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FIELD REPORTHis reaction to me saying I "wanted to be a mother" was much better than when I said I "wanted to get married and have children." (self.RedPillWomen)

submitted by nancywheelie

I'm someone who likes to think long-term, so sometimes verbally expressing my desire for marriage and family slips out unintentionally. We've been together ~4 years, but we're young and still have further studies to finish, so I understand that he gets the heebie-jeebies when he hears the "m" word. I'm naturally RP and like to lurk on the forums, so I'm usually able to appeal to his sense of masculinity, control my hamster and STFU. Sometimes I'm too good at STFU! He's encouraging me to be more articulate with my wants and needs, but sometimes I overshoot. Earlier this year, we started talking about our future and since we were being honest, I said point-blank that I wanted to be married and have children in the future. I handled that really badly, in hindsight, because it made him nervous and uncomfortable and I only noticed after the fact. D'oh. The lesson for me there was to handle sensitive topics with sensitivity. Men don't like having expectations on them because they feel trapped. And when they feel trapped, they will bolt.

I've noticed a trend in our conversations over the next couple of months. He would casually bring up hypothetical scenarios of "when he becomes a father" or "when he builds his own house". I think it was his way of communicating to me that marriage and parenthood were values that were important to him too. HOWEVER, if I ever tried to add onto those conversations using "our children" or "our house" he would immediately clam up or switch topics immediately. I tried conversations that casually mentioned "my future children" and he responded positively. It's only ever when I mention a shared future and progeny that he gets nervous. So I learned how to STFU and practiced my Calm Neutral Face of Pleasantness whenever marriage comes up in conversation. I just let him talk while I nod and inwardly scream, "Yes, I want your ring and your babies you foolish man!!"

I found some magic words while deep into an RP forum. I can't remember the exact post, but someone mentioned that saying "wanting to be a wife" was a much softer, nicer phrase than "wanting to be married." They explained it by saying that "wife" had a more nurturing, homey connotation than "marriage", which evoked an imagery of weddings, and therefore, expense. Some comments from that post even shared that their men, who had previously been skittish about marriage, proposed to them after hearing that phrase!

Well, I tried it, RPW! Note that my last big blunder was about three months ago when I said, "When we have kids—" which he immediately shut down with, "Please stop." I haven't broached the topic since.

Today, a family passed by while we were walking together and I gave a wistful sigh at their stroller. I quietly said, "Wow. I really would love to be mother." I didn't look at him pointedly, or make any overtures. I simply stated it as a want. He didn't pull away and cringe, like I expected! Instead, he wrapped his arm around my waist and kissed my temple. I'm over the moon! It seems such a simple thing, but his acceptance of my maternal desires soothes a bit of my hamstering. I'm playing a long game and I really don't want to scare him away before I have a ring on my finger, so I'll be using this phrase sparingly, and only at the most appropriate moments. I don't want to seem desperate for it. A little mystery is nice, right?


[–][deleted]  (11 children)

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[–]undercovervegan 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Gotta agree with this lady. I met my now-husband when he was a sophomore in university. Within months, we had conversations about marriage and how we planned to get married, and got married around 3 years of being together. I know I'm very lucky and can't expect most men to be like that. But I also think that an outright negative response to mentioning you wanting to marry this guy specifically is, like u/LateralThinker13 said, a huge red flag. His youth should not be an excuse. He's either serious about you, or not.

[–]teaandtalk4 Stars 20 points21 points  (6 children)

She did mention they were both young & still studying (edit: elsewhere she mentions further study), but yes, valid points. If she's expecting another 6 years (which she is) they need to be on the same page, so that she doesn't end up at 31 with no partner and no prospect of motherhood.

[–]Aragorns-Wifey 11 points12 points  (3 children)

Agreed that four years is too long. Plans could be made even if they can’t be acted on right away.

[–]sonnesatt 3 points4 points  (2 children)

Maybe she is from somewhere out of the US?

I am from Germany and those two friends I have that married at age 24 are belonging to a very small fraction of young married people. It really is more common in the US

[–][deleted]  (1 child)

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    [–]MxUnicorn 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    My concern for OP is that her boyfriend isn't even willing to discuss marriage with her, after 4 years.

    This. He's comfortable talking about other aspects of his (their?) future, but not wanting to talk about their relationship? Not even agreeing that yeah, kids and marriage, but wait until graduation? It kind of sounds like he feels trapped or 'tied down' by those conversations, which is a bad sign.

    [–]LateralThinker133 Stars 10 points11 points  (1 child)

    THIS. She is wasting her time with him. You point out the young and studying part - but if that's true, that's even worse in one way. What does this guy have wrong with him that he's that averse to marriage and children - to even discussing them? That's not mature, that's a sign of major issues. Why is a young guy that averse? BIG RED FLAG.

    [–]teaandtalk4 Stars 6 points7 points  (0 children)

    Yep. It's okay if he doesn't want to get married til they've finished studying, but not even wanting to talk about them is a BIG problem.

    [–]RubyWooToo3 Stars 1 point2 points  (2 children)

    We don't know how old this couple is (unless I missed it in the post). If they started dating at 17 than it makes sense that they wouldn't yet be married by age 21.

    They started dating on 25 and they're now 29, that's a completely different story.

    [–][deleted]  (1 child)

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      [–]RubyWooToo3 Stars 3 points4 points  (0 children)

      That's true. He shouldn't be flipping out at the mere mention of babies or getting engaged.

