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Confessions: Girl I want to marry is unwilling to meet me halfway on key issues

Readers Lounge By Simon and Boke
I wish to marry her because she has all the qualities I want (Photo: Shutterstock)

I am a 26-year-old university student. I have a beautiful girlfriend on the same campus and we love each other very much. She is not ready to be married to anyone else but to me. I also wish to marry her because she has all the qualities I want. But I have one challenge; she is four years older than me though looks younger in appearance. She claims she is a virgin, has never had a boyfriend, and is not ready for sex before marriage. The thing that annoys me most is she is a serious Christian and wants us to strictly have a church wedding, which I have never admired even once since and am not a good believer in matters of Faith. Also, her home is thousands of kilometres from mine. I am truly in love with this woman. We meet almost daily to negotiate on some of the mentioned issues but she sticks to her stand. She is always on my mind. I am left confused. What can I do now?

{Nikko de Plucky}

What the readers say:

Dear Nikko,

Sorry for what you are going through. To me, this woman is four years your senior and how sure are you she is a virgin and you are her first boyfriend? Do not force yourself into a relationship just to please a person, remember marriage life is not a rehearsal but a long time commitment. If you can respect her opinion why doesn’t she respect yours? Marriage life is not a one-way opinion but two-way opinion. Clearly state your goals, priorities, demand or needs if she cannot meet them then leave her and start afresh. Do not force yourself into a situation you will regret later on. It is your life and your future. How things start now is how they progress. You cannot plant beans and expect to reap maize.

[Onyango Outha?]

?Respect her wishes, if you cannot then you are both incompatible, you are even lucky that she is a virgin at that age. Sex is for the married, more relationships would have lasted if sex was saved for marriage. Remember she has been hanging in there waiting for the right man; if you are the one and you truly love and respect her as you claim, then go by what she wants, which is a church wedding.

[Fred Jausenge]

Nikko, am equally left confused here, your story sounds like a well-mustered movie. A very beautiful girlfriend, she is older by four years, she is a virgin, has never had any boyfriend, no sex before marriage, she insists on a church wedding, her home is several miles away.

I have never seen her, I do not even know her but I see a lot of deceit in her. Let her tell you the person she is! I equally read lack of seriousness in you! Marriage is not a thing to rush over. It is a lifetime commitment. I don’t think you are personally ready for all these; not at your age – she is already controlling you yet you are not married. If you go ahead and yield to her demands, you will always be a frustrated man brother.

People have pasts, we may not have clean pasts. You better be hated for what you really are than to be loved for what you are not. Take your time to know her. Do not be fooled by beauty. Beauty is for the public domain; go for character. As I said before if she is giving you all these demands while you are dating, what do you expect when you marry her?

[Ouma Ragumo – Sifuyo]

Boke says:

Marriage brings together two different people. Now, although the people are different they are agreeable. To get to that point the individuals must do a lot of giving and taking until compromises are made and middle grounds are arrived at. Otherwise, the couple will struggle with incompatibility.

What you are raising is primarily an issue of compatibility. Two areas stand out for me. One is your age difference. You are saying age is but a number but in your case, it is not. You are yet to be at peace with this difference. Analyse what this age gap presents, especially the negative one then give an honest judgment of yourself. Simply ask yourself if you can handle it. If you cannot then do the honourable thing and end the relationship. Heartbreaks have a high recovery rate compared to broken marriages.

Secondly is the issue of religion. Being in agreement as far as your religious conviction is a concern is critical. Remember religion is much more than where a person goes on Fridays, Saturdays, or Sundays. To some people, their religion dictates virtually everything from what they eat, what they wear, how they raise their kids, to their investments and much more. So you cannot brush this off. Find a way of agreeing on this otherwise you would be setting yourselves up for unending conflicts.

The rest of the matter such as the distance is a non-issue. Covering that distance to see her parents is such a small price to pay for a lifetime relationship. For your information, this you already know, people transverse continents just to do this.

These and any other areas that you are both not comfortable with should be discussed amongst yourselves.

Hilda Boke Mahare has a background in Counselling Psychology and loves to share her knowledge in matters of life and relationships.

Simon says:

Nikko, thank you for your question. That is indeed a tough predicament that you are in when your 29-year-old campus girlfriend says that it is only on the eve of her wedding night that she will give it up. I have also taken note of the other elements in your relationship that are also somewhat confusing - the church wedding thing, the long-distance between your respective homes etc. but I believe that a wedding and marriage may not be your immediate concerns just yet. I think there are many other things you need to take care of before issues to do with a wedding become your primary focus.

One thing that strikes me about this relationship is the age difference. I am also amused at the fact that a 29-year-old woman is still in university and waiting for marriage to break through those gates. I don’t know her but I think this is a highly unlikely occurrence and I believe she is only taking you for a ride. It is also rather interesting that the only opportunity to verify what she is saying shall be on the wedding night which is essentially a point of no return should you discover otherwise. I have a strong belief that she may have lied about her virginity in the beginning and does not know how to get out of this situation thereby giving you some “monster-stories” about how she wants to wait till a ring is on her finger to indulge.

At this age, you need to be exploring many things in your life and one of these is your sexuality. This is a more immediate need than thinking about a wedding/marriage that is even going to be a hard sell to your family members (especially to your mother and sisters). Again, you are working on your education so it is going to be a long process before you get a job, settle down financially to the point of considering starting a family. Those are medium to long-term plans that should not cloud your judgment for now.

My advice is that you concentrate on building relationships with other people (including women your age) and let her look for another man who is ready to walk her down the aisle. Get to discover yourself, learn, and build your character towards having a firm basis and understanding about yourself. Concentrate on your studies and in building a financial foundation. It is too early for you to be thinking about marriage, there are many other things that a man of your age should be doing. The possibilities are endless and you will find another girl later in life who will not have too many issues that you will have to deal with.

Simon Anyona is a relationships counselor

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