How Long Should She Wait For Him To Commit?


Name: Kelli
Question: Should I move on from this long distance relationship?

I am 28, my boyfriend is 41. We have been in a long distance relationship for 3 years now. I live in WV and he lives in FL. I have been trying to get him to offer some type of committment; whether it be marriage, allowing us to move in with him, something…

He wont. He says he loves me. His mother says he has never cared about anyone like he does me but yet when I push for more, he shuts down.

He has never been married, has no kids. I have two boys which I think my be the reason he is hesitant even though he says they are not the problem. Their discipline is the main reason we argue.

Should I move on?
Age: 28


Let’s first unpack the fact that this guy has never been married and doesn’t have kids and you two argue about how you discipline your children. Take it from me, that kind of resentment will only fester over time. As I’ve written about before, my step-mother and my Dad were married for 35 years. Throughout that time, my sisters andI  each had close relationship with her. She wasn’t just my Dad’s wife to me. She was a parent. I’d known her since I was nine years-old. I was a profoundly lonely kid and she was…my friend. My only friend at that time.  That’s why – when she disinherited my sisters and I – I was so heartbroken. The decision to leave my father’s rather large estate to her three sons was one borne of jealousy and bitterness. She hated that my father didn’t financially support her two older sons the way he did his five daughters. She also deeply resented that she had to compete with us for his attention. She was a petty, insecure woman who – with an evil sense of glee – bragged to her doctor that she cut us out of her will.

You don’t want to someone who tolerates your children while harboring some secret grudge for them. If they’re young and live with you, you want to be with someone that will love your children as their own.  Never apologize to him or anybody else who tries to make you feel guilty for prioritizing your children.  If he’s like many people (men and women), he’s not thrilled about supporting another man’s kids. To be honest, I get that. Part of the reason my Dad wasn’t financially supportive of my step-mother’s two older sons was because they had a Dad. As a proud Italian man raised to believe that the greatest shame a father could commit would be to not support his family, my Dad had no time for men who abandoned their obligations where they’re children were concerned. That’s not to say he didn’t get them jobs, help them with work, and give my step-mother money to buy them and their children things. He did everything he could up to giving them large amounts of money. My step-mom’s youngest son was the only one of the three who benefitted from my father’s financial generosity in the form of college tuition and helping with an apartment. So, I get where your guy might be coming from in that regard. However, if he loved you enough, he’d suck it up. Trust me, my Dad was not thrilled about taking on three more dependents in addition to the five he already had. He did it because he loved my step-mother and – as much as it kills me to say this – my step-mother loved him. I may have deep residual anger for her, but I will never question her love for my father. She was the only thing that made him happy, I think, which makes what she did so emotionally devastating.

Now, with that out of the way, let’s address your question.

Girl, move on. If he loved you he would – at the very least – meet you half-way and agree to move in together.  He shouldn’t be hiding behind his Mommy like some pussy. A real man would never let his Mom get involved with this kind of thing.

Leave him. He will only get worse over time.




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11 Responses to “How Long Should She Wait For Him To Commit?”

  1. Jen Says:

    3 years is a LONG time! I’m also dating a guy who has never been married and doesn’t have kids, so my 2 kids are still throwing a wrench into his plans for a future with me because I’m the first single mom he’s ever dated. My kids don’t need him as a dad, they see theirs regularly enough. We’ve been together just short of 6 months…I’m going to give us some fun, no pressure time for a few more months leaving things the way they stand since we’re still reasobaby new to let us get closer to the year mark and let him see what he’d be missing if he can accept me as the full package that I am – but if at that point he hasn’t gotten his head out of his ass on whether or not he can accept my kids as part of my family, a family he would be joining if we stay together? I’m walking. Just seems a little quick for me to push him to make that decision now, so I’m giving him a bit more time to adjust to his romantic life playing out differently than what he had always imagined (I’m mid 30s, he’s 43 – by 43 if someone hasn’t figured out if they do or don’t want kids, especially determining if they want their own biological kids? Not much is going to change by me waiting around for a few years.)

    If it’s been 3 years and he’s having issues with your parenting style and not making a future commitment? It’s time to end things. That’s a LONG time for you to deal with that uncertainty. And you’re young – if you prefer older men like him, you’d have NO problem meeting someone older who would adore you as a parent and who would fall in love with you AND your kids!

