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So, you’ve been together for a while and things feel great – but something is missing.
You’re desperate to marry your boyfriend, but he’s not asked you yet and you can’t stop thinking about it.
Rather than demanding a ring and adding a heap of pressure, you can slowly drop some hints and encourage some conversations that will help him propose on his own terms. Here’s how…
1. Talk about the future.
By talking about how much you want to continue sharing your life together (without being too obvious!), you’re letting your partner know that you see the relationship lasting for a long time.
While you’re both undoubtedly on the same page about that, it can be helpful for him to hear that you really do see yourself with him long-term.
You can talk about your dreams together – make sure you ask for his input, otherwise he will start to feel pressured.
Try asking him what he wants in the future, and what adventures he sees the two of you having together. This takes off the pressure, too, as it’s not marriage-specific.
You could talk about trips you want to take together, achievements and goals you want to smash, and what your dream future life will look like.
If marriage gets mentioned, great! Stay calm and go along with it, don’t make him feel like you’re expecting or demanding it, but show that you also see that in your future.
If he doesn’t mention it, you can drop it into the conversation gently.
But if this is something you’ve talked about a lot already, you should be careful bringing it up again as you probably know what his feelings on it are already. If he’s holding back, you need to avoid shoving it in his face or forcing him to talk about it.
2. Take the next step together.
For some guys, marriage can feel like a huge step – and that’s often because it’s a commitment that’s talked about ‘too early.’
Now, there’s not really a timeline for commitments, and each couple will find what works for them. If you’re not living together yet, however, your boyfriend might be right to feel like marriage is a huge leap!
There’s no set path, but it can help to slowly work your way up to a proposal rather than expecting one just because you really love each other.
Your boyfriend will love you, of course, but he might want to make sure that you are truly compatible in the long-term.
That means living together, for most couples, at least, and experiencing each other at your best and worst.
If you’re currently taking it in turns to crash at each other’s place a couple of nights a week, your boyfriend might not feel like you’re ready to suddenly spend all your time together in the same house.
Slowly move forwards with different levels of commitment, like spending more time with his family and friends, and with each other.
This will help him realize how well you fit into his life and how compatible you are, and he’ll feel more comfortable asking for the next level of commitment – marriage.
3. Remind him how great things are, not what is ‘missing.’
If you’re obsessing over marriage or it’s all you can think about because he just.won’t.propose, you need to take a breather.
This is something a lot of us experience, but it can have a really negative effect on the relationship if you can’t keep it under control.
You might start to resent the fact that your boyfriend hasn’t proposed, or obsess over what you can do differently to get him to want you more.
The more you focus on this, the more strain you are putting on both him and the relationship, and the more likely it is to negatively impact things.
Imagine if your boyfriend was constantly asking you to do something you weren’t ready for. You’d start to feel guilty for not feeling ready, as well as frustrated that they won’t give you space.
You would hate that they’re not respecting your feelings, and you’d feel very conscious of your behavior, to the point where the relationship would start to suffer.
Rather than doing those things, just try to focus on how great things already are. Be an amazing partner, take the pressure off by letting it go for now, and show your boyfriend just how great the relationship is.
The more he sees this ‘normal’ side of you (rather than the ring-obsessed version of you!), the more he will have faith in things working out long-term – and the more likely he then is to feel confident, and comfortable, enough to propose to you.
4. Openly talk about it.
Radical, we know, but this is something that a lot of us tend to avoid doing when it comes to proposals!
Again, if you’ve already spoken about marriage with your boyfriend and it’s not exactly gone the way you want it to, we’d suggest skipping this one.
But if you’ve never really talked about it with your boyfriend before, you might have avoided the topic of marriage because you don’t want to be ‘that’ person who is nagging and begging for a ring.
Sound right? There are so many unfair representations in TV shows and movies that lead a lot of men to think that us wanting to get married is us acting ‘crazy’ or trying to ‘trap’ them. To avoid this kind of interpretation, stay calm!
If it’s not something you have spoken about before but you’ve thought about a lot, it’s easy to launch into the conversation and be very, very excited – after all, you’ve planned it all in your head, so you’re comfortable with the topic.
He might not be on the same page as you (yet!), so might be very taken aback and feel pressured if you launch in with “So, I’ve been thinking about us getting married – we could do X, and get Y band to play, and I spoke to your sister about getting your grandma’s wedding ring.”
See what we mean? Save that kind of chat for your besties and keep it cool with your boyfriend – for now, at least.
You can let him know that it is something you’d like to aim toward, or something that would mean a lot to you.
Explain that you don’t want to put any pressure on him, and that you’re not expecting anything but you want to make sure you’re on the same page in terms of commitment and long-term goals.
Gauge the vibe and see how he feels – if he seems uneasy, let him know you understand how he feels, you’re happy to talk about it, and that you can also revisit this topic another time if he would prefer.
Remember that marriage, and proposals, are a two-way street and you need to respect how he feels just as much as you want to communicate how you feel.
5. Spend time with married or engaged friends.
Some guys worry that marriage will change things for the worse. They might not have any experience of long-term relationships and be concerned that everything will change and they’ll no longer have their independence.
Start spending more time with couples who are either engaged or married. You don’t need to make a big show of the fact that they’re married, as this may make him suspicious of your intentions!
Instead, keep it casual – the more time he spends with people who have made that commitment to each other, the more familiar it will start to feel.
He’ll see that his married male friends still have their own life and enjoy being married, and he’ll start to see that for himself and your relationship together.
The more he becomes comfortable with the idea of marriage, the more likely he is to want it for himself and actually propose to you!
6. Turn up the romance.
Similar to making yourself indispensable in his life, getting more romantic more often is a great way to speed things up with your boyfriend.
The more relaxed and in love he feels with you, the more confident and comfortable he’ll be when it comes to taking it to the next level.
If he feels like there is still so much going on in your relationship, and you’re still very happy and loved up, he’ll start to naturally think of how much more commitment he can make to you.
It will start to feel like his idea, which means he’ll be more confident in making the decision to propose.
If he sees that things are strong between you and you still make time for romance together, he’ll start to see the bigger picture of spending your lives together.
Make a bigger effort with date night, or plan a romantic weekend away together. Try to find some time where you can be alone together and really focus on how good things are between the two of you.
Getting in the romantic mood will naturally lead him to think of things like your future, marriage, kids, and so on. The more he feels like it’s a realistic option, the more likely he’ll be to pop the big question.
So, we’ve learnt that the best way for a guy to feel like he wants to propose is just that – making it his decision.
That means laying off when it comes to pressure and nagging comments, and just showing him how great you two are together. The more familiar and comfortable he becomes with the idea of marriage on his terms, the better.
That means he needs to see it for himself rather than you trying to force it on him all the time!
When it’s the only thing you can think about, it’s hard not to pressure your man into proposing, but it will only ever backfire. Instead, let him come to the idea himself – and get ready to say yes!
Still not sure how to get your boyfriend to propose? Tried everything on this list already? Chat online to a relationship expert from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out. Simply click here to chat.
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