“It is necessary, and even vital, to set standards for your life and the people you allow in it.”
~ Mandy Hale
Deciding whether to wait or move on is a tough decision.
And there’s really no one set answer. People are fascinating, complicated, emotional and unique. We come with our own history, expectations, past wounds, and family dynamics, among other things.
Now add to it that each person is at their own moment in their journey. While this may sound like a lot, I encourage you to keep reading to shed some more light on the subject.
Here are some factors to consider before making a decision to wait or move on:
1. Consider how long you’ve been waiting for this person to commit.
Only you can decide whether you think you’re done waiting. If you believe it’s been a very long time you’ve waited around for him, perhaps it’s time to consider moving on.
On the other hand, if you’ve been trying to hurry the relationship along unrealistically, consider what your motivation might be.
- Are you scared he might leave?
- Do you believe you’re not good enough for him?
2. What are his reasons for not committing?
Take some time to listen to his thoughts and feelings around commitment. Maybe he has some valid reasons for taking it slow. Keep an open mind to his opinion.
3. What is your timeline?
Consider your own needs and your vision for your life.
- How does he fit in with it?
- Do you find yourself compromising on values or goals?
- Do you find yourself frustrated because you’re allowing this relationship to keep existing without a definite plan?
It’s ok to communicate your needs and let him know you’ll move on with your life if he’s not ready.
Acknowledge his own timeline is valid in the same way yours is.
This is not the time to be petty or to try to manipulate him. Be clear about it and speak from your own perspective. If you are on different pages with your relationship, then that’s an important thing to know. Better to realize this now rather than in ten years.
4. How do you view yourself?
Take some time to consider who you are and your own worth. Do you think you are deserving of a healthy relationship? How does this present relationship align with your view of yourself?
Here’s an exercise I call 5-5-5:
Write out 5 words to describe yourself, 5 reasons you deserve to be in a healthy relationship and then 5 things you have to offer in a relationship.
Now use this exercise to compare to your current relationship. It can help give you clarity as to whether to move on or stay.
5. How do you view commitment?
Think about your values around commitment. Sometimes we’re so focused on a label or title and we miss experiencing the present moment.
Ask yourself what is driving your need for a commitment.
Does getting him to commit mean you can announce that you’ve attained a certain social status or that you’ve met a certain expectation from others?
Only you can make the final decision whether to wait or move on. Remember to be realistic and keep the communication flowing!
Melissa King, MA, LPC, NCC – www.firelightcounseling.com
To wait or move on, that is the question.
When a man is not committed, but you’re hanging out waiting for him to decide to commit, it can feel like you’re in limbo. Stop waiting, and start taking action!
To be honest, your man may not be thinking in these terms of making a decision to commit.
Instead, he may be enjoying himself and relatively oblivious to the idea of making a decision about committing. That is wonderful! There is nothing wrong with this–we want everyone to enjoy themselves. Take a page out of your man’s book and have fun!
In general, women tend to be more serious about relationships.
During the process of getting to know someone new or more deeply, enjoying yourself is essential. If the two of you are going to commit to each other, you both would want the long-term relationship to be enjoyable, right?
So it’s ideal if the relationship can begin and continue with having FUN! Even if it ends up being a short-term relationship, at least you had a good time.
That being said, if you are having fun and are ready for more commitment, think about what commitment really means.
Sometimes we think that commitment is when he says, “I love you”, or proposes marriage.
Actually, commitment is the agreement to make choices based on the best interest of the couple, versus the individual.
For example, let’s say you want to eat Italian food, but your man might be craving a burger, and the last three times you’ve gone out to eat were at Italian restaurants.
In the best interest of the two of you, this time you go for burgers. It’s not just about what he wants, it is also about showing that you are willing to share, compromise and be supportive.
These are healthy attributes that are good for the relationship.
Another example is the amount of time you spend together. Spending time together is an important part of growing a relationship. But you may prefer more time together than he does.
In an ideal committed relationship, you honor his need for more time apart, he respects your need for more time together, and you both find ways to help the other get their needs satisfied.
Once you have identified some actions that you believe show commitment, start to notice if he does any of those things. Have a conversation with him about it.
If you can get on the same page, wonderful! If not, wonderful! Don’t wait any longer: make room for a new man in your life.
You deserve a partner who wants to have fun and is happy to meet your commitment needs.
- Stop waiting.
- Take action to have fun.
- Assess if you are making choices for your best interests or for the couple. Neither is wrong. Just observe.
- Think about what kind of actions you would like to see as a sign of commitment.
- Notice if the guy you’re waiting for is showing he’s committed through his actions.
- Have a conversation with him about what you’re hoping your committed relationship will look like.
- Ask what is important for him in a committed relationship.
- Are you on the same page? If not, stop waiting, move on, and make room for someone who is!
Jolene Stokesberry, MA, LMHC – www.lightmindcounseling.com
Should I stay or should I go is an age old question that most women have asked themselves at one point or another.
How does one decide when it’s time to jump ship or give it just a little more time. There are several factors that I think play into this decision.
One is timing meaning what stage you are at in your life.
