Cold Feet? You Better Question it!

I had someone message me, asking my thoughts on cold feet right before marriage because I’ve brought it up on air in the past. Here’s my thoughts…

Question Marriage!

I’m 53, been in multiple relationships, divorced twice and single now for more than a few years. Ready for an opinion from someone who’s not great at this? On the surface, it can seem like a bad track record, and maybe it is, but I would argue that my failures will ultimately lead to my success, because I’m learning from my mistakes. At least I hope I am.

A couple years after my 2nd divorce, I decided to try again with relationships. I ended up falling for someone, but I didn’t get the feeling she felt the same way. So, I ended it. In hindsight, it was the best thing I could do, because I became anti-relationship and I was a little jaded. You may think that’s not healthy, but I disagree. Taking a step back from relationships gave me the opportunity to see things in a new way, work on myself, find me again, reevaluate and form solid opinions on dating, love and marriage. I see my time being single as invaluable research and a learning experience no over-priced shrink could ever provide me with.

My hardcore stance on not getting involved has lightened up significantly but I’m still solid on never being married.

As far back as I can remember, I was never someone who looked at marriage seriously. Please don’t mistake that sentence with not taking commitment seriously. There’s a huge difference for me. The government and churches working together to make sure I’m fully committed to someone, turns me off. I hate the idea that I’m forced to love someone for the rest of my life, or my life could become messy. I hate the idea that it’s a blessing from a church and government legalities that are the foundations of what binds me with another person. I hate the idea that if I want to walk away for very good reasons, I could suffer, when I shouldn’t. Most importantly, I hate the idea of someone feeling trapped if they want to walk away from me.

Here’s Where I’ve Changed

During my self-exploration, I concluded that just because marriage wasn’t for me, that doesn’t mean it can’t be for someone else. I have more respect for the idea of the institution and can understand why some people feel the need to get other parties involved in their relationship. To each their own, and I mean that most sincerely.

With All Of That Said…

That doesn’t mean we can’t dive deep into why marriage isn’t a good idea for some. If you’re thinking about marriage or about to be married, I would highly suggest giving yourself permission to ask yourself some important questions. You may be asking “Wait, what do you mean, give myself permission?”

Well, society has a way of making men and women feel bad about themselves if marriage isn’t part of their life plan or they don’t ever want to be married. Everything, from books, movies, jewelry advertisements, friends and family are telling us that finding the right person and marrying them is important to be happy and needed to be a “real” adult. When that’s simply not true. That type of crazy rhetoric creates pressure that builds as time goes on and because that pressure is subtle, it can go unnoticed or ignored. And as we all know, ignoring a problem can make it seem like it’s going away.

Give Yourself Permission To Ask Yourself Questions Without Guilt or Fear!

The Big Question: Why?

I’m writing this in part for me, but I also hope that my life experiences can help others along the way. Oh, by “life experiences” I mean screw ups. In both marriages, I screwed up by making the biggest mistake, and then repeating it. I married 2 people because they wanted to be married, not because I wanted to be married. My thinking was…I don’t take marriage seriously and I look at it as just a piece of paper, so why does it matter if I’m married or not? If she wants to be married, then I’ll marry her to maintain her happiness. After all, I don’t want to lose her. I also allowed my ego to tell me I could handle marriage. Not selfish at all, huh? If you’re getting married for any reason other than because you REALLY want to, then you’re screwing up!

Here’s Where I’ll Meet Resistance…

It’s resistance that’s understandable because cold feet can be temporary and overly used to push people into marriage, but cold feet is a grey area. Some people have had cold feet and have gone on to have amazing and loving marriages, but I believe there’s more people who have had cold feet and know on some level they shouldn’t be getting married, but everyone around them is telling them that cold feet are just butterflies, then those people go on to eventually derail their lives. Divorce rates may back up my belief.

The Grey Area Is a Bitch!

Damn! This is tough. I don’t know you. How can I tell you if it’s just butterflies or dangerously cold feet? I can’t, but you can ask yourself questions that may help you figure that out.

Can you look at your life honestly and ask these important questions?

1: What kind of big life decisions have you made and how did they turn out?

2: Are you someone who likes to please others to your own detriment?

3: Are you scared of losing this person if you don’t marry them?

4: Does this feel more like pressure and less like a journey you desire?

5: Does love blind you?

6: Does it all feel rushed?

7: Are you doing this for ANY reason other than that journey, and how excited are you?

If you believe marriage is for you, more of my thoughts will only become a rant and sound like I’m trying to talk you out of it. Plus, you have things to do before your big day. So lets end it here.

If you’re thinking marriage isn’t for you, then figure a way out now! I suggest pulling aside a friend or family member who is supportive and won’t guilt you into going through with marriage, but rather help you create an exit strategy. A good plan that creates the least amount of pain for everyone involved.

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