    I know you’re in a super difficult spot, and I really feel for you…please keep us updated on what you decide to do, I’d love to follow your story and see how it plays out since I don’t have any friends dealing with this kind of a situation, so I have no one to bounce this awkward relationship scenario off of! Good luck! ❤


    • Troll Says:

      This is a great point. Finding another good looking 41 year old quality guy is going to be pretty easy to do at 28.


  2. ann Says:

    3 years? He’s already made his decision and unfortunately the LW is like a lot of women i know who dont want advice as much as they want a magic word that will change what they already see and know to be true if he wanted something more he’d already have it with you. He doesnt seem to have a problem with this set up so he wont be the one to change it.
    Jen your guy sounds the same. I don’t think he has his head up his ass so much as he has it screwed firmly on the direction he wants to go which is any way that benefits him. You want to show him what he’d be missing out on and as a single woman with no kids ( for a reason) i bet your boyfriend is like me. He didn’t forget to have kids he kust likes his life better without them and when parents fail to see that us child free people don’t see,the wonderful family life that you see we don’t feel like were missing anything. Good luck but i think 40 year old men know what they want


  3. Noquay Says:

    It’s not just about the OP, it’s about her kids too. My first stepmother did not really want me and Bro even though we weren’t too much younger than her two. Felt that resentment for 7 looong years before I took bro and bailed out of the family at 17. Kids know when they’re not wanted and, right now, they need to be the OPs top priority. Right now, this dude is getting his cake and eating it too, getting access to the OP without any responsibility.


  4. fuzzilla Says:

    Generally people like to harsh on women pushing for commitment…but yeah, 3 years is a long time, and she’s not even necessarily pushing for marriage, just some kind of compromise to make the relationship easier (like, at least living in the same town, maybe). If you have young kids, they should be your focus. Nothing wrong with wanting a relationship, it would be nice, but it’s kinda icing on the cake. Yup, he’s a big ol’ time waster.


  5. Nia Says:

    Also, to me the red flag is the age difference (a 25 year old and a 38 year old?—that’s how old they were when it started!) and the long distance thing.

    A lot of men date much younger women because they’re hoping that those women won’t be as “demanding” as older/their age women. It is true that older women are less easy going—partly because they’ve learned what bullshit looks and smells like and how to say “no thanks” to it. Men who date women in their 20s when they are almost 40 are…someone to take a close look at. Men who also do this “long distance” and involve their moms and won’t commit after 3 years? Gurl NO.

    This is a man who is profoundly uncomfortable with an actual, real, relationship, and I’d go ahead and “call it” and find someone who is excited to be with you every day and is actually in your city.


    • fuzzilla Says:

      I wonder if long distance appealed to her at first? For reasons it would appeal to anyone – your time together is just fun, no drudgery. Plus people in a rural areas have small dating pools and kinda have to accept traveling to find partners (though several states away is pretty damn far). I don’t disagree with your points, though.

      I really hope LW doesn’t let her kids suffer because she’s wrapped up in some dead-end dude drama. Not saying she is, and she’s not wrong to want a relationship, but any relationship comes with risk, and that’s one of the risks single parents need to watch out for.


  6. EANx Says:

    Discipline is a huge part of a relationship. Neither person wants to feel like they have no control in their own home. How has that talk gone? Has there been a talk?


  7. mark Says:


    Three years. Usually more than enough time to know someone if you are both making the effort. At least most of the time.

    Sorry to be blunt, but at that point you should have a petty good idea where you both stand and what efforts you individually and collectively ought to make.

    Add to that: the long distance aspect, his shut down behavior, etc.

    Your trying to tell yourself something but not listening.

    If you look at it from that perspective, what are you trying to tell yourself?

    If you are honest with yourself you should have a pretty good idea with that you should say and do. As should he….

    Best of luck and hope you make the right choice.


  8. mindstar3000 Says:

    How are the kids going to feel being dragged away from their father or fathers? Likely to blame her boyfriend.


  9. Troll Says:

    This guy sounds like a time waster. If your goal is marriage, you’ve given him more than enough time to @#$# or get of the pot and he obviously intends to do neither.

    Also, if your parenting styles dont align, that could become very frustrating and create a very stressful home life for all 4 of you. Unfortunately, this does not sound like a situation worth pursuing even if he were willing to move the relationship forward.


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