      [–]LateralThinker133 Stars 11 points12 points  (1 child)

      I'm playing a long game

      If you play it too long, you'll age yourself right out of your prime years waiting for him to come around. His communication issues are VERY concerning if you've been together 4 years. What's up with that? It's very unhealthy.

      [–]undercovervegan 11 points12 points  (0 children)

      It's a harsh truth, but I 100% agree. Sweet u/nancywheelie, if you were my daughter, I'd ask you to seriously consider moving on. My husband and I openly talked about marriage and children within months of starting to date. Don't let the sunk cost fallacy trick you into settling for a low quality man. If he doesn't love you enough RIGHT NOW, after 4 years of being together, to even talk about marriage, I don't think he ever will. I'm sorry.

      [–][deleted] 12 points13 points  (3 children)

      "I really would love to be a mother" puts a lot less pressure on a man than "I want to get married and have children". The second one sounds a lot more controlling. "When we have kids" is even worse-sounding for the guy as it sounds like you've already planned everything and he now has to tow the line.

      [–]howabouthisnamenope 6 points7 points  (2 children)

      How about "I want your babies"?

      [–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

      In a different context I'd find that proposition interesting. :P

      Jokes aside I guess it's somewhere in-between the other two. There's the whole "I want" vs "I would want" thing. Maybe "he" (hypothetical "he") doesn't want to be the father of your babies yet.

      [–]AircraftWelder 0 points1 point  (0 children)

      From personal experience it felt good when my last gf said she wanted my babies. Unfortunately we decided to split up for work/moving reasons, so nothing ever came of it haha.

      [–]vintagegirlgame 11 points12 points  (2 children)

      The story you're referencing about the "wanting to be a wife" phrase comes from Laura Doyle's book The Surrendered Single :) She contrasts it with the phrase "wanting to be your wife" which comes across as controlling/assumptive/naggy.

      Thanks for sharing your post. I know you'll get criticisms saying it shouldn't be such a sensitive subject for him if he really wants to marry you. But I agree that, especially with what men face today, it can definitely be an uncomfortable subject to a more alpha minded man. I used to cringe myself at how a certain girlfriend used to talk about her future marriage/wedding/kids to or in front of her BF, it was just not tactfully delivered as her intent was to pressure him and bc he was a dutiful BP he lapped it up.

      Just turned 30 and I've found that I don't have to say anything anymore...a stroller goes by and my SO can feel the hormone surge radiating from me and teases me about it even tho I don't say a word.

      [–]Aragorns-Wifey 13 points14 points  (1 child)

      Not to be argumentative but my honest opinion of that is, if your long term girlfriend says she wants to be A wife, as opposed to YOUR wife, a man in love would not like to think of you married to someone else. It should NOT be ok with him to just think if you as some other mans wife.

      [–]vintagegirlgame 7 points8 points  (0 children)

      Maybe that's part of the point... if the man starts thinking down that rabbit hole and the thought of you ending up marrying someone else makes him uncomfortable, then he may be more inclined to step up and put a ring on it ;)

      Its not meant as a threat tho. Laura Doyle recommends the "a wife" line as a sort of litmus test to see where a man's at. She's the expert on these matters so I'm sure there's merit to it.

      [–]Rivkariver2 Star 12 points13 points  (0 children)

      I'm so glad I'm religious. I just tell a man (if it isn't already obvious) that as a Catholic, I don't date just to pass the time, but for the purpose of discerning if he is the right match, since I feel called to marriage. It's really easy to communicate that it's me following my religion and not me desperately obsessed with one man in particular. That allowed me to have that conversation very early on. Of course later I can talk in terms of him in particular without being too direct. After a certain point you can't act like he's just filling a position and that any guy will do. It has to be personal.

      [–]RubyWooToo3 Stars 3 points4 points  (0 children)

      May I ask how old you and your boyfriend are?

      Also, I think saying "I want to have your babies" and "I want to be your wife" is the best way to get a positive reaction on the subject of marriage and children, because it puts the emphasis on your love for him rather than a desire to achieve a certain milestone.

      [–]Limeycat 1 point2 points  (0 children)

      I'm so sorry... but the way I see this, his reactions show that he doesn't want to marry you or for you to have his children. He has reacted negatively every time you've brought up getting married to him or having his children, but he's perfectly fine talking about 'his' hypothetical and 'your' hypothetical children. This doesn't mean that these hypothetical children belong to both of you.

      [–][deleted]  (2 children)

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      [–]LaceandsilksModerator | Lace[M] 3 points4 points  (1 child)

      Cut the attitude immediately and stop following this user around to snark at them.

      Read the sidebar

      I will not warn you again.

      [–]gELSK 0 points1 point  (0 children)

      // ,

      “Men's courses will foreshadow certain ends, to which, if persevered in, they must lead," said Scrooge. "But if the courses be departed from, the ends will change.”

      Some research has looked at who fares better in relationships: people who follow their gut feelings, or people who weigh pros and cons. That research tilts in favor of the gut feeling people. They are more likely to stay in a relationship which lasts. Why is that true? You have an emotional stake in your gut. The "reasons" for staying with someone are head stuff. Head stuff can change, and head stuff doesn't involve you personally.

      http://www.wayneandtamara.com/advice/should-i-marry-him.htm

      Edit: It doesn't take long to realize a shoe doesn't fit, and almost all men give indicators they are, or are not, of a mindset for a wife. The sooner you learn a man is not of your mindset, the less likely you are to be hurt.

      Fewer and fewer men in the West will marry. If you want marriage, and get it, it won't be because a man wants marriage. It will be because the target woman has pros that outweigh the many, many cons of the institution of marriage itself.