What it means and what you should do if your girlfriend is constantly asking about your future together.
In this video coaching newsletter, I discuss an email from a viewer in his early twenties. They have been together for a little over a year and she really loves him. He’s read 3% Man about 10 times so far. About every week or so, she is bringing up their future together and trying to get him to talk about it – marriage, kids, having a house together, etc.
She sometimes gets upset at him when he is vague and noncommittal about their future. This is happening more and more frequently, and she is getting upset and saying he’s not that into it. He asks how to handle her constant inquiries. My comments are in bold italics like this below in the body of his email.
Hope you’re doing well. I have been following your work for a few years now and read your book around 10 times or so. I have landed myself a beautiful girlfriend who treats me very well. It was my birthday a few days ago, so she baked me a wonderful cake and she gave a me a few gifts. This girl really loves me. Now, as the title suggests, my girlfriend has been constantly questioning me about where I stand in our future.
Well, you’ve got to keep in mind, women have got a clock that’s ticking. The older they get, especially as they get into their their early, mid, late 30s, it’s like that window for them to have children and being able to conceive easily closes really fast. And it’s understandable that women aren’t going to want to stick around if a guy is noncommittal and they want to have a family. Because the reality is us guys can pretty much have kids almost until the day we die, as long as we’re healthy. But women, they’ve got a short window, and the older they get, the harder it is to conceive. It’s just a fact of life.
For context, we have been together for a year and a few months now. We don’t live together, as we are both in our early 20s and finishing up school, so we don’t have our own places yet. She’s brought up a comment a few months ago that she could see us being together for very long term, with a house, and even suggested marriage. My response was, “That sounds amazing, and if things are going great like they are now, it would definitely be on the table.” I thought we were going to leave the conversation at that.
Well, women are kind of like the Borg, if you ever saw the old Star Trek from the 1980s. “Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.” And it’s relentless.
It seems weekly, or every other day now, that she’s bringing it up. My responses have become lackluster; I told her once, it’s not that I don’t want a future with her, she’s amazing, it’s just hard for me to imagine any sort of future in detail while I’m still focusing on getting a career that I enjoy. Needless to say, that was the wrong answer.
Yeah, because it basically left things up in the air. You weren’t really decisive about what you wanted, you were vague. And it’s understandable. I mean, you’re still in college.
She got upset, saying that’s not what she meant and it’s us she wanted me to talk about.
A few nights ago, she accused me of changing the subject when she mentioned our future. I remember responding to what she said, then asked a different question. I realize now that she wanted me to expand on it and really talk about our future. Later, she said that it feels like she’s way more into this relationship than I am.
Well, if you’re applying what the book teaches, it’s better if she feels that way, because then she tries harder to win you over. The thing you have to keep in mind here, you’ve got to be honest with her and you’ve got to say, “Honey, I love you, I adore you. We’re both in college right now. I’m not even working in the real world yet.” And for guys, for us men, if we’re going to be into a long-term relationship, especially when kids are involved, or marriage is involved, or living together, cohabitating, whatever you want to call it, men feel most comfortable when they’re stable. And that means you’re done with school, typically.
Now, not everybody. There’s plenty of people who get married when they’re in college. And because they were high school sweethearts, or they meet in college and they’re happy, they move in together. Maybe the dude’s going to become a doctor or whatever, so he spends the better part of 10, 15 years in school just getting to the point where he can be a competent professional in his field.
She’s got to understand that, until you get to a place where you feel good about your future, you’re probably not going to want to settle down and take on the burden of a wife or a kids. I mean, like you said, you guys, I assume you’re probably meaning that you and her both live with your parents, respectively. And so, you’re going to have to be honest with her and just say, “Before I would get to that point, it’s going to probably be 3 or 4 years. I want to get a couple of years under my belt.” He says they’re in their early 20s, so more than likely, it’s several years away before he’s at that point.
Now, what us guys like is a woman who’s easygoing, easy to get along with, who’s not pressuring us to to get married and do something we don’t feel we’re ready for. And so, you just have to be honest about where you’re at. And it’s good that you said, “Well, if things continue on, I could totally see that.” But you’ve also got to be realistic. It’s like, “We both live with our parents, we’re both in college, and neither one of us are even working. So, we don’t have our careers, we don’t have an income from our careers. We don’t even know what a budget would be that we could have.”
And so, the point being is that where you’re at right now, today, you’re like, “I’m not ready to get married. I’m not ready to settle down. I’m not ready to have a family. It’s too soon to even be talking about that. I love where we’re at. We’ve only been together for a year, but you getting upset or pressuring me every couple of days bringing this up like I’ve got to make a decision right now and whether I’m going to marry you or not, I can’t make that decision. I’m not there yet.”
