Modern Dilemmas

Dear Alex, I have been with my boyfriend for over six years. He wanted me to go pick out rings a while back, and I did. He is beginning to make me worry. He says that proposing will be no surprise but it makes me think he'll never do it. I am just at that frustration level with the entire issue. Getting engaged used to excite me, now it makes me stressed out. I worry he will never do it? I feel like my whole life is on hold, while I wait for him to ask me to marry him.

Much of the frustration when it comes to the ancient stand off of men versus women is the simple fact that men aren't as expressive about commitment as women. This drives us nuts and is why many women wonder whether or not their men really think about settling down for the long-term. The fact is that men do think about it a lot, but it's more difficult for them to talk about it. As a result, they almost always keep mum about settling down.

The problem is that some women start to feel scared or anxious whenever they feel their boyfriends aren't talking about the long-term enough. This is where the relationship can go from good to bad. They begin to badger their boyfriends about it, asking again and again when they plan to propose so to get the ball rolling and make this thing (which we have been dreaming about for years) finally happen. Let's face it this is different for girls.

Men often feel threatened when we approach the subject that's because they have deep concerns about big, life-long decisions, not to mention the financial aspects. Some have second thoughts about settling down with a woman who wants to "rush" things. And this happens even to men who think about commitment on a regular basis. So the issue is the more you ask him about marriage, the more he'll want to avoid the discussion.

So what happens next? You might get more and more agitated with every passing day, and he might get more and more shy about proposing. The downward spiral keeps on going until the one of you makes a demand or quits. Not the best outcome is it? Here are three ways to ease the situation:

Decide to just be yourself and drop the nagging woman label.

Put the whole thought to the back of you mind and focus on how happy you together.

Know that when it happens, he will have really worried about it probably more than you have!

Let him have his space and his moment. He will be working from a different timetable and set of imaginary deadlines. Give him that and trust in him that he will do the best thing in the end.

Alexandra Watson is a Happiness Expert and best-selling author. If you're ready to be happy and more confident visit