If as they say your biological clock is ticking., you really want kids and you don’t see any significant movement towards commitment I would say it’s probably time to consider moving on.
If you are older and want to be sure your senior life is settled, calm and secure and once again you don’t see any movement towards commitment it’s also probably time to reevaluate and consider moving on.
As women we tend to fool ourselves into believing that we can change our men. In most cases we cannot.
If a man tells you he doesn’t want kids or doesn’t want to get married or remarried, listen to him.
We tend to ignore what’s right in front of us and rewrite the script to meet our needs.
We also compromise on the things that are most important to us. In essence we settle for many reasons.
One of the big ones is for fear of being alone. Each one of us must search inside for self love first. We set the standard for how others treat us.
Trust your gut.
Truly. If you’re feeling anxiety, are tired a lot and feeling less joy than you should, consider that this relationship is not fulfilling your needs. You’re worth it. We are all beautiful in our own ways and we each deserve our own version of a fairytale love.
What we desire and what we’re willing to compromise on will change through our life cycle.
But pay attention to what your intuition is telling you through bodily sensations and thoughts. You are your own best guide. Trust yourself.
Lynn Rosen, PhD – www.bocaratonrelationshipcounseling.com
This is a common question amongst women in the dating world, should I wait for my man to commit or move on from the relationship.
The answer is a difficult one because there isn’t always a clear yes or no, it sometimes depends on the situation or circumstance.
There is one thing that is certain when it comes to dating and relationships and that is don’t compromise yourself just to stay in a relationship.
So here are some questions to ask yourself while you are deciding to stay or go:
First, if you are in a dating relationship do you know what you want and what you are looking for in a partner?
What kind of relationship are you wanting and what are your boundaries?
- If you are clear on what you want in a partner and a relationship you can more clearly make a decision that is right for you as you move further into a relationship.
- If you are not clear on what you want and what is important to you then take a time out for yourself and get clear on boundaries and what you want.
Second, if you are thinking you are on the same page and your partner all of a sudden changes things up or says they aren’t sure that they want to commit, take a deep breath and pause.
You don’t have to make a sudden decision about staying or going but you do need to make a well thought out decision for yourself. Again, don’t compromise who you are to stay in a relationship.
If you want a deeper commitment and your partner isn’t sure then maybe it’s time to slow things down and review with each other what you want and what your priorities are regarding a relationship.
Lastly, remember every relationship is unique and different.
- What is going on in this relationship that you value and would you like to improve?
- What are you holding on to with the relationship and what are you afraid to let go of?
Remember also that you are worthy, you are enough, and you are of value.
You are a part of the relationship and your man is the other part of the relationship, it’s important to be clear on what you are both looking for, what you want and if you are on two different pages or you feel like you have to keep compromising yourself then maybe it is time to cut ties.
However, if you still see value in the relationship and you both are on the same page and just want to take the relationship slower then maybe the relationship is worth saving.
Monica Burton, MS, LMFT – www.monicaburtonlmft.com
Some women nowadays find themselves loving a man who does not want to commit. He may want to date in an open ended fashion, not understanding that for a woman security in an intimate relationship is paramount in meeting this legitimate need.
So, the question you may be asking yourself may be whether to stay, hoping he comes to his senses, or if you should let him go so you can consider other prospects.
The first thing I’d say to you that you need to do what is in your best interest.
While you don’t want to pressure a man into a commitment, you do need to honestly and openly discuss your needs and concerns with him.
Follow the following tips:
- Ask yourself if you want to be with a guy who is not showing that he wants to move to the next level in the relationship. Dating for a year makes it a long term relationship and both of you could begin to discuss this possibility.
- Prepare yourself for having an honest conversation with him about your desires and dreams in this regard. Gather your thoughts and write them down. Rehearse what you are going to say in a succinct and clear matter.
- Schedule a time with your beloved and express yourself assertively.
- Engage him by asking him to respond to what you have expressed, and inquire as to whether he has considered making a commitment to you.
- If things go well, get more specific about the time frame to begin planning how to move forward.
- If he demonstrates being aversive to commitment, ask him what prevents him from wanting to do so. Some people have had negative experiences in relationship and have trust issues as a result.
- If he just wants to continue on with relationship as is, you need to think seriously about ending it. Investing more in a relationship that is not going in the direction you desire is, more than likely, a waste of your time and a heartbreak waiting to happen.
- Be smart and decisive. Don’t stay just because you’re afraid to be alone, or because you don’t believe you’ll find other prospects.
Nelly Venturini, LMHC, NCC, CIRT – www.nellyventurini.com
Your man isn’t committing and you’re not sure if you should stay or go, right?
Let’s press pause on asking him the questions, getting at his head space, or unpacking whether he really cares. Instead, you need to ask yourself some questions. And I mean really ask.
These are not questions to gloss over but instead questions that invite you to break out that ol’ journal and really dig in:
1. What does a committed partnership offer me that I do not currently have? How would our connection look different if we were committed?
Oftentimes we desire commitment because it gives us a sense of security. Rightfully so! He finally asks you to be his girlfriend or he makes it Insta official with a super-cute pic – but these things don’t guarantee permanency. There is no full proof way to ensure he’s laser focused on you, even after marriage.
