I do not like to place time limits when it comes to the matters of the heart. I know that giving ultimatums can often time backfire when one party feels they are pushed into a corner. However, when it comes to protecting your heart and getting what you want out of a relationship, how long you should wait for commitment is important.
When women come to me and ask how long they should date a man before asking for a relationship, I tell them one thing – it depends.
Or when someone asks how long they should be with someone before expecting an engagement, I respond the same way. It depends.
See, how long you should wait for him to commit will depend on a variety of factors. I have seen some happy couples date for 10 years before getting married, only to divorce two years later. I’ve also seen couples marry in less than six months of meeting and have gone on to long and successful relationships.
So there’s no timeline you can gauge to say when it is the right time for him to commit. Simply because the right time will differ for each person, each situation, each time period in your life. There’s no crystal ball here, because if it was, we would all be happy. Right?
I do, however, tell women how to best gauge if the time is right for THEM. I’m not too concerned about his feelings as much as I am about yours. This is your life and the amount of time you’re going to wait on him will depend on your end goal.
If your goal is to get married, you should date with specificity. Especially if you’re in your thirties and forties. This means dating only marriage-minded men, men who share the same values as you, and men you can envision being good fathers to your children.
As for timing, let’s be realistic. If you want to have biological children and you’re in your mid to late thirties, you really don’t have that much time. I’m not trying to be crass, but mother nature is not on our side when it comes to this.
If you’re one of those women who wanted to put everything on hold to chase your career, I commend you but realize your fertility becomes an issue when trying to conceive.
I understand that sometimes the right man doesn’t come along for awhile, but I’ve also seen women not out there looking for him either. It breaks my heart how many successful women out there who waited too late and are not able to have children of their own.
Should you forgo your career to find a man? No, not at all. Women can be successful, have a career and a family. People make time for what’s important to them.
Now, if you have children from a previous marriage or don’t want children, timing is not as much of a concern. However, if you want to be married, you don’t want to waste time either. Read my article here on how to date for marriage.
If you know you want to be someone’s wife sooner, rather than later, then you need to make sure that you’re putting in the work. You can’t sit around for a man to come knocking at your door. This is also not the time to try to change a ho to house husband. It just doesn’t work that way. You’ll either get married and be miserable or you just won’t get married.
If you are looking to get married, I’m going to give you the following timeline (even though I said I hate timelines) for you to follow.
Now, understand this is not etched in stone and depending on a variety of factors, you may have to make some adjustments. However, I do believe that it is a pretty decent time frame for knowing when you should ask for some type of commitment.
Within 3 months of dating, you should know if this is someone you see yourself dating long term.
Within 6 months (but no later than 8 months) you should know if you are dating someone you can see yourself marrying (as he should see you as being as well). You should be in a committed and monogamous relationship at this point. You may not be engaged, but you should have AT LEAST had a conversation about the FUTURE.
Within 2 years, you should be engaged (with a date set for the wedding) or married.
Related Post: 7 Ways to Find a Husband
If you think this time frame is ridiculous, you’re probably over there still single. Look, why are you spending months or even years with someone you don’t want to marry or who doesn’t want to marry you?
What’s the issue?
Are you afraid of being alone?
I do not go by the saying “If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with”. It’s not fair to you and it’s definitely not fair to the person you’re with. You’re both keeping each other from people who want to be with you.
My belief is that if you want to be married, you have to put as much time and effort as you did in completing your education and to building your career. If your goal is to be someone’s wife, why are you wasting time with someone who is not ready or doesn’t want to marry you?
I always hear silly ass objections as to why someone doesn’t want to commit or get married and I’ll give you my thoughts on each.
- He’s waiting for when he can afford to buy you a ring. I call B.S., because he’s either too broke to afford you or he’s stalling. You can’t measure love by the dollar sign. If the two of you want to be together, the size of the ring doesn’t matter. You can always upgrade later. Now, if you are the one demanding a certain diamond size, then you may need to reevaluate why you want to get married in the first place.
- He wants to pay off his bills first. He may have too many obligations or bills he needs to get out of the way before he considers marrying you. You don’t want to get in a relationship with a man with a pile of debt, but then also maybe you should reconsider marrying him at all. If he can’t handle his own finances, it’s a good chance he’ll wreck havoc on yours.
- You’re waiting to have enough money saved up for the wedding. This is crazy to me. I know people who have spent more money on their wedding than they make in an entire year. Who are you trying to impress? Only idiots have lavish weddings they can’t afford. You should either tone down the guest list or elope. If you spend the first few years of your marriage paying off debt from your wedding, I promise you, it will be a short one. Money issues is one of the leading causes of divorce.
- The time is not right. I.e. He’s not ready. Period. Which in my mind says he’s not ready to commit to or marry you. If that’s the case, leave him right now. Many women become frustrated after being with a man for a long time, only for him to marry someone else after they break up. The sad, hard truth was that he was always ready to commit, just not with you. Instead of realizing that earlier, you stayed with him waiting for him to want you. In actuality, the only thing you did was provide him with sex while he waited for the one he really wanted.
If you are dating a man and want to be married, you need to be very clear of his intentions. If he’s not on the same time page as you, then you need to set a time limit for yourself and be prepared to put on your stilettos and walk.
If you wait and wait for a man for when he’s ready, you’re going to miss out on your blessings to be loved and desired by someone who wants to be with you RIGHT NOW. Do you know how crazy that sounds, waiting on a man to grow to want, love and desire you?
You can find someone who knows you are the one they want to be with and would die if they lost you. You deserve to be with someone who is not just keeping you around until the right one comes along.
So the answer to how long you should wait for him to commit is that it depends. What is your end goal and how long you are willing to wait to get there?
I hope this was helpful in your quest to be in a committed relationship with someone. I think you’re worthy of love and you should not have to wait for you.
If this article helped you in any way, please share it with other women who can be helped by it as well.