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MEN & MARRIAGE: WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS?

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In most relationships, you will always have one person that is driven by a higher level of commitment – engagement and marriage, while the other is just happy saying in its current form. Most people would agree that the latter is always the man. Statistics have shown that in more than half of these cases, the woman is the one looking for more commitment, while the man is content with a “status quo” scenario that could go on for years.

In line with our cultural stereotypes, you would say that both men and women can benefit from being married. However, most women feel that men seem to have a greater overall benefit. Several surveys have also shown as far back as ten years ago, that men end up accepting marriage as part of their lives only when they realize that it would be better than going through life single.  Through the years this sentiment may have changed, lessened or even flipped and men may now be more receptive to marriage without looking at it as a death sentence. But still there is ,the fact that men remain hesitant to “jump that broom”.

I really think that men are more resistant to marriage than women because they are made to believe that this will require them to increase their commitment and overall behavior very rapidly, and honestly, they do not always feel ready for that transition.

Quite often young men associate marriage with an increased sense of responsibility and a greater risk of having a financial loss, which is why they would prefer cohabitation versus actual marriage. Also the younger you are the less pressured you are by friends or your partner to get married. Others would think of marriage as their loss of freedom. The reality is that men need more time to grasp the idea of marriage and everything that could possibly involve. However as men grow older in both age and career paths, it seems to be easier for them to cross over and see themselves as fathers, providers, protectors, and everything that a husband vows to be, that in itself is an astronomic realization. 

It goes without saying that marriage certainly comes with great changes in men’s overall identity. All of those changes are accompanied by the fear and the unknown expectations of what it is to have to care for others, women are nurturers by nature and they have been raised to be automatically caring for others. In order for men to sacrifice for their future wives, they need to have mentally accepted that “this is the woman that I will share my future with”. Once this switch goes off, then they are ready for that internal transformation. 

We can conclude that getting married has really brought several changes to how men see themselves and how they will behave while accepting these changes. Certain aspects will always play a role in deciding whether it is time to get married.  Regardless of how the view of marriage may change in the years ahead, Steve Nock made a very valid observation prior to his sudden passing: “Marriage, will become an increasingly potent signal of commitment as other relationship forms become more common (i.e., cohabitation, etc.).Not all relationship transitions are transformative, but once men understand that the importance of the transition, they will accept that marriage matters (even if it take them a little longer than women projected)”.

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