So, you need to really ask yourself what the commitment will offer you and ask for those specific things (like, more quality time or exclusivity).
By asking you’ll quickly gauge whether you’re on the same page and whether he’s worth your time.
Another important piece to note is how your connection would look different.
If he’s not ready for exclusivity, focus on making your connection emotionally rock solid. That way when the time comes for more commitment you’ll know he offers maturity.
2. Am I experiencing pressure from myself, friends/family, or social media to be in a different spot in my life?
This one is tough for many of us to admit to. Sometimes we pressure our partners or move on because we want to be where everyone else. FOMO, anyone?
Here’s the deal, rushing him to commit is ignoring what he’s actually saying.
You don’t win if you get him to commit. Instead, you get a partner who is now second guessing themselves and your bond.
Instead, consider whether commitment is something you’re really ready for.
If he’s your person you may want to slow down because he’s worth your patience. But then again, if you’re ready to settle down, trust that intuition and exit stage left.
3. Where am I headed?
Have you heard people say they are dating for marriage? This phrase is jam packed with intentionality. If you’re dating for fun, have fun. But if you’re dating for marriage then you can’t dip your toes in the fun pool. Those people are not ready or interested in that (cough cough Bachelor in Paradise Deanie Babies anyone?).
Be direct with him
Is he hitting up Bumble and Tinder because he’s looking for lifelong partnership? And more importantly – are you dating for marriage or fun? This perspective will drastically change who you connect and settle down with.
Check in with you first and you’re golden.
Kendra O’Hora, Ph.D., LCMFT – www.wellnessandco.org
There are so many different stages of relationships involving decision-making, decision-making regarding the individual, and ultimately the couple.
One hard decision that women are sometimes faced with is whether they wait for a commitment, whatever that looks like for them, or move on from the relationship.
When we say “commitment,” this can apply to anywhere from committing to exclusively dating one another, committing to moving in together, and even committing to marriage.
The further into the relationship proves to make this decision that much more challenging as we get more involved, and the decision will be much more impactful on our lives at that moment.
A decision to move on from a prospective partner who is undecided whether they want to be in a relationship is a much easier decision and action than moving on from a fiancé who won’t commit to a wedding date.
Like any decision made within a couple, there needs to be open communication and dialogue.
True intentions and feelings need to be discussed and processed before any individual or couple decision is made. The best decisions are made with the most information and the most facts. Not with assumptions and false notions.
Talk to your partner about your wants and needs for yourself and your future.
Match them against their wants and needs for their future. Try to approach it with as much intellect as possible and not emotion. If all else fails and you can’t come to a satisfying conclusion, then seek the guidance of a third party. This is not a decision that should be made lightly as it is ultimately so impactful.
Remember, you are responsible for your own choices.
Waiting for a commitment is a choice. Moving on is a choice. Women have so much power in their relationships, and with a little bit of strategy and intellect, they will ultimately come to the right decision for themselves and their partner.
Lori D’Elia, MA, LMFT, CPC – www.deliafamilysolutions.com
Well, ladies, if I am to be of any use to you I think it is fair that I come clean.
When presented with this topic, it was impossible to stop myself from saying out loud, “If the question is even being asked: boy bye.”
Alas, that is not exactly compassionate, nor does it provide you with any tools to help figure out what to do.
Now buckle up, because I have LOTS of questions for you as you navigate whether hanging in there or moving on is the best choice for you.
Commitment to a relationship is a big step and something that both partners should enter into happily and willingly.
Commitment is also kind of an abstract idea that may look different to everyone. I would encourage you to take some time and consider what your personal definition of commitment is, so grab a pen or open the notes section of your phone!
- What does commitment mean to you?
- How do you show that you are committed to a relationship?
- What do you expect from a partner once they commit?
Ok, ok: so far how does your man add up?
This crossroads in your relationship actually provides a very cool opportunity for you: explore your own needs.
- What do you like or dislike about the relationship?
- Are your needs being met by this man? And girl, I mean all your needs: emotional, physical, sexual, mental, and whatever else that may be really important to you.
- How do you expect the relationship to change once he ‘officially’ commits?
- You know I have to ask it: what happens if he or the relationship does not change after commitment?
Taking the time to reflect upon exactly what it is you want and need can feel super uncomfortable and overwhelming.
Lastly, is he in the position to commit?
There are so many extenuating circumstances in life.
- Is he financially struggling to make ends meet?
- Is he caring for an ailing parent?
- Is he going through a messy break up or divorce?
- Is it possible that he enjoys your current entanglement and does not want more? Or is he just not the “one woman type” (insert eye roll here)?
Regardless of the reason, if he has made it clear he is not in a position to commit, I would encourage you to decide if that is enough for you.
In fact, he is perfectly within his rights to choose not to commit. But guess what? You are perfectly within your rights to move on.
Moving on can create the space in your life and heart for someone who is ready to meet you where you are at, because you deserve to be with someone who wants to be with you.
Meredith Buchanan, MA, AMFT – www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapists/meredith-buchanan
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