Hate To Break It To You But A Ring Won’t Fix Your Problems

Sophie Oatman
Sophie Oatman

Maybe it’s me being a frigid single bitch (it’s not, I love being single), but everyone these days is getting engaged.

I’m all for engagements, I love weddings, I love love – that’s not my problem. I love celebrating my friends engagements, I love being excited for them because it’s an exciting time – it should be celebrated. Engagements are special, you’re about to make a commitment to be with one person for the rest of your life.

But most people aren’t ready for that. Most people I see getting engaged together don’t even own a house. Hell – some don’t even live together, but they’re already planning to spend the rest of their lives living together not knowing each other’s painfully bad living habits.

I know it isn’t every millennial couple, but there is enough I’ve seen in my own life. I hear my friends in relationships complaining about how three other couples just got engaged, yet they aren’t. I hear them complain because they’ve been dating longer so they should be engaged by now; like there’s some kind of time frame; like someone said after two years together you should have a ring on your finger.

It’s this idea that people think they need to settle down by their mid twenties. It’s this idea that getting married will make everything better. It’s this idea that you’re not that serious until you’ve put a ring on it.

And with how high the divorce rate is I’m still so surprised how many people still romanticize and idolize marriage as much as they do. It’s like everyone has this idea in their heads that once they get married all their problems will simply fade away. But they won’t. Marriage is a commitment, it’s committing to working on your relationship every day, regardless of how hard and challenging things can get. Marriage is a vow to love the person you’re with forever, through everything you face in life. It’s agreeing to taking on all their problems and hardships because now their problems are also your problems.

The idea of getting engaged and married sounds all wonderful when things are going well, but what about when things aren’t going well and you’re tempted to call off the relationship? Marriage isn’t like that, marriage is more serious than a break up with your significant other. It’s a legal matter to walk away from now.

My problem is with people who get engaged for the sake of getting engaged; people who get engaged because they think it will fix their problems; people who are getting engaged because other people are getting engaged.

Couples who constantly fight and are clearly toxic for each other are getting engaged because maybe then if there is a ring involved it will stop their significant other from hitting on other people when they are drunk at the bar.

Oh wait, it won’t.

Getting engaged and eventually married won’t make your insecurities disappear, it won’t make you feel more whole, it won’t make you instantly happier, it won’t make your fears vanish, it won’t make you feel like your life has more of a purpose. Those things all start with you. They start with who you are as a person.

People are getting engaged because they hit a good patch, but then a few months down the road the ring is off and they are right back to where they were before, if they’re even together at all.

People try so hard to make things work because they don’t want to be alone. I know this because I’ve also done it. We as humans fear being alone, we crave attention and intimacy, and while there is nothing wrong with it – it also can be damaging to who you are as an individual.

We put love on a pedestal, we think finding “the one” will make everything better and our lives will feel more complete, and maybe in some cases it will. But most of the time it’s just an illusion we have made up in our minds.

What is the rush to get married? Really? What is the rush? Can you answer that?

Why rush in marriage before you’re drowning in bills, before you have a mortgage to pay every month on top of school taxes and every other payment you might not have at this point in your life? Why not work and enjoy life, spend the weekends with your friends, travel together if you desire and are able to. Why waste your 20s saving for a wedding before even saving for a house? What is really more important?

It just doesn’t make sense to me, but people are just doing it to do it. They’re getting engaged because it seems like it’s what you should do. They’re doing it because everyone else is engaged. They’re doing it because they feel like they’re missing out on some big thing by still calling each other girlfriend or boyfriend, instead of finance, husband or wife.

Marriage is about finding someone to work through life with you, not about finding someone to fix you. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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