Singaporebrides | Relationships

September 2021

How to Have “The Marriage Talk” with Your Boyfriend, Minus the Awkwardness

Itching to get married but your man still hasn’t popped the question, or even broached the subject? Here’s how to bring up “the marriage talk” without it getting awkward.

You’ve been with your significant other for many years, and you’re ready to take the relationship to the next level. But how do you begin “the marriage talk” with your boyfriend? Like any other big step in the relationship—officially becoming a couple, meeting each other’s families, or going on a trip together—talking about getting married is a scary and exciting milestone. How do you tell your boyfriend to put a ring on it?

What’s Scary about the Conversation

From asking your partner out for the first time, to reaching out to hold his or her hand, every new relationship milestone set your heart racing. You wondered who would make the first move, or feared they wouldn’t feel the same way. Imagine how much more intense the feelings of vulnerability and fear of disappointment and rejection would be, when you broach the subject of marriage. Many people also avoid the marriage talk for fear of coming across as naggy or clingy. It’s a scary conversation to bring up, no matter how long you’ve been together. What if your partner doesn’t feel the same way?

Joanne and Russell’s Magical Horseback Wedding at Capella Singapore by Pixioo

How to Bring Up the Marriage Talk

The marriage talk is a serious conversation, but it helps put the pressure off if you ease into it. Instead of bluntly asking your partner for a wedding date, you can start by sharing your vision for your personal life or your dreams for your relationship.

Share Your Life Vision

Instead of talking about your relationship, it can be less pressurising on your partner for you to share your vision for your own life. For example, you can share with them that you’ve always seen yourself married at a certain age, that you want three children, or that you’ve always wanted to live in a particular neighbourhood (where a BTO is about to launch–hint hint). This can then segue into a discussion on what you each envision for yourselves, and you can talk about whether your life visions match and marriage is in the picture. After all, marriage is not just about that big fancy wedding, but about joining your lives together.

Express Your Love

You want to get engaged because you can’t imagine a life without your partner, so why not start the conversation by telling them that? Tell them how much you love them and how you think you work well together. Share your dreams for the relationship, like how you want to go on a big trip together, or the way you imagine living in your dream house, cooking together or having breakfast in bed. Talk about how you dream of revisiting a favourite vacation spot for years to come. Sharing your dreams for your relationship’s future shows your partner that you’re in this for the long haul, and dreaming about your future together could flow naturally into a conversation about marriage.

Diana and Sufiyan’s Gorgeous Engagement Session and Blush and Green Wedding by Colossal Weddings

Why the Marriage Talk Is Important

Often, women don’t bring up marriage even when they’re ready to get married, for fear that their significant others will perceive it as nagging or pressure. However, the marriage talk is actually a healthy conversation. In the healthiest and happiest relationships, couples share their thoughts, feelings, and dreams, and are willing to talk about everything. The marriage talk is an important conversation about where each of you are in the relationship, and where you see your future together.

The key to avoiding nagging or pressure is to remember that the marriage talk is a two-way conversation. There’s a difference between, “What are your views on marriage?” and demanding, “When are we getting married?” Instead of pushing your dreams for a wedding and your personal timeline onto your partner, ask your partner how they feel about marriage and what it means to them. Make the marriage talk an open discussion where both parties can share their views about when and why to get married.

Rachell and Sean’s Peranakan-Themed Pre-Wedding Shoot with OneThreeOneFour

What If They Don’t Want to Get Married?

Your partner may not want to get married when you do, and it can feel very disappointing. But try not to take their opinion too personally. It isn’t necessarily a reflection of how they feel about you or the relationship. Seek to understand the reasons behind their reluctance to get married instead.

Beliefs and Feelings about Marriage

Talk about your beliefs about marriage and why you want or don’t want to tie the knot. Ask each other open-ended questions: Why is marriage important to you? What are your values regarding marriage? Is it a “piece of paper” to you? What are some marriages you admire and what are some you don’t want to model? What do you hope for your own marriage? How will you keep your relationship strong and happy through the years? Remember that there isn’t a “right” answer, and allow each person to express their opinions without pressure.

Sharing your values will help lay the groundwork for discussion should there be any differences in priorities. You’ll be able to understand where your partner is coming from if they don’t want to get married when you do. For example, they may believe that marriage is about a couple starting a new and independent chapter by themselves, and want to be financially secure before marrying. Or, your partner may feel that marriage is about family, and want to tie the knot soon so they can start having children.

Being able to clarify your values for yourselves will also help the discussion. When you can clearly express why marriage is important to you, or why you want to take the relationship to the next level, your partner is more likely to consider your reasons for wanting to get married. It might be a difficult and awkward conversation to start, but just talking about marriage will take your relationship to a deeper level as you share your dreams and beliefs with each other.

Credits: Feature image from Michelle and Byron’s Beautiful and Elegant Wedding at The Ritz Carlton Millenia Singapore by Antelope Studios

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How to have the marriage talk with your boyfriend

How to Have “The Marriage Talk” with Your Boyfriend, Minus the Awkwardness