Recognizing the signs of an impending proposal can be difficult, as your man may not be extremely open to discussing your relationship and marriage. However, your boyfriend may inadvertently communicate that he is ready to take your relationship to the next level, so you may be able to determine if he wants to get married by watching for specific clues.
Plans a Future With You
A man ready for marriage discusses issues in the long term, including you in his future goals -- for example, by asking "Do you think I should apply for that job?" or "Should I make an offer on that condo?" If your man suggests living together, he may be viewing you as marriage material, clinical psychiatrist Paul Dobransky tells Cosmopolitan magazine, in the article "10 Signs He Wants to Marry You." More subtle clues may include comments such as "This would be a good neighborhood to raise kids" or "Those new minivans come fully loaded."
Handles Finances Differently
A marriage-minded man often focuses his priorities on establishing financial security prior to marriage in provision for a family. Your boyfriend may suggest opening a joint bank account, which may indicate potential partnering in matrimony, asserts Dobransky. Demonstrating frugality or curbing large purchases may be a clue that he is saving for an engagement ring.
Behaves Out of Character
An impending proposal may be apparent if he is behaving differently -- for example, acting uncharacteristically giddy and more excited. He may engage in repetitive body movements, such as readjusting his clothes, that diffuse his nervous energy. A sudden demonstration of behavior similar to your initial courtship period -- such as holding hands or massaging your neck while working -- may be indicative of an imminent proposal. If he has changed his vocabulary from "I" to "We," this may be a clue to his marriage intentions.
Invests Time and Energy in You
Behavioral scientist Christie Hartman writes that an interested man truly "opens his life up to you," introducing you to family and friends, in her article "Signs a Man is Interested in You (Part 2)," published on her website. If he wants to marry you, he will likely communicate that you are his top priority -- for example, by exclaiming "I want to spend every possible moment with you." Another clue of proposal potential is referring to you as "the only one" or "special," suggests Dobransky.
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Boyfriend vs. Husband Material
- Oprah: How to Build Intimacy in Your Relationship
- Cosmopolotin: 10 Signs He Wants to Marry You
- Bride: Will He Propose? 10 Signs He's Planning to (Finally) Put a Ring On It
- Cosmopolitin: Is Your Boyfriend About to Propose?
- Marie Claire: 10 Signs He's Going to Propose
- Christie Hartman: Signs a Man is Interested in You (Part 2)
- Psychology Today: The Biology of Attraction
- The Complete Marriage Book: Collected Wisdom From Leading Marriage Experts; David A. Stoop and Jan Stoop
- Waiting and Dating: A Sensible Guide to a Fulfilling Love Relationship; Myles Munroe
- The Secret Psychology of How We Fall in Love and The Power of Female Friendship; Paul Dobransky, M.D
- He's Just Not Your Type (And That's a Good Thing); Andrea Syrtash
Michelle Stevens has been a writer for more than 20 years. Stevens obtained a master's degree in psychology from Eastern Kentucky University in 1987 and holds national certification as a school psychologist and licensure as a professional counselor in Georgia. Stevens has specialized in family counseling and cognitive behavior modification.
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