My favorite is the “two best friends fall in love” variety. You know how it goes: Two people have been friends since childhood, one realizes he’s completely besotted with his best friend but she isn’t ready to admit her feelings even to herself. Then all of these sweet moments happen, like when she falls asleep on his shoulder and he has to pretend that his heart isn’t simultaneously breaking and trying to beat out of his chest.
Be still my own heart!
Then the moment comes when he bares his soul, she gets angry or some other nonsense to drag out the drama, and then – finally! – the kiss.
Oh, that kiss.
It gets me every time.
Here’s the thing about that kind of love story, though: the female half of that couple is not wondering if he wants to marry her. She’s completely oblivious to his feelings and her own until The Moment arrives, and when it does, all she has to do is step lightly into her happily ever after.
Since it’s rarely that easy for the rest of us, here at the Relationship Blackbook, we want to help you recognize the signs he wants to marry you.
If you’ve been wondering how to tell if he wants to marry you or if he’s maybe just sticking around for the good times, read on, my friends.
Sign #1: The idea of weddings and babies doesn’t shut him down.
We’ve all seen “the look” overcome a man’s face: His eyes slide out of focus, his mouth slackens, maybe he drools a little. Sometimes the look happens when you’re telling him about your best friend’s new puppy’s favorite toy. Sometimes it happens when you’re comparing the cut and fit of one strapless floral romper to another.
And sometimes it happens when you talk about who’s getting married, who’s having babies, or who among your mutual friends just popped the question.
If your man keeps his focus on you in the midst of such conversations, or better yet, manages to look interested, that’s a good sign that he’s open to the idea of marriage himself.
Sign #2: He includes you in his family gatherings and expects to be in included in yours.
Oh, the holidays. They are the perfect time for families to gather together to celebrate, to love one another, and to let all their crazy loose in one place. Thanksgiving and Christmas are the big ones, but birthday celebrations, holiday weekends, and family vacations are perfect opportunities, too. Does your boyfriend automatically include you in such gatherings? Does he not only invite you but expect that you’ll attend?
If he is naturally including you in the craziness that his immediate and extended family – and if he isn’t afraid of the crazy in yours – then be rest assured that he’s leaning toward long-term commitment.
Sign #3: He talks about upgrading and he wants your opinion.
Is he thinking of upgrading his phone, buying a new car, purchasing a house, or moving to a new apartment? One sure sign that he’s ready for marriage is if he includes your ideas and opinions in his decision making.
On the flip side, if he shows up to get you for a date in a brand-new truck you didn’t know he was buying or casually informs you he’s moving to a new place next weekend…you can safely assume that marriage is not even a blip on his radar.
It’s Tuesday night and you’ve brought work home with you. Or maybe you have homework, laundry, or a desperate need to binge watch your favorite guilty-pleasure show.
When he shows up uninvited with your favorite take-out, plops himself down on your couch, and happily (or at least with a minimum of eye rolling) sits through 3 episodes of Jane the Virgin while you paint your toenails, scroll through Instagram, and generally ignore him, all because he enjoys spending time with you…
That’s true love.
It’s also a good indication that he’s looking forward to spending a lifetime of lazy evenings at home with you.
Sign #5: He talks about the future…and you’re in it.
Where does he see himself a year from now? 5 years from now? Where do you fit into those plans and goals?
If his dream is to live as a doctor in some remote African village, good for him! If he has envisioned how you will fit into that dream (and you’re willing to go), good for you!
But if his plans and goals are all about what he will do rather than what you will do together, it’s best to keep your expectations of a long-term commitment low for the time being.
Sign #6: He intentionally builds strong relationships with your kids…
Or your dog, your cat, or your pet turtle, Penelope.
Perhaps he has shown interest in bonding with your kids-from-previous-relationships. Perhaps he is interested in you bonding with his. If you don’t have kids of your own, what about your brothers or sisters, your nieces or nephews, or even your parents? Does he:
- show up on a Saturday morning with donuts before accompanying you and the kids to the park?
- show interest in honoring your dad on Father’s Day?
- send your mom flowers on her birthday?
- invite your obnoxious older brother over for beer and football?
All of these are signs of two things:
- He’s a great guy and a total keeper.
- He sees your family and life-outside-of-him as valuable and worth his time and attention. In other words, he thinks you’re a keeper, too.
Sign #7: He told you he wants to marry you the same night he met you.
Okay, okay, this doesn’t happen very often in real life, but it does happen.
Sometimes guys just know. I personally know three men who knew within moments or days of meeting “the one” that she was the girl he would spend his life with. All of them have been married to their lovely brides for over forty years. I know another man who asked his far-more-logical, far-less-impetuous girlfriend to marry him within the first few weeks of dating. And then he kept asking until she said yes. Ten years later, neither of them have ever regretted it.
Sign #8: He’s given you a key to his house…and his heart.
Moving in together is not always a sign that a man is considering marriage. He may very well still be a cover-hogging commitment phobe (CHCP for short). He might just be a CHCP with a thrifty side.
Consolidating households, and therefor expenses, is a strong temptation for even the most stringent CHCP. So, if he talks about the two of you moving in together, what are his apparent motivations?
Does he propose that living together “makes more sense” financially?
Does he nonchalantly say, “We’re practically living together anyway, so we might as well make it official?”
Or does he express, through either words or actions, that being with you is the best part of living together?
I’m not saying you should wait for a big romantic gesture to be sure (some guys aren’t built with big romantic minds, after all). But if you’re wondering how to know if he wants to marry you, the way he invites you to share cohabitational bliss is a good indicator of his long-term intentions.
Check out this link for more helpful signs.
And now, for the surest of signs a man wants to marry you…
Sign #9: He’s down on one knee, ring box in hand, asking, “Will you marry me?”
Because here’s the truth: Men are unpredictable. It’s impossible to know what’s going on in their minds at any specific moment – okay, maybe at some moments – beyond what Jeff Foxworthy told us years ago: “I’d like a beer and I’d like to see something naked.”
Until he is down on that knee opening the box, even he might not know what his intentions are. So, do what do you do in the meantime, instead of constantly wondering, “Does he want to marry me?”
Relax and enjoy your love story. Enjoy the unknown, the anticipation, the joy of falling love.
Take this advice from a lover of romance: Your love story is beautiful, no matter what it looks like or how long it takes.
Now let’s keep the conversation going! How did you know your man wanted to marry you? Let us know in the comments!