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How to tell men marriage is a goal without scaring them off?

Title asks the question at heart.

I’m independent, financially and emotionally stable, and I would very much like to get married one day.

My reasons for marriage include:

  • having positive married role models that I admire

  • wanting to commit myself to someone

  • to spend every day waking up to my best friend

My reasons for marriage do NOT include:

  • having a wedding

  • because that’s what happens next

  • to have more children

I am 36, with a small child, and I would rather be single than in anything less than a committed, monogamous relationship.

How do I convey that to the men I date without freaking them out? It’s totally cool if that’s not what someone is looking for but I also don’t want to waste anyone’s time.

Thank you, men!

Edit: Just to be clear, not asking for advice on “when” this conversation should be had. Also, I’m aware you can have commitment without marriage. Not reconsidering my values or intentions. I got this one. I’m specifically curious about HOW to communicate this without freaking guys out.

Edit 2: To be extra clear, I haven’t scared anyone off yet. Every guy I dated was like “yeah, me too!” Unfortunately, my last partner did a 180 at the 8 month mark and dumped the “I have commitment issues and actually don’t believe in marriage” bit. I want to avoid THAT, as well as flings.

Edit 3: Thank you for taking the time to respond to my question. Many of them were really helpful. I am going to spend some time really digging into why I want to get married and will consider a lot of things that you shared in the future.

I am a little concerned by the comments that a woman my age with a child is not worthy of marriage. It’s alarming to read some of these comments not because of a fragile ego, but because those comments are genuinely scary to read. I can see that many people have been burned by divorce or see children as baggage etc. I haven’t been burned and I don’t see kids as baggage. I have had really positive relationships and I have ever more positive views on marriage. It was never my intention to marry when I was younger - too much of a free spirit. But now it’s something I’d like. My desire coupled with my life seemed to hit a nerve with many of you. There is nothing fucked up about my life or my choices. But it really is fucked up to determine my worth by a very genuine desire in life. If there is any takeaway, it’s that open and honest discussion is extremely important.

Peace out!

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