Q: Dear Dr. Gilda,
My boyfriend and I had been together for a year when he got laid off and decided to move to Maryland to find work. Being a planner — at-least-a-year-in-advance-notice kinda girl — I said I would not go with him. After two months of rare emails, he broke up with me.
We started working it out again (after two months of not speaking) but my guard is still up. Recently I made the decision to move to Maryland, but at least an hour away from him, to take a job that I really wanted. He was excited and told me that I was the missing link in his life. As I was getting my bags packed, eager to be together now that we both had careers and so forth, he popped the question. I admit, now that I think about it, I answered too quickly, caught up in the moment.
Now we live together, and I am trying to start a life here, but I'm having second thoughts every day. This is everything I've wanted, but now…I'm not so sure. Is this normal? Is there any realistic advice that you can give me to figure out if this is the right thing to do? I love him but I don't feel that is enough.
— Cold Feet in Maryland
A: Dear Cold Feet,
It sounds as though you're more than "at-least-a-year-in-advance-notice kinda girl." In reality, you're a girl with very, very cold feet! But in all fairness, a life change such as marriage causes lots of folks to have second thoughts. Their fear serves as protection. If we jumped into such life-altering situations without weighing them, we'd end up doing things that would be dangerous to our emotional and physical health. So it's appropriate to be speculative and tentative in these instances. Consider that you also just made a geographic move, another large decision. Two huge changes in such a short amount of time can be unnerving.
But what's really going on inside you? You did move closer to your boyfriend, but you left enough distance to just dangle your toe in the water. Yet your feet are still cold. Are you angry with him for initially leaving you? Was your own move to his state a show of faith that you could do it, yet a deliberate statement that you are unwilling to blindly follow him if he gets the urge to move again?
Now that the two of you are almost merged, you are probably fearful about losing your independence and freedom. Instead of thinking in those terms, consider all the good things you would be gaining by becoming husband and wife. If this doesn't allay your fears, wait a while as you practice being a couple. Then let time dictate your final decision.
Is Love Enough?
by Dr. Gilda Carle<br /> <br /> He popped the question. I admit, now that I think about it, <b>I said YES too quickly,</b> caught up in the moment. What should I do?