I don't like seeing people married before their mid-20's; I don't like seeing them engaged without knowing each other at least 1 year and dating for at least 6 of those months (with at least 6 more months before the wedding).

But there will always be exceptions, on both ends of that.

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I'm in my 30's & if I met the man of my dreams tomorrow, I knew he was the one I would want to be married within a year. 1) because I'm older & 2) I would know.

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While we didn't get married for two years, I knew within a month of meeting/ starting to date mr. Bones. I was already 30, so I'd been through the ringer and knew what I DIDN'T want to be married to. And when I knew with Mr. bones, it was that weird, I "woke up one morning and just knew" thing you hear about.

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My husband and I became engaged after two months, but we didn't get married until we'd been together about a year. We have been married 7 years. I think quick engagements work for some people and others prefer more time.

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I remember we had a thread awhile ago where a bunch of FJs who had short dating periods/engagement periods posted about their marriages, but one thing that came up a lot was that most of the FJers had dated before and had other life experiences, and they all were able to get to know their spouse on their own before marriage. At least for me, that's one reason why I think really quick fundy marriages make me raise an eyebrow.

I understand the "know when you know" thing. I had something similar happen with a platonic friend, within a month or two of meeting her I knew she was going to be a really important person in my life. So I could see that happening for me with a romantic relationship. But personally I still think I would wait at least a year to make the commitment to marriage just to get to know the person unless there was some kind of mitigating circumstance, because I'm very analytical and would want to make sure the person is who they seem, and I would probably tell myself if it's meant to be you have the rest of your life, so you don't have to rush into it. (Also, I want a traditional/big wedding, so I need time to plan. LOL. Yes. Shallow.)

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I'm not sure if this belongs in snark or chatter, so please forgive me if this is in the wrong section. Anyway...

I've noticed a lot of times we snark on fundies for getting engaged so quickly after they start courting. I generally don't think getting engaged to someone you barely know is wise, but I also know it can work. (My grandfather-definitely not a fundie- proposed to my grandmother after one date. They were madly in love until they day they died). I've also noticed on Facebook that some of my more religious friends, not fundie, are getting engaged after dating a person for less than 9 months. I just feel like that seems fundie-style fast. Do you think religious people tend to get married earlier? How soon do you think is too soon (in general, obviously each couple is different)?

I think there is a difference between a couple who meets, is instantly attracted, is thoughtful, sincere and able to evalutate the attraction and has a rapid marriage. I met my husband Sept 30 and married the first saturday the following June--and nearly eloped over Thanksgiving. We met when the guys from the apartment next door invited us to a post ball game party, stayed up all night and talked and started talking marriage the next day. Just had our 34th anniversary--and it has been a great life so far. That said, I picked him and he picked me, and while the premarital counseling indicated we were quite compatible, we didn't let our church or our parents make the decision for us. My parents met him and his met me after we'd decided to get married.

I see this as wholly different from my dad picking a person who I never kiss, talk with alone or anything else (fill in the blanks) before saying "yes" to marriage and possibly before marrying. I believe in chemistry, in compatible personalities, is "getting" each other--all of these are things that my dad would never be able to select, no matter how much he wanted to do so.

When I hear people say that any Christian man and any Christian woman could and should be able to have a successful (note, not happy) marriage if they both follow the bible and their roles, I have nothing but pity and disdain for them. Pity that they must get so little from their marraige that they veiw their spouse as as interchangeable and disdain that they want to promote that kind of roles based marriage.

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The SO and I spent time talking online for a few months, then met in person in early July. About our 3rd meeting (we were living 6 states apart) we started talking marriage. We were engaged by September and I moved in with him the following March. We got married less than 13 months after our first meeting. Our 14th anniversary is coming up next month.

Our mantra is "well, it works for us." And it does. But we are not normal in any sense of the word.

We were both in our late 20s when we met, and I think that had a lot to do with our recognition that it would work for us.

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I like soon engagement in stead of dating for 3 or 4 year. Im now deciding by next year I be in husband search mission, and if he has what I like and want, and me for him too, then engage. Even to date 3 years we cant know every thing about each other. So I wont waste my time by next year to dating guys that dont be husband material for me.

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On the other hand, I know people who dated for 10 years (lived together off and on, took a break here and there, eventually got married) and they are one of the few couples I know who together are less than the sum of their parts. IT is as if they took 10 years and then just settled.

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My aunt met and married her husband in six weeks. He is an alcoholic and she is an enabler. They raised two children who are both dysfunctional messes and are damaging a new generation with their dysfunction.

And my aunt (were she capable of using a forum--but she can't really comprehend how to use FB even though she tries) would get on here and tell you how great her marriage has been and what a stunning 47 year success it has been. She would tell you her son is an astonishing success in life even though they bought his house and pay all of his bills. She would tell you she and her husband are the happiest couple on earth and always have been even though they separated several times and she regularly talks about marriage being a great sacrifice for women because you have to serve a husband. And a whole lot worse than that would be left out. Like the times he beat her up.

So, you know, grain of salt.

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My parents met in September 1962, were engaged in December 1962, married in August 1963. My in-laws met in July 1960, were engaged in October 1960, married in December 1960. Both marriages lasted until my dad and my father-in-law were widowered.

I met my husband in July 1998, we were engaged in September 1998, and we married in May 2000.

I think one of the reasons my parents' and in-laws' marriages worked is because both couples were well into their thirties when they married, and both my mother and my mother-in-law had lived on their own and done interesting work (both my dad and my father-in-law lived with their parents, except for military service, until their marriages).

As to why my marriage works, I think it's because my husband has the patience of a saint. And despite my experience and family experience, I wouldn't recommend quick engagements, per se.

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Wellll....

Not in the least fundie here, being a lesbian and all, but my fiancee and I got engaged five months and a week after our first in-person meeting (We met on Tumblr, and our first meeting was a weekend date; we'd been talking for seven months beforehand and had known we liked each other for five of them). We talked hypothetical wedding plans, down to the music at the ceremony, two weeks after admitting we liked each other, and from about the second or third real "date," she corrected me when I said "if we get married" and said "No, WHEN we get married." But we were very honest and open with each other from the start because the Internet had helped us be comfortable talking to each other about anything. Fundies don't have that honesty.

Engaged almost a year to the day after we first talked!

However, with short dating times, you may not really know the person. We know there are still things we don't know about each other, and that I in particular need time to grow up and work on myself (I just turned 23 at the end of this April, and have depression and a LOT of trouble with being assertive even in really small ways, so I can't be a truly equal partner yet). Then there's the whole issue of legalization; she's saying now she won't do it until Ohio, her home state, makes same-sex marriage legal.

So we'll be engaged another 18 months at the least. I just want to hurry and get married, and she does too, but it makes no sense to do that while we still live nine hours apart. If you don't date for long, don't rush to the altar right away! Balance it with a long engagement, or in our case, enGAYgment. :)

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