“It doesn’t mean I won’t get there in the future. But right now, I can’t give you a commitment that I’m ready to get married again. We both live with our parents, we’re in college, and we’re both a couple of years away from even graduating school and being able to work in the real world and get our careers going. Because the other thing is, you’ve got to know what your budget is going to be. You’ve got to know what kind of money you’re going to make when you’re in the real world, and then once you know that, and you have some experience, you’re going to feel more comfortable.
So, she’s being a little unreasonable, expecting and putting these demands on you. But part of the issue is you’ve been kind of vague and noncommittal, instead of just being totally honest and telling her where you’re at. It’s like, “I’m not going to be ready to get married for probably at least 3 to 5 years, or maybe a few years longer than that. I’m in college. I live with my parents right now, you live with your parents. We’re not even working” or “We’re working part time” or whatever it happens to be. So, you’ve got to be clear of where you’re really at.
And that’s typically what she’s getting upset at, is you’ve just been kind of vague. And she’s getting the impression, just on what you shared here, that you’re trying to change the subject. And if you’re trying to change the subject, it typically means you don’t want to give her an answer, because she’s probably not going to like it. Whereas, if you’re just brutally honest with her, you say, “I love you, I love where things are right now, but I’m not in a place where I’m ready to talk about marriage, or living together, or buying a house, or having children, or any of that stuff. I’m a college student still, and I’ve got a couple more years left” or whatever it happens to be. “And before I’d even want to get to the point where I’m considering marriage, I want to have a couple of years working in the real world.”
So, give her a target date of what age you think you’re going to be where you’re ready to make that kind of a decision. It’s like, “We’ve been together a year, so you’re being unreasonable, pressuring me to make a decision right now. I’m just not there yet.” And you also have to understand, if you tell her all of these things, she might not like the answer. She may be really insecure. And it’s possible that she breaks it off with you. I don’t think she will, but you’ve always got to know your downside risk.
It’s possible that she gets mad and frustrated that you won’t commit to marry her or put a ring on her finger in several years, and she’s like, “Well, I’m going to go be single again and go find somebody who is ready.” But the most important thing is you have to be honest with yourself, and you have to be honest with her about where you’re at and the fact that you’re writing this email. And I’ve been through it already. It’s obvious right now, today, in the present moment, you’re not ready to make a commitment or even give her a target date when that is. Because, again, you’re in college, you’re still growing up. So, it’s understandable.
Now, when my parents were growing up, my dad started dating my mom when they were seniors in high school. He asked her to the prom, they became serious, and I think they got married when they were like 19, if I’m not mistaken. And then they had me when they were 21 years old. And that’s what people did back then. So, they got married before they even finished college. My mom ended up dropping out of college and later finished somewhere at a different university, because she didn’t want to be away from my dad. And my dad, once he stopped taking classes, he got drafted and sent to Vietnam. He was deployed for a year, a year and a half, whatever it was back then, and so, I was actually born when my dad was in Vietnam.
But this is a different era. And where this guy’s at, they’re in their 20s, he’s still finishing school. But you’ve got to be really clear and brutally honest, in a loving way, with where you’re at. And don’t give into pressure, don’t make false promises. Don’t give her the idea that in a matter of months, or a few weeks, or next year, that you’ll be ready to make a decision. You’ve got to give her some kind of window of what’s going to happen in your life before you’re ready to get married or get engaged or any of those things. And just from what I’ve read here in your email, that’s what she seems to be upset about it.
He says, “A few nights ago she accused me of changing the subject when she mentioned our future.” And obviously, she was talking about how she felt like she’s way more into him than he is into her. So, what she’s really looking for is, “Do you love me? Do you really care about me? Is there a possibility of a future?” Because based on what her response is, you’ve been very vague.
I ended up talking for 20 minutes or so about it, I listened to how she was feeling, and I reassured her that it wasn’t my intention to change the subject and I’m really in this. After, she said “thank you” then held me close and said, “don’t leave me.”
Now, you might tell me that this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, she’s chasing me and wondering where I stand in the relationship. But I don’t know where to continue. I don’t want to keep having these conversations weekly, where she’s visibly upset and saying that I’m not into it when I am. I feel like she’s being affected negatively by it. I really love this girl, so I would love to hear your opinion on how I should continue.
