Is there a difference between couples that met recently and those in Huston’s study?Currently I co-run a longitudinal study of marriage and family development, started in 2008 and ongoing, and the answers couples gave me about their engagement ranged from several months to several years.Before bringing up the proposal conversation, ask yourself these four questions: Can you accept your relationship as it is, and remove/ give-up the expectation of marriage?Many women are interested in getting married simply because it’s validated by society, but that doesn’t mean you have to have a ring in order to be happy and have children.
Decades ago the statistics ranged from six to fourteen months.Much has changed in the last thirty years, and those in my study are still reporting general satisfaction in their marriages.There is actually a lower divorce rate now than in the 80s, and what marriage means on a societal level is also changing.A diamond is forever, but an expensive engagement ring means the marriage might not last that long. Men are 50 percent more likely to end up divorced when they said their partner's looks were important in their decision to get married, and women are 60 percent more likely to end up divorced when they cared about their partner’s wealth, compared to people who said they cared about neither. Honeymoons decrease the chances of divorce by 41 percent.* * *Part of the study echoes what we already know about marriage: That it's increasingly for rich people—who make a lot and can afford honeymoons.According to a new study, spending between ,000 and ,000 on an engagement ring is significantly associated with an increase in the risk of divorce. They analyzed income, religious attendance, how important attractiveness was to each partner, wedding attendance, and other metrics to determine the aspects associated with eventual marital dissolution. Dating for a while before tying the knot might indicate a level of planning that suggests the couple is in it for the long haul.You might even be filling your thoughts with anxiety and frustration about the future of your relationship.The issue of how long to wait for the ring might be a decision point for you.Ted Huston, a leading researcher on transitions in relationships, marriage and parenthood, followed couples for 13 years starting in 1979.He states in his study that happily married couples dated for approximately 25 months before getting married. Couples who were unhappily married soon after they said “I do” and quickly divorced more often married at or after three years.On average, the couples in my study decided to marry 2.8 years after they first showed romantic interest (many couples knew each other before they dated, but that isn’t counted).This may reflect growing trends in the delay of marriage.