prescriptions for the soul

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Fish or Cut Bait? Go Vegan

Dear George:

Is it ok to give my boyfriend a marriage ultimatum?

--- Problems in Peoria (Peoria)

Problems In Peoria:

It's ok to give your boyfriend an ultimatum regarding marriage (providing you've had ample time to get to know each other). Men sometimes need a little encouragement in that department. Maybe he thinks you're on the fence. He might be harboring this crazy idea that you'll reject him if he proposes. By setting an ultimatum, you're telling him you're on board for the journey and you're confident in your decision. Confidence can also be contagious.

Men are also usually very goal-oriented. Instead of viewing the ultimatum as something bad, see it as a goal you're setting for him. Be sure you give him enough time to save money for a ring though. He'll also need time to do the mental gymnastics required to actually believe the proposal was his idea. Four to five months notice should be sufficient for both. When you're laying down the law, be sure to avoid the, "all my friends are getting engaged" speech. That may come across as desperate. Just say you love him very much and want to be by his side until death do you part. And, mention you've always dreamed of a Christmas (insert holiday) proposal. If you're not engaged by that holiday, come out and be more direct. By expressing your true feelings to him openly, you're setting the foundation for a healthy relationship where honest communication is accepted and encouraged.

-- George

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