Well, you’ve got to tell her that as well. You’ve got to say, “I don’t appreciate you telling me that I’m not into it. It’s just that I’m in college. I’m not ready to make those decisions yet. Neither one of us even have a career. We live with our parents still. So, this is way premature. I’m not ready to have these conversations with you. It’s going to be several years before I could be in a place in my life where I felt comfortable enough to say, ‘Okay, well, let’s settle down and let’s get married. Let’s buy a house together,’ or ‘Let’s just move in together and not get married and involve the government. Maybe we’ll do a civil type of marriage.'”
You’ve got to be very clear to her that right now, today, you’re not ready. You can’t even have these discussions. Again, you both live with your parents. So, it’s just way premature. At least it’s premature for you. Now, there’s other people that will be in a relationship for a year, and they’re in college, and then they’ll go get married and they’ll move in together. But that’s not the majority of people. And so, the point being is you’ve got to be clear in your intent as a man. You have to be clear to her about where you are today, and letting her know it’s going to be two, three years down the road, at least, before you’re ready to really, seriously discuss these things.
But what would go a long way is if she’s easygoing, easy to get along with and not bringing this up every couple of days, getting pissed off at you, and getting butt-hurt and upset. It’s like, that’s not fun. “You know, if that continues, that’s not the kind of thing that’s going to make me feel like I want to commit to you. If you’re constantly giving me a hard time about it,” instead of being realistic about where you guys are. You’re college kids, you’re college students, you live with your parents still. And you’re not even working in the real world yet, so you don’t even know what kind of a budget you’re going to have to support yourself, or her, or a family, or what kind of house you’d even be able to afford.
You’ve got to know what your cash flow is going to be. And how much are you going to save for a down payment? What kind of neighborhood you’re going to live in? What is your mortgage payment going to be? I mean, mortgage rates have gone up dramatically in the last year, and so that’s dramatically reduced the amount of purchasing power that most people have until the interest rates come down. And that’ll be a few years anyway. And you can tell her that. “The way the interest rates have gone up, it’d be probably 3 to 4 years before we’d even be in a place where interest rates are favorable, where we’d have significant buying power.”
And plus, when you go to get a mortgage, typically the bank is going to want to see two years of consistent employment and paychecks. Not that you just graduated college and now, you’ve got your first paycheck. It typically does not work that way. Especially for a conforming loan, you’re going to need two years of stable job history, which the bank could see, “Okay, this guy is able to hold down a job for at least the last 24 months. So, the likelihood that he’s going to continue to be employed once we give him a mortgage is highly likely, versus somebody that just graduated college and only has a month of employment.”
These are all things that you have to take into consideration, and you should have a discussion. But you’ve got to let her know that it’s not loving to, every couple of days, bring this up and give you a hard time about it, and then accuse you of not caring about her. Because that’s coming from her insecurity, not your lack of caring for her. And you don’t appreciate her telling you that you don’t care about her, because she’s basically taking your word and not believing it. And that’s not something that’s going to make for a healthy relationship, when you tell her something and she doesn’t believe you.
She’s got to take what you say at face value, but you also have to be really clear in your intent. So, you’ve got to have some radically honest conversations with her, and you’ve got to be realistic. You know, these things that she wants are all nice and it’s all wonderful, but the reality is you’ve got high interest rates right now, and the real estate market’s going to be declining in value as the purchasing power of everybody overall drops because of the high interest rates.
And you’re not going to want to buy a house when house prices are falling. Because if you buy a house and the prices are falling, then you’re going to be in a mortgage that’s underwater, and you don’t want that either. So, it’s beautiful the things that she’s thinking about and the vision that she has, but she needs a dose of reality and where things really are. Even once you graduate, like I said, you’re typically going to need at least two years of stable job history and employment before receiving a bank loan.
And then, obviously, the down payment. Before a bank is going to be willing to lend you money, you’ve got to prove to the bank that you’re capable of getting a job and keeping a job. And right now, you’re college kids, you’ve got no income, you’re living off your parents. In essence, as far as a bank is concerned, you’re still children. And banks don’t lend money to children. So, you’ve got a lot of things to think about and talk about and have a radically honest conversation with your girl.
So, if you’ve got a question or a challenge and you’d like to get my help, go to UnderstandingRelationships.com, click the Products tab at the top of your screen and book a coaching session with yours truly.
*Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. **Free with a new Audible.com membership
If you have a question you would like me to consider answering in a future Video Coaching Newsletter, you can send it (3-4 paragraphs/500 words max) to this email address: [email protected]
If you feel I have added value to your life, you can show your appreciation by doing one of the following three things:
From my heart to yours,
Author, Speaker, Peak Performance Coach, Entrepreneur