Help Me, Bubby!

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Bennett and His Bubbe's Beau

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Tuesday, June 8, 2004
Dear Bubby,

I am a 25 year old woman who has been dating her boyfriend for 2 years now. The bone of contention between us has always been that I want to (and am ready to) marry my boyfriend, while he is not ready. Any time I have ever brought the topic up, he has always told me that he loves me and just needs a little bit more time. The first time I brought this up was 10 months into our relationship. Obviously, his "little bits" have been adding up.

Recently I have been more hurt and upset -- as I feel this has been dragging on for too long. I have told him that he needs to make a decision. His response was "I love you and want to marry you, I just need more time". We have spent time with each other's families, see each other every day (though do not live together -- and cannot as we are Orthodox Jews), even have a dog together.

Finally I told him that basically he needs to make a decision as I grow more hurt and upset every time he delays the future. I feel like a reject -- I'm good enough to date, but not to marry. He insists he will propose -- sometime. His actions don't always support that. For example, he has been looking into a buying an apartment, and has not asked my opinion on locations. He claims that he would not actually buy it without me seeing a place first, but he still doesn't bring me with to see places.

Yesterday, he told me, "I love you and I know I want to marry you and raise a family with you, and you are the only one for me. I'd rather wait longer but I don't want to lose you and make you upset and I'd rather marry the right person for me."

I told him I don't want to accept a proposal from a person who is only giving it because he doesn't want to lose his girlfriend. He said that is not the reason -- he's proposing because he wants to marry me. His preference is to wait, but his stronger preference is to be with me.

I am so torn, I don't know what to do. I worry that if I don't accept his proposal, another one won't be forthcoming so quickly. I'm worried that if I accept and he really doesn't want to get married that eventually the marriage will dissolve because it was created under bad circumstances. He said that the proposal isn't what sets the tone for the marriage -- its the past 2 years that has done that.

Maybe he's really ready and, not having been in this position, doesn't know how to deal with his feelings?


Dear Confused,

You are not confused but this boyfriend of yours certainly is.

If he wants to marry you and two years have already passed, what is he waiting for? Does he have a career? Established in business? If he is planning on buying an apartment, you should be with him all the way. You are both getting older and wasting time. I think he has gotten used to you - everyday - and what do you talk about everyday, or do you just spend the day arguing about when to get married?

If I were you I would take a long vacation from him and see how much he misses you and comes to get you. I think he has become too complacent. It seems to me that Orthodox people prefer quick and young weddings so the couple can get on with building a home and a family. That seems like the healthy thing to do.

I can tell you just recently I heard my friend's son and his girlfriend parted company after 16 years of togetherness. They are not Orthodox but the pain is the same. This woman just got tired of waiting. Don't let that happen to you. You are young and deserve someone who will respect, admire, and love you.

I hope I helped you a little and I wish you the very best.
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Bubby is our 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93 94 year old grandmother.
A few years ago we introduced her to the internet and we've been getting daily e-mails from her ever since. When she was 87, we began this website. We now believe she is the oldest blogger on the Internet.

Whether Bubby is reminding us that boyfriends do not substitute for warm jackets in the winter, or that it's better to receive a compliment than a brick, she always has something to say to her granddaughters.

Now with this new website, Bubby can finally share her wisdom with the rest of the world. And she's excited about it! (Which confuses us, because she used to say we were all she needed.)

Hopefully this will be as much fun for new readers as it will surely be for her. And if not, well, as Bubby says, it will all come out in the wash.

So, are you looking for advice on food, work, a broken heart, or the perfect bat mitzvah present?

But no dirty words allowed or you'll only get one matzah ball.

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